Projects

It’s Good To Vent

by Peter Nielsen, Posted August 23, 2012
Looking at a modern sailboat, with its profusion of opening portlights and hatches, you could be excused for thinking all boats are so well ventilated. Not so.
Whatever the reason, re-marking the waterline fills many sailors with dread. Get it right, and the resulting perfect boottop between contrasting bottom paint and the hull will be stunning. Get it wrong, and your shaky paint job will stick out like the proverbial sore thumb.
Splicing three-strand rope is a fairly straightforward process and a useful skill. Splicing joins together two ropes of equal diameter and does not weaken the rope to the same extent that tying a knot does. 

Make A Portable Pump

by Paul Esterle, Posted August 20, 2008
The cockpit lockers on my 20-foot trailersailer leak because the lid destroys any seal that is attached to it. I’ve resigned myself to needing a waterproof container for anything I store there, but I still have to deal with the water that has leaked in. My solution was to attach a small electric bilgepump (with a hose) to a handle. I used 1/8" by 1" aluminum bar stock, which is easy to

Outboard rebuild

by Sail Staff, Posted February 16, 2009
ChecklistTools
  • Basic tool kit
  • Wrenches and sockets (metric if you’re working on a European or Japanese engine)
  • Screwdrivers
  • Propane blowtorch
  • Rubber mallet
  • Hammer
  • Razor blade
  • Pliers
  • Vise-Grips
  • Vise
  • 400-grit wet/dry sandpaper
  • Brush for applying grease and lubricating
  • Our 1973 Norlin 34 project boat had been used mainly for club racing in its latter years, and it showed. Among its many outdated systems was the battery-management setup. It was no worse than what I suspect can be found on many other boats of that vintage, but it would not suffice for extended cruising.The two Group 27 90AH deep-cycle lead-acid batteries, one for house

    Tracking Trickles

    by Don Casey, Posted November 23, 2010
    Finding a big leak is relatively easy, but a small one can be a major challenge because a boat’s interior is a bit like a room in a funhouse, where water flow often seems to defy gravity. A trickle in the cabin, for example, may be coming from a leak in the deck half a boat length away. Conventional search techniques include 1) flooding the deck by sections with a hose, and 2) building a dike of

    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.
    Like all owners of older boats who like to do their own work, I’m extremely familiar with epoxy resin. I reckon I’ve used a good few gallons of it, for both major projects and little jobs where only small amounts are needed.
    After replacing our cadet-gray Sunbrella twice and replacing zippers and restitching countless times in our first six years cruising, we decided there had to be a better, more cost-effective way to maintain our cockpit canvas.
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