Where Credit is Due: April 2011
Sea Canvas Boat Covers
I purchased a boat cover for my Catalina 387 from Sea Canvas (www.seacanvas.com) and Carl Pellegrini. He had recently made a cover for another C387 close to my hull number, so he used that pattern to create mine. When I installed it, I found that it would not fit. Catalina had switched mast and boom manufacturers between my year and the following year, and the boom was 2 inches longer than the original pattern.
Carl volunteered to drive to Baltimore from Atlantic City, N.J., to take a look, take additional measurements, and correct the problem. He came down on a Sunday morning, assessed the situation, helped me take the cover off and then took it with him to his shop for repairs. By Monday night, he had made the corrections and shipped it back to me overnight.
I have heard horror stories about boat covers that don’t live up to their advertising, but Carl backed his product with great service.
Toccata in Sea, C387 No. 96
Middle River, Md.
At the Annapolis Sailboat Show in October, I walked by the BoatShoes.com booth and noticed on display the same shoes on my feet (Teva Omniums). The soles of my shoes were separating, so I asked the rep if he’d seen similar problems with this shoe, and he said he had. He gave me his card and said that if I had any problem getting them replaced, I should contact him.
Weeks later, when my shoes had further deteriorated, I couldn’t find the rep’s card, but I boxed up my shoes and sent them in with a note. Even though I didn’t purchase my shoes from them, BoatShoes.com agreed to send me a replacement pair. When I said I’d prefer a different model, given the problems I’d had, the gentleman on the phone agreed to send a different model of equal value. I was not even charged postage.
While it is not their normal practice to accept returns for purchases made elsewhere, it is commendable that this company followed through on a boat-show promise. Kudos.
When I found my Raymarine ST60 Plus windvane on the deck of my boat, likely removed from the masthead by a local osprey, I re-installed it and hoped for the best. It didn’t work. After many conversations with Raymarine Customer Support (www.raymarine.com), I sent the vane to them. Not only did they repair and return it within a week, but there was no charge. This was a unit that was about five years old, the victim of an osprey, and for which Raymarine had no warranty responsibility. This is testimony to the outstanding service by Raymarine and much appreciated by this customer.
The North 3DL jib on our Corsair F-24 was showing sun damage because the covering strip along the leech was too narrow. I contacted Ethan Bixby at North Sails in St. Petersburg, Fla., and he said to bring the sail to their loft. The sail was well beyond warranty, and I was its second owner. Ethan gave me a bid to sew on new covers and repair the sail, which I accepted. Somewhere during this process, North Sails decided to pick up half of my bill! Thanks to Ethan and North Sails for going the extra distance to fix this problem for me.
I’ve had an ACR Firefly Plus strobe/flashlight for a few years, and when I tested it a month ago, nothing worked. However, I can’t blame it on the light. The two Duracell AA batteries had leaked, damaging it.
I’ve always preferred Duracell batteries as they seem to last longer and have fewer leakage problems. So as a loyal consumer, I was disappointed. As AA alkalines are inexpensive general consumer items, I figured I didn’t have much to gain, but I called Duracell (www.duracell.com), told them about my light being damaged by the leaking batteries, and asked if it would be covered by any type of warranty. The company immediately offered to replace the batteries and the light. No back-pedaling, no hemming and hawing, no ifs ands or buts. They did not require me to send them any evidence, but they did ask for the date on the batteries. I about collapsed in the bilge.
I would like to commend Jeff Tyrrel from UK-Halsey SailMakers (www.ukhalsey.com) for his help locating some batten endcaps for the mainsail on my Hunter 290. I had searched all over and was not able to find anything that fit properly. I contacted Jeff and sent some pictures Iand the dimensions of the batten endcap, and he went to work. He located them within a week (in Hong Kong) and had them shipped to me. Hats off to Jeff for not giving up and going the extra mile to help me out.
Patience, Hunter 290