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Old 05 September 2007, 13:07   #1
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Driving on the right?

Most photographs of ribs I have seen have been right-hand drive. In other words the steering wheel has been on the right, and the throttle control on the left of it.

My question is: why should this be so? After all, the rule-of-the-road on the sea is to drive on the right so that you pass someone port-to-port.

What reasons can you, dear reader, suggest why this apparent contra-to-logic exist?
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Old 05 September 2007, 13:10   #2
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To counter prop torque I think ?
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Old 05 September 2007, 13:10   #3
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I guess it is often to offset the torque of a single outboard installation. Some manufacturers also offset their consoles to the right to help balance things up.
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Old 05 September 2007, 13:27   #4
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OK Guys-thanks for that. You are probably right.

But I am thinking of ordering a diesel duo-prop, and it SEEMS to me to be the thing to do, to order a left-hand drive.
But before I confirm the order, I would like to as many views/
opinions as possible.
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Old 05 September 2007, 13:55   #5
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I don't think it's going to make any difference in terms of driving on the right hand side of a road, it's not like a car where you're driving 6" away from a granite wall and you need the extra vision. I prefer to keep a bit more distance between my boat and the rockware dunno about anyone else!

Another point I would make is that when it gets a bit choppy and maybe you're standing up off the seat, with 1 hand on the throttle and the other on the wheel, if you're in a right hand drive you will have your stronger arm (if you're right handed) doing most of the hanging on. IMO makes a good bit of difference on the longer trips.
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Old 05 September 2007, 14:43   #6
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I think Nauti Buoy is left hand drive..
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Old 05 September 2007, 16:10   #7
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Quote:
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I think Nauti Buoy is left hand drive..

Yep Nauti Buoy was left hand drive, reason being, the trim buttons were on the left throttle so using the thumb to adjust trim was far easier. The new NB will also be LHD for the same reason.
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Old 05 September 2007, 18:32   #8
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Brian, where you go boating, is it any easier to come alongside on one particular side of the boat? It is for me and it's the port side.
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Old 05 September 2007, 23:36   #9
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I put my helm on the right because it was a far more natural side for me, to hold onto the steering with my "strong" right hand and to throttle with the left, and before you say prop torque has anything to do with things, it's a LH outboard. I have all the heavy batterys on the left however.
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Old 06 September 2007, 03:37   #10
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In Sweden Starboard is called Styrbord, styr means steering.
Over here and i think international you can say that its right traffic on the water, people from right has the right to pass, if you se a green light (starboard) its ok to drive thats a pretty common way of thinking over here (talking for motors, not sailing)
You should always pass a boat on the starboard side if you coming from behind, than its easy for the driver that sits on the starboard side to se a boat passing (this is more for closed boats) usually it can be hard for a driver to se a boat passing on starboard side if you sit on the port, there is covers etc etc in the way.
Thats how we look at it over here.
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Old 06 September 2007, 03:39   #11
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To be honest I find it much more natural to drive a LH car than a RH one (I am Rhanded) and for that reason I prefer to hold the steering wheel with my LH and the throttle (which needs more control in a rough sea) with my RH.

JW
It doesnt make any diference to me as I moor up in the middle of Braye Outer Harbour to a buoy (which is my home port). Elsewhere I can be offered any position in a marina or harbour so its even Steven.

Nauti Buoy/Tony
Well if you have a LH drive boat and cant see anything wrong with it, thats enough for me.

Everybody
Thank you all for your views and opinions. Order for LH going through!
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Old 06 September 2007, 04:07   #12
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What are you buying Brian?
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Old 06 September 2007, 05:52   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by martini View Post

Another point I would make is that when it gets a bit choppy and maybe you're standing up off the seat, with 1 hand on the throttle and the other on the wheel, if you're in a right hand drive you will have your stronger arm (if you're right handed) doing most of the hanging on. IMO
I agree with this, if your right handed id prefer to hold the wheel with my right hand and the throttle with the left
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Old 06 September 2007, 06:00   #14
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I am let handed but prefer the wheel on the right.
Whilst my left arm is the stronger it is also the one I use for fine adjustments etc so using it to throttle and trim seems more natural to me.
I must be odd as I play golf, cricket and shoot all right handed!

The Suzuki throttles (twin set up) have trim controls on both sides so it is ok for either left or right use.
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Old 06 September 2007, 07:17   #15
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I agree with this, if your right handed id prefer to hold the wheel with my right hand and the throttle with the left
It's been discussed a few times here, and it seems to be down to personal preference.

I'm with Brian and Jon on this one. It doesn't make much difference in good conditions, but if you're driving the boat hard then I don't see how anyone can drive at their best with their weak hand on the throttle. The throttle is the primary control, and should be in your dominant hand.

This doesn't necessarily effect which side of the console you put the controls though. There's also the discussion about whether you want a central throttle position or not . . .

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Old 06 September 2007, 07:53   #16
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This doesn't necessarily effect which side of the console you put the controls though. There's also the discussion about whether you want a central throttle position or not . . .

John
That is a very good point.
My controls are in the centre.
This works very well if my daughter is "driving" she has the wheel but I have the controls!
I can do this in comfort whilst sitting in the nav seat.

Also a good point to think about if you are teaching.
As an instructor I would want to have easy access to the controls, just in case!.
If it is a twin consol then it makes sense for them to be in the centre that way I don't have to sit on the tubes all the time.
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Old 06 September 2007, 11:40   #17
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In Sweden Starboard is called Styrbord, styr means steering.
Over here and i think international you can say that its right traffic on the water, people from right has the right to pass, if you se a green light (starboard) its ok to drive thats a pretty common way of thinking over here (talking for motors, not sailing)
You should always pass a boat on the starboard side if you coming from behind, than its easy for the driver that sits on the starboard side to se a boat passing (this is more for closed boats) usually it can be hard for a driver to se a boat passing on starboard side if you sit on the port, there is covers etc etc in the way.
Thats how we look at it over here.
Its the same in English. The "sterbord" is a type of rudder and in the olden days you wanted this away from the docks so as to not be damaged. Port is obviously the other side. We still steer from the starboard side even though a sterbord hasn't been used in over a century. Mucking with nautical traditions will surely bring scurvey to all aboard!
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Old 06 September 2007, 15:27   #18
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if you're driving the boat hard then I don't see how anyone can drive at their best with their weak hand on the throttle. The throttle is the primary control, and should be in your dominant hand.

Does it necessarily matter if it's the 'weak' hand? I have as much control with my left as my right as long as I don't have to write with it (comes from a succession of strange vehicles including a trike with a right hand gearchange and a left foot brake)

I also find I'd rather be using my right hand on the steering when using cable-op steering as the torque reaction from an engine can take quite a bit of effort to control when throttling up hard.
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Old 06 September 2007, 16:10   #19
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Like I said, "it seems to be down to personal preference"

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Old 06 September 2007, 16:18   #20
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Like I said, "it seems to be down to personal preference"

John

Ok Ok I'll read it properly in future
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