Controlling Motion: Two Case Studies

Securing a small boat between pilings in a wrong-sized slip is a common challenge. The dock line angles from the dolphins (outlying pilings) are too narrow for a beam wind, allowing the boat to dance around, increasing forces, chafe, and even making it difficult to stand in the cockpit. During a recent winter near-gale we measured dockline forces on several smaller boats that reached four times higher than the static wind load. If the recommended size dockline was used, the rope would be operating beyond its working load limit in real storms and could fail. Increasing the line diameter would result in more jerking and chafe.

Giving Bugs the Big Goodbye

Were not naturally bug phobic, but when they eat our food, clothes, or boat, something needs to be done. Since we dont like heavy doses of pesticides in a space as small as a boat, lets first look at low impact approaches that focus on specific pests. After that, well look at the more potent approaches

Make Your Own Over-the-Boom Riding Sail

Delighted with the performance of the over-the-boom riding sail, we decided to make our own.

Sails and Summer Projects

While most of us are-hopefully-out sailing this summer, we know that many sailors are busy with system upgrades, do-it-yourself projects, and the usual marine maintenance adventures. Here are some archive articles we think will help you tick off the tasks on your to-do list.

Shedding Weight on Sailboats

Balsa and rigid foam cores. Aluminum, magnesium, and titanium alloys. Epoxy resins. Unidirectional glass, carbon fiber , and Kevlar. Builders have the most fantastic tools at their disposal to build light, durable boats … and then we weigh them down with all manner of stuff.

Leaving Your Boat in a Foreign Port

A high percentage of cruisers we meet each year plan on leaving their boats in a safe place and flying home, often once a year. If youre leaving your boat for less than four weeks, it may be most convenient to leave it in the water, providing you can find a secure marina slip or mooring. For longer periods of time, it may be cost effective and attractive to combine dry storage in a secure boat yard with your annual haul out. Weve left Mahina Tiare 1, II & III on the hard or in the water in Portugal, the Azores, Sweden, Panama, Chile, Hawaii, Canada and New Zealand and over the past 35 years and have learned quite a bit about the process, from choosing a place to keep the boat.

The Sailors Boot Dryer

I like the outdoors. I sail year-round, and I can endure as much heat and cold as my passions demand. But whether it is summer or winter, I just cant abide cold, wet feet. There is something about damp socks that chills me through. If my feet are warm, Im warm.

Seacocks for Thin Hulls

A proper below-the-water line sea cock consists of three parts: the outside portion or mushroom, which threads into the flanged valve, the flanged valve, and the backing plate.

Mailport: Dustless Sanding

Regarding your recent Waypoints article about making your own dustless sander (see Dustless Sander, PS April 2016 online) I added a Dust Deputy (~$50 Ace Hardware) upstream of my shop vac around 3 or 4 years ago.

Heat-Seal Connectors

A typical cruising boat has thousands of electrical connections. The consequence of failure range from a light that doesnt work to a fire that can cost lives.

Too Many Layers of Bottom Paint?

So, a couple of years back, you acquired a good old boat at a pretty good price-thanks to the market-but now youre wondering how many coats of bottom paint it has. And what kind? Youve put on a few coats of ablative antifouling since youve owned the boat. It has adhered well and has done its job. But each year, the bottom looks rougher and rougher-with big recesses where paint has flaked off. You sweated out some extra prep-work this season, and thought you had a nice, durable subsurface for painting, but each pass of the roller pulls up more paint. Whats going on here?