Dinghy Cruising with Phillips
Chapter 12

The principles for stowage are these:

1. Heavy things low down, not too far forward or aft, and well secured  so as not to move when heeled (or capsized). Sharp things (anchor  flukes) padded. Cans of food or drink under floorboards, but be sure the floorboards are taking the crew's weight and not transmitting it through an oversized can to the hull. Hard and heavy objects should be secured on floorboards, or padded if resting on the hull to avoid damage when pounding in rough seas. 

2. Extra buoyancy not too low down (or the boat is even more unstable when swamped) and as well secured as the heavy equipment.

3. Bedding, spare clothes, and some emergency food in a water-tight compartment.

4. Everything in the cockpit aft of the decking will get wet in a brisk beat, so binoculars, camera, charts, all go under foredeck, hung up, and preferably in water-tight bags as well.

5. Area around and below the compass should be free of iron. The worst offenders are anchors, flashlights and batteries, tools, tin cans, stove, camera.

6. Anchor stowage is important. You may need to drop the anchor on short notice, and a snarled rode can cause many problems including a shouting match between skipper and crew within hearing of watchers ashore. We start by securing the bitter end to the centre thwart. Then we fake out the rode in figure-8 coils on the floorboards. The chain comes on top of the fake and the anchor on top of the chain. The whole pile is then tied down with light line whose ends are knotted through holes in the floorboards. The anchor can then be carried out either forward or aft, and the rode runs out easily either way.

7. Things needed only once a day or less can be stowed in the least accessible places; but note that the tent may be wanted in a hurry during a sudden shower when already beached.

8. Things that tend to be needed in a hurry should be readily accessible: binoculars, camera, horn, paddle, boat hook, bilge pump, foul weather gear, life-jackets and a spare one to throw, chart in use (and the next one), log book, snacks and drinks, flashlight and white flares (at night). In light airs, when commercial shipping may be encountered, or on a river, the oars (or motor) must be immediately accessible. Similarly, in poor visibility, the radar reflector should be either mounted or ready.

Clips, Velcro, shock cord, and nets mounted under side decks, are all useful for stowing all kinds of small and light items. In the after locker, varnished cardboard cartons or plastic dishpans of different colours, keep stores from getting jumbled. Try to put things away in the same place every time. There is scope for much ingenuity arranging neat stowage in the cramped space of a dinghy. One skipper rigged a shelf three inches below the foredeck, and carried his shore-going clothes folded on the shelf, held down by shock cords. We have spare clothing and shore-going clothes in a separate duffel bag stowed well forward and only opened when needed.

Chapter 1: Introduction
Chapter 2: Planning
Chapter 3: Equipment
Chapter 4: Rigging and Sails
Chapter 5: Camping
Chapter 6: Cooking and catering
Chapter 7: Communication
Chapter 8: Navigation
Chapter 9: Heavy Weather
Chapter 10: Spares and repairs
Chapter 11: Clothing, Personal Items, First Aid
Chapter 12: Stowage
Chapter 13: The Record
Appendix A: The CWA Cruising Library
Appendix A1: Dinghy Cruising Logs on line
Appendix B: Book List
Appendix C: Recipes
Appendix D: Addresses: Government Agencies, etc.
Appendix E: Buoyancy Testing