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Rigging a springline

Jan 8, 2015
345
MacGregor 26S, Goman Express 30 Seahorse Kerr Reservoir
Reading another post that digressed to springline use got me to thinking. Even though it wouldn't be needed very often at my current slip, getting familiar with how to use one now could come in handy for when I got into a situation where I would have to use one.
Our marina is well protected from most wind directions and I don't usually get out when winds are greater that 20 knots. Coming into to my finger pier, I slow to idle speed, then shift to neutral as I pass the end of the pier. With the fin keel and spade rudder I do a quick 180 and line up to the second slip from the end. I have performed this enough times now that I can coast into the slip cross angled to port, shift into reverse for a short burst, than back to neutral. As the boat slowely comes around to line up perfectly in the slip, I walk around with the boat hook grabbing the dock lines and placing them on the cleats.

My question is how to rig my boat for a midship springline?
Springline rigging.jpg
Can I use the hook that currently is used to stow the jib sheets or would it be better to add a block to the outter track?
 
Oct 22, 2014
11,341
CAL 35 Cruiser Portland OR, moored EVERETT WA
Is that a padeye on the port side near the edge of the deck even with your front window just aft of the stanchion?

If it is and it has a strong backing plate , that would be wha I would try first.
Strong padeye (I like Wichard) with strong backing plate can be used to take up the strain of a nylon spring line. A cleat with strong backing plate is better. I saw a flush deck spring up cleat the other day that was rated to 24,000 lbs breaking strength. I’m looking into a pair for my boat. Two through bolts to backing plate.

My spring line runs back to the dock cleat then to my boat stern cleat. This is the line I use in docking maneuver. Then when secured in the slip it stops movement forward and keeps the stern from drifting out away from the dock. I run a bow line to a forward dock cleat. I run a forward spring from the same mid location to a forward dock cleat. This stops the boat from drifting aft. Finally I run a stern line to the dock near the stern to keep the boat square against the fenders.

Is that to much info? Confusing, hope not.
 

TomY

Alden Forum Moderator
Jun 22, 2004
2,096
Alden 38' Challenger yawl Rockport Harbor
We don't spend much time on the dock but use the sheet winches for spring lines, when we do. You might try them to see what location works best for your situation, before mounting a cleat. The previous owner of our boat mounted mid-ship cleats. We find them worthless in any situation. Too far forward as a first dock line, to bring the boat into the dock under light power.

Our main jib sheet winches are perfect location for that, always the first line to attach to the dock. They are well mounted and strong so I've never needed to mount another cleat.
 
Nov 30, 2015
1,190
Hunter 1978 H30 Cherubini Treman Marina, Ithaca, NY
One consideration would be whether you prefer to transport your docklines or leave them on the dock. If you transport the lines a simple solution would be to use a single line which attaches at both the bow and stern dock cleats and a couple of wraps around you jib winch. That’s what we use, in addition to 2 bow lines run through the chocks and a single stern line.
 
Jun 21, 2004
1,293
Beneteau 343 Slidell, LA
There are numerous applications for using spring lines, not only for docking in a slip. Just a few important situations are springing off a dock when the wind has you pinned against the dock & springing off a dock when there are boats immediately fore & aft of your location. Check out videos on you tube to see the dyanamics in motion. Important skills to acquire, especially as you venture away from your home port.
 
Sep 25, 2008
5,540
Alden 50 Sarasota, Florida
There are numerous applications for using spring lines, not only for docking in a slip. Just a few important situations are springing off a dock when the wind has you pinned against the dock & springing off a dock when there are boats immediately fore & aft of your location. Check out videos on you tube to see the dyanamics in motion. Important skills to acquire, especially as you venture away from your home port.
Good point.
We see too many people stranded alongside a dock because they never figured out how to use a spring.
 
Jan 8, 2015
345
MacGregor 26S, Goman Express 30 Seahorse Kerr Reservoir
Is that a padeye on the port side near the edge of the deck even with your front window just aft of the stanchion?
If it is and it has a strong backing plate , that would be what I would try first.
.
That was my first thoughts also. However, it was installed by the manufacturer prior to installing the liner so there is no way to get access and check the backing plate size.
I have the same concern for the midship rail cleat that dlochner suggested. I can't get access to check the backing method.
My issue is that while learning I might unintentionally get excessive loads at these points.
I do like TomY suggestion for the reasons given. That sounds the simplist method to try first.
I do have a heavy stretchable nylon line to practice with.
Another complicating factor (that you can't see from my pic) is there are no cleats on the piers where I tie up. I wrap my dock lines around those red post you see sticking up. I lay them to the side when I get underway then pick them up with the boat stick upon my return.
 
Oct 22, 2014
11,341
CAL 35 Cruiser Portland OR, moored EVERETT WA
Agree with @TomY 's suggestion as a good option. Normally winches are strong attachments. But as always it is wise to check the backing plate setup.
The installed headliners are not put on boats to be permanent. They are there like car interior panels to cover over the nuts and bolts to beautify the interior.
Perhaps one of the MacGregor owners can share the secret how they gained access. `
 
Jan 11, 2014
4,784
Sabre 362 113 Fair Haven, NY
The forces on a rail cleat are for the most part horizontal, while the rail is designed for vertical forces, i.e., the lifting force from the genoa clew. There are also screws every 4 to 6 inches and the load is distributed over the length of the cleat. The cleat will sit between two screws with a pin fitting into a hole to keep it from sliding. This is a pretty secure way of holding the cleat.

Here's a link to a close up. https://www.p2marine.com/schaefer-midship-cleat-for-1-track Note that cleat is not in the installed position, it needs to slide up a little for the pin to drop in the hole, same as for the genoa cars.

I'm not a big fan of using winches for cleats. The issue is the the line can cause the winch to rock back and forth, especially 2 speed winches, this just causes unnecessary wear and tear on a very expense part.

Another option, is using the stanchion base. These are designed to support loads with a 24 lever attached to them. Lines attached to the base will not have the same loads.

Docking cleat loads are mostly horizontal not vertical. If the line is secured properly, around the base of the cleat and not the horns there will be very little lifting force or leverage.

Keep the line low and as close as possible to the horizontal plane of the deck and you should be fine.
 
Sep 14, 2014
858
Catalina 22 Pensacola, Florida
try a v shaped self docking capture rig, i single hand and only have to put the boat into the slip and reach over to get my lines, a little forward throttle will even hold it in place until i get stern line with wind or current running. also capture keeps bow lined up in slip til I can grab the bow and spring lines. Its the v shaped lines wit yellow pool noodles on it in pix.
IMG_20160206_112336.jpg
 
Oct 22, 2014
11,341
CAL 35 Cruiser Portland OR, moored EVERETT WA
Clever rig @Jacktar . A little like a spider web capturing your boat as she fly's close. Makes it easy to single hand and likely gets you out on the water more often. Nice. How often do you need to inspect or change the lines, swim noodle?
 
Jan 8, 2015
345
MacGregor 26S, Goman Express 30 Seahorse Kerr Reservoir
Good point.
We see too many people stranded alongside a dock because they never figured out how to use a spring.
Yes, I don't want to be one of those guys so that is why I have the desire to practice now.

Anybody have an idea of why the PO would have this on the rail? (In the pic aft of the spinnaker block) There are several on each side of the boat. Would it work for a temporary turning point to be able to adjust how the spring line comes to the boat?

Rail rigging.jpg
 

Attachments

Jan 18, 2016
517
Catalina 30 Dana Point
I have a few of those on the boat - I use them to hang fenders from. I also have a track mounted cleat I use for spring lines. Works fine, and I do put quite a bit of force on it when docking on a upwind dock (power against the spring).
 
Oct 29, 2016
1,490
Hunter 41 DS Port Huron
Anybody have an idea of why the PO would have this on the rail? (In the pic aft of the spinnaker block) There are several on each side of the boat. Would it work for a temporary turning point to be able to adjust how the spring line comes to the boat?

View attachment 158096
A connection point for a spinnaker snatch block would be my thoughts, but why several I would not venture a guess
 
Oct 22, 2014
11,341
CAL 35 Cruiser Portland OR, moored EVERETT WA
They are for a block to be attached to give you a "barber hauler" attach point. Adjustment for the jib/genoa sheets. You could rig a snatch block

Like this:

Or a light weight low friction ring.

You could certainly use them to test your spring line skills. They would work as an attachment point like the midship rail cleat @dlochner suggested.
 
Oct 24, 2010
2,123
Hunter 30 Everett, WA
I've tied to the jib car many times. That location is tough and in a great location for a midship springline. Then if I want it to be a loop, I put the tag end on the jib winch. No need to buy more hardware. I also use the jib car when I need to put on extra lines for an approaching storm.

Ken
 
Jan 8, 2015
345
MacGregor 26S, Goman Express 30 Seahorse Kerr Reservoir
They are for a block to be attached to give you a "barber hauler" attach point. Adjustment for the jib/genoa sheets. You could rig a snatch block

Like this:

@dlochner suggested.
OK, I did find several of those blocks in a box of "stuff" that came with the boat. Now I know what they are for. Thanks!
 
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Joe

.
Jun 1, 2004
6,903
Catalina 27 Mission Bay, San Diego
You can use the primary winch to secure the spring line. You can run the line through a lead block... but.... know that it will make noise as the boat moves around in it's berth. Make sure you're protecting against chafe.