Reversing in the marina

A forum for discussing topics relating to older MacGregor/Venture sailboats.

Moderators: Catigale, Heath_Mod, beene, Hamin' X, kmclemore, tangentair

Post Reply
Ricard_M
Just Enlisted
Posts: 18
Joined: Sun Jun 11, 2017 2:27 pm
Sailboat: MacGregor 26S
Location: Lisbon, Portugal

Reversing in the marina

Post by Ricard_M » Wed Sep 19, 2018 3:39 pm

Hey guys!

Firstly I want to let you know that my boat is finally ready and staying at the nearest marina! I also want to thank you for all the help that you guys provided during all the recuperation of the boat.

In the meantime, I new question has popped up regarding the way she sails. Namely, while sailing under engin power with the keel down, the boat is quite responsive and easy to control while going forward using only the rudder. However when I reverse no mater what I do with the rudder the boat does not move at all. It seems that the only solution is to steer the boat ony with the engine (have not tried this one yet, had my engine locked in central position and was steering always only with the rudder).

Do you guys also have the same problem?

User avatar
Tomfoolery
Admiral
Posts: 5208
Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2011 9:42 am
Sailboat: MacGregor 26X
Location: Rochester, NY '99X BF50 'Tomfoolery'

Re: Reversing in the marina

Post by Tomfoolery » Wed Sep 19, 2018 4:00 pm

Ricard_M wrote:Do you guys also have the same problem?
Actually, no, I don't. But my rudders are linked to the OB. :wink:

When I had an Aquarius, I used a technique I've seen referred to as "two-fisted steering" where you steer both the rudder and the OB. It takes some practice, but it works well if you can coordinate them.

User avatar
RussMT
Admiral
Posts: 5527
Joined: Thu Oct 11, 2007 2:01 pm
Sailboat: MacGregor 26M
Location: Bozeman, Montana "Luna Azul" 2008 M 70hp Suzi

Re: Reversing in the marina

Post by RussMT » Wed Sep 19, 2018 4:15 pm

When in the marina or tight spaces, I have all fins down and the motor connected to the steering. Motor in the center means rudders for control and it's just not very good.

--Russ

User avatar
arknoah
Engineer
Posts: 192
Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2010 12:49 pm
Sailboat: MacGregor 25
Location: Lexington Park, Maryland

Re: Reversing in the marina

Post by arknoah » Thu Sep 20, 2018 7:29 am

I have a Mac 25 and have always reversed using both the outboard and rudder. It makes the backing up process very precise. In all honesty, I wouldn't know how else to reverse as precisely without using this method.

kurz
Captain
Posts: 779
Joined: Mon Dec 06, 2010 12:07 pm
Sailboat: MacGregor 26M
Location: Zürich, Switzerland, Europe

Re: Reversing in the marina

Post by kurz » Thu Sep 20, 2018 8:10 am

Ricard_M
Get a quick disconnect for your outboard. So connecting / disconnecting ist made in seconds.

And so you can enjoy best maneuvring with your :macm:

Important: always let down the daggerboard at least half for good steering in narrow waters!

User avatar
Sumner
Admiral
Posts: 2374
Joined: Sun Jan 04, 2009 6:20 pm
Sailboat: MacGregor 26S
Location: SE Utah
Contact:

Re: Reversing in the marina

Post by Sumner » Thu Sep 20, 2018 10:29 am

arknoah wrote:I have a Mac 25 and have always reversed using both the outboard and rudder. It makes the backing up process very precise. In all honesty, I wouldn't know how else to reverse as precisely without using this method.
The above works perfectly with the 26S. You can back and turn the boat in its own length almost if needed. It can be a long reach to the outboard in some cases. I could do it but Ruth being shorter had a hard time so I made a quick disconnect linkage between the two...

Image

It is easy to put on or off and works great. I use it myself all of time as it simplifies the process and leaves one hand free to work the forward/reverse as needed.

I've also used it along with the tillerpilot in situations when motoring into heavier wind and waves where the tillerpilot couldn't keep up with the contidions turning the rudder only.

Here is a YouTube video ....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-UYc2ZH ... re=channel

... and more info here...

http://purplesagetradingpost.com/sumner ... de-29.html

Sumner

============================
1300 miles to the Bahamas and back -- 2015

The MacGregor 26-S

The Endeavour 37

Trips to Utah, Wyoming, Idaho, Canada, Florida

Mac-Venture Links

User avatar
NiceAft
Admiral
Posts: 4045
Joined: Tue Feb 01, 2005 10:28 pm
Sailboat: MacGregor 26M
Location: Upper Dublin,PA, USA: 2005M 50hp.Honda4strk.,1979 Phantom Sport Sailboat, 9'Achilles 6HP Merc 4strk

Re: Reversing in the marina

Post by NiceAft » Thu Sep 20, 2018 7:22 pm

Ricard,

Listen to Sumner.

The motor needs to be the means of steering in reverse, which means it needs to free moving. The quick release is a great way of achieving this.

Ray

User avatar
BOAT
Admiral
Posts: 4243
Joined: Fri Oct 19, 2012 7:12 pm
Sailboat: MacGregor 26M
Location: Oceanside, CA MACMJ213 2013 ETEC60

Re: Reversing in the marina

Post by BOAT » Fri Sep 21, 2018 4:38 pm

The motor does not do a great job turning the boat in reverse unless you really exaggerate your throttle and wheel movements - the powerboat guys with the in/out drives know what I am talking about. To get the boat to turn you need to spin the wheel hard over full to one side and gun the throttle with a short burst - then you need to do it again in the OTHER direction to slow down - it's a real PITA - watching the powerboat guys with the in/out drives do it is a real work of art, and they really churn up the water as they muscle their boats around in tight places using mostly the throttle.

On 'boat' maneuvering in reverse is super super easy - I have the DB all the way down, full ballast, both rudders down, and the motor connected to the steering. In that configuration the boat pretty much goes backwards in any direction you point the motor and it even makes nice turns without sliding because of the DB. One thing that really helps me a lot is I go REALLY REALLY SLOW! I think I drift into the dock more than I power into the dock for the most part. I move really slow. The motor is idle idle and I am in neutral usually many yards away from the dock and just drift in. I am not much of a powerboat guy.

I was never very good dealing with a rudder and an OB at the same time - it's really hard. My dad was real good at it - and he used a lot of throttle and muscled the boat around - he was pretty good at it - not me.

On boats with fixed propeller shaft and only a rudder they use the forward thrust a lot to make the boat start to rotate - I see the guys in the smaller single prop cigar racers use forward throttle to turn the boat when they are going backwards - I don't know how they do it but I have watched them - the get the boat drifting backwards and then they use spurts of forward throttle to turn the aft this way and that - I don't know how they do it with only one prop and one rudder!

User avatar
NiceAft
Admiral
Posts: 4045
Joined: Tue Feb 01, 2005 10:28 pm
Sailboat: MacGregor 26M
Location: Upper Dublin,PA, USA: 2005M 50hp.Honda4strk.,1979 Phantom Sport Sailboat, 9'Achilles 6HP Merc 4strk

Re: Reversing in the marina

Post by NiceAft » Fri Sep 21, 2018 5:36 pm

Boat,

Ricard has a 26S. I don’t believe there is a wheel.

If I’m wrong, I’m sure the correction will arrive swiftly. :)

Ray

User avatar
BOAT
Admiral
Posts: 4243
Joined: Fri Oct 19, 2012 7:12 pm
Sailboat: MacGregor 26M
Location: Oceanside, CA MACMJ213 2013 ETEC60

Re: Reversing in the marina

Post by BOAT » Fri Sep 21, 2018 5:53 pm

NiceAft wrote:Boat,

Ricard has a 26S. I don’t believe there is a wheel.

If I’m wrong, I’m sure the correction will arrive swiftly. :)

Ray
Yeah, that's how it was for my dad - he would know what to say - my dad had the A23 like Tom's old boat. A tiller and an outboard - it was so difficult to maneuver tight places with the motor - that was why we got really good at using the head sail to dock the boat - we could even park the boat in a slip using the headsail if there was not too much wind. Maneuvering that boat in reverse was very very difficult. The tiny motors that swing around almost 360 degrees are cool - they work better for that stuff. Trying to go in reverse with a fixed motor is really really hard - the rudder does not work very good.

What correction will arrive swiftly?

User avatar
NiceAft
Admiral
Posts: 4045
Joined: Tue Feb 01, 2005 10:28 pm
Sailboat: MacGregor 26M
Location: Upper Dublin,PA, USA: 2005M 50hp.Honda4strk.,1979 Phantom Sport Sailboat, 9'Achilles 6HP Merc 4strk

Re: Reversing in the marina

Post by NiceAft » Fri Sep 21, 2018 9:28 pm

BOAT said:
What correction will arrive swiftly?
If my statement about not having a wheel is incorrect, it won’t be long before someone will correct me.

Ray

kurz
Captain
Posts: 779
Joined: Mon Dec 06, 2010 12:07 pm
Sailboat: MacGregor 26M
Location: Zürich, Switzerland, Europe

Re: Reversing in the marina

Post by kurz » Sat Sep 22, 2018 3:12 am

Well I agree with BOAT. Maneuvre in slow speed at idle can help a lot ;-)
BUT if you want that the rudders can do a good job, sometimes it helps to increase speed.

For example if I am too lazy to connect the motor when leaving the marina... I really have to give some speed so that the rudders get in. Otherwise the OB pulls straight back or forwart...

User avatar
Sumner
Admiral
Posts: 2374
Joined: Sun Jan 04, 2009 6:20 pm
Sailboat: MacGregor 26S
Location: SE Utah
Contact:

Re: Reversing in the marina

Post by Sumner » Sat Sep 22, 2018 10:20 am

NiceAft wrote:Boat,

Ricard has a 26S. I don’t believe there is a wheel.

If I’m wrong, I’m sure the correction will arrive swiftly. :)

Ray
Correct, according to his signature he has an S. Hopefully comments related to X's and M's haven't confused him. With the S point the back of the tiller and outboard tiller in the direction you want to go and she will turn and go there easily,

Sumner

============================
1300 miles to the Bahamas and back -- 2015

The MacGregor 26-S

The Endeavour 37

Trips to Utah, Wyoming, Idaho, Canada, Florida

Mac-Venture Links

Interim
Engineer
Posts: 197
Joined: Thu May 08, 2014 9:31 am
Sailboat: MacGregor 26S
Location: Great Plains

Re: Reversing in the marina

Post by Interim » Tue Sep 25, 2018 9:50 am

Sailboats do forward much better than reverse, so calibrate your expectations accordingly.

The rudder doesn't do much unless there is water flowing over it, so at low speeds it is useless. Except as a brake.

On my S, I use the two arm method. I have the motor locked in place as we enter the marina, but when we get close to our slip I flip the tab and it is free. As we back into the slip, I am turning the rudder tiller and the motor tiller at the same time. It has great control, but of course it is a little awkward. But I have to reach back anyway as we adjust throttle and gears (F-N-R).

--john

Post Reply