A Little PS Winter Reading


With winter upon us, and boats sitting on the hard in many places, its a good time to troubleshoot or update systems, and to make a to-­do list for the off-season and pre-season.

Stay Up to Date

Its never a bad time to update the software for your onboard electronics, but before you do, be sure to read the Pain-free Marine Electronics Update blog post (Inside Practical Sailor, March 31, 2015), as well as the May 2015 article, Playing with Cards, an extensive look at which digital-media storage cards are compatible with various marine electronics.

Dry storage

Looking for ways to keep your cabin dry during off-season storage, and to prevent that musty, mildew smell? There are a number of de-humidifying methods and products available, but good ventilation is the most effective. Other options include electric dehumidifiers (PS June 2013) and absorbent chemicals, or desiccan’ts (PS November 2012). Testers evaluated anti-mildew protectants in the November 2013 issue and mold-inhibiting products in June 2010, as well as commercial mold-cleaning products in the January 2009 issue.

Boat Stink

If you’re battling boat stink of the holding-tank variety, be sure to read our tips for stopping stink in the May 21, 2015 blog post, along with the many sanitation system product tests we’ve done in recent years. The December 2013 issue offers a 30-month update on sanitation hose and holding-tank vent filter tests; we reviewed holding tank treatments in the February 2012 issue; and offered advice on cleaning holding tanks in the November 2015 PS Advisor. You’ll find some of these articles and other useful info in our Marine Sanitation ebook series, which is available at www.practical-sailor.com/books.

Gift Shopping

Did those holiday gifts fall flat? A do-over is easy at PS online. Be sure to browse through our past Chandlery articles, which highlight new and innovative sailing gear. If you’re short on time, check out our online bookstore, www.practical-sailor.com/books, where you can select from the dozens of sailing resources that PS editors recommend, as well as Practical Sailors ebooks and subscription products.

Darrell Nicholson
Practical Sailor has been independently testing and reporting on sailboats and sailing gear for more than 50 years. Supported entirely by subscribers, Practical Sailor accepts no advertising. Its independent tests are carried out by experienced sailors and marine industry professionals dedicated to providing objective evaluation and reporting about boats, gear, and the skills required to cross oceans. Practical Sailor is edited by Darrell Nicholson, a long-time liveaboard sailor and trans-Pacific cruiser who has been director of Belvoir Media Group's marine division since 2005. He holds a U.S. Coast Guard 100-ton Master license, has logged tens of thousands of miles in three oceans, and has skippered everything from pilot boats to day charter cats. His weekly blog Inside Practical Sailor offers an inside look at current research and gear tests at Practical Sailor, while his award-winning column,"Rhumb Lines," tracks boating trends and reflects upon the sailing life. He sails a Sparkman & Stephens-designed Yankee 30 out of St. Petersburg, Florida. You can reach him by email at practicalsailor@belvoir.com.