Cruising

Without A Paddle

by Sail Staff, Posted August 26, 2008
Because most dinghies have an outboard, it’s not surprising that many sailors neglect the oars. But if you’re not careful, one of them will inevitably come loose when you’re not looking. During the 18 months we spent cruising, we found four dinghy oars floating in various harbors. After we lost one of ours, I made a point of tying a length of cord from the midpoint of each oar to the dinghy. The
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Cruising

Nothing Is Best

by Sail Staff, Posted August 26, 2008
Many sailing tales are filled with drama and even life-threatening adventure. In my experience, however, a modern boat with an experienced crew can have an uneventful trip even in heavy weather. This may not make for great literature, but it indicates good seamanship and speaks well of the quality of most modern production boats and their components. I’m happy to leave the excitement and the
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Cruising

Check Them Out

by Sail Staff, Posted August 26, 2008

To check the condition of your sails, hoist each one individually on a calm day and watch what happens to the shape of the sail when you adjust the luff and foot. You still can get reasonable performance from an old sail if the basic shape remains; if it’s disappeared, take the sail to a sailmaker. He or she may have some suggestions for a recut.

If your mainsail uses short battens, make


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Cruising

Masthead Magic

by David Schmidt, Posted August 26, 2008
Tips for safely going aloft

The list of reasons for going aloft is long: checking the rig, rerunning a lost halyard, fixing a broken wind instrument. There are two basic ways to go up the mast: You can climb a halyard or you can be hoisted. While there are a number of devices available to help you ascend, the best method is to use a bosun’s chair or to use a mast-climbing device


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Boatworks

Steering Committee

by Sail Staff, Posted August 26, 2008
Steering CommitteeCastaway, the Bailout boat, needed a new steering pedestal. Mark Corke shows how it was installed.

The original steering pedestal on Castaway, a 1979 Ericson 34T, was serviceable, but it was old and in need of some TLC. We could have reused it, which would have involved refinishing it and replacing the control cables—but it would still have lacked a


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