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Re-floating techniques after running aground
Always embarrassing, but seldom disastrous, every now then you will run aground. It is part of the life of an adventurous cruising sailor. However heavy seas or uneven ground can make the situation dangerous and many vessels, large and small, have been broken up by running aground in rough weather.
Quick and easy leak repairs whilst passage making
Every boat develops some small leaks at one time or another. The most irritating ones are those that manifest themselves during a passage when they are highly inconvenient to address.
Dealing with a fouled propeller
Occasionally you will get a rope (most likely your own), or netting or a bag, around the propeller that will affect propulsion. Or, as is often the case, a mooring line that will serve to tether the vessel to the spot.
Shutting down a diesel engine that fails to stop
Diesel engines stop via a stopper system in the injector. On older systems a cable is attached to a lever that shuts down the fuel, or on modern systems an electrical solenoid is used. Boats have a mixture of both systems depending on the engine and age. But if the solenoid fails or the manual stopper slips on the rail, the engine will not stop once started.
Getting in without power or wind by a dinghy tow
If you are becalmed and have an engine failure the vessel is effectively helpless and your natural resort is to notify the Coastguard or ask for a tow from a passing boat.
Getting in without power or wind by heaving buckets
If you are becalmed and have an engine failure the vessel is effectively sat in the water helpless. This is never more infuriating when a dock may only be metres away.
'Bow hauling' a boat along a dock, pier or canal
If you have to move a boat that is being serviced alongside a pier or do not wish to start the engine it is a difficult challenge. If you pull from the pier the applied energy tends to draw the boat towards the shore as opposed to parallel to it making it a challenge.