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Old 16 September 2002, 14:49   #1
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Things I'd wish I'd known

I am sure we have all learnt things the hard way by making expensive mistakes or gone through an embarrasing or awkward experience, which could have been avoided, had we known what to do:

So lets have a thread with some usefull tips to avoid future pitfalls
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Old 16 September 2002, 14:56   #2
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Powertrim

Powertrim packed up on me one day and engine was stuck in lowered postion, did I know what to do years ago ?, had some fun trying to recover boat with a 100hp merc stuck down.

Eventually figured out there is a plastic pressure release screw (which requires a very large screwdriver) to allow the engine to be lifted.

This also came in handy the other day when I saw some other chap on the slipway having the same problem trying to recover his boat , scraping the leg up the concrete because it was also stuck.

Turned out that the contacts on the throttle control button simply needed cleaning and then worked perfectly.
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Old 16 September 2002, 14:56   #3
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PVC and buying secondhand

Never buy a PVC rib which you are told only has: 'a couple of leaks on the seams' and will be 'a piece of p**s to repair'. They aren't. if the seams start to go on PVC ribs (such as Tornado's) they are nigh on impossible to repair as the leak just keeps springing up further long the boat! My only way out was a re-tube!!!!!! Expensive lesson learned. Always go and spy/view on any prospective purchases prior to departing with any hard earned cash, to ensure the damn thing stays inflated!!! Don't believe any 'I let it down at night' stories!!!
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Old 16 September 2002, 16:00   #4
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At the end of a hot days diving, with the boat hauled up the slip and hitched on the car we changed out of the sweaty drysuits into normal clothes. Wet diving kit wasn't going back in the car, so the lads were told to leave it in the rib, which they duly did.

Six sets of diving kit looked heavy on the trailer tyres so I thought I would check the trailer nose weight on the car too. Unhitching the trailer was fine, only the trailer wasn't quite at the top of the slip, and yes it started to roll back down. We did our best to stop it, but 5 seconds later there was big splash as boat, trailer and lighting board hit the water and lauched itself across Strangford Lough. Pity all the drysuits and fins were in the rib or we might have been able to salvage the situation. Instead we had to turn to another dive club and ask them to get our boat back. They did but it took some time for the laughter to subdue & the tourists eating fish an chips on the harbour wall thought it was great fun. That was in 1991 and people still ask about it!

Don't even ask about Senen in Cornwall.

JK this is a great idea, how about a "confessional" web page?
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Old 17 September 2002, 08:51   #5
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Quote:
Originally posted by Pete7
JK this is a great idea, how about a "confessional" web page?
I'm not sure there's enough disk space on the server

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Old 17 September 2002, 09:56   #6
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OK I'll bite.
What happened at Sennen then?
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Old 17 September 2002, 15:19   #7
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Senen ? Noooooo, well okay.

The scene, an August Saturday lunchtime, scorchy hot, tourists everwhere eating fish and chips (again).

The gentle slip we had been told about turned out to be 45 degrees! and drops about 30 metres onto soft sand. Lots of revs from the V8 Landrover and the tourists leg it off the slip as 45 feet of rib and tonka toy decend downwards onto the sand only for the landrover to dig straight in up to the axles.

unhitching the trailer doesn't help even with eight lads pushing she just goes down further. Eventually with lots of brute force and ignorance we get the two front wheels back on the slip.

Abandoning the Landie the rib and trailer are pushed into the sea and the rib floats off, err well no actually. Okay push the tailer a bit further. Nope, the rib still won't float, hmm okay further still until Mal standing at the stern can't touch the bottom any longer. Okay rock the boat from side to side its got to come free. By now the sweat is running down inside the drysuits and eight lads are completely b******s.

Eventually Mal sees a little piece of rope disappearing over the back of the transom down to the trailer. Yep the one that meant to stop the rib falling off the trailer down the M5. Didn't even think about trying to untie the knots just touched it with a knife and bang the rib is free and the trailer is in five feet of water below. Trailer dragged out with the 40m shot line and everthing secured. We did dive but missed slack water and ended up drifting over flat sand in the middle of nowhere.

Returning to the slip tide had gone out and left great big rocks everywhere, real fun trying to move the trailer and rib over that lot. Not to worry we will use the rope again afterall its a climbing rope bound to be strong enough. Nope, and with a twang it parted in spectacular fashion narrowly missing the remaining tourists who were running for there lives by this point. Finally got it hitched up and set off into oh, about 10 hours of August Bank holiday traffic, all trying to get out of Cornwall to go home. Use Falmouth next time, the town slip is the dogs. Pete
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Old 18 September 2002, 06:21   #8
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Things I'd wish I'd known..............

Where to start?!

- Buying a new RIB with an old Johnson VRO Gulf import job engine is a good way to become aquainted with your local filling stations and to become their #1 customer! Fuel efficiency? No thanks!

- We all know about starting the engine without the kill cord or whilst in gear (or trying to anyway) but one time at Calshot we just couldn't get the bl**dy thing started at all. Hauled it out and sat there figuring til we realised that we'd forgotten to push the key in to actuate the choke. Did that and hey presto it started! (Actually to the assembled masses we looked like we knew what we were about as we'd had the cover off the engine, tinkered for half an hour and managed to start the engine in the end!)

- The ebb tide through Portsmouth Harbour runs about 3.5kts. When you can make 4kts max on your aux outboard and the IOW ferry is bearing down on you, life can get a little interesting. And of course there's never a power boat around for a tow when you want one!

- It helps to untie the boat before you try to launch (Thames Cruz this year) and it also helps to take the prop bag off as well! (1st trip in Blue Ice). Yep, I still have the occasional brain fade after four years of Ribbing!

- If you travel at 12kts in a Scorpion Cabin RIB in the English Channel blowing a F5 you get very wet indeed. If you go at 25kts you remain dry!

- Sods law says that anytime I think "nah, wont bother with the drysuit today" within 10mins of leaving port I get a hefty dollop of briny down my neck and am soaked for the rest of the day!


Theres much much more but thats a start. The fundamental lession is that I'm poverty stricken (to buy the RIB) and in pain (having put my back out RIbbing) but absolute love it!

Alan
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Old 18 September 2002, 06:55   #9
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Check that the overheating warning buzzer is fitted and/or working.

I had just taken delivery of my first RIB, a second hand humber with 2x50hp Johnsons on the back. We were having great fun on the Thames going flat out when one engine inexplicably stopped and would not restart. Looked over the stern to see a shopping bag just below the surface and consequently had to rebore the engine at a cost of over £2,500. Also had alarms fitted that have since alerted us to plastic bags and other debris clogging up the intake in plenty of time to stop the engine and clear the obstruction before any damage occurs.
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Old 18 September 2002, 07:02   #10
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How about these for a few:

- make really sure the trailer is securely connected to your car before you reverse down a steep slipway

- politely decline any offer of mechanical help from Paul Lemmer, however desperate you are (cost more for an engineer to undo the "help" than it did to fix the original problem!)

- if you must leave your RIB outdoors for long periods, do bother to cover it up

- even if your RIB is well covered up, do check on it from time to time

- carry spare bearings for your trailer (even if you don't know how to change them, at least you'll have the bits when you find someone who does)

- entry to Hull marina is tidal, and the waiting facilities are rather limited

- if you wear a hat, tie it on to your lifejacket strap so when it comes off it doesn't go overboard

- when you take your goggles off, take them right off and put them somewhere safe. Don't leave them perched on top of your head where the slipstream will catch them . . .

- when asked about the weather, Alan Priddy always says "it's clearing"


John
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Old 18 September 2002, 08:30   #11
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Dohhhh

How about forgeting to put the transom bung in before launching and then wondering why she was so low in the water with the bilge pump going like mad
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Old 18 September 2002, 08:41   #12
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When the jockey wheel breaks off the trailer and you decide to dump the boat on the sand 'coz the tides on the flood make sure it is!

Oh, and take spare oil as well as fuel!
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Old 18 September 2002, 09:04   #13
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Re: Dohhhh

Quote:
Originally posted by Ribald
How about forgeting to put the transom bung in before launching and then wondering why she was so low in the water with the bilge pump going like mad
Gotta better one than that! Our DS21 used to have the "ping pong ball" type self bailer. Found out that if you spill petrol on deck (jerry can fell over whilst being towed behind the car) the gasket in said bailer is melted by the neat fuel so when you launch the boat immediately starts to fills up with water. If you don't notice this until the next day you come back to Dunstaffange marina to find your RIB just floating. Much frenzied work with bucket required to evacuate water and judicious use of wooden bung needed to prevent re-occurance!

Alan
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Old 18 September 2002, 09:56   #14
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Speelosc

Avoid getting a speelosc at all times. For the uniniated, a speelosc is the noise you get when an expensive handheld vhf drops over the side. A double speelosc is when, while trying to rescue said vhf, your expensive leatherman tool falls out of its pouch and follows the vhf to the sea bed. Each expensive piece of equipment has its own distinct sound. Can squids be trained to fetch and retrieve? All answers written on the back of a new vhf please.
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Old 18 September 2002, 13:59   #15
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Melted a starter motor

on an inboard engine and damn near set fire to the whole boat, purely because I had forgot to plug in the kill cord in my rush to head out !!!

Leson : check some basic things before continuing to try to turn an engine over which isnt starting, cost me 250 quid an a ruined day out plus a very smelly engine bay for sometime afterwards
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Old 30 December 2002, 17:36   #16
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Time to bring this one back to the top and ask a few other members to reach deeply into their soul and admit all.

Merry Christmas

Pete
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Old 30 December 2002, 17:56   #17
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Well heres Three for ya,

Flicked my Fag off the back of a Tyne class lifeboat,whilst chatting to me mate,looked over mi shoulder to see it burning its way through the Rnli inshore lifeboats tube.

Bought a boat and switched depth sounder off cos it was beeping and I thought it was broke,nearley killed all 6 as we were aproaching the last wave train before beaching a 12 tonn fin keela at 8knts

Walked straight off the pontoon whilst talking on my mobile phone.

Thatle do for the moment

Crazyhorse

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Old 30 December 2002, 17:59   #18
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You sure are one crazy horse.
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Old 31 December 2002, 13:30   #19
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engine starting with the pull chord in your pocket

Having beached my first Sib I was with my girlfriend on a little island called Dalkey island,a sudden squall came in we decided to sit it out but ,as the tide was flooding I decided to move the Sib to a better more sheltered spot on the island to sit out the squall.I calmey pulled the rip chord on the old Evinrude, and it came out and broke, the rest of it jammed up the mechanism, on the engine, I was in a pickle.I thought Id wrap the piece that I had in my hand around the wheel and pull again to start, alas it was too short, and I couldnt free the other piece to knot them together.Just then it dawned on me I put the stroker ino gear raised the engine up and spun the prop with my foot, after three turns it caught and the motor started, I causally pushed the boat out and away home with us me still with both feet intact.
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Old 31 December 2002, 14:49   #20
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Hm

- Forgot to depress the key to activate choke

- almost snapped tank connector - surely the ball goes on that side?

- jumped off rib to tie up, missed slip, then realised I hadn't done up the zip on my drysuit........

finally & probably best.... came into Port St Mary in IoM. Saw Mrs W on the slip. Threw her a line, asked her to cleat it off - she bent forward and £100 of sunglasses slid off her nose into the briny! Now she knows why "you two have those stupid bits of string and crocodile clips on yr specs, hats etc!"

Happy New Year from the Isle of Man!
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