Maintenance

Replacing Fixed Portlights

by Don Casey, Posted April 29, 2013
Let’s start with a tip. Kits sold in auto stores for polishing headlamps can also restore the clarity to portlights. If your plastic portlights are cloudy, not crazed, this is where you should start.
One day I discovered the romantically named Belt Tension Jack. Suddenly belt tensioning not only lost all its emotional tension, it even acquired a certain elegance.

Mounting Overheads

by Joe Kogan, Posted February 11, 2013
Back in the 1970s and 1980s, many sailboats were finished with foam-backed vinyl headliners glued directly to the underside of the deck and coachroof molding. If you own such a boat, you’re likely to be well acquainted with the problem of the headliner coming adrift as the glue and foam interface breaks down.
Is your boat set to launch? It’s all too easy to overlook things in the spring rush. This checklist should jog your memory.

Winter's Folly

by Peter Nielsen, Posted October 28, 2010
Do you winterize your own engine, or do you have the yard do it? I take the former approach, for three reasons. As my dad used to say, if you want to be sure a job’s done properly, do it yourself; I’ve seen some pretty sketchy work done by so-called marine professionals over the years.The second reason? It seems silly to pay someone to do a job that’s a) not very time-consuming, b) not at

Soda Blast your Boat

by Roger Marshall, Posted November 13, 2012
You have a thick layer of antifouling paint on the bottom of your boat. It’s rough and worn around the edges, so you’d like to get rid of it and have a nice smooth bottom that will help you sail faster. The options are quite simple.
The phrase “out of sight, out of mind” is all too true where boats are concerned, and some of the systems that are out of sight on a typical sailboat can really ruin your day—or your season. Take the exhaust mixing elbow, for example—and give yourself a pat on the back for actually knowing what it is.

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
One challenge with older boats that have been out of production for decades is obtaining replacements for components that may have been custom-made back in the day. Good luck finding a new bow pulpit for your 1974 Flexiflyer 43 or a mast cap for the rig on your 1967 Brickouthouse 29.
A stitch in time truly saves nine when it comes to diesel maintenance. By taking a few easy steps, you can go a long way toward ensuring that you won't be plagued by engine problems when on passage.
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