Boatworks Most Commented

Circuit Breaker

by Don Casey, Posted September 20, 2009
Gene Cramer of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, asks:

"Where can I get a galvanic isolator of the sort you mentioned in your excellent piece on wiring a boat for shore power? Also, the circuit you described in that piece doesn't seem to provide ground-fault protection either for the battery charger or for other branch loads, such as the water heater, which would be hard-wired to the


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Compass Truism

by Tim Bartlett, Posted September 14, 2009
Karl Westman of Ocean City, New Jersey, asks:

"Is it all right to use magnetic headings on my chartplotter to adjust a new compass?"

Tim Bartlett replies:

In theory, definitely not. But in practice I'd have to give you a very guarded "maybe." The problem, of course, is that your heading is the direction your boat is pointing in. Your


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Dirty Ground

by Nigel Calder, Posted September 14, 2009
Mark Karwowski of San Francisco, California, asks:

"Recently we had trouble starting the diesel engine aboard our Nordic 40. Although all the lights and other electrical equipment aboard worked fine, whenever I touched the starter button, the starter motor hesitated at first then sped up. We checked the batteries and found that they were eight years old, so we decided to


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Mildew removal made easy

by Charles Mason, Posted August 24, 2009
If your sails are made from laminated materials there’s a good chance that you’ve struggled with ways to keep mildew from getting a toehold in the fabric.

"Many of the sails made today are constructed with laminated materials," says Jeff Andersen, President of the New Hampshire-based Sailmaking Support Systems. "Although a laminated sail will be lighter and potentially faster than a woven


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Dragonfly is a sweet 1983 Bristol 35.5, based in Marblehead, Massachusetts. She still sports most of her original deck gear and the old Merriman genoa lead cars and tracks, while still functional, had seen better days. Owner Tim Sheehy sails shorthanded and wants to get the best performance out of his new suit of North sails, so he decided to upgrade to Lewmar sliding bolt track and
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