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Sails, Rigging & Deck Gear

High-Tech Anchor Rode

My primary anchor is a big hunk of steel on an all-chain rode, handled by a windlass. Secure in all bottoms, idiot proof, easy to handle, and thus perfect for everyday use. But when the need arises to set a second anchor-either to restrict swing or to increase holding in horrible mud-the last thing I want is a heavy steel anchor connected to chain that I have to drag across deck.

Where Credit is Due: July 2011

Letters to Practical Sailor, June 2011. This month's letters cover subjects such as: Whale Pumps, Rigging and More!

Offshore Log: A Major Overhaul For A Faithful Perkins

Of all the work done on Calypso during its six-month hiatus in New Zealand, none was more important—and expensive—than rebuilding the diesel engine.

Sailboat Design Conference Part I

Beyond the text and photos contained in a sailboat manufacturing company’s brochures, and the words of a dealer or salesperson, and absent an understanding of yacht design, discerning the actual capabilities of today’s production boats is a major task. Gone are the days of Herreschoff et. al., when the conventional wisdom held that a long, deep keel was the best method of producing good tracking, displacement produced a seakindly ride, and performance (straightforward speed) was a simple matter of adding sail area. Prior to the age of fiberglass, most yachts used similar raw materials (wood and metal), and construction methods, so those variables were not generally a consideration.

A Look at the Latest Generation of Genoa Furlers

To get an idea of whats on the market and see how the newer products fare against the simpler, tried and true furling systems, Practical Sailor rounded up 11 new headsail furlers suited for 30- to 35-foot sailboats. This, the first of a two-part report on the evaluation, focuses on the seven products that use a head-swivel design and range in cost from $950 to $3,200. (The report of integral systems will follow in an upcoming issue.) The following furlers were reviewed: Facnor LX 130, Harken MkIV and Cruising 1, Profurl LCI32, Schaefer 2100, Furlex 200S (Selden Mast), and US Spars (Z-Spar) Z-780.

Anchors for Muck, for Under 200 Bucks

In soft mud, the low-priced Lewmar Claw stands out in short- and long-scope testing

Midsize Mainsheet Traveler Test

Considerable evolution has taken place since our last traveler test. Now, Antal stands out for ergonomic design, functionality, and attention to detail, but Lewmar is our choice due to its pricing.û

Elastic Mooring Systems

When Hurricane Irma plowed through the Florida Keys, it left behind both a trail of destruction and a wealth of information for us to learn from. One of the most instructional episodes took place at the municipal mooring field at Boot Key in Islamorada.

Sailboat Do-it-Yourself Rig Survey

Several subscribers who read my recent blog post regarding stainless steel corrosion, “Detecting and Dealing with Stainless Steel Corrosion” asked if we had any...