Experienced skippers know the importance of properly mooring or mooring a boat when not in use. If not properly secured, a boat can rock back and forth in the water, causing scratches and damage. Furthermore, it could float away in stormy weather or a strong tide. To moor a boat to a jetty, you must have the right mooring equipment. You also need to install mooring ropes, these are the ropes that attach your boat to the jetty. Secure the mooring ropes with strong boat knots so that the boat stays in place.
Part 1 of 3: Getting the right gear
Step 1. Check that your boat has cleats on all sides
Cleats are T-shaped metal fasteners that usually sit on the side of the boat, close to the rim. There will also be cleats on the side of the jetty. The boat's mooring ropes must be attached to the cleats on the dock to keep the boat in place. Most boats have cleats on the bow, stern and sides for mooring.
If your boat doesn't have cleats, you can buy them at a boating store or online and then attach them to your boat
Step 2. Use the piling if there are no cleats on the scaffold
The pole work consists of long pieces of wood or metal with a cleat on top. They are often attached to a pier or jetty. You will need mooring ropes and boat knots to attach your boat to pilings.
Sometimes piling is also used if the boat remains moored for several weeks or months, as this can protect the boat for a long time
Step 3. Get bumpers to protect your boat from scratches and damage
Bumpers are usually made of foam or inflatable rubber. They are attached to the front and sides of the boat so that they do not hit the pier or jetty. They are ideal if you are mooring the boat at a busy jetty or if you want to protect the side of the boat from damage when docked.
- You can buy bumpers at a water sports store or on the Internet.
- If you decide to use bumpers, attach them to the boat with the ropes attached. Leave them attached, hanging in the boat until it's time to dock. Then hang them outside the boat before installing the mooring ropes.
Part 2 of 3: Installing the mooring ropes
Step 1. Use the front hawser, rear hawser and fore spring for a short stop
Pull the rope through the stern mooring, at the back of the boat, on the side furthest from the jetty. Then attach the forespring, the line on the right front of the boat. Finally, attach the front mooring line, the line at the highest point of the boat. Pull the rope through the cleats on the boat to the cleats on the dock to secure.
There are 9 possible mooring ropes on a boat, but you only need to use 3 or 4 to moor the boat. Using the too many ropes can cause them to tangle, effectively making the boat less secure
Step 2. Attach the boat with 2 fore and 2 aft lines for a longer stop
Start by attaching the 2 stern mooring lines to the back of the boat. Lay the ropes over each other so that they can be attached to the cleats on the scaffolding. Then attach the 2 front mooring lines to the front of the boat and loop them into the cleats on the jetty.
Make sure that the mooring ropes are attached to the jetty at two points, so that the boat stays in place
Step 3. Avoid using only breastlines to secure the boat as they are not secure
Chest lines are on the left side of the boat. They are short lines that lead in a straight line from the boat to the jetty. Although they require the minimum amount of rope for attachment, they are not safe lines for mooring as they are too short. They also limit the vertical movement of the boat, making it unstable when getting on and off the boat.
A good guideline is to always secure the fore, stern and jump lines when mooring the boat, as these are the safest lines. You can add a bust line afterwards if you want, but it's not required
Part 3 of 3: Capturing the Mooring Ropes
Step 1. Use a simple mooring knot to attach the mooring ropes
The mooring knot, or half stitch, is the most commonly used knot for securing mooring ropes. Start by sliding the loop on the rope through the cleat, under the top of the cleat. Then wrap the loop over the arms of the cleat and pull the loose rope to tighten.
Use the simple half stitch to attach all mooring ropes for a quick, easy way to secure your boat
Step 2. Try a slip stitch for a more secure attachment
A slip stitch is a good option if you want to secure the mooring ropes, although it will take longer than half a stitch. Start by wrapping the line once around the leg of the cleat, then slide the line over the top and wrap it around the other side of the cleat. Pass it over the cleat and loop it on the first arm to make a figure 8. Make a small underhand loop and place it over the first arm. Pull on the end to secure the knot.
You should see a nice, tight figure 8 on the cleat when you've done the slip stitch. If you use this knot, use it for all mooring ropes
Step 3. Use a mast throw when mooring to pilings
A mast throw should only be used if you are attaching a mooring rope to poles instead of a scaffold. Start by wrapping the loose end of the line around the post or hook of the fencing. Cross the line over itself and wrap the loose end around the post again. Place the loose end under the wrap you just made and pull the loose end to tighten the knot.