The Art of Seamanship: Evolving Skills, Exploring Oceans, and Handling Wind, Waves, and Weather

Wind, waves, weather, and water demand the practiced art of seamanship

"Planning and reacting to the unanticipated are the flip sides of seamanship. This blending of pre-voyage preparedness with effective on-the-water response is learned rather than inherent--together they define the art of seamanship." -- Author RALPH NARANJO

Each time a sailboat casts off its docklines the sailor enters a marine realm that demands knowledge, preparedness, vigilance, and coolheadedness--these qualities are the foundation of good seamanship. Both an art as well as a science, seamanship is also the mastery of numerous practical details, from the best choice of line for a jib sheet to an accurate assessment of the passage of a deep low-pressure system.

Around-the-world sailor Ralph Naranjo--technical expert, ocean racer, former Vanderstar Chair at the U.S. Naval Academy--delivers a priceless reference for anything that comes up while on the water, sharing all the knowledge today's sailors need to "hand, reef, and steer"--an enduring reference to the collective skills of the bluewater sailor. Naranjo's vast knowledge is supported by real-life examples of sailing mishaps, sample itineraries, vibrant photos, as well as first-hand accounts and sidebars from top sailors and marine experts, including Shelia McCurdy, Chuck Hawley, Lee Chesneau, and Paul Miller, N.A. Seamanship is a dynamic art, demanding full attention from the sailor amidst a constant flow of information and knowledge.

The Art of Seamanship will improve your problem-solving skills, whether daysailing around the harbor or voyaging around the world.

You'll learn:

  • The attributes of a good skipper and crew—including physical and mental agility, effective communication, and knowledge-based decision making
  • Fine-tuning your voyaging with the seaworthiness of your boat and the capability of your crew in mind
  • Using weather information and routing resources to lower risks and raise rewards
  • Developing advanced boat-handling skills—including heaving-to, towing a drogue, reefing, setting storm sails, and kedging
  • Lines, line handling, and rigging--making sure the right strings are attached, including an in-depth look at modern rope construction
  • Anchoring--the art of staying put--with a realistic look at tackle from lunch hooks to storm anchors
  • Sails, modern sail material, sail trim, sail handling, and hardware, from hanked-on headsails to the latest top-down furlers
  • Navigating in the satellite age, including paper and digital chartplotting, how to best use the new equipment, plus understanding the role of celestial navigation as a fail-safe
  • Sailboat design and dynamics, including the role of vessel structure and stability and a look at what your current boat has to offer and what to look for in a new boat
  • Sharing crowded waters and understanding the reasons behind the "rules of the road"
  • How to be ready for any emergency, including fire, crew overboard, a flooding bilge, or the need to abandon ship
  • Establishing reliable communication, including VHF, AIS, SSB, satellite phones, and beacon signaling (EPIRBS, PLBS)


Rescue of the Bounty: Disaster and Survival in Superstorm Sandy

The harrowing story of the sinking and rescue of Bounty—the tall ship used in the classic 1962 movie Mutiny on the Bounty—which was caught in the path of Hurricane Sandy with sixteen aboard

On Thursday, October 25, 2012, Captain Robin Walbridge made the fateful decision to sail Bounty from New London, Connecticut, to St. Petersburg, Florida. Walbridge was well aware that a hurricane was forecast to travel north from the Caribbean toward the eastern seaboard. Yet the captain was determined to sail. As he explained to his crew of fifteen: a ship is always safer at sea than in port. He intended to sail “around the hurricane” and told the crew that anyone who did not want to come on the voyage could leave the ship—there would be no hard feelings. As fate would have it, no one took the captain up on his offer.

Four days into the voyage, Superstorm Sandy made an almost direct hit on Bounty. The vessel’s failing pumps could not keep up with the incoming water. The ship began to lose power as it was beaten and rocked by hurricane winds that spanned eight hundred miles. A few hours later, in the dark of night, the ship suddenly overturned ninety miles off the North Carolina coast in the “Graveyard of the Atlantic,” sending the crew tumbling into an ocean filled with towering thirty-foot waves. The coast guard then launched one of the most complex and massive rescues in its history, flying two Jayhawk helicopter crews into the hurricane and lowering rescue swimmers into the raging seas again and again, despite the danger to their own lives.

In the uproar heard across American media in the days following, a single question persisted: Why did the captain decide to sail? Through hundreds of hours of interviews with the crew members, their families, and the coast guard, the masterful duo of Michael J. Tougias and Douglas A. Campbell creates an in-depth portrait of the enigmatic Captain Walbridge, his motivations, and what truly occurred aboard Bounty during those terrifying days at sea.

Dripping with suspense and vivid high-stakes drama, Rescue of the Bounty is an unforgettable tale about the brutality of nature and the human will to survive.

As Long as It's Fun, the Epic Voyages and Extraordinary Times of Lin and Larry Pardey

To anyone interested in small-boat cruising and voyaging, the names Lin and Larry Pardey need no introduction. As world-girdling sailors who roamed the planet on a pair of small, engineless boats that they built themselves, the Pardeys established their hard-earned reputations by eloquently (and sometimes controversially) telling their stories through a series of best-selling books and manuals, and countless seminars and boat shows.

They have been called the first couple of cruising and have remained true to their mantra: Go simple, go small, go now. And after 200,000 miles of cruising under sail, they ve demonstrated that the dream of voyaging over the horizon is not only attainable, it's affordable. The children of modest, middle-class families, their message of accessibility into the world of cruising of taking your own floating home anywhere has proved irresistible to tens of thousands of sailors. Lin and Larry Pardey became cruising royalty not solely due to their impressive deeds but also through their rare ability to share what they d learned across multiple media.

Seemingly every offshore cruiser knows who they are and what they represent. Or do they? In As Long as It s Fun, the biography of Lin and Larry Pardey, Herb McCormick recounts their remarkable sailing career from their early days in Southern California to their two circumnavigations to their current life in a quiet cove in New Zealand. Through interviews with their families, friends, and critics, McCormick delves deeply into the couple s often-controversial opinions, sometimes-tenuous marriage, and amazing list of accomplishments.

As Long as It s Fun is as much a love story as it is a sea yarn, and, like all such stories, it s not without complications . . . which makes it not only a sailing tale but also a human one.

World Cruising Routes: 7th edition: 1000 Sailing Routes In All Oceans Of The World

Since its publication in 1987, World Cruising Routes has become one of the best-selling nautical publications in the world. World Cruising Routes, and its companion volumes World Cruising Destinations, World Voyage Planner and Cornell’s Ocean Atlas, are to be found on board every long distance cruising yacht, and provide ocean navigators all the information they need, from the planning stages of a voyage to its successful completion.

Since 1987, offshore navigation has undergone a number of major changes, and this new edition has been thoroughly revised to meet the requirements and expectations of the current generation of offshore sailors. The revisions were dictated primarily by the information contained in the latest pilot charts, which required a rethinking of some old established route planning tactics, many of which are no longer valid. Another important change made in this edition is the addition of detailed waypoints on some well-travelled routes, as well as the inclusion of alternative routes leading to popular cruising destinations. Compared to previous editions, where the waypoints were listed mainly for planning purposes, in this new edition every waypoint along each route is listed, enabling the navigator to plot a course for any passage from start to finish. One new feature added to this edition is that of windgrams depicting a summary of wind conditions for the month when passages are undertaken along some of the most commonly sailed routes.
In direct response to current navigational methods, most routes have been redesigned to provide essential passage planning details. New routes have been added to areas rarely explored until recently by cruising yachts, from Greenland and Micronesia to China and the Northwest Passage.

Described as the bible of cruising sailors, World Cruising Routes is the definitive reference book for long-distance navigators. This totally revised and updated edition has drawn on the latest weather information available to provide the most comprehensive aid to planning a safe voyage to any part of the world. With over 1000 sailing routes in all the oceans of the world, from the tropics to the high latitudes of the Arctic and Antarctic, it contains essential information on winds, currents, regional and seasonal weather as well as optimum times for individual passages.
Geared specifically to the needs of offshore navigators, this comprehensive guide contains all the necessary information for planning a passage in any of the world’s oceans. This seventh edition assesses the consequences of climate change on sailing routes and provides over 6,000 waypoints to assist skippers in planning individual passages. Much of the information contained in the following pages was gathered during the author’s three circumnavigations. It is the perfect one-stop reference for planning a voyage anywhere in the world.

This is a companion volume to both World Voyage Planner, which offers invaluable planning strategies and advice on long-distance voyaging, as well as World Cruising Destinations, which gives practical information on all the maritime nations of the world with details of their main cruising attractions, climate, formalities, marinas, repair facilities, charter operators, cruising guides and websites.

Seamanship Secrets: 185 Tips & Techniques for Better Navigation, Cruise Planning, and Boat Handling Under Power or Sail

"Secrets' is the modern Bowditch, written so clearly that navigation and seamanship will be comprehensible to anyone..."
--Dave and Jaja Martin, circumnavigators and authors of Into the Light: A Family's Epic Journey

"It's a great book. The prose is simple and clear . . ."
--John Vigor, author of The Seaworthy Offshore Sailboat


"It is a fine piece of work and should be read by anyone contemplating coastal cruising or blue water voyages. It definitely deserves a place in the offshore yacht's library . . ."
--Ted Brewer, yacht designer, author, and offshore racing and cruising sailor


Be a Better Skipper


In the night, wind, rain, fog, big seas, strong currents, or congested waters, when there’s no time for textbook seamanship solutions, what you need are shortcuts and techniques that work quickly and reliably every time.


Distilled from the vast accumulated lore of seamanship and navigation, here are the absolute essentials--185 techniques that work without fail in the pilothouse or the exposed cockpit or flying bridge of a shorthanded sail- or powerboat. John Jamieson shows you how to:


  • Set up a clipboard chart table for cockpit use
  • Avoid hazards with danger bearings or a GPS grid highway
  • Estimate current speeds with the 50-90-100 rule
  • Track other boats in poor visibility using radar plots and bearing drift
  • Sail home without a rudder or get your twin-screw boat home on one working engine
  • Dock or anchor under any conditions
  • And much, much more


Even in this age of electronic navigation you need to know how to eyeball your boat through any situation. Each of the techniques in this cut-to-the-chase book has shown itself to be absolutely repeatable. It will work this time, the next time,
and the time a er that, in conditions fair or foul.

Coyote Lost at Sea: The Story of Mike Plant, America’s Daring Solo Circumnavigator

When Coyote and its skipper, Mike Plant, went missing mid-Atlantic in November 1992, the sailing world held its breath. Now, twenty years later, the story around the mystery, tragedy, and enigma is told at last "[Plant] is as close as yachting gets to a James Dean character, going his own way, in his own time, but always with an eye to the sea." (Barbara Lloyd, New York Times).  Mike Plant came to ocean racing late; as an American in a sport dominated by European sailors he was an underdog. And yet he won his class in the 1986-87 Around Alone 24,000-mile race, beating competitors with more experience, among them Hal Roth. Plant led an adrenaline-fueled life, full of seemingly suicidal adventures and yet his charismatic personality attracted hundreds of friends. Told in the style of Into the Wild, Coyote Lost at Sea transcends the sailing story and explores the intimate details of Plant's intense personality, upbringing, and experiences that created the fiercely original character of Mike Plant. It explores the events and circumstances leading to Plant's phenomenal success as a singlehanded ocean-racer, as well as the factors contributing to the failure of his high-tech and controversial boat, Coyote.

What Knot?

Anyone can tie knots: learn just one or two from this book and you will be glad you bought it. Learn ten, and it could make a difference in your life. This is because there is endless pleasure to be had from the study and practice of knot tying, this fundamental but fascinating process being an art, craft, science and philosophy, all rolled into one.

This book contains over 150 knots and splices and is guaranteed to amuse for hours on end. It makes sense to shed our over dependence on buckles, clips and zip fasteners, safety pins and superglue, when a length of cord or rope and the right choice of knot works at least as well and often better.

The types of knots in this book range from figure-of-eight knots, bowlines and sheet bends, crossing knots, wrap-and-tuck knots, and more. A full glossary and index will help readers learn to tie knots of all kinds.

Nigel Calder's Cruising Handbook

The most comprehensive and helpful guide ever written for selecting and equipping a cruising sailboat

Whether you’re a coastal or offshore cruiser, you’ll find your most pressing concerns treated with the know-how that makes for skillful, confident cruising in Nigel Calder’s Cruising Handbook. The author -- one of the most respected marine how-to authors on either side of the Atlantic, and author of the universally admired Boatowner's Mechanical and Electrical Manual, -- walks you through all key technical and practical aspects of modern cruising systems and equipment, providing you with a summary of the skills necessary for safe, enjoyable sailing.

The first half of the book includes an easy-to-use tabular method for evaluating a boat's suitability for cruising; ideas for workable deck and interior lay-outs and organization; how to choose and configure suitable boat systems for cruising; and how to install gear for trouble free operation.

The book's second half teaches you boat handling skills; core navigational expertise; anchoring techniques; weather understanding; heavy weather expertise; and specific skills for long-term and long-distance cruising.

The Big Book of Wooden Boat Restoration: Basic Techniques, Maintenance, and Repair

The Big Book of Wooden Boat Restoration is the perfect introduction or reference guide for wooden boat lovers both experienced and new. Author Thomas Larsson, one of Sweden's most experienced and premier wooden boat restorers, has gathered his thorough knowledge of the subject for the reader and placed it in this book with informative facts and an extensive glossary, accessible to new hobbyists and longtime boat lovers alike.

This book contains chapters on boat care, including winter maintenance, racing, finishing, and stripping. You will also find current information on boat building, gluing, and tools. The most extensive part of this book consists of chapters that describe the detailed clean repair of wooden boats—everything from plug-accession and bonding to changing socks and bottom engine installation.

Larsson includes a history of boat building and provides a nice glimpse of different wooden boats with over 200 sketches and photos in both color and black-and-white. He explains how staying on top of maintenance keeps a unique fleet of wooden boats alive. With practical instructions and fact-boxes with advice and tips, this book will teach you all about maintenance: surface treatment, scraping the hull, equipping the boat in the spring, and looking after it in the winter, as well as tips about buying a boat, installing an engine, and more. 100 color and b/w photographs, 156 b/w illustrations.

How to Read a Nautical Chart, 2nd Edition

Authoritative, practical, and hands-on information on reading and relying on electronic and paper nautical charts

The classic How to Read a Nautical Chart explains every aspect of electronic and paper nautical charts: how a chart is assembled, how to gauge the accuracy of chart data, how to read charts created by other governments, how to use information such as scale, projection technique and datum that every chart contains; how not to get fooled or run aground by overzooming. Nigel Calder teaches you how to squeeze every ounce of information out of a nautical chart (on your GPS, chartplotter, or nav station) and understand the limits of accuracy for all charts, paper and electronic, raster and vector.

This much-awaited second edition addresses the changes in the world of electronic charting, integrated onboard navigation systems, as well as radar overlays and AIS and their interfacing with charts. A new chapter on the Wiki Revolution explores the mechanisms allowing you to incorporate user-generated content into navigational products and share this content with others—harnessing a user-base never before possible. Calder also explores how 3D-technology and real-time depth and weather information is creating interactive charting capacities that are fundamentally changing how we navigate. Calder's unique, practical insights will help you to navigate safely for years to come.


The Complete Sailing Manual

The Complete Sailing Manual is the most comprehensive and informative book on sailing available, and will immediately become your teacher, advisor, and counselor for all your sailing questions and needs.

With over 400 fully illustrated pages it is truly a book like no other, and it’s one that every sailor — regardless of skill-level — will refer to again and again.

Order your copy today with this special offer!

Inspecting the Aging Sailboat

Become an Expert Judge of Used Sailboats

Step by step, the author of the bestselling This Old Boat shows you how to evaluate the condition of an older fiberglass sailboat-the one you own or the one you'd like to purchase. Don Casey's expert advice helps you:

  • Assess the condition of a used sailboat in 30 minutes
  • Prioritize maintenance and repair tasks for a boat you already own
  • Catch potential problems early
  • Know where to look and what to look for (and how to interpret what you see)

A professional survey is recommended before purchasing a boat-and usually required for financing-but with Inspecting the Aging Sailboat, you can consider and reject any number of boats before settling on "the one." This book will streamline your used-boat shopping while saving you hundreds or even thousands of dollars in professional survey fees.

Handbook of Sailing

This classic contains 2,000 diagrams and photos enabling you to visualize every sailing procedure and maneuver; reflects the latest word on procedures, techniques, and equipment. 48 pages of full-color photos.

Extremely comprehensive of almost all aspects of sailing. For beginners through advanced levels including spinnakers, weather, navigation & lights, tides, first aid, knots, recovering from various emergencies, entering & leaving difficult moorings, rafting, anchoring, and much more. Experts in any area will want greater detail on a topic but others will be grateful for the help that's here. The 1250 drawings and photos are outstanding for their clarity and illustrative value.

The Voyager's Handbook

This inspirational and comprehensive manual leads you step by step through every aspect of choosing, planning, and following the voyager’s life. Using three example boats representing three cruising lifestyles—Simplicity, Moderation, and Highlife—Beth Leonard helps make your bluewater dreams come true, whether you’re sailing on a shoestring or a CEO’s pension. Starting with the things you can’t do without—an enthusiastic crew, a seaworthy boat, and, of course, money—Leonard offers sage advice on how to select crewmembers who are truly committed to the voyage, how to choose the right boat for you, and how to find just the right approach to financing your voyage and making the most of every dollar spent.

Advanced Marine Electrics and Electronics Troubleshooting

Whether you are a marine electronics professional or a boatowner, Advanced Marine Electrics and Electronics Troubleshooting helps you understand the new, more powerful methods of troubleshooting marine electrical and electronic systems. A modern boat’s sophisticated installations and networked electronics can stretch the traditional diagnostic methods based on trouble lights and multimeters past their useful limits. This book will show you how to:

* Use microprocessor-based diagnostic tools and techniques from the automotive and communications sectors, adapted for boats for the first time * Diagnose the most difficult AC and DC problems * Protect communications and navigation electronics from interference and lightning * Seek out and eliminate stray-current sources and galvanic corrosion

Boat Owner's Mechanical & Electrical Manual

If it's on a boat and it has screws, wires, or moving parts, it's covered in Boatowner's Mechanical and Electrical Manual. When you leave the dock with this book aboard, you have at your fingertips the best and most comprehensive advice on:

* Battery technologies * 12- and 24-volt DC systems * Corrosion, bonding, and lightning protection * Generators, inverters, and battery chargers * Electric motors and electric lights * Marine electronics, antennas, and RFI * Diesel engines * Transmissions, shaft brakes, and propellers * Refrigeration and air-conditioning * Tanks, plumbing, and through-hulls * Pumps and watermakers * Steering, autopilots, and wind vanes * Stoves and heaters * Winches, windlasses, and bow thrusters * Spars, rigging, and roller reefing


Entry-Level Sailboats, Volume 2

Entry-Level Sailboats, Volume 2 provides easy to understand reviews and specifications for the following sailboats:

Grampian 26, Hunter 30, Hunter 27, Newport 28, O’Day 30, Lancer 28, Nonsuch 30, Pearson 26, Ranger 26, S2 8.5, and Tartan 27

Order your downloadable copy today!

Entry-Level Sailboats, Volume 1

Entry-Level Sailboats, Volume 1 provides easy to understand reviews and specifications for the following sailboats:

Beneteau 311, Catalina 310, Hunter 326, Pearson 30, Tartan 30, Catalina 30, C&C 29, Cal 31, Cal 2-27, Catalina 27, Columbia 8.7, C&C 27, Ericson 27, and Freedom 30

Order your downloadable copy today!

Marine Toilets

Marine Toilets (Volume 1 of Practical Sailor’s 2-Part Series, Marine Sanitation Systems) is a thorough review of the types of marine-toilets available, and will help you determine which is best suited for your boat and boating activities.

From manual to electronic, compost to vacuum - this ebook is guaranteed to help you choose the best toilet for your boat’s head.

Order your downloadable copy today!

Holding Tanks, Plumbing, and Odor Control

Holding Tanks, Plumbing and Odor Control (Volume 2 of Practical Sailor’s 2-Part Series, Marine Sanitation Systems) examines the important mechanisms that keep your boat’s head running smoothly. With reviews of hoses, valves, holding tanks, and sensors, the information in this ebook will help you maintain superior, odor-free marine plumbing.

Order your downloadable copy today!

Marine Sanitation eBook Package

Practical Sailor’s 2-Part Series - MARINE SANITATION SYSTEMS - is a unique examination of marine plumbing, and will give you the peace of mind that comes with knowing your boat’s head is in good working order.

Covering everything from toilets to holding tanks, hoses to sensors, vent filters to toilet paper, this comprehensive series is sure to keep your boat’s bathroom operating at peak efficiency.

A busted head is a situation no boater wants. Keep your boat’s sanitation system functioning properly and odor-free. Order this downloadable series today!

MOB Prevention & Recovery


Despite recent advances in safety equipment, sailors are still falling overboard. As Practical Sailor’s recent tests and investigative reports have shown, some widely promoted advice regarding harnesses, tethers, and jacklines can be misleading. Likewise, many books on seamanship continue to ignore the latest recommendations in man-overboard recovery drills.

That’s why having the proper equipment, and knowing the right way to use it is essential.

With this new e-book from Practical Sailor, you’ll be fully prepared to avert—or respond to—MOB situations by learning about the necessary gear and proven recovery procedures.

Inflatable PFD-Harnesses: They not only help keep you onboard, but they keep you afloat if you end up in the water. Learn which designs and brands are state-of-the-art for safety and comfort.

The vital link between you and your boat, the tether’s goal is to keep you out of the drink. Find out why one specific material is essential, and when and why one certain feature can be deadly.

They provide a secure and continuous means of attachment for on-deck crew. Find out which type is the safest and most durable, why choosing the right color is imperative, and what’s the best way to set up a jackline system.

MOB Recovery & Recover Aids:
From MOB modules and throw bags to the right recovery techniques for your boat, Practical Sailor explores the equipment and procedures that will be most valuable when you hear “Man Overboard!”

It’s too easy for seasoned sailors to be lulled into a false sense of security, but MOB tragedies have befallen even the most professional crews. That’s why the information in this e-book is essential, regardless of your level of experience.  So don’t wait—order your copy today!




Whether your passion is racing or cruising, sails are one of the biggest investments in your boat that you’ll ever make. You want to make the right decisions, but with the wide variety of options available, choosing the right sail (or sails) can be a daunting task.

Now, with this new 3-part series from Practical Sailor, you’ll learn everything you need to know about sails, including materials, fit, hardware, and choosing the right sails for your boat.

Volume One: Sail Buying, Sail Making, & Mainsails

Covers sail buying, sailmaking, mainsails, mainsail handling, and furling options. It also includes a comprehensive list of recommended sail lofts and compares offerings from major brands. Everything you need to choose the right mainsail for your boat.

Volume Two: Headsails & Furling Gear

Compares and reviews light-air headsails, headsail furlers, and bow sprits. It also closely examines costs, durability, and ease of use. A must read before you start shopping for a new jib or furling gear.

Volume Three: Specialty Sails & Hardware

Evaluates the value of—and need for—riding sails, trysails, reefing staysails, and sail-handling hardware, including travelers, snatch blocks, and vangs. The most complete analysis of specialty sails you’ll find anywhere.

Having the right sails and hardware is not a luxury, but a necessity. Eliminate the guesswork when selecting this important and often expensive gear by taking advantage of this special offer. Order this comprehensive downloadable series today!

A LOOK AT SAILS, PART THREE: Specialty Sails & Hardware

Part 3 of Practical Sailor’s “A Look at Sails” series examines important sails and equipment that sailors often overlook when they are adding to their racing or cruising inventory. The Specialty Sails and Hardware e-book explains which specialty sails and key accessories deserve a place in your gear inventory and why they are so important.

Riding sails, storm trysails, and reefing staysails—along with their corresponding hardware—are explained, examined, and reviewed in this one-of-a-kind e-book. In it, you’ll discover:

- Proper size and shape for a storm trysail. - When a riding sail makes the most sense. - How a reefing staysail simplifies your sailing, and why a custom-fit is necessary. - What features make for an ideal snatch block and which is the most user-friendly.

In addition, you’ll understand the key advantages of a mainsheet traveler vs. simple mainsheet rigs, find out what makes the best rigid boom vang, and learn how to properly inspect a trysail (including head, clew, tack, leech and luff)!

While a new mainsail will likely consume the biggest share of your sails budget, don’t forget about the supporting cast of characters. Cruising sailors, in particular, need to think carefully about storm trysails, reefing staysails, and sailing hardware like snatch blocks.

Learn which sails and related hardware are right for your needs with this insightful e-book. Order your copy today!


A LOOK AT SAILS, PART ONE: Sail Buying, Sail Making, & Mainsails

Purchasing new sails is a big deal for a boat owner: Materials, design, features, construction methods, etc., all need to be examined carefully.

Now, with this new series from Practical Sailor, “A Look at Sails,” we’ll help you navigate the waters of what is often a difficult decision-making process.

In Part One, “Sail Buying, Sail Making, & Mainsails,” you’ll find:

- An objective overview of today’s most popular sailmaking companies.

- Which material will give you the most bang for your buck—is Dacron still king?

- The two questions you should always ask your sailmaker.

- What to look for in clews, eyes, and battens.

- A comprehensive list of new, used, and discount sailmakers.

Also included is a review of mainsail handling systems like lazy jacks, the pros and cons of in-mast and in-boom furling, the advantages of a loose-fitting main, and the 3 critical points that any capable sail designer must address (especially since many loft floors are now overseas).

Using a poorly made sail is like driving on bald tires, so learn as much as possible about this fundamental piece of equipment before you spend another dime. Order your copy of this money-saving e-book today!


A LOOK AT SAILS, PART TWO: Headsails & Furling Gear

When buying new sails, sailors often overlook key details in jibs, genoas, and furling gear that can dramatically affect performance. Whether you want to reduce your tacking angles, make headway in heavy weather, or maintain good downwind speed in light air, finding the right headsail or furling system for your boat requires careful thought. Let Practical Sailor take the guesswork out of the decision-making with this detailed, in-depth look at headsail options. With Headsails & Furling Gear (Part 2 of Practical Sailor’s “A Look at Sails” series), you’ll learn everything you need to know about:

- Furlers (with and without head swivels) — and our pick for “Best Choice.” - Asymmetrical spinnakers and why shorthanded cruisers will find them valuable. - Mini bowsprits and why they’re so popular on modern cruising hulls.

With this special publication, you’ll also learn the best time to buy a sail, the advantages (and disadvantages) of foil-less furlers, and about some of the best sailmakers in the business. (One company will repair your sail for as long as you own your boat!)

So order this valuable e-book today and discover how adding new sails and improving light-air performance is easier than ever.


Marine Cleaners - The Complete Series

Downloadable E-Book

Boating is one of life’s great pleasures, but owning a boat can also be a labor of love. The gelcoat needs polishing and waxing, teak decks need cleaning, ropes and sails need washing…these can eat-up a lot of time, and money!

But now with this incredible 3-part series from Practical Sailor you’ll learn how to minimize your work and maximize your dollar.

Volume One: Gelcoat Restoration & Maintenance

Reviews hull cleaners, polishes, and waxes, with test-results up to 3 years! Also includes a step-by-step guide on the best method to maintain your gelcoat.

Volume Two: Essential Marine Cleaners

Rates the most common (and uncommon) cleaners on the market for price and ease of use. Everything from deck cleaners to metal polishes to mildew (and barnacle!) removers. Plus, the ultimate guide to bilge cleaners and oil absorbers.

Volume Three: Specialty Marine Cleaners

Reviews the products that only a sailor would need – black streak removers, line, rope and rigging cleaners, degreasers, even waterspot removers. Also includes a special section on sail cleaning and care.

Using the right cleaners the right way will get you off the dock faster and back on the water (and isn’t that where you want to be?) So take advantage of this special offer and order this one-of-a-kind downloadable series today!


Specialty Marine Cleaners

Downloadable E-Book


Your gelcoat is cleaned and waxed. Those nasty stains have been removed from your deck. And your bronze shines like new. Your boat is spotless – or is it?

How are your fenders looking? Is your vinyl beat-up? Are your ropes and rigging in good condition (and are they safe)? These items are often overlooked but go a long way in keeping your boat clean and protected. And with Practical Sailor’s Specialty Marine Cleaners you’ll learn why it’s not just your hull that needs to be kept clean.

Black Streaks?

There’s a cleaner that’s cheap and effective (and we’ll show you where to find it).

Clear Vinyl Need Attention?

If you’re using these common products you’re making things worse.

Got Grease?

This bargain de-greaser is the best of the bunch, and it’s in your hardware store!

Plus there’s a special section on the care and cleaning of your ropes (keep a pillowcase handy but DO NOT use bleach!) and sails (please don’t hang them to dry), as well as ratings and reviews of the newest “green” products.

So finish cleaning your boat the right way without breaking the bank. Order your copy of this unique publication today!


Essential Marine Cleaners

Downloadable E-Book


Mildew removers, bilge cleaners, metal polishers - the sheer number of supplies you need to keep your boat clean seems endless. But now, thanks to Practical Sailor’s Essential Marine Cleaners, you can keep your bronze burnished and your teak tip-top without spending a fortune on unnecessary cleaning products.

With this concise publication you’ll discover:

-Which bargain cleaner rated EXCELLENT on fiberglass, rubber, vinyl, and formica

-Why a 2-part teak cleaner should be used only when absolutely necessary

-What metal polisher works fast and easy on bronze and stainless

-How the right bilge absorber can be the most important gear on your boat

So don’t let grime and grunge, blood and beer, or coffee and ketchup keep your boat from sparkling. Learn how to keep her clean inside and out, by getting this special publication today!


Gelcoat Restoration & Maintenance
Downloadable E-Book


Protecting your boats exterior is an absolute necessity, but it can be a time-consuming and muscle-straining job. But with Practical Sailors Gelcoat Maintenance you’ll save time, energy, and money by using the right products the right way.

In this detailed new publication every type of cleaner, wax, polisher, and restorer is tested (some for results up to 3 years!) and reviewed – the Practical Sailor way!


- Wax offers little UV protection (regardless of these manufacturers claim!)

- There’s a good reason you should NOT use an acrylic coating on a new boat

- To scrub-away a waterline stain, find a cleaner with a low PH

- The best product to remove salt deposits is right in your kitchen cabinet

Plus, you’ll get a step-by-step regimen in topside maintenance that will keep your boat clean and shining, all for less than $50 a year in materials!

So keep your gelcoat in great shape, and stop wasting money on products that don’t do as advertised. Get this time (and money) saving publication today!


Survival Electronics

Downloadable E-Book

Lifelines, jacklines, tethers, nonskid decks, and good man-overboard procedures - these are a given for every good sailor, but that hasn’t stopped an alarming number of fatal man-overboard occurrences.  Now, with Practical Sailor’s Survival Electronics, you’ll discover how to fully protect yourself and your crew.

With the wide array of man-overboard devices now available (beacons, alarms, trackers, etc.) it’s no wonder there’s confusion.  Practical Sailor will help you cut through the clutter and tell you:

  • Which OB alarm had an MOB mark with a quarter-mile discrepancy!
  • Why a Sat Phone can be an excellent backup to an EPIRB
  • Which beacon is capable of being detected from a full-mile away
  • It’s not only which OB alarm but how it’s worn


Maritime safety should always have the highest priority, and with the vast majority of alerts being false alarms (96%!) a solid working knowledge of how the IMO’s worldwide rescue network works is essential.

So keep yourself and your crew as safe as possible, order your copy of this vital publication today!


Survival at Sea - The Complete Series

Downloadable E-Book

Owning a boat and being on the water can be one of life’s most relaxing and rewarding experiences.  But are you prepared for possible nautical emergencies?  In this ground-breaking 4-part series from Practical Sailor you’ll learn what you need to have on board to remain safe.
Choosing The Right Life Raft - Learn which life rafts were the safest and easiest to operate (is automatic deployment really safer?).  Includes a special Life Raft Value Guide.

Ditch Bags and Emergency Gear - Make sure you have all the supplies necessary for emergency survival (yes - you do need a compass, and only one Kit supplied one!).  A comprehensive guide to what you’ll need, and what is available, if you must abandon ship.

Onboard First Aid - A complete guide to the basic, and not-so-basic medical supplies you need to have onboard.  Reviews near-shore and off-shore kits (is yours water-tight?) and what you’ll need to supplement them.

Survival Electronics - Discover why these devices are a must have for any sailor. Evaluates the usability and functionality of the wide-range of man-overboard devices now on the market.  It’s imperative you have the right device onboard.

Choosing the proper emergency items can be a life and death decision.  Eliminate the guesswork and order this downloadable landmark series today!

Ditch Bags and Emergency Gear

Downloadable E-Book

As a sailor you know that being prepared for an emergency is vital. Your life raft comes with supplies, but are these sufficient? With Practical Sailor’s Ditch Bags and Emergency Gear, you’ll learn what your life raft might be lacking, and what you’ll need for a separate abandon-ship bag.

With this essential publication you’ll discover:

  • How to determine the correct supply of drinking water
  • Which is the only raft-kit to contain smoke canisters
  • What vital piece of equipment all standardized packs failed to include
  • Why an EPIRB is worth its weight in gold
  • Which important items are most often overlooked (e.g., copy of your passport)

Also included is a special section on staying hydrated at sea. Sure, you have plenty of water and energy drinks on board, but there’s something even more effective (and it grows on trees!)

So order your copy of this important publication today, and ensure that you are fully equipped for even the most serious emergencies.


Onboard First Aid

Downloadable E-Book

An accident can happen anywhere, but when it happens on your boat your access to medical treatment often is not close by. With Practical Sailor’s Onboard First Aid, you’ll learn which items you need to keep onboard for both minor and major injuries.

In this new publication, concise evaluations were conducted for both near-shore and off-shore kits, and the results were surprising.  Many kits were missing essential elements (one day kit lacked basic aspirin!) and some were stocked with more than many sailors would need (one includes a full oxygen kit – but at a cost of almost $5,000!)

From contents to construction to price, all types are examined, and you’re sure to find the one kit that best suits your voyaging needs (and you’ll also learn about the one first aid item that is an absolute must!)

So order your copy of this essential publication today, and make sure you’re prepared for boating medical emergencies.


Life Rafts

When you abandon ship lives are at stake, so choosing the right life raft is literally a life and death decision. With Practical Sailor's Survival at Sea – Life Rafts, you will be better equipped to make the right choice.

With this new publication you’ll learn:

  • Which feature an ex-naval officer ranked as a raft’s most important
  • Which standards the major players are scrambling to meet
  • Which brand is the ONLY raft allowed for extreme ISAF Category 0 races
  • Which raft does not have reflective tape on the bottom
  • Which zippers failed to operate properly

Also included is a 6-Man Life Raft Value Guide, which rated everything from weight to launch to floor, for 8 of the most popular life rafts sold today. The life raft evaluation conducted by Practical Sailor mirrored those done by the U.S. Coast Guard, and the results were telling.

So prepare yourself, and your crew, as best as possible for this emergency situation. Order your copy of this essential publication today.


Inside Practical Sailor Blog

Florida's Anchoring Debate Heats Up

by Darrell Nicholson on September 17, 2014

The state of Florida is at it again. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission held a couple of poorly advertised “workshops” earlier this month to discuss the future of anchoring in the state. The public hearings made it clear that the state is once again trying to tighten anchoring restrictions in coastal areas, particularly in urban areas along the Intracoastal Waterway.

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