Maintenance

On the Right Track

by Peter Nielsen, Posted March 21, 2013
Here is a sad truth relating to older boats: the more desirable the piece of equipment you want to install, the harder it is to remove its predecessor.

Keeping Cool

by Paul Esterle, Posted August 25, 2008
A covered foredeck helps keep the noon sun at bayBy Paul EsterleSpending a Tennessee summer on my 35-footer taught me that surviving the sun and heat calls for proper sunshades and awnings. I quickly learned that if I didn’t put up adequate shades, the noon sun would heat the cabin to such high temperatures that even air conditioning could not cool the space down until

Build a Boarding Step

by Sail Staff, Posted August 27, 2008
As you get older, you usually discover it’s a little harder to climb on and off a boat. At least, that’s what’s happened to me. Attempting to improve my lot, I tried out several commercially available boarding steps. Some had good features, but I wasn’t really happy with any of them. Then one day Vince and Dianne Purcell stopped by aboard Finn MacCool, their classic Bill Tripp–designed

Galley Upgrades

by Sail Staff, Posted August 28, 2008
Thinking hard about the little things increases efficiencyBy Rob LuceyMost production galleys are fine for a weekend cruise, but if you’re thinking about a longer time frame for the galley’s use—extended cruising or living aboard—any shortcomings will quickly become apparent. Fortunately, you don’t have to settle for what you are given. For example, my wife and I

Deck gear

by Sail Staff, Posted December 23, 2008
Upgrading the deck gear on your boat can seriously enhance your sailing pleasure. Once you’ve sailed a boat set up with low-friction blocks, good rope clutches and jammers, and genoa-sheet cars that are quick and easy to adjust, it’s hard to go back to the creaky, friction-riddled 30- or 40-year-old deck gear that so many older boats are still saddled with.We had always planned to replace

Free and clear

by David Schmidt, Posted August 3, 2009
If you sail in Maine, you’ve likely heard the one about the best way to cross a channel (Answer: walk across on the lobster-pot buoys). This isn’t hyperbole; visit many harbors in Maine and you’ll find them choked with pot buoys, some of them in working channels. For sailors, a wrapped prop in a tight channel flanked by rock ledges is a serious predicament: not to mention the potential damage to

Sailboat Centerboard Upgrade

by Mike Raleigh, Posted October 27, 2009
Using a popular airfoil analysis code (XFOIL, by M. Drela & H. Youngren, see http://web.mit.edu/drela/Public/xfoil/) we analyzed the performance of the stock centerboard of a San Juan 23. As this board was a thin flat plate, this performance was rather poor, consistent with the

Keeping the Sea Out

by Peter Nielsen, Posted January 28, 2010
Out of sight, out of mind…That adage is so old it creaks, but that doesn’t make it any less true. It was especially true of the cockpit drain hoses and gate valves on our 34ft project boat. Back when we acquired the boat, the surveyor looked at the ancient hoses and corroded gate valves in horror and suggested that we replace them “before long.” Three years later, “before long” still hadn’t

Cockpit Makeover

by Roger Marshall, Posted May 13, 2010
When my oldest son, David, told me about the J/24 he had just bought I had a pretty good idea what was coming next. “Dad, I’ve bought a J/24. It needs a lot of work, but the price was right.”“What are you going to do with it?” I asked.“Race it, eventually. Here’s what needs to be done,” he said and pulled out a two-page list of repairs and upgrades he wanted to make on the boat.
I’ve always liked the versatility that comes with a centerboard. The ability to vary your boat’s draft from deep to shallow greatly increases the options you have when cruising. The other side of the coin is maintenance.A centerboard can be made of anything from foam or plywood sheathed in epoxy to solid bronze or cast iron. The former will need fresh antifouling each year. The latter will
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