Power Boating For Dummies book cover

Power Boating For Dummies

Author:
Randy Vance
Published: March 3, 2009

Overview

Ahoy, there! From docking and mooring to routine power boat maintenance and repairs, this handy guide is your trusted first mate for smooth sailing 

For both new and experienced boaters, Power Boating For Dummies is a useful reference that covers the ins and outs of this exciting and popular sport. The book starts at the beginning, taking you through the process of buying a boat, but it’s helpful to anyone who owns a boat. Designed to teach you how to pilot a boat, equip it, store it, tow it, handle emergencies, and more, — it’s a comprehensive guide written in jargon-free language . 

Power Boating For Dummies teaches you everything you need to know about buying, operating, and enjoying a power boat up to 35 feet in length and provides expert guidance for anyone new to the sport and new tips and ideas for improving power boating for even those with some experience captaining a boat: 

  • Calculate the costs of boating and compare those costs to non-boating activities 

  • Decide which type of boat to buy — fishing, runabouts, pontoon, cruisers, or houseboats 

  • Know which mechanical checks to perform when you’re looking at a pre-owned boat 

  • Learn the rules of boater safety  

  • Find out what it takes to acquire a boating license 

  • Outfit your power boat with the right gear, equipment, and supplies — for fun and safety 

  • Operate your power boat, from launching and loading to driving, anchoring, and docking 

  • Navigate with charts, GPS, and radar 

  • Handle the weather and other boat emergencies 

  • Check (and change) fluids, charge your boat’s battery, and perform other routine maintenance tasks 

  • Check and repair belts and propellers and fix leaks and other minor problems 

  • Prepare your power boat for all seasons 

  • Keep your boat’s galley fully stocked 

To learn about all of that and so much more, including boating tactics that separate the pros from the amateurs and all-important items you’ll never set sail without, grab your copy of Power Boating For Dummies today. 

Ahoy, there! From docking and mooring to routine power boat maintenance and repairs, this handy guide is your trusted first mate for smooth sailing 

For both new and experienced boaters, Power Boating For Dummies is a useful reference that covers the ins and outs of this exciting and popular sport. The book starts at the beginning, taking you through the process of buying a boat, but it’s helpful to anyone who owns a boat. Designed to teach you how to pilot a boat, equip it, store it, tow it, handle emergencies, and more, — it’s a comprehensive guide written in jargon-free language . 

Power Boating For Dummies teaches you everything you need to know about buying, operating, and enjoying a power boat up to 35 feet in length and provides expert guidance for anyone new to the sport and new tips and ideas for improving power boating for even those with some experience captaining a boat: 

  • Calculate the costs of boating and compare those costs to non-boating activities 

  • Decide which type of boat to buy — fishing, runabouts, pontoon, cruisers, or houseboats 

  • Know which mechanical checks to perform when you’re looking at a pre-owned boat 

  • Learn the rules of boater safety  

  • Find out what it takes to acquire a boating license 

  • Outfit your power boat with the right gear, equipment, and supplies — for fun and safety 

  • Operate your power boat, from launching and loading to driving, anchoring, and docking 

    • Navigate with charts, GPS, and radar 

    • Handle the weather and other boat emergencies 

    • Check (and change) fluids, charge your boat’s battery, and perform other routine maintenance tasks 

    • Check and repair belts and propellers and fix leaks and other minor problems 

    • Prepare your power boat for all seasons 

    • Keep your boat’s galley fully stocked 

    To learn about all of that and so much more, including boating tactics that separate the pros from the amateurs and all-important items you’ll never set sail without, grab your copy of Power Boating For Dummies today. 

    Power Boating For Dummies Cheat Sheet

    Power boating is a fun and relaxing hobby so long as your boat is seaworthy and ready to launch. Simple checks can help make sure that it’s both. As one of the more powerful crafts on the water, you need to know when to give way and when it’s your right to stand on course when encountering another boat.

    Articles From The Book

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    Power Boating Articles

    Checks to Make before You Launch Your Power Boat

    Before you launch your power boat, it pays to run through a short checklist to make sure that your boat is ready for the water and ready to disengage from its trailer. Doing the checks in the following list can save you from making embarrassing, and potentially harmful, mistakes:

    • Is the bilge plug in?

    • Have you disconnected and removed the transom straps, and locked them in your tow vehicle?

    • Have your loosened the bow winch just enough so that the strap has a few inches of slack?

    • Are fenders and docklines attached?

    • Is all last-minute gear loaded?

    • Is the battery switch on (if you have one)?

    • Have you double-checked the battery charge level? (Turn on the key just long enough to hear the engine fire, and then quickly turn it off.)

    • Is the engine trailering support bracket disengaged?

    Power Boating Articles

    Following Right-of-Way Boating Rules

    When you’re cruising along in your power boat, you’re rarely alone on the water, so you need to know, and follow, boating rules. In boat-speak, you and your vessel either stand-on course because you have the right-of-way, or you give way to a vessel and let it pass first. The action you take depends on what you and the other vessel are doing.

    Sailboats under sail power only are always the stand-on vessels in crossing and meeting situations, so look out for them when you’re under power. Also, commercial vessels restricted by their draft or by fishing gear, such as nets or trawls, hold privilege over all recreational vessels, including sailboats.

    Passing a boat

    • Your vessel: If you’re following another vessel in a river, narrow canal, or marked channel, you’re the give-way vessel, meaning you have the greater burden of responsibility should anything go wrong when you try to pass. Your vessel, in this case, is also called the burdened vessel.

    • The other vessel: The vessel you want to pass is the stand-on vessel. It’s privileged and the skipper can deny you passage if she thinks it’s unsafe (or doesn’t like the color of your paint).

    • Asking permission to pass: You sound two short blasts from your horn, signifying you’d like to pass the skipper on his port (left) side.

    • Receiving permission to pass: He signals back with two short blasts to say “Okay!”

    • Permission denied: She blasts the horn five times, signifying there’s danger involved in such a maneuver. If she doesn’t respond at all, consider it five short blasts and don’t attempt to pass.

    Crossing paths

    • Your vessel: You’re on a crossing course with another vessel that could result in a collision if neither boat changes course or speed.

    • The other vessel’s on the right: It’s the privileged or stand-on vessel and you must let it pass in front of you.

    • The other vessel is on the left: You’re the privileged or stand-on vessel and you must pass in front of the other vessel.

    Meeting a boat head-on

    • Your vessel: You’re meeting another vessel head-on.

    • Both vessels: You should both steer to the right to such a degree that each can see the other’s intentions to pass safely portside to portside (left to left, for the landlubber).

    When all else fails

    When it seems like no one but you knows or follows the rules, the rules say you must give way to avoid a collision. If you exercise stand-on privilege and an accident results, you’ll be held at least partially responsible.

    Power Boating Articles

    How to Determine the Seaworthiness of a Power Boat

    Whether you’re buying a new or pre-owned power boat or preparing to sell yours, you need to make sure that the boat is shipshape and seaworthy. The following list spells out the checks to make before you buy or sell a power boat: