Boatworks Most Commented

Charging Into the Future

by Nigel Calder, Posted August 22, 2008

For the past 30 years, lead-acid batteries have always been the principal limiting factor in the design of high-capacity DC systems for sailboats. Over the years a number of technologies have been developed that attempt to circumvent this roadblock—NiCad, nickel metal hydride (NiMH), lithium ion (LiI), fuel cells—but none has had sufficient life expectancy at a price affordable enough to be


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Rigged!

by Sail Staff, Posted August 22, 2008
Castaway gets a new spar

For the last two years we’ve been involved in the full refit of Castaway, a 1978 Ericson 34T. We recapped the story of this BoatWorks Bailout project in the January issue, and now the boat is at last in the water. Any old-boat project runs into some kinks, and we hit a literal kink with Castaway when the mast was found to be so badly


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Adding Mast Pulpits

by Peter Dubler, Posted August 21, 2008

Call me old-fashioned, call me daring, call me crazy, but I prefer not to have my cockpit full of lines that have been led aft. I enjoy going forward and working at the mast. It hasn’t always been that way. During my first crossing from Isla Mujeres, Mexico, to the Dry Tortugas off Florida many years ago as crew on an Irwin 38, each trip forward was a crawl on my hands and knees. Oh, how I


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Easy Reefing

by Ian Nicholson, Posted August 21, 2008

Windage and drag are two of a racing sailboat’s worst enemies, especially around a sail’s leech. Many racers eschew in situ reefing lines until it’s absolutely necessary to reef. (Some cruisers also don’t use reefing lines, as they can chafe sailcloth.) The risk is that you can get caught out if you’re not careful.

A smarter, faster way to reef without leaving reefing lines in


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Paper or Plastic?

by Sail Staff, Posted August 21, 2008

"You're not carrying any paper charts?" is a question I've heard at all the exotic landfalls and cruiser's hangouts I've visited during my circumnavigation. Many cruisers, it seems, aren't quite ready to fully trust their electronic chartplotters. While almost all cruisers, other than a few diehards, do have plotters on board, they also carry enough paper charts and tools for measuring and


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