Bareboat Charter Crew Briefing List

Posted by Grant Headifen on May 14, 2010 under About NauticEd, Bareboat Charter, Crew, Skipper | Be the First to Comment

We received a lot of interest in the Bareboat Charter Clinic Crew Briefing Check list that we sent out via our mailer earlier in the week. Some additional and excellent tips were sent in by some of you and so we have updated the list. See it now at the bottom of this page:

Yum yum while sailing

Yum yum while sailing

Bareboat chartering is one of the most fun things you can do on this planet. This August we’re leading a fully booked flotilla in Tonga to sail the islands around Vava’u. But next week we thought we’d pop over there to do a reconnaissance trip. So watch out for our video blog report in a few weeks on that.

Each year we invite our Bareboat Charter Master Graduates to join us on a flotilla. While this year is Tonga, next year we’re thinking of some where in the Med. Come join us on that – watch out for the announcement.

One of the things that we find particularly great about our trips is a fully engaged and working crew. With this comes knowledge about leadership and team work, boat systems, dinghy operations, provisioning requirements and just basic bareboating skills by everyone on board. It’s not that everyone should know how to sail but some good knowledge of what to expect before hand makes the trip go smooth with out drama, confusion, injury, or arguments. Everyone invests A LOT of money in a trip like this.

What we’re suggesting is why not make it as fun as possible. So if you haven’t taken the NauticEd Bareboat Charter clinic yet and haven’t sent it onto your crew,  go ahead and do so because the small comparative investment in the clinic by everyone will make the trip seem ten times more fun (and safe). The one tip like walking under the boom side of the boat when going down wind is tooooooo invaluable for your crew.

Bareboat Yacht Charter Clinic

Bareboat Yacht Charter Clinic

In addition to this, if you’re traveling to Greece, Spain or Croatia, you’ll be required to show harbor authorities a VHF endorsement on your Sailing Certificate. When you take and pass the NauticEd Bareboat Charter Clinic, you’ll get that endorsement stamped on your Sailing Certificate.

So go ahead, get started now with the Bareboat Charter Clinic and let NauticEd teach your crew prior to the trip. And while you’re at it, please hit the Like Button on that page to tell your facebook friends that you like this clinic.

Here again is the Bareboat Charter Curriculum

Module 1: Planning and Arriving
1.1 The Types of Charters
1.2 Good Captainship
1.3 Arrival at the Base
1.4 Provisioning
1.5 Freezer and Fridge Management
1.6 Generators
1.7 Fishing
1.8 Kids
1.9 Local Area Familiarization
1.10 VHF Operations

Module 2: Checking out the Boat
2.1 Getting Familiar with the Boat
2.2 The Deck
2.3 Breakdowns
2.4 The Engine
2.5 The Fuel System
2.6 Starting the Engine
2.7 Operating the Engine
2.8 Stopping the Engine
2.9 Plumbing and Tankage
2.10 Seacocks
2.11 Showers
2.12 Heads
2.13 Bilge Pumps
2.14 Galley Stove
2.15 DC Electrical System
2.16 AC Electrical System
2.17 Sails

Module 3: Underway
3.1 Knot Tying School
3.2 Communications
3.3 The Nautical Chart
3.4 GPS
3.5 The Autopilot
3.6 Mooring
3.7 Anchoring
3.8 The Windlass
3.9 Docking
3.10 Seasickness
3.11 The Dinghy
3.12 Briefing the Crew
3.13 Conclusion

Register now at

Sailing Resume – Logbook

Posted by Grant Headifen on January 18, 2010 under About NauticEd, Skipper, Videos and photos | Be the First to Comment

Here is a question posted by Nancy KnudsenEditor Sail-World Cruising. Sail-world is one of the largest and respected online sailing news companies ( to NauticEd this week. Followed by our answer.

On 1/16/10 6:47 PM, “Nancy Knudsen Cruising Editor Sail-World” <> wrote:

Hi Grant
I have a question about the sailing certification video you have sent me.   The practical experience that is mentioned in the video.  For a sailor not within practical distance of your facilities, how does this happen.  Do you take the word of the sailor that they have completed this? – or what happens.

As my readership is international, this is a very important point for me.  (I understand that if it is an honour system then the ‘verification’ process at the end would make up for this)

Nancy Knudsen
Sail-World Cruising

TetraMedia established in 2000, operates the largest online marine news network in the world. It now has regional sites around the world, with Sail-World UK-Europe, Sail-World Asia, Sail-World NZ, Sail-World USA, Sail-World Australia, Sail-World Cruising International, Sail-World Cruising USA, Sail-World Cruising Canada, Sail-World Australian Cruising, Powerboat-World and Marine Business News.

Each week, more than 165,000 newsletters are sent to subscribers, by its seven editors. More than a million individual boaters have visited Sail-World and Powerboat-World in 2009.

This is NauticEd’s response


Yes  – as with all charter company resumes – it is the honor system. It is completely impossible to verify time. Additionally the United States Coast Guard accepts the honor system for the USCG Commercial Captains license as do most other country licenses.

What I’ve been able to do is to also back this up with a Proficiency Verification by a NauticEd affiliated sailing school. Right now we are encouraging schools to be affiliated with us because there are a ton of “students” (we are all students) out there who don’t see the value in taking a basic course if they are already past that point. Thus the entire sailing school network is missing out on touching many students. With the verification check out, schools now can actually add this to their income stream thus it’s a big incentive for them to align. Students benefit by solidifying their resume to charter companies and by picking up a few professional tips along the way.

The technology is simple but clever. When an instructor is finished verifying a student’s proficiency, he or she simple logs into the site and clicks the verification button against the student. Before the student can get home, their certificate is updated with the Verification stamp.

We’re making it pretty simple for a school to sign up with us. They must be an established school with a website and have commercially legal instructors and follow our standard when performing a verification. A new system that we will implement shortly is a way for students to publicly rate the experience with the school on-line on our site. This ensures the school is providing an excellent learning experience for the students else they may get a bad rating. This I think is essential for the growth of the industry – no one in the sailing industry wants a single student to have a bad/boring/unprofessional initiation experience to sailing.

So to answer you question specifically – we plan on expanding our verification-training schools. However even with out a verification the honor system for building a resume is fine. Whats’ exciting to us is our sailing iPhone app which makes it easy for a student to update their resume on the dock in 2 clicks.

If you have any more questions please let me know.


Grant Headifen
Ph 512-696-1070

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Docking a boat

Posted by Grant Headifen on December 20, 2008 under Bareboat Charter, Maneuvering Under Power, Skipper | Be the First to Comment

Docking, maneuvering, handling, parking a boat while under power is an easy skill to learn. Many people are intimidated when entering the marina and with good cause – that is where 99% of damage to boats occur. But with some practiced skills, the intimidation changes from fear to excitement to see how close to perfect one can dock their boat.

Given a perfectly calm day (altho why would a calm day be perfect for a sailor?) I still see sailors with that nervous look on their face docking a boat. And it’s understandable, I remember those days my self.

The day when I was able to replace the nervous look was the day I picked a buoy in the middle of the lake and just started maneuvering the boat all around it pretending that the buoy was the dock. I’d back the boat up to “dock”, park next to it, spin around it. Then I started doing donuts in the boat to see how it handled under full power, low power. On other days when the wind was howling strong I’d do the same.

maneuvering docking handling a sailboat

maneuvering docking handling a sailboat

All this lead me to be able to develop and teach a maneuvering under power course and looking high and low there is no other course out there quite like this one. But even if you don’t take the NauticEd maneuvering under power clinic, just doing the above will keep you out of trouble.

So get out there, and learn to dock a boat in any marina by learning how a boat behaves under power. Soon you’ll be grading yourself a 9out of 10 on your docking skills.

Similarly this will give you a huge boost of confidence when chartering a sailboat in the Caribbean, Pacific or Mediterranean. Usually when chartering we go for a bigger boat than we’re normally used to and so docking and handling a sailboat skills become important. And besides it’s just plain embarrassing when you hit something right in front of the guy who just checked you out on the boat. There is an unwritten competition rule to make a perfect docking maneuver when bringing the boat back after a week. and the way to do that is to do some maneuvering as above on your own boat before you charter a sailboat and once you are there practice it again with the charter boat next to a mooring buoy or something but make sure other boats are out of the way.

In the Maneuvering under Power clinic there is a printable set of exercises that you can take out to the boat with you to practice with. These exercises will simulate almost everything you’ll need to know when docking a sailboat perfectly.


Christmas in the Caribbean

Posted by Grant Headifen on November 25, 2008 under Bareboat Charter | Be the First to Comment

Two christmas’ ago, 5 of us went to Guadeloupe Island for Christmas. We chartered a sunsail 44 ft Beneteau and sailed for a week around the local islands of Guadeloupe, Marie Galante and Dominica and Iles des Saintes.

the Ginch in the Caribbean

It was an incredible trip and we had great winds all week including a 30 knot blow. The highlight was Christmas day in Iles des Saintes, a very quaint French Community. We rowed ashore and bought Croissants from the local bakery and then proceeded to have the most fabulous day. Spirits were high in the bay. One of the crew donned a grinch suit and then we went dingying around in the bay wishing every one Merry Christmas. In Dominica we went scuba diving and were quite impressed with the dive. Not the best in the world but excellent non the same. the locals on Dominica Island were friendly and we hired a guide to drive us around the island. Took quite a few hours to do this but again it was worth the drive. We were amazed at the lush growth and fruit growing on the trees everywhere.

The sail from Dominica back to Iles des Saintes was about 5 hours on a nice beam reach.

On Marie Galante, we rented scooters and rode around the island. The funny thing was negotiating for the scooters in my best french which at this stage is not that great.

We took a few days at the end of the sailing charter to explore Guadeloupe island and what a treat that was. Again the forest is extremely lush. I’d recommend renting a car to drive around the western island of Basse-Terre. The dirve up through the center of the island is gravel and a biut hairy but certainly worth it.

the Ginch in the Caribbean