- Practice and develop the coordinated use of boat controls for starting the engine, shifting, changing speeds, and performing pivot turns and minimum control speed.
Setting Up the Drill:
- Equipment: powerboat rigged with bow, stern and spring lines, and fenders
- Boat securely tethered alongside a dock or preferably in a slip.
Conducting the Drill:
- Operator starts engine and then practices shifting from neutral into forward and reverse, and indicates throttle positions for maneuvering and high speed.
- Operator learns to check engine/helm position before applying any power.
- Operator practices coordinated helm and throttle maneuvers for turning and backing.
- Operator practices helm, shift and throttle coordination of a pivot turn.
- When shifting gears, pause in neutral.
- Use the mnemonic: “steer then gear” when teaching the pivot turn to help operators remember.
- Applying too much throttle or applying it too abruptly.
- Lacking awareness of engine/helm position.
- Turning the helm in the wrong direction during the pivot turn, or turning it while in gear.
- Start Powerboating Right! textbook pp. 10, 41, 45, 52, 59 (rudder steering)