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Old 07 October 2013, 14:17   #1
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Plymouth PBI weekend anyone else going?

There's a South-West region powerboat instructors' development weekend at Plymouth this week (12th & 13th).

I'll be there; are any other RIBnetters going?

(I'm not a PBI; the email said "suitable for potential instructors")
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Old 20 October 2013, 08:55   #2
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So, turns out the answer to that was 'no' then .

It was well worth going to — the idea was for instructors to catch up on the latest thinking (EDICT teaching model, changes to the man overboard and turning in confined spaces drills, etc). For me, it made a good opportunity to quiz instructors and trainers on what I really needed to do to as prerequisites to the PBI course.

They had 22 attendees split into three groups, with three trainers per group. That meant a ratio of 2:1 or 3:1 on the water, which was a perfect balance of time on the helm and watching other people.

Each group rotated between RIBs (SR4.7), displacement (Cheverton Champ) and jet-skis (Yamaha & Sea-Doo). All useful experience — as an SR4 regular, the SR4.7 felt familiar but did some things slightly differently, and hardly anyone I spoke to really had significant experience with displacement boats or jet-skis.

My own last displacement time was with a Beneteau 32 in 2008, before that a narrowboat, jet skis (interestingly vague steering around centre at speed, backwards steering in reverse and no neutral, and quite a lot of bite turning hard-ish at speed). So it was good to get the feel for both types, and come away with just enough experience not to be intimidated by them should the need arise.

And at 15 for the day (30 for the weekend), much better value than the train I took there and back.

I'll be looking out for it next year.
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Old 20 October 2013, 09:31   #3
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Sounds like a really worthwhile event.

Jet ski instruction; do you think it'll catch on?

Putting the words 'jet skier' and 'instruction' in the same sentence seems to me like an oxymoron of biblical proportions...
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Old 20 October 2013, 10:35   #4
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Oddly enough, the jet ski part was the one with the least instruction . It was more a quick:
  • Here are the controls
  • Turn the engine off notice that they're now completely useless
  • Get the feel for things at low speed
  • Follow our RIB ten ski-lengths apart and let's all go for a blast
Admittedly, they were a bit short on time, as it was 1:1 for the low speed part.


Reading the RYA's page on their PWC proficiency course, it looks like they are trying hard to get people trained to use them well, so I hope the take-up is good. The Yamaha I tried was simultaneously the smallest and the most powerful water craft I've ever handled, and probably the highest power:weight ratio I've ever experienced, so worth learning to use properly.
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Old 20 October 2013, 12:05   #5
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I have to 'fess up here and say that even though I hold a commercial skipper's ticket, work in a highly regulated, safety conscious offshore environment and am an RYA Yachtmaster Instructor for my sins the devil taps me very heavily on the shoulder when I get on board a jet ski....

It could be something to do with the Pina Coladas on Orient Beach, St Maarten, or the 'Painkillers' served at Sunshine's bar in Nevis but I must admit to a few non-textbook manouvers when I've paid my dollars for a 30 minute blast!

Nothing involving or endangering any other person on the water you understand but the missus refused to get on the back of one with me EVER again and then proceeded to hire her own and behave just as badly.

Of course, when you're ribbing, sailing or just moored up relaxing, they're all the biggest PITA imaginable and should be banned immediately and the owners given a 5 year stretch in Strangeways!
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Old 20 October 2013, 14:06   #6
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Sounds like a good weekend .
As for jet skis or PWC I love em trouble I still think I am 21 not 51
So after a hard day on the water training I feel more like 81 lol
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