From Powerboat® Magazine

By Dick DeBartolo ©

Dick does Docking

How fast can you tie up your boat at the gas dock? Or at a strange marina? A lot depends on whether you're tying up to a floating or fixed dock. If it's a fixed platform and you know you will be staying for several hours or overnight, you'll have to take the tidal difference into consideration. On the Hudson River, for example, there is a 6 foot difference between low and high tide.... The tidal flow along the Hudson is almost 7 knots, so you don't really have a second chance to grab a line before you hit the dock. Even if friends are along, it doesn't necessarily make docking easier, unless they know your routine.... So where am I going with this? Simple. There are docking aids that can help and in this column, I'm going to talk about some of the ingenious ones....

Fendergrip® from New World Marine makes setting and adjusting fenders a breeze. Fenders at the wrong height for a particular dock often offer no protection at all and sometimes boaters are reluctant to reset them when they know they can gas and be underway in 10 minutes. That may be fine for a lake with no traffic, but around a busy gas dock, there are always inconsiderate boaters that can cause damage to boat railings and the gelcoat- or worse- to fingers and feet. People instinctively use their hands and feet to fend off and that's not a good practice.

Fendergrip®'s push-button action provides fender-height adjustment in seconds. Simply put, fender lines, in either 3/8" or 1/2" thicknesses, pass throught the grip and over the boat's railing. A push of the black button activates the release that lets you raise or lower the line's position. When the fenders are where you want them, let go of the button and the line is locked securely in place. Fendergrip® is extremely versatile and comes with instruction photos that illustrate how to use the product on cleats, lifelines and railings. With two grips, you can even use fenders horizontally. If you're trying to raft up with another boat, you know there often just a couple of seconds to judge exactly where the fenders should be. With Fendergrip®, that's all it takes. Built to last, they're made with two types of Dupont® Delrin®, which contain UV inhibitors, and there shouldn't be any corrosion problems because the working parts are stainless steel.

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