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Essential Knots: Clove hitch

Use: Tying a rope to posts, bollards, rings or a guardrail.

Step 1. Make a turn around the object and lay the working end diagonally back over the standing part.

Step 2. Pass the working end round the object and back through the loop.

Step 3. Pull tight   Tip: Learn how to tie and adjust a fender using a clove hitch – this is a job for everyone on board.  

A one stop guide to tying and understanding all of the 50 most useful nautical knots!

   

Boat ownership

Owning a boat is a big commitment that should bring no end of satisfaction for the owner as well as the owner's family and friends. In...

Learn ColRegs: Traffic Separation Schemes

Learn ColRegs Rule 10: Traffic Separation Schemes. (c) A vessel shall, so far as practicable, avoid crossing traffic lanes...

Sector lights, directional lights, leading lights – how do they differ?

Sector lights, directional lights and leading lights guide vessels safely through hazardous waters or narrow channels at...

First Aid at Sea – strains and sprains

Strains and sprains respond well to rest and cooling. Wrap ice in a tea towel before applying. First Aid at Sea Strains and...

Getting a tow for your sail or power boat at sea or on inland waterways

FREE tips from the Safe Skipper App for iPhone/iPad/Android: Getting a tow for your sail or power boat Plan how to secure a...

A five day sailing cruise of the Solent, UK

Welcome to our virtual Solent sailing cruise – a five day sail in the south of England from Bosham Quay in Chichester...

Essential boat engine checklist

Boat engine checklist Engine oil level check Even if you have checked it previously, confirming the engine oil level is up...

Rudders and steering systems – Part 1

Rudders and steering systems. A rudder is one of the most critical parts of a boat. Rudder failure is a common occurrence on neglected or overworked boats and a very unpleasant and potentially dangerous thing to happen when you are out at sea.

The give-way hierarchy at sea – who gives way to whom?

Whatever their size or type, all skippers have a responsibility to avoid collisions with other boats at sea.  It is...

Feeling anxious at sea

  Some people feel anxious at sea. Will they be seasick? What if they get caught in a violent storm? Could the boat...

Navigation safety: a quick-reference mobile app to learn the ColRegs NavLights and Shapes

 Safety at SeaSafety at sea will always remains a topical and important subject that will no doubt dominate the syllabuses of nautical...

Repairing chips and dings in gelcoat

The gelcoat topsides of a GRP boat can be pampered and restored to their former glory relatively easily when it is ashore. Gelcoat is only a very thin outer layer of the hull, often less than 1mm thick, so you should avoid cleaning it with highly abrasive cleaners, or an-ything that could potentially damage its surface.

Fire safety advice at sea from the Marine & Coastguard Agency

Fire safety advice for boaters Top fire safety advice at sea: 1. Fit smoke alarms, carbon monoxide and gas detectors 2. Turn...

First Aid Afloat – how to deal with a fracture at sea

First Aid Afloat A closed fracture does not break through the skin. An open fracture is when the bone punctures it. A...

Know your Navlights & Shapes – essential for all skippers

Know your Navlights & Shapes International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea (ColRegs) Anyone who is...

Rewiring a boat – overcoming the challenges involved

Skippers need to have a basic knowledge of boat electrics, to avoid potential problems and to be able to solve them when...

An explanation of the IALA maritime buoyage systems – IALA A and IALA B

What are the differences between the two IALA buoyage systems, IALA Region A and IALA Region B, and where are they used?   As recently as the 1970s...

Avoiding collisions at sea – how to stay safe on the water

Boats have many blind spots, including the headsails of sailing boats. Always keep a lookout, stay safe and remember that...

ColRegs – avoiding collisions at sea

ColRegs - avoiding collisions at sea ColRegs Rule 8: Action to avoid collision (a) Any action taken to avoid collision shall...

Seized fixings and fastenings

Maintaining a boat can be a rewarding experience but at times it can also be frustrating. A prime example of this is when you come across a seized fixing or fastening that refuses to budge. Read our tips on how to release and fix them:

ColRegs Nav Lights & Shapes, Rules Of The Road and IALA Buoys Apps

ColRegs Nav Lights & Shapes, Rules Of The Road and IALA Buoys Apps Make Learning Rules on iPhone, iPad, iPod and Android...

Medical Emergency at Sea

How to deal with a medical emergency afloat   If you are planning a boating trip, it is important to have at least one...

Understanding your mast and rigging

The rig of a sailing boat is put under huge stresses and strains so it is important for inspections of a yacht's spars and rigging to be...

Safety Briefings – leave nothing to chance

Before giving your crew a safety briefing, it is worth considering the specific circumstances of the planned trip, the...

Passage planning and pilotage

Passage planning and pilotage help skippers navigate safely from one port to another. A passage plan takes into account all...