Q&A

BOAT AN­GLING

Sea Angler (UK) - - SEA SCHOOL -

Q: I have seen both rope and plas­tic cable ties used when rig­ging an an­chor to trip, should it be­come snagged. Which are best? ROB RALSON, SWANAGE, DORSET

DL says: Ei­ther can be used, pro­vided that your choice is strong enough to sus­tain the weight of the boat when an­chored for fish­ing. It needs to be weak enough to break un­der con­trolled pres­sure us­ing the en­gine, and al­low the an­chor to be pulled free from a snag.

Q: When driv­ing an open boat, where is the best place to at­tach the en­gine kill cord? CLIVE HEAD­LAND, COLCH­ESTER, ES­SEX

DL says: I find that clip­ping it around my leg, as shown, is best. Oth­ers clip it to their life jacket, belt or around their wrist, but I find this can re­sult in the cord get­ting in the way.

Al­ways en­sure that, should you fall over the side, the cord can­not be­come de­tached from you in any way and will stop the en­gine.

Q: Do you have any ad­vice for night fish­ing aboard a small boat? BOB HYTHE, BY EMAIL

DL says: Do not at­tempt to fish in dark­ness aboard your own boat un­til you have plenty of ex­pe­ri­ence run­ning it dur­ing day­light.

Al­ways en­sure you know the area you in­tend to fish at night re­ally well, and ob­vi­ously avoid those marks with haz­ards in the near vicin­ity.

When you do plan your first night trip, al­ways choose an even­ing with per­fect weather con­di­tions, and set off in day­light in or­der to get se­curely an­chored be­fore the on­set of dark­ness.

Q: I have ac­quired a trailer (left). Is it a road trailer, ramp launch trailer, or is it suitable for beach launch us­ing a trac­tor? SHARON FRIZZEL, NEW­CAS­TLE UPON TYNE

DL says: The trailer il­lus­trated is suitable for ei­ther pur­pose, but if you in­tend tow­ing it on a road, I rec­om­mend you have it fully ser­viced be­fore use, pay­ing par­tic­u­lar at­ten­tion to the wheel bear­ings and brakes.

Q: Over the years I have lost count of the num­ber of small tools that I have dropped over the side and sub­se­quently lost. Can you of­fer any sug­ges­tions on how to pre­vent this? BRIAN MEAD­OWS, WHITBY, NORTH YORKS

DL says: ac­ci­den­tally drop­ping small items of kit over the side of a boat is in­evitable from time to time.

at­tach­ing each item to some­thing that floats, such as a cork or piece of poly­styrene, will pre­vent it from sink­ing. al­ways check that you have suf­fi­cient buoy­ancy by test­ing the ef­fi­ciency of your float in a bucket first.

Have a land­ing net close at hand to re­trieve any item that goes over the side.

Q: When run­ning my out­board en­gine in shal­low water, how far up can I trim it to avoid dam­ag­ing the pro­peller?

ANDY HUTCHIN­SON, BY EMAIL

DL says: it is im­por­tant to en­sure that the en­gine has un­in­ter­rupted ac­cess to sea water for cool­ing.

The best way to en­sure this is to avoid trim­ming it above the point where the flat cav­i­ta­tion plate above the pro­peller ex­its the water be­cause the cool­ing water in­takes are lo­cated just below this.

Q: MY BOAT IS NOT FIT­TED WITH A BOARD­ING LAD­DER. I NEVER FISH ALONE, DO I NEED ONE? MICHAEL BROADBENT, LIVER­POOL

DL says: a good board­ing lad­der is one of the most im­por­tant safety fea­tures you could have aboard any an­gling boat.

re­gard­less of how strong you are, lift­ing a ca­su­alty back over the side is in­cred­i­bly dif­fi­cult, to the point of be­ing im­pos­si­ble.

My ad­vice is to fit a lad­der (as shown above) at the ear­li­est op­por­tu­nity.

Q: WAHT TYPE AND HOW MANY FLARES SHOULD I CARRY ABOARD A TRAILERABLE BOAT, WHICH I USE WHEN FISH­ING IN­SHORE? RUS­SELL PILKINGTON, BRIS­TOL

DL says: as a min­i­mum, you should buy an in­shore pack con­tain­ing two red hand flares for day or night use, along with two or­ange smoke flares for day­time use. i also rec­om­mend you carry a cou­ple of para­chute flares.

Q: ARE YOU AL­LOWED TO TIE OFF ON ANY NAV­I­GA­TION MARK OR BUOY IN OR­DER TO FISH? CARL TRIP­PIER, BY EMAIL

DL says: no. in al­most ev­ery cir­cum­stance, ty­ing off to any nav­i­ga­tional buoy or fixed marker is strictly pro­hib­ited.

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