by David Schmidt

David Schmidt, a SAIL editor-at-large, is a recent transplant to the Pacific Northwest from SAIL's Boston offices

Boats are complex objects containing numerous systems, parts, components, and gadgets, all of which are designed to make the sailing experience more enjoyable. Many of us sailors enjoy trying out the latest gear, be it a sail, a chartplotter, or a snatch block. And if you’ve sailed long enough, you’ve seen gear steadily improve as innovating manufacturers come up with ever-better mousetraps. If

Out of the Wild

by David Schmidt, Posted December 3, 2007
Watch video of the Avanti ripping it up at 19+ knots in Block Island Sound.(May take several minutes to download.) Clip 1 | Clip 2“Hey David, do you have a life-insurance policy?” Ken Read asks, poking his head through the companionway of the Volvo Open 70 Puma Avanti as we pound
For most dinghy sailors, co-skippering an Open 60 in the Barcelona World Race, a non-stop double-handed circumnavigation race via the three capes, would be a suicide mission. Luckily, Seattle based Jonathan Mckee, 45, isn’t your typical dinghy sailor: His resume includes three years on the All American College Team during his time at Yale, a Gold medal in Flying Dutchman in the 1984 Olympics,
By David Schmidt On October 4–6, a quiet, invitation-only regatta-within-a-regatta was held in New York City during the Panerai New York Classic Week aboard the world’s only W-Class yachts— two beautiful 76-footers (“Wild Horses” and “White Wings”) that were designed in 1997 by Joel White. The boats, which are owned by Donald Tofias of Newport, Rhode Island, represent a different
Sanding and polishing bright work is never easy, especially if there are details in the woodwork itself. Black & Decker’s new Zone-Touch Mouse makes sanding and polishing easier, as this innovative product can accept multiple finger detail attachments via the unit’s Velcro bottom. Simply select the attachment that best fits the bit of detail work that you need to sand or polish, attach the

Learning to fly

by David Schmidt, Posted April 23, 2007
The emergence of the Foiler Moth has been one of sailing’s most pyrotechnic developments. The Moth is a development class which by definition, means that it’s capable of true innovation, such as hydrofoiling at speeds up to 27.9 knots. It was only recently that Foiler Moths—the Bladerider, the Prowler, the Mistress, and the Hungry Tiger—became commercially

HydroVision Raptor 16

by David Schmidt, Posted September 6, 2006
Proa designs are ancient, but there’s nothing stale about HydroVisions’s new proa-style Raptor 16 outrigger canoe. The 16-foot, 9-inch composite hull weighs a scant 40 pounds and can be rigged with either a 70- or a 90-square-foot sail, depending on your thirst for speed. What makes the Raptor 16 unique is the L-shaped retractable hydrofoil mounted under the ama. This foil
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