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  1. #226
    Chief Petty Officer Davem3's Avatar
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    I actually have a few , but i am now 49 and have had plenty of time to add them up ............

    going back to the late 70's, i lived in Warren, RI. now, if you come from RI, you know that you learn to boat LONG before you learn to walk, just a fact of life. Well, anywho, my buddy and I get a boat from a friend who was leaving/moving out of state, a nice 18' skiff with a 90 horse merc tower of power. Sweet, right. well, anyway we pull it out, go through everything and get her ready to drop back in. we are finally ready and drop her in, using a buddies Toyota pick up truck. ya, you heard it right, a early Toyota truck, that were not all that great back then, more on that later. well, we get it in and start cruising, when i realize (probably by the fact that my feet are getting wet) that %$^t, we forgot the plug. Now remember this is the 70's, a age and time before cell phones or hardly any way to communicate except by VHF radio, which there were NO handhelds at that time. I go to WOT instantly to get the water back out, all the while trying to signal everyone on land to get the effing trailor back into the water ASAP!!! Finally some one gets a clue and gets it back in. i come in hot, reverse at the last sec, hook up the winch and get it out now!!!!! problem was , the poor little Toyota with only 2 wheel drive could not pull the boat, motor trailer, and all the water IN the boat, so yep you guessed it the truck just slid back...........
    took 2 tow trucks to get us out............boat ended up being fine except for the battery , no biggie........... the truck however , well.......... i will leave that for another day

    2) and why i will never ever lock a motor EVER................was out around the point in Barrington, and discovered that a rock will win over a LU period, end of sentence. has anyone ever noticed that rowing with a motor as dead weight always takes longer to get back, then if you did not have a motor at all? I did

    so there is two of my favorites ........
    It is better to have it and not need it, then need it and not have it

    why is there never time to do the job right, but always time to do it over again?

    "Whenever I do something really dumb (at the boat ramp), a very large audience always seems to appear from out of nowhere"

    You cant fix stupid, but you can numb it with a 2 x 4.

    All the romance of fishing exists in the mind of the angler and is in no way shared by the fish.

  2. #227
    Chief Petty Officer Part-time's Avatar
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    Would putting a 25hp on a 12' car topper count???
    This is going back almost 20 years. I put a 25 yamaha that I had just got for a steal in a yard sale on my buddy's little tinny that could hardly handle a 9.9
    At first I was being very carefull... but then this overpowered little boat started being to much fun and I didn't notice the plywood from the transom comming appart.
    I was WOT when the sound of the engine changed, my left hand, still resting on the tiller handle was comming up over my head, the prop was now completely out of the water. The little motor seemed to have jumped over the corner of the boat and down on the port side.
    I tried my damndest to hold on to it but forget it... There's no holding on to a WOT 25hp engine hanging over the side of a boat with one hand while trying to stay inside a 12' car topper.
    I must have been a mile from shore where this happened and my friends waiting for me back on shore said they could here me cussin before they could see me... paddling back in a head wind.
    (Note: the word "carburetor" is a French word. In English it refers to the fuel mixture dispenser residing near a cylinder. However, you should be aware that the meaning of this word in the native French language is quite different. In French it means: "Don't mess with me".)

  3. #228
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    spend half a day fixing trailer lights so you can pass inspection then back into a tree and break a light. Welcome to my Saturday.
    A man of constant boat tinkering.

  4. #229
    Petty Officer 1st Class Nickypoo's Avatar
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    Thumbs down Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    I'm really throwing out my ego on this one: I started my boating experience as a teenager going out on a boat with a bunch of other teenagers. Needless to say, idiocy ran abound...



    The biggest mistake that was truly of my doing was I forgot to take the rear straps off before trying to launch.

    We put them on in a different spot than usual and I didn't see them so I assumed they were already off. At this point I was also pretty good at backing a trailer down straight, so with a couple of girls in the boat I decided to get cocky and reverse down the ramp fast. Well, I slammed on the brakes as I hit the water to launch the boat and, it didn't go anywhere. So everyone in the boat got flinged around and I felt like a complete idiot.



    One time I threw the anchor out without checking to see if it was attached, and well, it wasn't.



    Another experience which may or may not be my fault, was when my feet almost got chopped off by a propeller.

    My friend had just gotten a brand new V-drive boat (X-star - spoiled brat), and he wasn't quite used to the fact that the spinning propeller will actually shimmy the boat over to one side when it's moving slowly. Well I was wakesurfing and he came back around to pick me up after I fell. I was crouching on the board underwater so he could just swoop by while I catch onto the handle and immediately get up.

    He got a little too close, but I didn't think he would actually run me over. Well as he kept moving forward, the boat kept getting closer and closer over the top of me. Now keep in mind that I am on top of the board and I'm balancing it underneath me, so I'm not very mobile in the water. So finally I'm halfway under the boat and I bail out, while the board goes straight into the propeller.

    The board was chewed up but that was the extent of the damage.

  5. #230
    Petty Officer 2nd Class markheck1's Avatar
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    Here's one I haven't seen yet,

    Did a new water pump in my Alpha, hauled it down to the river and tested out the new install.....

    Of course wife and grandkids all wanted a boat ride since it was nice out....

    ran around the river for a little while and BANG!!! CRAP...I smacked a rock.....

    still limped along so I cruised it back to the launch, on the trailer, went to put the spare prop back on, Did I mention this was a "new to me" used prop that I just bought because the old one had some pretty good dings in it....

    HMMMM....where the heck did the trim tab go? Hmmmm....you know I have never hit a rock there before either......

    DING!!!.....hey stupid......you forgot to tighten the trim tab.......and it dropped into the prop......DOH!!!

    Also have forgot plug, and forgot to close the drains on the manifolds,

    Also learned NEVER trust the fuel gauge on a used boat, LOL

  6. #231
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    [

    I recently changed a fuel sender, figured I'll drain the "couple gallons" of gas I was sure was left in the tank. Well, 13 gallons later and nothing left to drain into, I poured it all back in. I guess that is a job for another day.LOL

  7. #232
    Lieutenant Junior Grade AZBoatDreamer's Avatar
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    Thank you all for sharing your stories and keeping this thread going. YOur mistakes helps us learn.
    David THE 5am Boater
    1996 Glastron GS 205 BowRider Purchased 2/12/10
    40th Anniversary Edition V8 5.7 Cobra/Penta Volvo Outdrive.
    Tow Vehicle Ford 2004 F250 4 x 4 V10
    5am is not too early to go boating
    Wife and Kids just don't understand

  8. #233
    Commander sutor623's Avatar
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    Quote Originally Posted by Part-time View Post
    Would putting a 25hp on a 12' car topper count???
    This is going back almost 20 years. I put a 25 yamaha that I had just got for a steal in a yard sale on my buddy's little tinny that could hardly handle a 9.9
    At first I was being very carefull... but then this overpowered little boat started being to much fun and I didn't notice the plywood from the transom comming appart.
    I was WOT when the sound of the engine changed, my left hand, still resting on the tiller handle was comming up over my head, the prop was now completely out of the water. The little motor seemed to have jumped over the corner of the boat and down on the port side.
    I tried my damndest to hold on to it but forget it... There's no holding on to a WOT 25hp engine hanging over the side of a boat with one hand while trying to stay inside a 12' car topper.
    I must have been a mile from shore where this happened and my friends waiting for me back on shore said they could here me cussin before they could see me... paddling back in a head wind.
    So what happened to the motor?

  9. #234
    Seaman Apprentice
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    After a beautiful trip through downtown Chicago and a great day with friends, we returned to the launch after dark. I loaded my 22' Searay CC without incident. My brother needed help with his loading, so I parked and helped. Once both boats were out of the water, everything was tied down and we were on our way. I am fairly new to boating, and at this point, I am starting to think I am doing well. WRONG! A few miles down the road, the dock line (that I had on while getting trailer) was thrown onto the bow, forgotten, and slid off while cornering. It only took a split second and, with a lurch, my bow rail was junk! My wife and I were so disgusted. I truly felt guilty. 22 years and don't know how many owners, those rails looked new.
    If any readers have a starboard rail for an '89 220 OV, let me know

    If nothing else, this is just another boating lesson. I am sure more are to follow.
    As long as we all go home in one piece, it's worth the trouble!
    Happy Boating to all!

  10. #235
    Petty Officer 1st Class
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    Quote Originally Posted by Raypex View Post
    After a beautiful trip through downtown Chicago and a great day with friends, we returned to the launch after dark. I loaded my 22' Searay CC without incident. My brother needed help with his loading, so I parked and helped. Once both boats were out of the water, everything was tied down and we were on our way. I am fairly new to boating, and at this point, I am starting to think I am doing well. WRONG! A few miles down the road, the dock line (that I had on while getting trailer) was thrown onto the bow, forgotten, and slid off while cornering. It only took a split second and, with a lurch, my bow rail was junk! My wife and I were so disgusted. I truly felt guilty. 22 years and don't know how many owners, those rails looked new.
    If any readers have a starboard rail for an '89 220 OV, let me know

    If nothing else, this is just another boating lesson. I am sure more are to follow.
    As long as we all go home in one piece, it's worth the trouble!
    Happy Boating to all!
    Did the pretty much same thing once with a much smaller (and cheaper) tinnie. Bow line which was still attached to the eye on the front of the boat but was just tossed on the front floorboard of the boat. It snaked it's way out, whipped off and caught under the trailer wheel. I was much luckier though. There was no bow rail to destroy. The hook that attached the bowline to the boat must have been made in China. It broke instead of pulling the eye out of the bow. Bowline somehow ended up wrapped around the hub and axle but that only took a few minutes to get loose. Now, when ever we go, the bowline in removed and stowed securely in the boat before anything moves.

    One more lesson well learned.

  11. #236
    Cadet wpalmisano's Avatar
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    Easy. About 18 years ago I was fishing at North Farms Reservior at night, alone, with my first boat. The bass were on the topwater bite and I could hardly bring myself to leave. I was "in the zone." I had the place to myself, it was a warm night. I was working third shift and after fishing I would just hook up the boat and go to work for midnight. I had a 14' 1965 fiberglass Starcraft which weighed at least one ton, lol. I was new to boating and as time for work neared I headed for the shallow ramp covered in goose poop, and backed my brand new 2004 S-10 pick up up with the trailer in the water. Try as I might I could not get the boat on the trailer. I soon had the bright idea of turning the key on, not starting it, just powering the reverse lights. and put the truck in reverse. It lit everything up nicely but I could see the trailer wasn't quite back far enough into the water. So I pushed on the clutch to back it up another foot. Of course it pop started in reverse, the door pushed me down into the water, and the truck actually backed up so that the bottom of the doors was underwater but it pointed upward so the engine was out of the water. I just stood there on the ramp, covered in goose poop and green water, utterly alone. The crickets chirped and the headlights pointed up into the air. Later, as I stood there in shock and disgusted with myself. a couple showed up to the deserted ramp to be romantic and quickly noticed the headlights pointing into the air. His 4x4 easily pulled me out. The truck started right up.Later, I took out the vinal floors and seats and cleaned and dried everything but that truck never did smell right ever again.
    Last edited by wpalmisano; April 20th, 2012 at 10:38 PM. Reason: spelling
    1988 Tracker Topper 14 w/ 1988 Mercury 8
    1987 WINNER ALPHA II w/1987 Suzuki DT65

  12. #237

    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    I fish and hunt relics of the Tennessee River. TVA release water for electricity at various time. One day I pulled up to shore and tied my boat off and was looking for arrowheads. I was about 70 yards away and saw that the shore line was receding fast. I ran back to the boat and tried to push it back into the river. I was stranded on a mud flat. I had to dig a ditch to the boat and then dig out the mud under the boat to get her back in 7 hours later. I was down in the boondocks. I did dig out a few relics on that mud flat though. This was with a 16' G-3 duck boat.

  13. #238
    Rear Admiral Maclin's Avatar
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    The anchor rope stories remined me of one time when I was heading back to the ramp for the day and the tow rope decided it had time for one more adventure. The tube and rope were in the boat and on the way to the ramp the tow rope sneaked out so when I go to the ramp there it was 25' back in the water, one end on the tow hook and the other on the tube that was still in the boat (it had not moved at all). It was not a long trip to the ramp but I as doing 45 or so most of the way. I was taken aback some when I saw it while aiming the boat at the trailer, but then once my brother was winching the boat on up I just put on a silly grin and reeled it back in right there on the ramp. Not too many people noticed, but all I could think about were the what-ifs, like the tube getting sucked out and catching and pulling the tow eye out, or rope in prop or rope in someone else's prop.
    "TaylorConn", our 1991 HydroSwift 2200 Cuddy Volvo Penta 570/DP

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2CUH0...b1AUAAAAAAACAA

  14. #239
    Petty Officer 1st Class Harritwo's Avatar
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    Yesterday at the ramp, a guy had a nissan truck backing down on the ramp a bayliner. First he forgot to unstrap it, when he finally figured that one out, he pulled out, unstrapped, then backed down into the water again. This time he forgot the plug, when he pulled out and put the plug in, he let his tailgate down, Backed down into the water, and left a huge dent in the tailgate. I fianlly left before he destroyed anything else.

  15. #240
    Lieutenant Commander SigSaurP229's Avatar
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    First launch of the season, you can now add me to the transom strap club as well as the left plug out club. Though technically i didn't forget the plug the plug was worn out and leaking luckily i keep three spares on the boat sooo back up the ramp she goes out goes the old plug in goes the new one of comes the transom strap and away we go. Yep I removed only 1 transom strap the other was holding the boat quite firmly in place.

  16. #241
    Lieutenant Commander SigSaurP229's Avatar
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    Quote Originally Posted by home cookin' View Post
    spend half a day fixing trailer lights so you can pass inspection then back into a tree and break a light. Welcome to my saturday.

    that sucks

  17. #242
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    Well.. New to the site sort of...
    But here are a few of my follies.. They usually have something to do with me not paying full attention to what I am doing at the given time...
    Let's see.. So far this year alone...
    Decided to replace brakes on the trailer, bought new lines, drums, everything, was amazed with my self how quickly it all went, bled the brakes out, tested the trailer out great, all works fine.
    Head out for a family camping trip and trailer the boat with us. Trailer handles great. Back the trailer in to the tightest camping spot I have ever seen (proud of myself at this point, usually our family trips are never smooth...) Next day pull the boat take it to the ramp, go to back down the ramp... Brakes lock up. (WTF moment...) Put truck in drive, pull forward no issues.. Put truck in reverse brakes lock up again, I do this two or three more times and finally give up... (held my temper as best I could..) said screw it and we headed back to the camp ( now, I have to try and back the trailer up again.... fun begins again, if I give the truck gas and the trailer tongue compresses, brakes lock..
    Patiently let the truck idle and back the trailer in.. 30 minutes to back up a trailer.. SO MUCH FUN.... temper still in check.....
    Next day we are packing up to go home, I put the kids in the truck to watch a movie as we pack up the camp, well about an hour and a half later, we are ready to hook the boat up. Go to start truck... click click click.... (temper lost......)

    Finally get truck jumped and boat hooked up drive all the way home again, and immediately take the trailer to a repair shop near the house that I bought all the parts from, dropped it off. Next day get a call, Brakes were put on backwards... DOH! 50 dollars and I was good to go...



    Just this past weekend...
    While I was replacing the brakes I decided to replace two of the tires on the trailer as they were pretty worn.. the other two could make it the rest of the season I though...
    Well trying to pull in to the gas station I caught one of the non replace tires on the curb right at a spot where the curb was rough. Bent the rim into the tire, tore about 3 inches of side wall off until there was the steel bands showing (surprisingly the tire still held air and I was able to tow to the tire shop..) never even made it to the water that day... Now I have ordered the two other tires.....

    Most my mishaps happen before I even get to the water, by that time I am usually so ticked off I dont go or I am so overly cautious I catch myself before I do anything really stupid.......

  18. #243
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    yup yup done all the obvious ones besides the key thing, first boat i bought was a 14ft savage ski boat kinda thing that cost 900 bucks with a 35 hp chrysler hangin off the back. They really should stick to cars! first three times i went out i paddled that thing back in, All for different reasons too! lucky it sat low and i had good paddles, still a hit to the ego tho, always took forever to start and if ya got it started it seemed fine until the battery went dead, then when pull started the bloody thing would run backwards! that always made for fun back at the dock! My favourite one was taking my dads little 12ft tinny out and just as I pulled in to the service station to fuel up everything one wheel just fell off the trailer! yep no fishin that day. Please keep these stories coming I love em especially the one where the guy put 25 gallons in to the rod holder!

    And its true if ya aint breakin s@#t Ya aint tryin hard enough!

  19. #244
    Cadet jlongsta's Avatar
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    OK, it's a good thing my husband and I didn't buy an airplane. We took our 21' pontoon out for the first time this season. My huband backed the trailer down to the boat ramp just fine, boat started just fine, I backed off the trailer just fine. We got out in the middle of the lake and everything was "Just Fine" until my husband noticed the gas gauge. It was on empty. We store our boat in a "secure" storage area and we stored it with a full tank of gas with stablizer. I flicked the gas gauge hoping it would shoot up to full. No luck. In a matter of minutes, I felt the boat lose power. We were dead in the water. We didn't have our trolling motor because we thought we would just troll along the dam this first trip out. A woman stopped and took my husband into the marina. She said she couldn't tow us in. Back comes my hubby with some gas and into the marina we go. $200 later, at $4.50 per gal., we were back on the lake. These are desparate times. Come to find out, one of the other tenants in our storage area was caught stealing gas and other items. It would have been nice had the storage people contacted us. The thief was even nice enough to replace the gas cap so we didn't notice anything strange. As I said, it's a good thing we have a boat and not an airplane. Lesson learned, always check your fuel no matter what!
    Jill in Kansas, Fight Like a Girl

  20. #245
    Petty Officer 3rd Class Water_God32's Avatar
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    Winterized the boat wrong.
    Took it out the next spring.
    Crack in the block.
    Engine caught fire.
    Thank goodness for fire extinguishers!

  21. #246
    Commander sutor623's Avatar
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    Quote Originally Posted by filthy View Post
    guy put 25 gallons in to the rod holder!
    Don't think I would have admitted to that one....

  22. #247
    Petty Officer 1st Class
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    Quote Originally Posted by sutor623 View Post
    Don't think I would have admitted to that one....
    With 60+ years of boating -- I do NOT admit to any mistakes if there is no one around to see it happen .

  23. #248
    Petty Officer 1st Class
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    Quote Originally Posted by CoffeeHound View Post
    With 60+ years of boating -- I do NOT admit to any mistakes if there is no one around to see it happen .

    A mistake is only a mistake if someone else is there to see it or, if the consequences are so apparent that you can't hide it or blame it on someone else. Otherwise it never happened.

  24. #249
    Commander sutor623's Avatar
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    Quote Originally Posted by CoffeeHound View Post
    With 60+ years of boating -- I do NOT admit to any mistakes if there is no one around to see it happen .
    Hahaha.

  25. #250
    Chief Petty Officer tomdinwv's Avatar
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    Default Re: What boating mistakes have you made?

    I make no mistakes. I just teach those around me what not to do.

    Okay, I did make one boo boo with the tow vehicle I used to have. It was an '04 Dodge Dakota. It didn't have any tie downs in the bed and I had hauled something and used a ratchet strap hooked on the front of the bed to hold said item in place. I was going down the road running about 50 or 55 when all of a sudden, WHAM, THUMPTHUMPTHUMPTHUMP. Pulled off the side of the road and found the problem. The end of the strap (without the ratchet) had slid down and got into the driveshaft. It looped itself around the driveshaft and proceeded to beat the snot out of everything underneath the truck. On a side note, the big Wham sound was the ratched hitting the back of the cab about 1" below the back glass, leaving one heck of a nice dent. After the ratchet end had made its way down to the driveshaft, it decided it hated my muffler. I could not have beat a better dent in the muffler with a 12lb sledge hammer. The ratchet strap also managed to rip the wiring out of the speed sensor in the rear end housing and it shredded the input shaft seal in the differencial. I cut the strap off the driveshaft and limped on home. Changed my underwear and proceeded to replace the seal and repair the wiring. On a side note, I always make sure all straps, ropes etc... are secured before taking off now, weather it's my truck, boat or anything else.

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