Since the mid 1980’s, mid-cabin cruisers have become the most popular style of cruiser for families, giving them two distinctive sleeping areas—mid-cabin and v-berth. Most boaters don’t realize though, that the changes to Power Boats over the decades, made them more difficult to dock than earlier power boats—especially mid-cabins.
Manufacturers re-designed smaller cruisers to include more sleeping accommodation with the introduction of the mid-cabin. A mid-cabin cruiser is an express cruiser with a cabin under the forward cockpit sole (some people mistakenly call them aft cabins, but aft cabins are at the transom or aft, as opposed to a mid-cabin in the middle or amidships ahead of the motor(s). Having extra sleeping amidships is a great feature for family and/or guests; but, what was compromised?
♦ To create more room on the inside, some space had to be taken from the outside, leaving the side decks very narrow to non-existent. Now, how do First Mates move safely from the cockpit to the bow to tie the bow line, when docking? They can’t. Even if they could, the foredeck is sloped and slippery when wet and the rails are too low for safety.
♦ Also, the cockpit sole built over the motor and mid-cabin, elevates the crew above the typical low floating dock. This configuration makes it difficult to attach a dock line from the cockpit to the dock cleat.
♦ Additionally, the shallow cockpit gives crew members a feeling of insecurity, when leaning out to reach a dock cleat—unlike a similar sized cuddy cabin with much more cockpit depth (waist height compared to knee height).
Mid-cabin cruisers are offered with a Single Sterndrive, Twin Sterndrives or Twin Inboards. Each power system has its own unique handling and docking characteristics.
As a result, you have to use different docking techniques that accommodate the mid-cabin cruiser modifications and drive systems to dock safely and easily without using the narrow side decks.
Doug Dawson’s e-Lessons are compiled and written for today’s boats (including mid-cabins with little or no side deck, high cockpit sole and shallow cockpit), to allow Captains and their First Mates to dock safely and easily without the use of the side decks and without having to go to the foredeck. Thousands of boaters around the world are easily and safely docking their mid-cabins using Doug’s proven techniques.
Invest in an e-Lesson today to improve your mid-cabin docking skills or shorten your learning curve if you are new to boating.
Dock your mid-cabin cruiser safely, easily and with confidence.
Become “Captain Confidence” – Your First Mate and Crew will thank you.