Boatworks Most Commented

Energy Control

by Nigel Calder, Posted June 15, 2010
Recently, as part of my work on hybrid propulsion systems, I attended a demonstration where a large-scale lithium battery pack was deliberately pushed past the boundaries of existing experience. The intention was to run the system at 20 kW of output and 160 volts, creating a current flow of around 130 amps. Owing to a miscalculation, when we threw the switch and brought everything on line we
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Gear to Keep You Connected

by Tim Bartlett, Posted June 3, 2010
At the beginning of last season, the stroke of an official pen shut down an entire communications system and made half a million distress beacons obsolete, as the International Cospas-Sarsat satellite system stopped processing distress signals on 121.5MHz.

It wasn’t as bad as it might appear, though: the old 121.5MHz distress beacons hadn’t been doing much—other than adding to the tally of


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Words From Above

by Tim Bartlett, Posted June 3, 2010
THE TECHNOLOGY

Conventional “old-fashioned” high-frequency radios are quite capable of communicating worldwide, just as they did throughout most of the 20th century. But they suffer from two main problems.

The first is that radio communication over distances of more than a few hundred miles can be achieved only by reflecting radio waves off electrically charged


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Prop Wash

by Nigel Calder, Posted May 17, 2010
In the April edition of Ask Sail, Nigel Calder asked readers to share ideas on how best to keep their props clean. The Q and A from the magazine sparked a discussion with readers chiming in from all corners of the country. Here are some of their ideas:

Q: What do you recommend for keeping barnacles from growing on my prop, strut and shaft? For years, I've used metal


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Cockpit Makeover

by Roger Marshall, Posted May 13, 2010
When my oldest son, David, told me about the J/24 he had just bought I had a pretty good idea what was coming next. “Dad, I’ve bought a J/24. It needs a lot of work, but the price was right.”

“What are you going to do with it?” I asked.

“Race it, eventually. Here’s what needs to be done,” he said and pulled out a two-page list of repairs and upgrades he wanted to make on the boat.


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