Sailing Gear

Having the right kind of gear aboard a sailboat is essential, not only to its performance, but the safety of the crew. With this in mind, SAIL not only reviews a wide variety of equipment, including foul weather gear, life jackets, sails, rope, electronics, paints and spars, but recognizes the very best of the best every year through its Pittman Innovation Awards.

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Electronics and Navigation

Gear: Navisafe SUP, Dinghy and Kayak Light

LET THERE BE LIGHT Summer evenings in crowded anchorages or mooring fields are part and parcel of the coastal cruising life, and there is always some activity after dark as stragglers arrive or cruisers run to shore and back in their dinghies. It’s only common sense (and also the law) to have the proper lights Read More

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Books and DVDs

Book Review: Knot for Sailors Only by Bill Harmon

In this comprehensive collection of short stories and poems, lifelong sailor Bill Harmon reveals how time spent on the water can affect time spent on land. With three decades of sailing experience, he has no shortage of adventures to share. Through Harmon’s original writings on lessons of life inspired by the seas and oceans of Read More

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Maintenance and DIY

Gear: Pettit’s SeaGold Satin Wood Treatment

Good as Gold There are sailors who like to spend hours lovingly tending their brightwork, and there are sailors who don’t. Pettit’s new SeaGold Satin Wood Treatment should please both camps. It’s a blend of UV-stable resins, pigments and UV inhibitors that can be cleaned up with soap and water, and can be applied over Read More

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Maintenance and DIY

Gear: MagicEzyUV Shield

Clear Sighted There’s nothing more annoying than peering through a salt-smeared or cloudy dodger window. MagicEzyUV Shield is a water-based polymer that’s claimed to clean and protect glass, acrylic, vinyl and plastic from UV damage, and also repel rain and salt for up to three months per application. It comes in a spray bottle that Read More

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Safety

Gear: West Marine’s Offshore 3000C Binoculars

No cruising boat is complete without a good pair of binoculars and a hand-bearing compass. West Marine’s Offshore 3000C binoculars combine both in one sturdy, waterproof package that will give you a lifetime of use. The 7 x 50 specification offers good magnification combined with excellent light-gathering ability; the lenses are made by Germany’s renowned Read More

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Electronics and Navigation

Gear: iHome BT9

The Sounds of iHome If you don’t want to go to the trouble of installing a sound system on your boat, or you just want to be able to take your tunes ashore with you, the iHome BT9 could be just the thing. It streams wireless digital audio via Bluetooth, but it’s more than a Read More

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Electronics and Navigation

Gear: Garmin VHF 110 and 200

Garmin VHF 110 and 200 Garmin’s latest VHF radios are similar in size but differ in capability. The VHF 110 is your basic entry-level DSC-capable fixed-mount VHF, featuring 25 watts of transmitting power, NOAA WX alerts and Garmin’s Position Tracking, which allows a user to track up to three other boats using Garmin VHFs. The Read More

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Electronics and Navigation

Gear: Ronstan Vaavud Wind Meter

Ronstan Vaavud Wind Meter Sometimes the best addition to your boat’s electronics is the simplest one, and the Vaavud wind meter from Ronstan is certainly that. No wires to connect, no mounts to install—simply plug the anemometer into the headphone jack for your smartphone or tablet, download the free Vaavud app, and you’re good to Read More

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Electronics and Navigation

Gear: B&G Vulcan 5 Sailing Chartplotter

B&G Vulcan 5 Sailing Chartplotter The new Vulcan 5 from B&G is a 5in multi-touch chartplotter with pinch-to-zoom capabilities. The Vulcan 5 can be integrated with existing NMEA 2000 networks and a wind instrument to allow sailors to tap into B&G’s SailSteer functionality. The Vulcan’s comprehensive navigation features include a built-in GPS, an array of Read More

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Engines and Systems

Gear: Raymarine EV-100 Wheelpilot

I hadn’t long been sailing before I realized that being a slave to wheel or tiller wasn’t for me. Much as I enjoy steering a boat, doing so for hours on end becomes tedious and tiring. I’ve done many hard coastal and bluewater miles hand-steering when an autopilot or windvane gear broke down, and I Read More

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