Know-How

Every once in a while you hear about a boat stored ashore that leaked enough rainwater to fill the bilge and flood the cabin. What a mess! And even a little water in the bilge, if it freezes, can cause damage.
Leaking portlights are a common sight on older sailboats, and they aren’t uncommon on newer ones. Often the owner does not notice small leaks, but over time they get worse and worse until they cannot be ignored.

Anchor Swivels: Keep Your Boat Safe by Using them Correctly

by Rudy and Jill Sechez, Posted October 27, 2014
The sound of shouting drew us up on deck, where we watched the crew on a nearby boat madly scurry about trying to get re-anchored. Next morning we dinghied over to ask what had happened.
Why are so many cruising sailors scared of spinnakers? Today’s cruising A-sails are so forgiving and easy to deal with that there’s really no excuse for not having one on board.
According to Boat US, boats sinking at docks account for a disproportionate number of insurance claims. Frankly, I’m not surprised. Even a modest boat often has six or seven through-hull fittings below the waterline. Should one of these fail, the inrush of water will swiftly sink the boat
I see wire nuts on boats all too often. Many times they are installed by an owner as a temporary measure, “just to make sure it’s working,” or by electricians more used to working on houses than boats. Just to be clear—wire nuts have no place afloat...
Forget those pricey marine compounds. Rope caulk, a non-hardening stranded putty that costs a few dollars at any hardware store, is ideal for bedding just about anything above the waterline.  
The process of piloting in deep water is the same at night as in the daytime. Once clear of channels and buoys, it’s down to GPS fixes checked against estimates, distances and courses to steer. 

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.
In recent years it has become more feasible than ever to navigate using a smartphone or tablet. Apps have improved to the point where they rival paper charts and chartplotters. With so many good navigation apps available, the question is: which is best for you?
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