In Search of Better Filters

Presumably, air cleaners are about dusty environments, and dust is a rare thing on the water. But...

Highway Ride Tests Coating Adhesion

Paint will stick to anything-for a while. But the real test comes over time. Fabric, because it is a flexible surface that can absorb water, presents multiple challenges for a coating. Our biggest concern was flogging. If we cant prevent the varnish on our grab rail from cracking after eighteen months, how can we expect any coating to adhere to a stretchy, pliable surface that is exposed to the elements-storms, high summer temperatures, freezing cold-year in and year out? To answer this question, we fit the test rack to the top of our vehicle and drove at highway speeds for 20 minutes.

Adhesion and Opacity Varies Widely

Ahesion was a key characteristics we sought in a sail paint, but we were also interested in opacity.

A Few Tips on Patching or Masking with Tape

Tape seems like simple thing to manage. How complicated can it get? But as webe found in multiple past tests at Practical Sailor, the type of tape you choose, and how you use it determines the quality and durability of your work.

Test Boats Painted Jib Draws Zero Attention

What's that they say about the 10-foot paint job? Sure, if you look closely, it is clear that something is different with the genoa aboard Tech Editor Drew Frye's F-24 Corsair. Battleship gray is not a common color for the suncover on a recreational sailboat, and the sheen is more reflective than normal. But unless you are aboard the boat, the laminate sail looks like any other genoa with a stitched on suncover. The original suncover exists, only now it is painted.

Bird repellants, solvent safety, GPS antennas

[IMGCAP(3)] Anti-Bird StrategyFlorida is hard on boats from sun damage, mildew, bottom blisters and birds. I keep the ospreys from perching on my tricolor light by fitting a clear plastic container over it with tacks on its bottom. I have sunbrella deck covers that keep poo from the smaller birds off the deck and also shade the boat to keep it cooler, the paint protected and mildew free. Then, for the pelicans that pooped on my…

Simplifying Your Cleaning Chemicals Kit

Instead of requiring 30 random cleaning products, you would need only four or five with carefully targeted chemistry. Thats it-no more than five cleaners to serve most purposes. Here are the basics to building your own kit.

Winter Maintenance

For many of us, the falling of leaves marks the end of the sailing season. The boat is winterized for the season and our minds shift gears, away from sailing. As the new year comes, we catalog the winter projects we had intended to tackle. Bottom paint, of course. Fresh varnish may be needed inside and out. Deck fittings need re-bedding.

Clipper Ventures Cites Inaccuracies in Report

The following is an excerpt from the statement that Clipper Ventures released in response to UKs Marine Accident Investigation Branchs report on the death of sailor Simon Speirs. The full response can be found online at:

Hidden Impacts of Metal and Fuels Chemical Stew

After years of testing fuel products and systems, PS began to suspect that mixed metals in the system could be causing harm.

Simple Tips for Maintaining Stainless Steel

When applying a paste cleaner, a toothbrush is useful for buffing tight spots and working into the pores of welds; follow by buffing with a cotton cloth. A green 3M scrubby pad helps for removing more aggressive stains. Continued rusting in welded areas might indicate a developing failure, requiring replacement. Rinse thoroughly with fresh water and mild soap when done buffing.