Boatworks Most Commented

Outboard Boat Motors - DIYOutboard Shifter

by Sail Staff, Posted October 8, 2009
D.I.Y. Outboard Shifter

A lever for all reasons Although I could reach the tiller/throttle of the five horsepower outboard that was mounted on the transom of my 20-foot trailersailer, whenever it was time to go from forward to reverse I had to face aft and then bend over the transom and the motor to reach the side-mounted shift lever. That's not a good position to be


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Sailboat Rigging - Highly Strung

by Sail Staff, Posted October 7, 2009
Time and again sailing has been revolutionized by the introduction of new fibers. Traditional wood hulls have been supplanted by glass fiber, Kevlar and carbon. Canvas sails have given way first to Dacron and then to laminated sails utilizing various high tech fibers. Running rigging today is entirely synthetic. And now stainless steel standing rigging is being replaced by fiber rigging,
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Clear Channel

by Gordon West, Posted September 20, 2009
Henry Meyer of Chicago, Illinois asks:

"I'm thinking about getting a satellite radio receiver so I can download all the marine weather products that are available these days. But I'm curious: Will I have to mount one of those softball-sized antennas above my deck?"

Gordon West replies:

Before you do anything about mounting the antenna, first


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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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