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Obsolete mooring set-up


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Prove me wrong - T studs at the bow, a centre post and stern dollies are all throwbacks.  Mostlt to horse powered boats and/or towed butties. There is nothing they do that a well designed and well placed marine cleat can't do better. Two cleats at the bow (although one centre cleat would do), two cleats one each side in the middle and one on each stern quarter. All lines secured by using the stronger, much simpler to tie, simpler to untie and less likely to jam cleat hitch.

 

Nothing wrong with tradition but also nothing wrong with accepting improvements.

 

A horn cleat is the traditional design, featuring two “horns” extending parallel to the deck or the axis of the spar, attached to a flat surface or a spar,

cleat_hitch3.jpg

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I like T studs at the fore end as you can easily throw a loop around a stud while standing on the bank, ordinary cleats are harder to catch and reaching out to a cleat is risking  wet feet and more, to place a cleat at the wider part of the boat means falling over the rope every time you get in or out.

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1 hour ago, TomIre said:

Prove me wrong -

 

 

There is a tendency for newbies to narrowboating to see it as hidebound in tradition, with nobody ever thinking about the way things are done. The truth is the opposite and a large tee stud on the bow with a pair of bollards at the stern actually works best on a 'normal' narrow boat (partly for the reasons Bee points out above).

 

We don't need to 'prove you wrong' or convince you in any way. Go ahead and fit these cleats you like to your own boat if you like them and try them out. Let us know how it goes. I very much doubt you did this before posting and are claiming they are an improvement from personal experience.

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No idea about American horse towing practice, but I think the OP has not realized that our canal boats towed with mast some way back along the boat so the horse toeing bit has nothing t do with T studs.

 

Many UK motor cruisers of the 70s did have smaller quarter cleats mounted where the bow bent into the side as well as a main centre eye, T stud or cleat mounted in the typical position. I found that the small quarter cleats did make it easier to pull the boat around the yard by hand because they did not cause it to sheer towards the bank like using the bow T stud does. However, they all had side decks about 12" wide, so there is plenty of room for smaller cleats. On a typical narrow boat mounting small cleats in the optimum position towing wise would obstruct the walk way and stand a good chance of tripping someone into the water, so I agree, let the OP try them on his own narrow boat.

 

I have a question for the OP, why can't you use your hitch on a T stud? JennyB had T studs on the stern so that hitch is one I often used.

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2 hours ago, TomIre said:

Prove me wrong - T studs at the bow, a centre post and stern dollies are all throwbacks.  Mostlt to horse powered boats and/or towed butties. There is nothing they do that a well designed and well placed marine cleat can't do better. Two cleats at the bow (although one centre cleat would do), two cleats one each side in the middle and one on each stern quarter. All lines secured by using the stronger, much simpler to tie, simpler to untie and less likely to jam cleat hitch.

 

Nothing wrong with tradition but also nothing wrong with accepting improvements.

 

A horn cleat is the traditional design, featuring two “horns” extending parallel to the deck or the axis of the spar, attached to a flat surface or a spar,

cleat_hitch3.jpg

 

 

 

Tee stud and bollards are nothing to do with horse towing.  The tow was to a centre mast with a long rope. Motors towed butties with cross straps on the bollards for close hitches or on the side towing hook for long lining.

Edited by Tracy D'arth
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I find our bow T-stud the very devil to get at, mainly because of the design of our cratch cover which covers the gunnel. I do plan to fit another further back from the bow on each side, when I can buy some, so that one can be more easily reached from the bank. I certainly don't want a centre cleats on the gunnel, they would be a real trip hazard. We already have a T-stud either side at the rear of the boat which are easy to reach from the bank-side. I too use the illustrated hitch to secure my mooring lines. 

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I have one of These bolted to the gunwales either side  just behind the cratch board, works very well indeed for mooring etc, Dave's trying to lasso the T stud C can just pass me the rope from her deckchair in the front well😎

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25 minutes ago, Tracy D'arth said:

 

 

 

Tee stud and bollards are nothing to do with horse towing.  The tow was to a centre mast with a long rope. Motors towed butties with cross straps on the bollards for close hitches or on the side towing hook for long lining.

Which came in to widespread use around a century and a half after the canal system first expanded. Very modern by canal standards.

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The cleat hitch shown is fine for tying off a line from elsewhere to a cleat or tee stud (such as when tying off the bow rope back on the boat), but it isn't much use for a rope you want secured to the boat, and which you might tie off elsewhere.

 

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I see the tee stud simply as an adaptation of the traditional foredeck samson post present in many small craft primarily to secure the anchor line, bow line and bow springs. On narrow boats the downturned tees are a refinement to aid lassoing the aforementioned stud.

Though I did at times wish for some cleats out of the way of any stepping places, to fasten bow springs. Never found that  place though. 

 

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1 hour ago, IanM said:


Isn’t a t-stud just one big centre cleat? The cleat hitch that you show is how I tie the rope to our t-stud anyway. 

me too

45 minutes ago, David Mack said:

The cleat hitch shown is fine for tying off a line from elsewhere to a cleat or tee stud (such as when tying off the bow rope back on the boat), but it isn't much use for a rope you want secured to the boat, and which you might tie off elsewhere.

 

I always tie off back on the boat.  I can't think of a time when I've needed to do different.

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52 minutes ago, doratheexplorer said:

I always tie off back on the boat.  I can't think of a time when I've needed to do different.

It's fine for tieing off back to the boat. But it isn't appropriate for the end of the rope which is permanently attached to the boat. For that an eye splice cow-hitched over tee stud, bollard or cleat is secure yet easy to remove when necessary.

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1 hour ago, Loddon said:

I have one of These bolted to the gunwales either side  just behind the cratch board, works very well indeed for mooring etc, Dave's trying to lasso the T stud C can just pass me the rope from her deckchair in the front well😎

Like most, I use a bow mounted Tee stud and the cleat hitch, but it can be a faff to clamber on and off the pointy end, which is a bit of a stretch, plus the line can chafe the paintwork. I can see advantages in your thinking then, as the bollard is then in easy reach from the bank so no need to climb onto the fo'c'sle, you can tie up from ashore or from aboard and the trip hazard idea is a non-issue up by the cratch board. You'd lose the advantage of a single head rope fixed to and stowed by the Tee stud and ready for use either side though. Food for thought. 

 

I can't, however, recall or even think of an occasion when lassoing the Tee stud on my boat from the bank might be a seaman-like course of action. Could someone who does this explain please? 

Edited by Sea Dog
Word change for sense
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5 minutes ago, Sea Dog said:

You'd lose the advantage of a single head rope fixed to and stowed by the Tee stud and ready for use either side though. Food for thought. 

Yes it does mean that C has to get out of her chair to move the rope 😎

 

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25 minutes ago, Sea Dog said:

You'd lose the advantage of a single head rope fixed to and stowed by the Tee stud and ready for use either side though. Food for thought. 

I have a short aluminium boat pole that is very light and can easily retrieve the bow rope on the T stud without leaning dangerously out. Works for any other rope fixed to the boat.

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You can totally redesign narrowboats to make them more modern and ditch all the tradition but you end up with something like Whitfield. Some hire boats do have twin T studs at the front and the look very wrong.

I confess we have twin cleats at the back rather trhan dollies and we find them really useful, especially in Thames locks, but they are welded steel rather than stainless so don't look too out of place.  We use a spliced loop on our ropes so no need to use a cleat hitch

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2 hours ago, Loddon said:

I have one of These bolted to the gunwales either side  jus, t behind the cratch board, works very well indeed for mooring etc, Dave's trying to lasso the T stud C can just pass me the rope from her deckchair in the front well😎

I've thought of having these fitted, mainly for springs when mooring in a storm, but also they are accessable for other situations.

Single handed and not particularly nimble, when cruising I have two bow ropes which are tied to the T with a bowline, one either side and they hang in a loop over the gunwales in to the well deck so I can reach them from the towpath.

I sometimes use the hitch as shown in the diagram on the T, it is OK if I have brought the mooring rope back to the bow from a bollard or ring, or pin but generally I moor in quiet places, so leave ropes on the verge.

Sometimes I use a round turn and two or three half hitches to moor up for a while, but I tend to adjust the ropes incrementally if they are getting rubbed.

 

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The problem with ropes jamming on bollards and T studs is the knitting that some people put on them, I watched a lady do 3 turns found a bollard followed by a Clove Hitch and wondered why the mooring line went lose as the three turns unwound

 

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33 minutes ago, dmr said:

You can totally redesign narrowboats to make them more modern and ditch all the tradition but you end up with something like Whitfield. Some hire boats do have twin T studs at the front and the look very wrong.

I confess we have twin cleats at the back rather trhan dollies and we find them really useful, especially in Thames locks, but they are welded steel rather than stainless so don't look too out of place.  We use a spliced loop on our ropes so no need to use a cleat hitch

But that is really the important bit. T studs and stern dollies are usually very well attached to the hull and not the same as the more feeble cleats just screwed into the surface. OK for light handling but probably a failure point when put under any amount of stress - such as created by a passing high speed canoe (!).

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I think the point about fixity is a very good one. Narrowboats are generally built from steel so the ability to weld a steel T stud or dolly gives a very secure fixing.

 

Many river craft are not steel hulled so a bolted aluminium cleat may be more appropriate.

 

I also find that a T-stud hitch (two round turns and a half hitch over the front horn) and a cleat hitch (which done correctly only has half a round turn at the back) are not really interchangeable. I wonder if folk who say they tie a cleat hitch on a T-stud are actually doing some form of hybrid.

 

The T-stud hitch is really simple and effective.

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Kelpie has extra "T" studs on the bow and stern quarters, as well as the central bow stud and stern bollards. Come in very handy, as the bow line automatically ends up triangulated to the shore, and the quarter "T" is easy to reach from the bank. Similarly at the stern, and the "T" is more secure than the bollard during locking, when the stern rope may be going up almost vertically. (Only a consideration for some locks! :) )

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1 hour ago, Tracy D'arth said:

Tying to a Tee stud or cleat on the side of the bow rather than a central Tee stud will cause more roll on the boat when there is passing traffic.

Buy tying to a cleat on the side of the gunwale at the middle of the boat rather than using a centre line attached to the roof will cause less roll on the boat when there is passing traffic.

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