Boatworks Most Commented

Old Boat Nightmares: 2011

by Peter Nielsen, Posted February 17, 2011
One of the unwritten laws of project-boat hunting is “pick your battles wisely.” Most project boats come with their fair share of flaws—otherwise they wouldn’t be project boats, would they? The trick is to know which flaws can be dealt with relatively easily, and which will involve countless hours of hard work and heartbreak. In other words, what kind of flaw is a deal-breaker.

Consider a


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A New Traveler

by Peter Nielsen, Posted February 17, 2011
I love the fact that an old boat can give you as much sailing pleasure as an expensive new one. The only proviso for me is that the sail handling systems be absolutely top-notch. Replacing hardware like mainsheet travelers, genoa lead cars, boom vangs and lead blocks with new, low-friction gear will repay you many times over in ease of handling and improved efficiency.

A case in point was a


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Blasting Your Hull

by Charles J. Doane, Posted February 17, 2011
Soon after I bought my aluminum cutter Lunacy it became apparent I needed to remove the heavy 20-year accumulation of hard antifouling paint from her hull. After I brought the boat from Florida to Maine all the old paint started flaking off in alarmingly huge chunks, presumably due to the dramatic change in water temperature.

My initial plan was to soda-blast the boat down to its


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Fridge Burnout Mystery

by Nigel Calder, Posted January 25, 2011
Lewis K. Redmond of Plainfield, Illinois, asks:

"We have an Adler/Barbour cold machine refrigerator, which is air-cooled with a small vertical evaporator. The ground wire and its retaining screw on the PCB board somehow were burned black. The technician’s guess was that something must have been thrown across the terminals to have caused this burnout. What measures would you


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VHF Frequency Confusion

by Gordon West, Posted January 25, 2011
Tom Kamlowsky of Salt Lake City, Utah, asks:

"While sailing in San Francisco Bay last month, I contacted the Coast Guard on VHF channel 16. On receiving my call, the Coast Guard radio operator asked me to change frequency to channel 22. I changed both my Icom M304 and M34 radios to channel 22 and quickly found that I could not use the M34 because of interference from a


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