Know-How

Rig check

by Charles Mason, Posted August 4, 2009
Your mast is back in the boat—or it may have been there all winter—the shrouds are tuned, the engine is checked, and all the battens are in the sails. You are ready for your first sail of the season. Without doubt, many boatowners follow this path, but if you’re one of them, be ready to act quickly if a piece of gear holding the mast suddenly fails and the rig begins to

Vavuud Wind Meter

by SAIL Editors, Posted June 20, 2014
The Vaavud wind meter (currently being distributed in North America by Ronstan) is both accurate and truly pocket-friendly, with a compact two-cup durable plastic rotor and low friction PTFE bearings.

Keeping Connected: Communications for Cruisers

by Sail Staff, Posted November 13, 2007
The rapid evolution of communications technology in the last decade has meant that more of us are able to keep in range of a regular cell phone. We asked many of the entrants in the 2006 ARC transatlantic rally how they planned to stay in contact with those back home and received a variety of answers. Here we describe what systems were chosen and why, and explain some of the

First aid kit

by Sail Staff, Posted August 24, 2009
Few sensible sailors would consider setting out without some form of first-aid kit on board. Scraped knees, cuts, bruises, and bumped toes are all part of the sailing experience—everyone suffers them at some time or other. Being able to deal with these appropriately makes them minor annoyances rather than life-threatening emergencies. Of course, don’t be slow to call for help
When we arrived in Cartagena, Colombia, after a year of cruising, I knew we had work to do. While we had kept up with the necessary (read: constant) maintenance on our 45-year-old Bill Tripp yawl Papillon during our first year aboard, now it was finally time for some major upgrades.
When the going gets tough is when it’s most fun to steer

Smart Plan

by Sail Staff, Posted June 24, 2008
MAKE A PLANNING SPREADSHEETI use Microsoft Excel spreadsheets for my planning documents, and I use four different worksheets. The main sheet covers a full year of sailing (I know, that sounds llke a lot of planning but I have found that it is very helpful to me) while the other sheets detail my plans for a long trip in the spring, plus shorter weekend trips and another long trip

Winter Battery Maintenance

by Peter Nielsen, Posted January 27, 2010
A few years ago, I left my boat’s two lead-acid batteries on board over winter. It wasn’t intentional—an early snowfall led me to cover the boat up sooner than anticipated, and I just never got around to taking the batteries off.After three months of freezing New England winter, I suddenly remembered they were still on board. I snuck down to the yard one mild Saturday and hooked the

Make that RIB Sparkle!

by Adam Cort, Posted August 23, 2012
Give your poor abused RIB the makeover it deserves with the environmentally friendly RIB Clean & Shine Kit from Ensearch.

Genoa Gybe

by Tom Cunliffe, Posted August 21, 2008
A sailor quickly learns the right way to gybe a mainsail: Trim the mainsheet carefully, and always keep the boom and sail under full control. But in all the moving around, the headsail, often a genoa, tends to be forgotten. Unless you have a crew of eager sailors in search of a permanent job, that's usually a good course of action. Do nothing with the headsail until the mainsail has been
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