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.
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.
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.
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.
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.