Beginner’s guide to driving a small boat

In this video I go through the basics of driving an outboard-powered runabout boat (or “tinnie” as we call them locally.) This includes judging your speed, leaving and approaching a pontoon, manoeuvring in a confined space, navigating in a channel and driving between moorings. We also explore techniques such as using a deck line to spring on or off a pontoon when weather gets bad. This is a great way to avoid running into trouble when the wind picks up as it does by the end of this video.

If you are new to boating and looking for a few pointers before heading out on the water this video is a good place to start, but even if you are more experienced you might still learn something from this one. Learning to handle a boat can be a lot of fun, and there is always something new to discover so be sure to post your own tips in the comments as well!

Apps use:


Michael O'Connell says:

Can you please make one on how to ride into a wake when a boat passes

OutdoorsUnlimited 101 says:

My cousin just told me what everything did and told me to let me rip

Joe O'Halloran says:

love the vids mate. great work

matko990 says:

Thanks for the video. I have a question: how do you know when exactly are you on plane (if you’re trying to find the lowest planing speed for example)? Did you start planing at the 14:25, 14:26 minute mark, when the wash moved away from the outboard/prop or after that? Thanks.

BOB CAT says:

Nice video, but can you recommend me some inflantable boat with 25hp outboard motor? Thanks

Josh Schackmann says:

Thank you for this video.. I’ve been boating most of my life but the difference now is I own & operate the boat. You didn’t make it complicated you showed what it is to maneuver. I have owned a boat now for 3 years and no mishaps. However there is always something to learn. thank you again!!!

Sean Shin says:

Thanks mate! Awesome video with very helpful tips!

Ian Purcell says:

i have some engine problems anything you can help me with?

Al D says:

Dude you talk way too much

Nikolas_ James says:

Subscriber earned!!! Great vid mate, I recently bought a little boat and I can’t wait to put it in the water. This video help a lot because I live in Melbourne and it’s the same stuff really but the weather is more unpredictable down here.

Caleb Hines says:

what up from good ol bama

Jian Ren says:

thanks heaps for puting such an.informative vid with real boat demos, learened a lot from this vid especially approching the dock part. cant wait to try this tech on water. thanks again danger marine

gavinjay yehboi says:

Awesome vid!.. i learnt a lot out of this.. thanks for the tutorial.

Deuce Gamz says:

Hi Dangar marine,
just wanna let you know that AU Tides app no longer works as of 9/03/2017 it dosen’t show the tides anymore so 😐

SailingPittsburgh says:

Hi Mate, I really like your videos and have learned a lot from them. I am a new to me (used) power boat owner. It is a Rinker open bow V-hull 15ft with a 75hp Chrysler outboard. I would like to perform some basic spring maintenance on this 1984 outboard. I do not think the impeller has been replaced in a few years because the prior owner did not know it had one so I think I will start there. Most Youtube channels just show removing the lower unit by unbolting the 4 bolts and sliding out the long drive shaft rod, then uncovering the impeller housing and replacing the rubber impeller and adding some new gaskets. I borrowed a library book about Chrysler outboards and there are a few water pump removal instructions I do not understand: ????Remove drive shaft seal from pump body by driving same out from inside pump body. Remove water pump back plate and gasket. Press drive shaft seal (garter spring on major sealing lip positioned out) in seal bore of pump body using seal installer (Special Tool T3012)???? Any help on this would be great because I have no idea what they are talking about. The motor seems to run great with the ear muffs on but I have not had it in the water as yet. Any other suggestions for routine maintenance would also be great. My list includes: 1 top off gear grease, 2 check and replace spark plugs, 3 add Sea Foam to fresh gas to clean carb. I had a marine mechanic check the outboard for compression and he felt it was fine with 130 in each cylinder. He also was skeptical about the motor not having a power trim tab – it is either all up or all down. Thanks for all your great Youtube posts. Regards, Bob

Aaron Wilde says:

That should say “when I dock” … Lol

John Kimmen says:

Thanks much from Florida…well presented

mbmj says:

I am going to take a RYA Powerboat Level 2 course. Found this video really useful for a beginner like myself. Thank you for sharing.

Philth- E says:

Taking an old bayliner capri out for the first time tomorrow. Im more nervous about the drive there! Thanks for the video.

Darren Mole says:

Stu, what’s it like for a holiday around Danger? Is there much for holiday makers to do? If so, do you fancy a days fishing if I come over from the uk ?

ryan joseph says:

this is a brilliant video i just learnt a lot once again well done

mOejOe33 says:

I’m in the market for my first boat and this was very educational. I certainly learned a ton from navigation to docking to tilting the motor, etc. I also appreciate your warning about getting “panicky” which will undoubtedly help to stay in control. Lastly, making a second attempt is great advice. Thanks for sharing and posting this video. Tremendous help indeed. Cheers.

Andy Mck 63 says:

Good info thanks for sharing

Sweden for Swedes says:

Thank you for this! Im just about to get a boat and get into a little lake! So thank you for these tips!

Greetings from Sweden!

Anthony Hayden says:

Very helpful video. Does the bimini affect the boat much during windy conditions?

Open Bar says:

Getting back into boating after a few years away, great refresher. Cheers

NS Farm says:

Thank You sir. Great lesson

The King Of Random Fans says:

Thanks! Can you wish me luck on my boater coarse in a few days?

Aaron Wilde says:

I have a 25 foot GRP cruiser, outboard and I have been on the water less than a year. I have a motto of my own. Never rush, but when the occasion calls, act fast and decisively. In other words, it’s better to save time by tying knots very quickly, or having your lines at hand ready, than to try to save time by hopping around on the gunwales. But when I fuck, I have a good idea of what I will end up doing, and I also have a plan B ready, and I watch the window for plan B. At some point you must commit to plan A.
Also you don’t mention in your video, the importance of having the engine in neutral before you leap around on the dock with lines. I mean, while I really like the way you use the engine to hold the boat on the dock, some viewers might think this is a way to cast off… Which could leave you on the dock watching your boat sail away!!
Still, I really appreciate your videos and especially how to use the gears and steering to dock. Thanks!

Liam McLoughlin says:

Excellent watch, envious of the local!

Mariandreina Duran says:

Thank you for the video and for taking the time to make it, but I think you should have started with the basics as when you are teaching someone to drive a car. I know it would have taken much longer. I do not know if you already have a video mentioning what I am about to point out. I have been around boats since I was 6 and now I am 25. Forgive me if I say some names wrong, since I am not used to boating terms in English.

For example: this is the key you press to move the motor up and down, putting the roof up and down for speed purposes and under certain conditions might be helpful for it not to get destroyed if your roof is foldable, throwing an anchor, this is how you put the boat’s lever to put the boat in neutral or to back up (and actually show it with the camera and your hand), how to drive with waves (I know there were not big waves on the video, but maybe just going over it), how to use boat stabilizers on a bigger boat, how to tie a basic knot, and also safety tips when you are a new driver such as life vests, especially when you are driving alone.

Maybe this could be some ideas for another beginner’s video. Thank you for your time and dedication and for trying to help others in their boating journey.

yatabata says:,151.239973&zoom=15&maptype=hybrid&size=640×640&key=AIzaSyAy3_Eqgwg_whwbGU3zOQFM4IG5lgaF8Qg

I googled it. found it. looks like plenty of water to have fun in for sure. this link did work now it said it’s rejected on my phone? oh well anyway looks like a cool place. must be just my phone. link works on my tablet

Tom M says:

Good and informative video. Well done, Cap!

Sasha & Shane's Adventures says:

Thank you. And I love your videos!! You are a wealth of knowledge!

Jon R says:

Great video Stu. Taught me loads as a new boater, just need to practice now! But this was a great start, really like your presenting style, relaxed but informative.

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