Boatworks

Silent Driver

by Sail Staff, Posted January 18, 2007
The Tiller Trimmer is a simple self-steering device for tiller-steered boats. Mount it on your tiller, run a control line from one side of the cockpit to the other through the Tiller Trimmer, and you can lock the tiller in place by tightening the unit’s control knob. The device, made of N6 Nylon, has a ball-bearing Delrin sheave that evenly feeds the control line into the control knob, regardless

Trailer Upgrade 2.0

by Sail Staff, Posted January 10, 2007
Carpet tacked to your trailer’s wood boat braces takes forever to dry if you sail on the salty, and its looks deteriorate after a season or two. Snaptraxx’s new modular trailer bunk system easily snaps together and encases 2-by-6 lumber without any hardware. SnapTraxx makes two different polymer versions—one allows your boat to slip easily off the trailer once it’s immersed in water, the other

Cockpit Comfort

by Sail Staff, Posted November 10, 2006
It can take hours to adjust a cockpit cushion just so, and, inevitably, perfection is attained just before tacking. SeaBound’s new line of Flaties self-inflating cushions is designed to enhance onboard comfort. One is a V-shaped bow cushion; other models can be clipped to lifelines. The cushions come in a variety of sizes to fit different cockpit benches, fold down small, and are easily carried

Hurricane Insurance

by Sail Staff, Posted November 10, 2006
Few experiences are as surreal as prepping your boat for a hurricane. Will it be safe? Colligo Nautique has created this super-strong bridle-plate system that connects up to three anchors to help you ride out a blow. Made from zinc-plated, hot-dipped galvanized (HDG) steel, the system features a 3/4-inch HDG swivel that gives a boat a wide range of movement without chafing rodes or tangling

Get a Grip

by Sail Staff, Posted October 10, 2006
Tired of searching for the right wrench? The Bionic Wrench, a wrench/pliers hybrid, comes in three sizes (6-inch, 8-inch, and 10-inch) that collectively cover 38 metric and SAE wrench sizes, from 1/4 to 11/4 inches. Just squeeze it, and its six steel teeth grip a bolt head evenly on all sides. The Bionic Grip can also fit around objects that are impossible to put a standard wrench on. From

SensiBulb

by Sail Staff, Posted September 9, 2006
The maker of the SensiBulb boast that it has the warm color, intensity, and beam width of a 10-watt halogen—“close enough” in my testing—plus the cool operation, low draw, and long life of an LED. The basic $40 “bulb” fits as is into most dome lights, and accessories enable retrofitting to many reading lamps. Typical current usage of .14 amp can be reduced to .025 amp by using the built-in dimmer

Fear No Fire

by Sail Staff, Posted July 9, 2006
The one thing you shouldn’t do with a fire in an enclosed space—like an engine bay on a boat—is to add more air. Smell something burning, open the engine compartment, and whoosh, say goodbye to your eyebrows, and maybe to your boat. That’s why I like this simple install-it-yourself Fire Port ($8.74). If you ever see flames through the transparent window, just puncture it with the nozzle of a fire

Compact Cooling

by Sail Staff, Posted July 9, 2006
This new air conditioner from Dometic won’t cool your entire boat down—unless it’s a rather small boat—but it’s ideal for a sleeping cabin or a small saloon. The self-contained 3,500-Btu unit measures 91/4" @ 15" @ 8" and will fit in a locker or under a V-berth. It’s powered from the boat’s house batteries via an integral inverter that also lets you connect other 115-volt appliances to it. It

Solar Hatch

by Sail Staff, Posted April 9, 2006
Sometimes it can be tricky to find a good place on board to mount a solar panel. Here’s a neat idea from the German company Sunovation, which fits its solar cells to deck hatches; there’s something organic about a gizmo that both blocks sunlight and uses that same light to generate power. The photo shows a Gebo hatch fitted with semi-transparent Sunways power cells that generate about 16 watts in

Mold Cleaner

by Sail Staff, Posted April 9, 2006
The unusually mild and wet winter in the Northeast had one drawback, as I discovered during a midwinter boat check—the conditions were ideal for mildew. There are various ways of getting rid of this pestilence, but it always seems to return. YachtBrite claims its enzyme-based Moldaway powder will kill off those pesky mold spores as well as clean up stains. Dissolved in water, the nontoxic,
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