Projects

Taming Full Batten Mains

by Adam Cort, Posted January 5, 2012
One of the great ironies of sailing is that as hard as it can be to get your mainsail up, it can often be just as hard to get it back down. This goes double when tucking in a reef with a slab-reefing system—one reason why so many sailors are willing to sacrifice sailing performance for the sake of in-boom or in-mast furling.

There's the Rub

by Brian Hancock, Posted January 5, 2012
Because friction makes you work harder and harms your boat’s performance, it pays to take a long, hard look around your boat to see where and how you can make it function as smoothly as possible.

Snow, Sleet and Storms

by Charles Mason, Posted December 12, 2011
Make no joke about it: winter is here. Luckily SAIL editor Charles Mason is luckily here to show you how to winterize your boat easily and efficiently.

Impeller Etiquette

by Peter Nielsen, Posted November 16, 2011
Get to grips with an often over-looked but vital part of an engine cooling system in this step by step procedure
Near the end of the 2010 boating season I noticed that the old Profurl roller-furling unit on my Tanton 39 cutter Lunacy was no longer working properly. The furler, which probably dates back to the early 1990s, was getting increasingly difficult to use.

A Head Start

by Don Casey, Posted September 27, 2011
When your boat spends the winter on the hard, relaunching in the spring will go easier, and perhaps happen sooner, if you tackle a few of your pre-launch tasks during the fall and winter months. Some of these are jobs you might otherwise neglect or skip in the rush to launch. And the nice part is you get to mess about doing boat things during the off-season.

Smart Regulators and Happy Engines

by Sail Staff, Posted August 16, 2011
A smart regulator can boost your alternator’s charging performance, which means you don’t need to run your engine as long to keep your batteries happy. Sterling Marine Power’s ProRegD digital alternator regulator can be tailored to your battery type—flooded, gel, or AGM—to ensure the most efficient four-step charging schedule. It assesses battery bank size, state of charge and current output, and
For a number of years, I used a piece of 2x4 screwed to the side of the garden shed as a mount for my 3.5hp Tohatsu outboard. It would perch happily thereon while I dangled its nether regions in a cooling tub of fresh water, sputtering and burbling away as the salt got rinsed from its innards.   This year, I decided something more sophisticated was in order for my faithful motor. I wanted a
Among the multitude of things that needed upgrading on our project boat, the cockpit drain seacocks loomed large. The wheels on the 1973-vintage gate valves were frozen open so the valves could not be closed. This is a typical problem with gate valves. The valve stems and the valve body are usually dissimilar metals, and eventually they’ll corrode so that the valve sticks on the position it was

A New Battery Monitor

by Charles J. Doane, Posted August 15, 2011
Back in the 1990s when I was cruising full time and living aboard a 1964 Pearson Alberg 35, my electrical system was dirt simple. I had two 100AH wet-cell batteries, a battery selector switch, a 30-watt flexible solar panel and a multimeter. When I wanted to know how the batteries were doing, I put the
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