Drysuit vs. Survival Suit for Offshore Sailing

The problem with survival suits is that theres no telling when the big wave or brutal wind gust will hit, and it may not leave time to don a survival suit. Some survival suits have sewn-in gloves that make it almost impossible to turn on the radio or deploy a personal locator beacon. Thats why wearing a comfortable, breathable drysuit makes sense. It leaves you much more ready to manage the boat in heavy weather. And should the unexpected happen, your odds of survival in the water are better than they would be in foul weather gear.

Capt. Henry Marx Memorial Safety at Sea Seminar

Get a great overview of the essentials of safety at sea during the day-long Capt. Henry Marx Memorial Safety at Sea Seminar in Hampton...

Beware of Tankless Water Heaters

Tankless propane water heaters carry serious risk of causing carbon-monoxide poisoning or oxygen depletion when mounted in a tight or sealed space. Because a boat is more tightly sealed than a shoreside home, the carbon monoxide is more likely to become trapped.

Doing ‘The Ditch’ Capt. Frank’s Way

Be aware that a less-experienced sailors report of a great anchorage with plenty of depth, or statements like We ran aground here! dont do you much good if they fail to include basic info such as their boat's draft, state of the tide, etc. Other sailors' facility reviews should also be taken with a grain of salt. For example: The dockmaster hates Algerian Snaggle-tooth Poodles (like our Fluffy), so were never coming back, and you shouldnt either!

Welcome to the new Practical Sailor website! New passwords required.

We’re pleased to present to you Practical Sailor’s brand-new website. On the site, you’ll find our sailing gear, equipment and boat reviews...

Finding the Right Mix of AntiFreeze

While the polar vortex was pummeling the northern states last winter (ahhh, remember those days?), Practical Sailor contributor Drew Frye was knee deep in glycol antifreeze and engine coolants. One of the test's most important findings was that how you use antifreeze is as important as what product you use. The only sure way to know how effective your antifreeze will be this winter is to measure the glycol as it comes out the other end of the plumbing. There are a couple ways to do this.

Boat Insurance Shopping Tips

If youre in the used boat market, late fall usually offers a good opportunity for buyers. Owners in snow-bound states face haulout and storage expenses for a boat they will only put on the market again in the spring. But before you can start filtering through the used-boat websites looking for great deals youll want to get a clear picture of what your insurance options are. In the upcoming January 2020 issue, we explore the topic of consequential damage, a potential loophole in some policies that your insurer might use to deny coverage.

Pro Tips to Hauling Out

Once a boat has been shored and blocked, its a good idea to layer tarps or plastic sheeting beneath it. That keeps cleaners, paint, paint removers, and other chemicals from contaminating the ground. Layering the tarps means you can remove a soiled one and have a clean surface to kneel or stand on.

Gearing Up for Winter Sailing

While many North American sailors have already hauled out their boats for winter, there are plenty of cold-weather diehards who refuse to bow to the season. In a recent issue of Practical Sailor, contributor Drew Frye shares his tips for sailing year round above the frost-line. It has always seemed a shame to me that the great majority of boats in the country are only used in the summer," says Frye, who sails through the winter on Chesapeake Bay. "[In winter] I have the waters virtually to myself.

Homemade Mildew Preventers That Really Work

If youre getting ready to put your boat into storage in a wet or humid location, then youll probably be interested in some of the cheap and easy mildew "cures" we've come upon in our testing. PS tester Drew Frye made a pleasant little discovery when he was researching and testing various anti-mildew protectants. Two inexpensive homemade concoctions did as well as or better than retail formulas that are 20 to 100 times more expensive.

Need A COVID-19 Toilet Quick? Try...

COVID-19 has made it harder to find a clean toilet these days. This is a tiny inconvenience compared to virus's terrible impacts in the...