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nicknorman

Single handers - would you do this?

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I would say I single hand the lock our boat is currently in as Mrs-M sets ahead. I therefore operate the paddles and open and close the gates of the current lock.

 

Occasionally I'll single hand the setting of the next lock as well but that generally means bringing the boat in to the gates then preparing the lock.  The only time I would leave the boat in one lock and go to the next is if the locks are very close together and the boat is in the current lock with the exit gate open.

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1 hour ago, cuthound said:

 

Is it really single handing if your wife is helping?

No but leaving a boat in a lock with no one by the paddles amounts to the same thing if something goes wrong

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If the windlass was left on the spindle I would remove it and throw it in the cut. It would be safe then. Flying windlasses are killers

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I never leave the boat unattended in a lock. To me it's not worth the time saving if anything goes wrong. At Fradley I always work the locks one by one. If it's a close flight I'll get the level right on the lock I'm working and then go ahead, leaving the boat in the opened lock and set the next couple. 

 

I've always got the dog on board and would be devastated if anything happened to him if the boat sunk in a lock.

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2 hours ago, jeddlad said:

I've always got the dog on board and would be devastated if anything happened to him if the boat sunk in a lock

Surely he is free to swim away.  My dog was seldom on the boat, unless we were tied up.  That's why she hated rivers - no towpath.

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11 hours ago, jeddlad said:

I never leave the boat unattended in a lock. To me it's not worth the time saving if anything goes wrong. At Fradley I always work the locks one by one. If it's a close flight I'll get the level right on the lock I'm working and then go ahead, leaving the boat in the opened lock and set the next couple. 

 

I've always got the dog on board and would be devastated if anything happened to him if the boat sunk in a lock.

Also got the dog on-board. The risk is worth the time saving in my opinion. 

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Surely most of us are simply boating for pleasure, not boating against the clock to eke out a living?

 

In that case, whilst agreeing with the aim to travel as efficiently as possible, is any risk worth taking, just to "save time"?

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14 hours ago, sueb said:

 Flying windlasses are killers

 

Could you cite examples of this?

 

"Flying windlasses could hurt somebody" might be more accurate, if less exciting reading.

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8 minutes ago, DRP said:

Surely most of us are simply boating for pleasure, not boating against the clock to eke out a living?

 

In that case, whilst agreeing with the aim to travel as efficiently as possible, is any risk worth taking, just to "save time"?

"Is any risk worth taking, just to save time"...well it obviously depends on the person accepting the risk and it depends on the risk itself.

 

For example, boating in damp conditions poses a risk, should you wish to travel somewhere should you wait for the sun to come out and dry the surfaces before continuing your journey - or travel in the damp to save time.

 

Everybody does things to save time everyday while accepting the risks that come with the time saving. Such as driving vs. walking and using the train. 

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My understanding of the danger of leaving the windlass on is it could hit someone in the face (or elsewhere) if they're near it and it starts spinning. However it might not even wobble off the spindle, and if it did doesn't really "fly off" anyway, due to the direction of the forces involved - so there's actually little danger if its left on but nobody around it. If someone was killed by one, then they were very unlucky. 

 

The other danger, of course, is that it pings off into the canal or lock.

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1 hour ago, sirweste said:

 

 

For example, boating in damp conditions poses a risk, should you wish to travel somewhere should you wait for the sun to come out and dry the surfaces before continuing your journey - or travel in the damp to save time.

 

Everybody does things to save time everyday while accepting the risks that come with the time saving. Such as driving vs. walking and using the train. 

Travelling in the damp is the normal state of affairs in this country, and you can have a long wait for the sun to come out and dry everything.

Boating single handed and leaving boats unattended and moving in locks is just foolish.

I imagine even the debaters in this forum, addicted to reductio ad absurdum arguments, can probably understand that(although I wouldn't put money on it).

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22 minutes ago, Paul C said:

My understanding of the danger of leaving the windlass on is it could hit someone in the face (or elsewhere) if they're near it and it starts spinning. However it might not even wobble off the spindle, and if it did doesn't really "fly off" anyway, due to the direction of the forces involved - so there's actually little danger if its left on but nobody around it. If someone was killed by one, then they were very unlucky. 

 

The other danger, of course, is that it pings off into the canal or lock.

I did see a chap get hit in the mouth by a windlass he'd left on a spindle.

 

It didn't kill him,  but he spat three front teeth out immediately afterwards.

 

I always remove my windlass from the paddlegear if I am not actively using it.

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2 minutes ago, DRP said:

Travelling in the damp is the normal state of affairs in this country, and you can have a long wait for the sun to come out and dry everything.

Boating single handed and leaving boats unattended and moving in locks is just foolish.

I imagine even the debaters in this forum, addicted to reductio ad absurdum arguments, can probably understand that(although I wouldn't put money on it).

The point I was making is that some people would see damp slippy surfaces as too great a risk. Others see snow as too great a risk. Others see leaving the boat in the lock at anytime during movement too great a risk.

 

Everyone is different and has a different perception of risk. It's all about the convenience of mitigating risks vs. the magnitude and likelihood of the risk.

 

For me, as I said, I'm happy to leave the boat once filling has reached a certain point, this is because I deem the risk to have dropped low enough to make the convenience of joggin up to set the next lock worth it.

 

You have obviously, consciously or subconsciously, evaluated the risks of boating and decided they are worth it for the enjoyment you get. Other people may decide that the risks are too great and thus stick to safer hobbies e.g. crown green bowling, reading, knitting etc

 

To call people (me) a fool because my risk perception differs to yours is narrow minded in my opinion.

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52 minutes ago, Paul C said:

My understanding of the danger of leaving the windlass on is it could hit someone in the face (or elsewhere) if they're near it and it starts spinning. However it might not even wobble off the spindle, and if it did doesn't really "fly off" anyway, due to the direction of the forces involved - so there's actually little danger if its left on but nobody around it. If someone was killed by one, then they were very unlucky. 

 

The other danger, of course, is that it pings off into the canal or lock.

There was an air ambulance job when one flew off at Napton top, I wasnt there to witness it but understand it was a face injury.

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1 hour ago, Paul C said:

 

The other danger, of course, is that it pings off into the canal or lock.

 

Or Sue B chucks it in.

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30 minutes ago, ditchcrawler said:

There was an air ambulance job when one flew off at Napton top, I wasnt there to witness it but understand it was a face injury.

Its unlucky (that you weren't there) because we are no further - we don't know if it did actually fly off, or if it was still on (maybe the catch came off, not the windlass?) but they were very nearby but for some reason had let go of the windlass, etc. Obviously a windlass turning backwards driven by the force of a closing paddle is dangerous, and could cause serious injury. But we are discussing whether it could come off, travel some distance and kill a passer-by.

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My dad put a windlass through his face but that was because he was trying to wind a paddle down to stop our boat sinking and the windlass came off the spindle and the momentum meant it hit him in the face and put him in hospital.

I've only seen a windlass slip on a paddle a couple of times and each time the person has tried to grab it as it is spinning round and they have been lucky not to break an arm, no near deaths though.

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1 hour ago, Chris Williams said:

If the windlass causes injury or not, it is just plain bad practice or ignorance to leave it on the paddle.

I don't think anyone is in disagreement there!!!!! 

 

The point is more that, if I were a bystander: if I saw someone leave the windlass on the paddle and be in that area, I'd feel the obligation to step in and warn of the danger. If they had left it on but gone away, that imminent danger is no longer there. Its still sloppy, but there is not enough danger to intervene as a bystander against the actions of a boater. sueb would, I wouldn't!

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6 hours ago, DRP said:

Surely most of us are simply boating for pleasure, not boating against the clock to eke out a living?

 

In that case, whilst agreeing with the aim to travel as efficiently as possible, is any risk worth taking, just to "save time"?

If you're singlehanding, you are always a bit aware that you are slower (if not by much if you're any good at it) than the crewed boat behind you. So there's a bit of pressure to get on along a flight as quick as you can. Nice as people are you can see their faces drop when they realise you're on your own. So in those cases I tend to be happy to leave the boat to drop the last few feet (once it's well past the cill) and set the next lock. 

That being said, I seem to be as quick as a crewed boat, but I have followed some singlehanders who drove me demented by the sheer slowness and inefficiency of how they worked locks. 

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The biggest thing that slows a single hander is the inability to go away from the boat and set ahead.

 

If a crewed boat (let's assume 2 people) comes up behind a single hander, the most efficient thing is for one of the crew of the boat behind to go ahead (beyond the single hander) to set up the next lock, then once its draining/filling, come back one lock. The single hander, once completed the lock, sets that lock for the remaining crew of the boat behind, during which time the lock ahead is probably then ready. Or some other variation like that.

 

The point being, the crewed boat is able to use the "spare" crew to (safely, obviously) speed up the single hander, and they in turn are able to partially help the other boat rather than simply going from having 1 to having 2, where the crewed went from 2 to 1 (and instead of being up the arse, would then lag behind, over time, on a flight).

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3 hours ago, Chris Williams said:

If the windlass causes injury or not, it is just plain bad practice or ignorance to leave it on the paddle.

Which a lot of hirers are not aware of. A lad on the boat in front of us on the Stratford and his Grand dad both left their windlesses on, The boy had his get away from him and just catch his arm, so when I asked if he was OK I pointed out the danger of leaving them on, He still did it at the next one but Granddad shouted at him.

 

Sorry I shouldn't have said that as I am not a single hander

Edited by ditchcrawler

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6 hours ago, TheBiscuits said:

I did see a chap get hit in the mouth by a windlass he'd left on a spindle.

 

It didn't kill him,  but he spat three front teeth out immediately afterwards.

 

I always remove my windlass from the paddlegear if I am not actively using it.

Showing a lady friend how to use a lock I did the never leave the windless on the spindle talk, she lent over to have a closer look at the pawl and let go of the windlass.

Bloody hell they unwind fast, stayed on the spindle though 

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6 hours ago, Paul C said:

However it might not even wobble off the spindle, and if it did doesn't really "fly off" anyway, due to the direction of the forces involved

My understanding of the forces involved agreed with yours until I saw one fly off and travel some distance.

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I would do exactly what the perp did.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If I wanted to cill and sink the bote.

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