Home Mailport & PS Advisor

Mailport & PS Advisor

Do Look Up: The Real Risk of Powerlines

Seven years ago, in my home cruising grounds of Chesapeake Bay, high voltage electricity arced from a powerline to the mast of a 35-foot...

Mailport: December 2015

We recently purchased a Webasto Airtop 3900 do-it-yourself (DIY) kit from Defender Industries. The instructions were very comprehensive, and the installation and product work exactly as they should, which typically would lead me to recommend this as a great DIY product. The issue, however, came when we tried to register the product for warranty.

Mailport: November 2010

Letters to Practical Sailor from our readers. November 2010's topics include cleaning products, sail hardware, galley stoves and anti-fouling paints.

PS Advisor: Sea Anchor Sizing

While most sea anchor manufacturers may use similar formulas for determining the right size sea anchor for a boat, other factors must be considered, including the weight of the material used in the anchor and a boat’s windage. Ultimately, what matters is that the anchor can displace enough water mass for your size boat. It’s a good idea to select a sea anchor, and then use that maker’s criteria to determine what size you need for your boat. If you have questions or concerns, contact the manufacturer for clarification. According to Don Whilldin, president of Para-Tech (maker of the Sea Anchor), the company figures Sea Anchor sizing based on a boat’s length, displacement, and type. If the result is on the line between two sizes, Para-Tech recommends going with the larger size.

PS Advisor: Boat Buyers on the Prowl

Every so often, I find myself boat shopping and turn to the reviews in "Practical Boat Buying." I’m looking for a trailerable, 20- to 26-foot, easy to rig, singlehandable boat—and fast wouldn’t hurt either. I am a beginner, thinking about the Rhodes 22, Tanzer 22, O’Day 23, or Balboa 26. Did I mention I didn’t have a lot of money to spend?

PS Advisor: 08/15/03

Solar Panel PowerYour review of solar panels left me with some "solar panels for dummies" type questions. For trickle-charging a battery, how do you...

Mailport: 05/06

Timeshare SailingThank you for the report Learning to Share in the January 2006 issue of Practical Sailor, in which our company, Pinnacle Yachts, was...

Finishing the Cabin Sole

Im in the process of installing new teak and holly veneer in the interior of my boat. I have the old floor out and have the new plywood/veneer cut. I am ready to varnish/seal the new veneer, but I am in gridlock as to how to go about it.

Anti-Mildew Weapons

I was wondering whether you might have any comments on using bottom paint on the boats interior to help fight mold and mildew. Many bottom paints are ineffective out of the water, but I was wondering whether some of the new eco-friendly paints might prove to be a new weapon in the fight to work less and play more.

Mailport: Vesper AIS and noise, Helio Shower, & More!

In regard to your December 2016 review of the Vesper AIS products: Weve used the Vesper XB-8000 for some time now with exceptional results. Be aware, though, that if you are using a masthead antenna with LED navigation lights, such as a masthead tricolor, it can create electrical noise that can reduce the effectiveness of the AIS send/receive capabilities. We had this happen using an Imtra LED masthead light. When we switched back to a standard incandescent bulb, the problem disappeared. Vespers technical support was extremely helpful in diagnosing this, and the XB-8000 even has a built-in display showing signal noise to verify this.