JibCap’s Scuttlebutt #2 – Set your boat free
A Sailor in the Chesapeake shares his simple and safe technique to determine if he has snagged a float line and the removal of the line.
He writes: In addition to fouling the occasional crab-pot float, it was the ‘not knowing’ if we fouled a float or not that would drive us crazy. To avoid making unneeded tacks, or taking the occasional swim around the hull with a boat hook, we devised a fool proof, detection and removal method using our anchor sentinel.
Briefly, we take our plastic coated 10 lb. Mushroom Sentinel and tie it in the center of a 40’ line. With the boat in ‘irons’, my wife at one end of the line, myself at the other end, and each of us at the stern, we drop the sentinel aft of the transom. Then we walk towards the bow, her on port, myself on starboard, thus bringing the sentinel under the keel. Reference sketch
The sentinel easily clears any crab-pot (or Lobster-pot) fouled on any of the underbody appendages bringing the crab-pot float and line forward to the bow. If the sentinel passes under the boat and comes to the bow without snagging a line…our slow boat speed was due to poor sail trim. Note the Sentinel will not clear a crab-pot line that has been wrapped on the prop, but it does provide very much needed information and brings the fouled line to the surface.
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