A reader's question about med mooring gets answered by PBO's experts


Mooring ‘stern to’ in the Med is common as the tidal range is seldom more than a foot or two.

There are various ways of getting on and off the boat: the simplest is by a plank secured to the boat by a rope, but this leads to abrasion problems etc.

We have a swivel that allows the projected end of the plank to be hoisted up to clear the quay by a topping lift with a 2ft loop, bridged by two lengths of stout shock cord (using cable ties), so the plank only makes contact with the quay when someone steps on it.

This arrangement is good when conditions are calm and the boat isn’t ranging from side to side.

For this we need a swivelling device, and although have seen them on a number of yachts I have not managed to source one.

Can you help?

Alex Strachan
By email


I’ve asked around and searched the web, but have failed to come up with a proprietary swivel that can be bolted to a gangplank (often known as a passerelle).

However, the basic arrangement is so simple it can easily be made by, say, a stainless steel fabricator.

The photo (right) shows the general arrangement. This particular gangplank is a proprietary product but I have seen many similar ones on obviously home-made gangplanks. It consists of a T-bar mounted on a pair of lugs.

The short upright of the T has a flange welded to it and fits into a socket, rather as a pintle fits in a gudgeon. The design and position of the socket depends, of course, on the boat details. It could be on the after deck or even bolted to the transom.

Dropped into its socket, the ‘pintle’ is free to rotate side to side while the long span of the T is also free to rotate in the supporting lugs.

Combined with your shock-cord sprung topping lift, something similar would work very well.

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