Month: September 2015

Rudders for cruising

From the steering oars employed by the earliest sailing vessels rudders have evolved into the centrally mounted foils we see today. On a production boat you don’t usually have the option of specifying the rudder configuration – you get what you’re given – but the design of the rudder will certainly affect the suitability of …

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Race to Alaska

Two months from now an intrepid group of men and women in sailboats, rowing boats and kayaks will set off on the 750 mile Race to Alaska which runs from Victoria in British Columbia, Canada, to Ketchikan, Alaska via a stop at Port Townsend, BC. The race is open to any boat that has no …

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Clever radios

There’s a new generation of fixed DSC/VHF radios incorporating an AIS receiver that are seriously worth considering. The clever bit is that they combine excellent radio performance and AIS receiver functions in the same compact unit. An internal splitter shares the radio and AIS reception from a single VHF antenna. The not quite so clever …

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The anchor light

I like an anchor light that hangs just above head height, either in the fore-triangle or over the cockpit. A light lower down like this illuminates some of the boats superstructure and is more likely to be seen by boats moving into the anchorage than is a masthead light. I don’t really care if my …

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Marine sealants

There is a bewildering array of sealants available at your chandlers for jobs requiring a watertight seal or bond between surfaces. Attaching deck hardware, repairing the inflatable dinghy, making a hull to deck seal, fitting portlights or sealing through-hulls and seacocks all require sealants with special qualities. Here’s a brief run through of what’s available …

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