Home Belowdecks & Amenities

Belowdecks & Amenities

Compact Cookers

Petite, portable, and powerful: Single-burners face off.

Check that Antifouling Label

Shortly before this issue went to print, Practical Sailor learned that Irgarol, a pesticide commonly used as a boosting agent in antifouling paints, is in short supply in the United States. Although we have not fully investigated the ramifications of this news for boat owners, it seems likely that the supply of paints containing this pesticide will be exhausted sometime this year.

Grill Griddle Faceoff

Practical Sailor recently tested three grill-top cooking griddles to see what benefits they could add to the outdoor cooking experience—a highlight of the summer boating season for us. We pit the rectangular, stainless-steel Little Griddle Sizzle-Q griddle against the reversible, non-stick rectangular and kettle-style griddles from Magma Products.

Pump Details: The Modern Macerator

Most of the macerators that PS looked at for this test used a variation of the centrifugal pump/macerator design introduced by Tecma in the 1990s.

PS Advior 05/01/98

Rerigging QuestionI enjoyed your December 1997 article on replacing wire halyards with all rope. When I considered it a few years ago, my rigger...

Ultraflex Debuts Variable Speed AC

In the June 2018 article Air Conditioning for Sailboats, we compared several options for 12-volt air conditioning on boats, and more recently we looked at the power requirements for running our air conditioner without being tethered to shorepower, see Air Conditioning at Anchor, PS June 2019). Since that article was published, we were told about the new i-Line VSD Series of compact air conditioners from Velair-an Italian company that is part of the Ultraflex Group.

Additives Fight Urine Odor

Some will claim urine is sterile and doesn’t smell. Horse hockey. No matter how careful you are, urine is loaded with nitrogen (urea) and potassium. Bacteria will find their way in, and the potent brew will ferment into a nasty solids-laden syrup within a few days. Unlike a holding tank, where the purpose of treatments […]

Cobb Cooker

If you don't mind a few ashes, here's a smart alternative to propane on your afterdeck.

Nonskid Test Update

Practical Sailor recently tested a nonskid mat from Soft Deck Inc. as a followup to our January 2012 report on do-it-yourself options for replacing worn nonskid. Soft Deck Inc., owned by brothers and lifelong sailors Ross and George Champion, is a family-run business with manufacturing based in Southern California. The January report reviewed six nonskid paints, three nonskid additives, and two nonskid mats. For this evaluation, we used the same test protocol to compare the Soft Deck to our Best Choice mat, Tiflex’s Treadmaster (www.tiflex.co.uk.com).

The practical griller

We get a masochistic sort of pleasure out of our messier tests, but we don't typically share those details. This months grill test is...

The Pros and Cons of Leaving Your Mast Up for Winter

If you are like us, you may feel strangely guilty about leaving a mast up during winter storage. In our case, it is probably those old wooden spar days calling. Ideally, wooden spars need to come down and be sheltered and coddled at regular intervals. Aluminum masts really don't, and the sky is actually a decent place to store them.