Mailport & PS Advisor

Mailport: 05/01/04

KnivesHaving read your recent article concerning sailor's knives in the March '04 issue, I forward a comment. To obtain superior performance, one usually has...

Mailport 01/15/01

Freewheeling PropRe: the recent correspondence on prop drag and freewheeling (November 1, 2000). Surely the answer is straightforward. If you have a pressure-lubricated gear...

BOATUS Offers Required Safety Course

The state of Virginia is requiring that all operators of vessels and personal watercraft that have 10 horsepower or more complete a boating safety education course. Compliance is mandatory for operators of all ages, and will be required after July 1.

PS Advisor: 09/05

Remote Units for VHF RadiosYour July 15 issue review of fixed-mount VHF radios didn't address one common problem. When I'm on board alone, at...

Multi-stage Battery Regulators

I am building an electrical system that will hopefully support wife and two teenage daughters. With this objective, I am planning approximately 1,000-amp hour battery bank. I see lots of hype about the external three-stage voltage regulators. Do they really provide more amp hours during the limited engine running time? If so, I have not found any definitive side-by-side comparisons that convince me that three-stage regulation is more efficient than a single-stage constant voltage regulator.

PS Advisor: 09/04

LEDs in EmergenceYou published a letter in your June 1 edition this year in which the writer questioned the feasibility of LED lights for...

Mailport: Anchoring, Harken on Shackles, and More!

Harkens shackles are not intended for securing to any part of an anchor rode or to an anchor. We are adamant that stainless-steel shackles are not to be used for this purpose and ask that you do not include the Harken name in anchor-shackle articles.

How To Make a Dinghy Roller for Less Than $25

Making a portable set of dinghy wheels is relatively simple and inexpensive. Reader (and PS contributor) David Liscio sent us the following DIY how-to on dinghy-roller making, a timely Reader Workbench as we’ll be reviewing dinghy wheels in an upcoming issue. Email us your DIY project ideas at

Mailport: 03/02

Back in the Ozone AgainI have just read about "ozone warnings" in your January 1 issue. I might suggest, having been a long...

Printing Your Own Charts While on Board

I am a novice sailor, but after taking a few more courses, I plan to buy a 30- to 50-sailboat with a few other aficionados. Two questions:

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.