We boaties are a unique breed of individuals with some special characteristics that set us apart from the rest:
- We are resourceful
- We improvise
- We think outside the box
- We solve problems
- We fix things with what we have lying around
- We don't like spending money if we really don't have to
- We don't like to be told
- We don't leave anything to chance
After years of frustration with the dreaded mooring pick up which includes falling in the water, kicking the cleat with my toe, loosing the gaff, loosing my temper and my peace at home from the deckhand/wife, I started thinking that there must be a simple, inexpensive, DIY solution to the problem. I googled but nothing came up so I decided to do something about it.
An idea came up, then another one so I started experimenting by building a prototype. The first failed miserably, the second was a bit better and in the end it worked. I could pick up the mooring at the bow whilst I am at the helm with no gaffs, magnets, no fancy electronics or moving parts. Success rate was almost 100%, and the times it failed was because I didn't steer the boat properly.
Total cost of the system was under $70 in materials, which is what you need. You may even have some bits you can use and bring the cost further down.
The beauty of it is that it is customisable to any boat with a rail at the bow. You attach it in less than 1 minute when you need it, and when you are done it folds neatly for storage. If you don't have a rail, you can even attach it to the hinged bow roller.
The feedback I had from some boaties that used it was very positive, especially in the safety aspect, so I decided to make a video with instructions and plans for anyone interested.