Gear

Marine Communications Special: 2006

by Sail Staff, Posted June 28, 2006
By Ben Ellison

On the one hand, I’m sorry to report that the U.S. Coast Guard has made little visible progress toward implementing Rescue 21, the new search-and-rescue communications system that will, eventually, unleash the potential of DSC-VHF radios. On the other hand (this comes as a real surprise), the reappearance of coastal marine VHF operators just may induce a lot of sailors to


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Navigation Gear Special

by Sail Staff, Posted May 31, 2006
Cautious sailors understandably worry that the trend toward networked multifunction electronics could lead them to simultaneous multifunction failures. But the solution may be improved system architecture—as seen in Northstar’s new 8000i, diagrammed at right—not in running separate machines. Notice that the Northstar system is “masterless”—sounder, radar, cameras, and even the various sensor
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New Gear - April 2006

by Sail Staff, Posted May 3, 2006
A Sail for RidingMost boats don’t behave as well when anchored with rope rode as they do when lying to chain. They tend to sheer about much more, especially in wind-against-tide scenarios, which is bad for your nerves—and those of your neighbors. One way of coping with this is to set a riding sail on the backstay to help keep the bow pointed into the wind. You could make one of
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A Sail for Riding

by Sail Staff, Posted April 9, 2006
Most boats don’t behave as well when anchored with rope rode as they do when lying to chain. They tend to sheer about much more, especially in wind-against-tide scenarios, which is bad for your nerves—and those of your neighbors. One way of coping with this is to set a riding sail on the backstay to help keep the bow pointed into the wind. You could make one of these yourself, or you could order
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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
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