If it were up to avid boaters, sunny and warm weather would probably be the year-round climate. Cold weather and gloomy weather aren’t the ideal conditions for boating, but you shouldn’t let this kind of weather keep you from enjoying a day out with your boat. More »
Many different factors are used to determine the style or type of a motorboat. The most common include the length, layout and placement of the motor. Motorboats are defined as a class of sailing vessels that use electrical or diesel engines to move the vessel instead of relying on the wind, currents or oars. More »
It is always essential to use caution while riding on a boat. By the same token, a person should be responsible while driving a boat of any size. The information below may help a person make the right decisions.
1. Take a Class and Learn As Much As Possible
When a person is ready to take on a boat of any size, he or she should visit the local community center. It may be possible to take a boat safety course. If a person makes this move, he or she may learn about what is necessary when it comes to driving a boat. He or she may also become certified, and this may help a person avoid trouble in the future. The person will not have to worry about breaking any laws.
2. Understand the Layout and All Materials
A person who wishes to be responsible while on a boat should take the time to learn about the boat. He or she should walk around the boat and pay attention to the layout. Where may a person find a life jacket? Where are any and all seats located? The driver should also be aware of any extra safety equipment. This may help the driver in the event of an emergency. A person should not rush the process of inspecting the boat; if he or she makes this poor decision, he or she may miss out on something crucial.
3. Do Not Drink While Driving
People should not drink while they are on a boat. If a person chooses to drink an alcoholic beverage, he or she may lack common sense and a grasp of safety. The person may cause the boat to tilt or come close to falling. The person may distract the driver of the boat and bring about an accident. It is especially dangerous if the driver of the boat chooses to drink. He or she may run the boat into another boat. People may suffer from serious injuries or death as a result of this poor decision.
4. Ask For Help and Pay Attention
If a person wishes to be a good driver, he or she should not be afraid to ask for help. A person who does not ask for help may run into problems and risk the safety of the people on the boat. A person should be able to talk to another person about what to do. This may save a person a lot of worry and stress in the long run. A driver may have a person sit nearby and point out any incoming obstacles. The second person may also take over if the driver feels sick or otherwise nervous.
Boating is a fun time passer for people of all ages. If a person wishes to drive a boat and add to the experience of riding a boat, the information above may help. A person may avoid a dangerous or stressful situation when he or she takes on the correct habits. Anybody may learn more.
If you are a new boat owner, you might be wondering just what you need to have on board your boat before you head out on the water. While you will want to have a good supply of food and drinking water on the boat, there are some other essential items that you will need to carry along with you at all times. Each of the following 5 items will help you prepare for disasters just in case they ever happen.
1) Life Jackets For All Passengers
You should always have enough life jackets on your vessel for every passenger that is on board your boat. Just because all of your passengers can swim does not mean that these safety flotation devices are not needed. If you are involved in a collision or the boat capsizes, it can be difficult for injured parties or tired individuals to float until help arrives. In most areas, life jackets must actually be worn while boaters are on the water.
2) Your License
You must have a boating license to operate a boat on open water. If you are pulled over by the Coast Guard, not having your license can actually cut your fun short and land you a fine. Be prepared and check multiple times to ensure you have your boating license with you before you start your engines.
3) Visual Distress Signal
If you are stranded in vacant waters, you need to be able to signal for help. All vessels that will be used on coastal waters and in the Great Lakes are required to have approved visual distress signals on board that can be used in the daytime and at night. Signals include approved pyrotechnics and electric lights. You should have a combination of different types of signals including hand-held flares, parachute flares, smoke signals, electric distress lights, and a distress flag that can be used during the day when other boaters are present.
4) A Fire Extinguisher
Fire can cause a significant amount of damage to your vessel. While fire extinguishers are not required on all motorboats, all boaters should carry them because water cannot be used to put out gas, oil, or electrical fires. Believe it or not, water can just make some fires worse. If you experience an on board fire, an extinguisher can prevent serious damage and even save your life.
5) Waterproof GPS or Compass
While you might have a GPS mounted in your boat, having a handheld waterproof model is ideal. If you are facing a situation where you must leave your boat, having a portable navigation device that can be attached to your body can help guide you in the right direction to get to safety.
Each of these items are important in their own way. Make sure you have a comprehensive checklist of items to bring along with you on your voyage and write these items on the list if they are not there already. If disaster strikes or you are stopped by the Coast Guard, you will be happy you took time to prepare.
The cost of the boat is only the tip of the money you’ll have to spend if you want to cruise on the open ocean. Before you decide on your dream of owning a boat and start saving up the cost for the boat itself, you’ll want to know the real costs of boat ownership.
A yacht owned by the rich and famous can cost around half a million dollars. Each year it can cost about $250,000 in fees, taxes and maintenance.
Most average boat owners don’t have that much money to buy a boat and maintain it. A small craft can cost anywhere from $24,000 to $150,000 depending on the manufacturer and extras like electronics. When owning a boat, there are other costs to consider.
Depending on the current price of gas, a one-hundred gallon tank can cost almost $500 to fill. To save costs, you might want to consider a sailboat or a boat that has the capability of using sails at least part of the time.
Boats are subject to sales tax and property taxes. People with boats are required to pay sales tax when they purchase the boat. They are required to pay a yearly property tax on the boat as well. How much that is owed depends on where the boat is docked year round. Most boat owners will vary the home of their boat depending on property taxes in the area. Florida has no property tax on boats, and Rhode Island has no sales tax. South Carolina has no property tax if the craft is docked in the state for more than 180 days per year.
Registration and Insurance
Like a car, a boat has to have a title, registration and insurance. This varies by state and the size of the vessel. In some states, there is a set fee for the title and registration, and in other states, it would depend on the size of the boat.
You have to have a place to store your boat. Some people will use a trailer and bring their boat to and from the water every time they want to use it. This may be a way to save money with small boats, but it’s impractical for larger boats. Docking fees vary by marina. The cost can range from a few dollars per foot of dock space to hundreds per night. It varies by boat footage, dock space and marina policy.
Boats need to be maintained on a regular basis. Boats with engines need servicing every year. Oil changes can cost close to $400. Every year, the bottom of the boat will need to be repainted with special paint, and the hull will need to be waxed. Boats with sails will need the same treatment to the hull of the boat. The sails will have to be checked years, and replaced every few years.
Unless you live in an area where it’s warm all year, you’ll have to pay to have your boat winterized and stored properly. The winterizing costs money but then so does the warehouse space for the winter.
Electronics, emergency kits, fire extinguishers and life jackets all cost money. Often, life jackets and emergency kits need to be replaced when they are lost or used frequently.
Since more people are enjoying Canada’s beautiful waterways by boat, the need for boating safety education has increased. As of 2009, all boaters operating recreational, powered marine craft must possess a pleasure craft operating card certifying that they have received boating safety training. This card allows boaters to legally operate their vessels in all waterways throughout Canada. Boat owners must also register their watercraft with the Pleasure Craft Operating Centre by submitting a completed application for pleasure craft licence, proof of vessel ownership, and a copy of a valid government issued identification card. Obtaining pleasure craft operating cards and ensuring vessels have the proper pleasure craft licences are the primary ways to use recreational watercraft safely and legally.
Everyone wants to avoid boating emergencies at all cost through smart boating practices, but sometimes emergency situations cannot by avoided. Boating safety courses teach students how to handle passenger overboard situations as well as the subsequent hypothermia treatment needed after accidents. Boating safety students will also learn how to handle situations about grounded watercraft. Boating safety courses stress the need for students to operate vessels safely and with regard to environmental constraints.
After obtaining proper marine safety instruction, students sit for a comprehensive exam to certify that they have learned the concepts taught during the course. A temporary pleasure craft operator card is issued upon receiving a passing exam score, and the permanent card is mailed to boaters later. Armed with a pleasure craft operator card and the proper boat licence, watercraft owners are ready to enjoy Canada’s waterways legally and safely.
Boating is a great activity for the entire family. However, without taking the proper precautions, it’s also potentially hazardous. Staying safe in an important part of having fun, so before you head out, consider these boating safety tips.
Mind the Weather
Check on your local weather forecast and current conditions before you get on the water. If rain or storms are expected, the weather can get violent in a hurry. High winds cause the water to become choppy and lightning can pose a serious electrocution hazard. Furthermore, when you’re on your boat, keep an eye on the sky. If things start looking inclement, it’s time to head back to shore.
Display Common Sense
Using your common sense is one of the most important parts of staying safe while boating. Maintain legal operating speeds, obey no wake signs, stay away from barges and never go on the water without a boating licese and pleasure craft operator card. It’s also recommended to be aware of navigational aids, such as buoys, which are there to ensure your protection.
A Helping Hand
You should never be the only person on your boat who is knowledgeable about operating a boat, navigating or various safety protocol. Should something happen to you out on the water, it’s important that another person is able to get you and everyone else on your vessel back to dry land in a safe and speedy manner.
Make a Plan
Before you head out, you should always inform someone of where you plan to go and approximately how long you expect to be gone. It can be a friend, a family member or even the staff at the marina or boating club. Furthermore, the more information you provide, the better. Give your name, phone number, address, the names of the people on your vessel and your boat name and license number.
Carry a Cell Phone
It’s never a good idea to put yourself in the middle of a body of water with no means of communication. When boating, always carry a cellular phone on your person and, if necessary, bring along a signal-boosting antenna to make sure you can reach someone when you’re in the middle of nowhere. You can also simply use a satellite phone, which can communicate from virtually anywhere.
Make Use of Life Jackets
Most drowning deaths are caused by boating accidents in which the victims were not wearing life jackets. Before you get onto the boat, make sure that you and everyone aboard is wearing one. They may look funny and be mildly uncomfortable, but they can save lives.
Don’t Drink and Boat
Although it can be tempting to drink on board, save the alcohol until you get back to shore. When you’re under the influence, your risk of being in a fatal boating accident doubles. Furthermore, the dehydrating effects of the sun and wind are known to exacerbate alcohol’s effects.
Take Swimming Lessons
Nobody should ever be out on a boat unless they know how to swim. If you never learned how, now is a great time to start. Your local YMCA, as well as the Red Cross and other safety organizations, typically offer swimming lessons to people of all ages.
If you are new to the boat-building process, you will need to understand that it is a craft in its own right, and a complex one at that. Many people enjoy sailing but are either unable or unwilling to buy one and choose to build one themselves. However, it is important to have a basic idea of what you will need before you begin. This type of project has very unique and specific aspect to everything from the tools to the materials to the construction process, so you want to be fully prepared.
Boatbuilding plans are the best place to start. These plans have their very own characteristics that you may be unfamiliar with. If this is your first experience with building boats, you need to start with the simplest plans possible. You can often find them online or in books. The more complicated plans may have to be purchased. While there is nothing wrong with wanting to design your own plans, unless you have a great deal of prior knowledge, you need to stick with someone else’s designs for a while.
Understanding Boat Terms
Another factor to consider is that maritime terminology is very different than non-maritime terminology. You will need to familiarize yourself with all of the parts and terms before you put your vessel together. Know that a bulkhead is part of the frame, a chine is a junction of planking and carling is a support for the side of the craft, and you will also need to understand the mechanics of the terms as well. For example, until you can truly comprehend what the Center of Effort is, you will have difficulty building something seaworthy.
You will also need to have the basic tools in order to get the job done right. While it is certainly possible to build a boat without special tools, there are things that can help speed up the process. Most woodworking tools will also adapt well to boatbuilding, but here are some basic speciality tools that might come in handy.
- Caulking irons
- Sliding bevel
- Surface planer
Once you have your supplies ready, you also need to sit down and decide what kind of wood you want to use. Certain types of wood work better in the water than others, or are lightweight enough to be used. It is best to get knot-free wood like fir, spruce, pine, cypress, cedar or redwood if possible. Your finish will also have a great deal to do with the final results of your project. If possible, use oils or wax that will help ensure water resistance and buoyancy.
Today’s modern technology can help you utilize power tools, drafting software projects and even find free boating plans online. In addition, man made materials of today can really make a big difference in the durability, seaworthy aspects of your craft’s construction. Be sure to purchase the very best materials you possibly can, as you may be staking your life on the integrity of the materials once you leave shore.
If it were up to avid boaters, sunny and warm weather would probably be the year-round climate. Cold weather and gloomy weather aren’t the ideal conditions for boating, but you shouldn’t let this kind of weather keep you from enjoying a day out with your boat. If it’s still a tolerable cold kind of weather without any frozen water, some easy boat safety tips can help you enjoy your day out on the water. These safety precautions can help ensure a fun and worry-free trip to help you get back into the warm indoors safely.
Preparing for spontaneous weather
Preparing for your trip is important to have a successful cold weather outing. Make sure everything is ready to go – that you have more than enough fuel and all of your emergency equipment. If you notice there are winter weather warnings or advisories, postpone your trip until they let up. Pack a weather radio and some extra emergency weather equipment just in case the cold weather takes a spontaneous turn for the worst. Leave a plan with someone who is aware of your itinerary and locations at all times, so they know when you’re scheduled to return and what to do if you don’t return at that time.
You should also make sure you’re dressed warm enough for the occasion; check your local weather the day you head out and make sure to bundle up and wear layers. A good example of a proper cold weather ensemble includes a long-sleeved shirt, topped with a sweatshirt and jacket. Gloves and beanies, earmuffs and scarves are also great to keep your warm and comfortable out on the water. Pack an extra set of clothing in a waterproof container just in case the outfit you’re wearing gets wet with spontaneous rain. The last thing you want is to be wearing wet clothes when out in cold temperatures.
To practice boat safety, it’s important you wear a life jacket no matter how experienced of a boater or swimmer you may be. If weather conditions turn less than favorable while you’re out in the water and you fall into the water for whatever reason, you could quickly experience hypothermia or shock.
It’s important to slow things down while you’re out in the cold weather, especially if you have others on board with you. Traveling too fast can be dangerous when you’re traveling in a less familiar condition, and it’ll feel much colder the faster you travel. Staying bundled up and moving at a calm and constant speed will help you enjoy your trip and enjoy the winter scenery more.
While this trip may take a little bit more planning and preparation on your part, it will be worth it to spend a nice day out on the water enjoying one of the activities you love most as opposed to limiting your fun to the indoors just for the cold. As long as you practice some precautions and boat safety, you should be able to enjoy your day out on the water no matter what time of year it is.
There are several different factors to consider when choosing a boat. The many types of boats that are available each have advantages and limitations. It is best to look at the individual features that are necessary in order to select the right vessel. The old classifications for boats have largely become blurred with recent manufacturing trends. Anyone who wants to join the tens of millions of boat owners across the country will need to look at a few key points.
The size of the boat should be the first consideration. The smallest vessels are less than nine feet long and are very easy to launch and store. The largest boats will require a special dock or storage setup. The size of the vessel will determine exactly where the boat can be used. Small vessels are good for lakes, rivers and reservoirs. They are easy to transport between locations and make a good choice for casual fishing expeditions. Larger boats are less convenient to move between bodies of water. A yacht or larger vessel is a good choice for coastal areas or for individuals who will be primarily sailing on a single large lake. Large boats generally require more regular maintenance and training for proper operation.
The type of propulsion on the boat will make a large difference in how the vessel can be used. Simple boats that use oars are only appropriate for short trips into calm waters. Sailboats can operate in nearly any environment although learning how to adjust the sails in relation to the wind and the body of the vessel takes some practice. Motorboats use an inboard or outboard motor to drive the vessel. Operating a motorboat requires a boating license in all areas although a license is not always required for non-motorized boats. Motorboats are generally the most popular choice because they are easy to use and remove any unpredictability from the time spent on the water.
Space And Amenities
The amount of storage and passenger space on the vessel should be examined. A large boat does not necessary have room for passengers and gear. Cabin cruisers that have internal rooms generally provide the most space for boaters. Larger boats also have different amenities available that will make it easier to use the boat and relax. These amenities could include special chairs and mounts for fishing. It could include a full kitchen or galley for cooking while out on the water. Other options include entertainment centers and advanced navigation systems.
It is best to choose a boat that is designed for the specific recreational activities that it will be performing. A number of small and fast outboard motorboats can be used to pull skiers across the water. Larger fishing boats are not capable of doing this. Alternately, the small recreational motorboats used in most lakes are inappropriate for serious fishing because of the hull design. There are motorboats available that have features such as ladders, steps and cranes that make it easier to perform activities like diving, snorkeling or crabbing.
Many different factors are used to determine the style or type of a motorboat. The most common include the length, layout and placement of the motor. Motorboats are defined as a class of sailing vessels that use electrical or diesel engines to move the vessel instead of relying on the wind, currents or oars. Some motorboats are designed for casual use while others are high performance machines that require special training and experience to use safely. There are six broad categories of motorboats available.
Outboard motorboats are one of the most common types of vessels. These are a popular choice for anglers and casual boating enthusiasts. Outboard motorboats have a detachable motor placed on the back. This motor can be removed when needed or tilted so that it does not sit in the water. Any boat that has a motor attached to the back is considered an outboard motorboat. These boats are inexpensive and versatile. Smaller vessels have the added advantage of being able to operate in shallow waters because of low displacement.
Inboard motorboats are the opposite of outboard boats. The engine is an integral part of the vessel and cannot be removed. Inboard motorboats are generally larger than outboard boats and can achieve very high speeds depending on the configuration of the hull. Inboard motorboats are popular for traveling in deep waters or coastal ocean trips. They frequently have a high displacement that makes it difficult or impossible to operate near shoals or in very shallow waters. These types of vessels are generally more expensive than outboard motorboats.
A cabin cruiser is a type of inboard motorboat that has one or more contained rooms as part of the design. These cabins could be below the main deck or in structures built on top of the deck. The cabins often include enough space for a few people to sit and rest or sleep. Several styles of small cruisers are available that use one or more outboard motors instead of an inboard design. Larger vessels are often equipped with all of the amenities of a home including bathrooms and a kitchen. This allows owners to live on the cruiser.
A yacht is similar to a cabin cruiser. Yachts are normally defined as vessels that have an inboard motor and that measure more than 50 feet in length. Most yachts are designed to be very rugged with the ability to travel across the open ocean farther away from the coast than most other vessels. The amount of space available on most yachts allows owners to choose from a variety of interior options including luxurious onboard hot tubs and large dining rooms.
A hydroplane is a very specialized type of motorboat. The shape and design of the hull of a hydroplane is designed to skim along the surface of the water. This reduces resistance and allows the boat to achieve incredibly high speeds on open waters. The fastest hydroplanes require special training for ownership. Not all areas allow hydroplanes although they are used in a number of different sports.
Sailboats are vessels that rely on sails to capture the wind and move the boat. Boating enthusiasts have made sailboats very popular. Unfortunately, there are times and locations when it becomes difficult to move the vessel. Tacking into the wind could take hours just to move a short distance. Motor sailers are sailboats that have an inboard or outboard motor attached. The boat looks like a traditional sailboat but is actually powered by the motor for the majority of the time. Auxiliary motor sailers are simply sailboats that have a motor attached in case of poor sailing conditions.