The PS Power Subscriber

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Another runner has made it! It’s always nice to get an email or letter from an appreciative reader letting me know they’ve escaped the land of the dirt dwellers. The shot above is from John Stone’s single-handed passage Beaufort, North Carolina to St. Thomas, USVI this fall aboard his refit Cape Dory 36 Far Reach. The solo passage saw quite a bit of wind. Some details:

  • Total distance: 1,466 miles sailed
  • Time: 12 days 6 hours
  • Reefs : At least of 16 times
  • Sail changes: 19
  • Tacks: 4
  • Fuel used: 6 gallons
  • Water used: 20 gallons
  • Ships sighted: 8

The special thing about John’s refit is how well he documented the six-year process of gutting and completely rebuilding the 36-foot Cape Dory in a temporary shed adjacent to his North Carolina home. His website www.farreachvoyages. com offers an impressive look at what a truly complete refit entails.

Another noteworthy bit about Far Reach’s refit is that John adhered to the principles that we’ve emphasized over the years—focus on the essentials, keep things simple.

John is a longtime subscriber to PS, and what I’d call a “power user,” someone who has managed to master our less-than-perfect, but truly vast and incomparable archive of product tests.

“Anytime I’m going to do something on the boat, I check the archive and see what you all have done,” he said. “I don’t always follow your recommendation, but it always informs my own decisions, and I really appreciate this resource.”

Here are a few tips to getting the most out of our services.

1) Use the Practical Sailor search bar on a desktop or laptop. Try to be as specific as possible. If general searches deliver too many results, a brand search will often produce a good match (i.e. “Spectra watermaker”).

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3) Still can’t find the report you need? Email me at practicalsailor@belvoir. com. For subscription issues email customerservice5@belvoir.com. Pilar King, Mallory Jean-Baptiste or one of their assistants will be able to help.

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Darrell Nicholson is Director of Belvoir Media Group's marine division and the editor of Practical Sailor. A lifelong thalassophile, he grew up sailing everything from El Toro dinghies to classic Morgans on Miami's Biscayne Bay. In the early 90s, he left a newspaper job to sail an old gaff-rigged ketch across the Pacific and has been writing about boats and the sea ever since. His weekly blog Inside Practical Sailor offers an inside look at current research and gear tests at Practical Sailor, while his award-winning column,"Rhumb Lines," tracks boating trends and reflects upon the sailing life. He sails a Sparkman & Stephens-designed Yankee 30 out of St. Petersburg, Florida.

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