Blog 2021

Latest

Posted On: October 21, 2021
Posted On: October 14, 2021
Posted On: October 12, 2021
Posted On: October 07, 2021

Subscribe

Via Email:    

TAKING THE BOAT OUT OF THE WATER?

Posted On: October 21, 2021

Here's some things to consider as you contemplate taking the boat out and storing in it in a yard or marina.

What's the cost of hauling and relaunching? Some yards quote just the haulout price and some include the relaunch in their price. Usually haulouts are charged based on length of boat, but not always, so ask.

Can I work on my boat myself? Not all yards allow you to work on your own boat, often citing insurance concerns. Check on what's allowed if you plan on doing any work yourself.

Are there any "lay days" included? If your boat will only be out for a few days, there may not be any storage charges, but some marinas charge by the day, week, or month as soon as the boat is blocked in the yard.

Is there a fee to bring my boat to the haulout well, and how much is it? If you need the yard to move your boat because you're not able to, there'll most likely be an additional charge. If you're a long-time customer, though, you may be able to get it waived. Bimini or backstay removal may come with an extra fee.

Does the cost include a high-pressure washdown? Most marinas provide this service as part of a haulout, but ask, don't assume.

Where will you put my boat? After hauling, your boat will be blocked ashore. In a large marina, that could mean a long hike from the office or chandlery, and worse, possibly too far from electrical power or water, which you might need.

Can I bring in outside contractors? Marinas want you to use their services and may charge you a fee or even a percentage of your outside contractor bill. Most will require the contractor prove he's properly insured. Some prohibit outside contractors altogether, citing liability, though there is little risk to the marina if you and your contractor have the proper insurance.

When will my boat be relaunched? If you hope to use your boat the next weekend, you could be disappointed if the yard tells you it could be several extra days. Let your yard know in good time when you'd like to go back in the water, but be aware that sometimes tides and weather may preclude you from getting your ideal time and date.

0

AVOID DISTRESS- DRESS TO BOAT SAFELY IN THE FALL

Posted On: October 19, 2021

Fall has arrived. Boating weather may range from freezing conditions for New England frostbite to very hot and humid tropical weather for offshore fishing in Miami or cruising in California. Staying comfortable means staying safe.

Wearing layered clothing helps keep you dry and comfortable, because each layer is only required to do one thing well. A hydrophobic wicking layer of long underwear worn next to the skin disperses perspiration outward. A middle insulating layer traps warm air, providing a barrier from cold outside air or fabric, and helps funnel moisture to the weather protection layer. The breathable outside layer uses hydrophilic, water vapor absorbing coatings or micro-porous membranes like a heat-driven water pump, allowing water vapor molecules to escape. Solid water molecules are blocked, along with wind, from entering. With each layer performing its designed function you stay dry, warm and alert, however hostile the outside environment.

Many boaters have no incentive to spend more for high-tech synthetic socks, and will instead wear cotton. The problem with this approach is that cotton retains moisture, and it is this moisture that causes friction and blisters. For years, many in the healthcare field recommended all-cotton socks to prevent foot problems. This is the biggest myth out there! Cotton absorbs moisture and in socks, that moisture stays next to the foot creating an ideal environment for bacteria and fungi to grow, and for blisters to form. Stay away from all-cotton socks!

The extremities, especially the head and neck, are where most of the body's heat loss takes place, so protection is critical for the head, neck, hands and feet as well.

0

WINTERIZING YOUR BOAT SYSTEMS

Posted On: October 14, 2021

What Systems Need To Be Addressed?

Generally, anything that uses water for cooling or carries water for use on board, needs to be winterized. Fall is also the perfect time to do your annual oil change and transmission fluid, or lower-unit gear-lube change on your engines. Make sure your to-do list includes: Oil change and cylinder fogging for engines and generators.

  • Lower-unit gear-lube change for outboards or sterndrives.
  • Topping off the fuel tank, adding stabilizer or biocides as needed.
  • Draining or flushing/filling any raw-water cooling systems with nontoxic antifreeze. Don't forget the air-conditioning system.
  • Water system winterization, which can be draining or flushing or filling, depending on your preference. This includes tanks, heads, pumps, shower sumps, sinks, and even seacocks, if the hose runs don't drain entirely.
  • Inspection of anodes and running gear.
  • Washing the exterior of the boat to remove salt and dirt, and getting the cockpit or other exterior drains cleared.
  • Make sure batteries are fully charged, or better yet, remove them where they can be stored indoors and given a booster charge from time to time to keep them topped up.
0

WINTERIZING? SETTLE IT NOW

Posted On: October 12, 2021

I hear complaints every year from boat owners who thought the marina would winterize their boat but the marina didn't do it or didn't know it was supposed to.

Disputes arise when the marina and the boat owner don't have a well-defined contract that spells out exactly what's to be done.

The term "winterizing" doesn't have a universal meaning, and your definition of winterizing and theirs may be completely different. Telling someone to winterize the engines and freshwater system doesn't mean they'll also close the seacocks and winterize the head.

If you're hiring someone to winterize your boat, insist on a written contract that clearly lists every job necessary to protect your boat and has a firm time frame, beginning well before the first typical hard freeze. Include language that specifies not to de-winterize until you authorize it in case something comes up and you won't be using the boat through the next winter.

Pay with a credit card if possible. If the boat didn't get winterized properly per the contract and you have damage, you can dispute the charges with your credit card company, which gives you more leverage. Also, don't assume that the marina will routinely inspect your docklines and bilge unless you specifically pay for the service.

Bottom line: Whatever you expect to be done, spell it out in writing.

0

COLUMBUS' SHIPS RE-EXAMINED

Posted On: October 07, 2021

Columbus Day 2017: When is it, and why do Americans celebrate it? | The  Independent | The Independent

As everyone knows, Columbus had three ships on his first voyage, the Niña, the Pinta, and the Santa Maria. The flagship Santa Maria had the nickname La Gallega. It was a nao, which simply means "ship" in old Spanish; today, we might call such a ship a carrack. She was fat and slow, designed for hauling cargo, not for exploration. Some sources say that the Santa Maria was about 100 tons, meaning that it could carry 100 toneladas, which were large casks of wine. There has been much speculation about just how large such a ship would be; the best current thinking, by Carla Rahn Philips, puts the length of Santa Maria at 18 meters, keel length at 12 meters, beam 6 meters, and a depth of 3 meters from keel to deck.

The Santa Maria had three masts (fore, main, and mizzen), each of which carried one large sail. The foresail and mainsail were square; the sail on the mizzen, or rear, mast was a triangular sail known as a lateen. In addition, the ship carried a small square sail on the bowsprit, and small topsail on the mainmast above the mainsail.

The Pinta was captained by Martín Alonso Pinzón, a leading mariner from the town of Moguer in Andalucia. Pinta was a caravel, a smaller, lighter, and faster ship than the tubby Santa Maria. We don't know much about Pinta, but it probably was about 70 tons. Philips puts the length of Pinta at 17 meters, keel length 13 meters, beam 5 meters, and depth 2 meters. She probably had three masts, and most likely carried sails like those of Santa Maria, except for the topsail, and perhaps the spritsail.

Smallest of the fleet was the Niña, also called Santa Clara, captained by Vicente Añes Pinzón, brother of Martín. The Niña was another caravel of probably 50 or 60 tons, and started from Spain with lateen sails on all masts; but she was refitted in the Canary Islands with square sails on the fore and main masts. Unlike most ships of the period, Niña may have carried four masts, including a small counter-mizzen at the stern with another lateen sail. This would have made Niña the best of the three ships at sailing upwind. Philips puts her length at 15 meters, keel length 12 meters, beam 5 meters, and depth 2 meters.

How fast did they go?

As you can guess, speed of sailing vessels varies considerably with the speed of the wind. Over several days, ships of Columbus's day would average a little less than 4 knots. Top speed for the vessels was about 8 knots, and minimum speed was zero. These speeds were quite typical for vessels of the period -- and indeed, typical for the entire Age of Sail up until the time of steamships and clipper ships. So overall, 90 or 100 miles in a day would be typical, and 200 phenomenal.

Of the three ships on the first voyage, the Santa Maria was the slowest, and the Pinta was the fastest. The differences were small, however, perhaps about 0.1 knot between them.

0

STORING YOUR BOAT SOON?

Posted On: October 05, 2021

WHAT TO ADDRESS WHEN STORING YOUR BOAT

Generally, anything that uses water for cooling or carries water for use on board, needs to be winterized.

Fall is also the perfect time to do your annual oil change and transmission fluid, or lower-unit gear-lube change on your engines. Make sure your to-do list includes: Oil change and cylinder fogging for engines and generators.

  • Lower-unit gear-lube change for outboards or sterndrives.
  • Topping off the fuel tank, adding stabilizer or biocides as needed.
  • Draining or flushing/filling any raw-water cooling systems with nontoxic antifreeze. Don't forget the air-conditioning system.
  • Water system winterization, which can be draining or flushing or filling, depending on your preference. This includes tanks, heads, pumps, shower sumps, sinks, and even seacocks, if the hose runs don't drain entirely.
  • Inspection of anodes and running gear.
  • Washing the exterior of the boat to remove salt and dirt, and getting the cockpit or other exterior drains cleared.
  • Make sure batteries are fully charged, or better yet, remove them where they can be stored indoors and given a booster charge from time to time to keep them topped up.
0

THINKING STORAGE THIS WINTER?

Posted On: September 29, 2021

Boat storage methods are numerous and can be simple,. Here are some of the advantages  and disadvantages of the three most common methods to store your boat..

1. Backyard Storage

Many boat owners opt to cover their trailer- able boats and store them in their yards over the winter. Keeping the boat in your yard is usually the least expensive and most convenient, but extreme care should be taken to choose the right cover.

Boat cover prices can range from under $200 to over $3,000 for a custom cover. Most Boat Industry Experts generally agree that purchasing a high-end boat cover is the best way to go. If you purchase a cheap cover that doesn't allow enough airflow it can promote mildew, causing problems and costing more further down the road. Choose the best cover you can afford with a fabric that is strong, breathable and water-resistant. If your budget allows, a custom cover and frame is a worthwhile investment.

2. Boatyard Shrink-wrapped

Shrink-wrapping will keep your boat dry and well ventilated, meaning less chance of mildew. Almost all Boat yards specialize in shrink-wrapping boats. If you wish,  you can purchase do-it-yourself kits at marine stores for boats 25 feet and under.

The downside to shrink-wrap is you will be unable to work on your boat during the winter. If this isn't a problem, it may be the option you will want to choose if you don't have space for a trailering and storing your boat at home.

3. Indoor Storage

Options abound with indoor boat storage. Unheated or heated. Climate controlled or not. The obvious pro in storing your boat at an indoor facility is protection from the elements and having access to your boat during the winter months. The downside is that storing your boat at an indoor facility is usually costly and they usually dictate when you can have access to the boat.

Just remember when choosing a winter boat storage method, choose the solution that provides the best protection for your boat investment at the price and accessibility you can most afford.

0

LET COOLER HEADS PREVAIL

Posted On: September 28, 2021

As we head into the fall boating season, closer attention to cold weather boating safety guidelines is a must.

With the cooler weather comes colder waters!

Here’s some tips from our friends at the US Coast Guard.

When the weather changes so should the type of lifejackets boaters use such as a flotation coat or deck suit-style designed to keep the boater afloat and insulated without using energy.  If a person were to fall overboard in cold water, hypothermia sets in and their chances of survival decrease drastically…and quickly! Bringing extra layers of clothing and weather appropriate outerwear is crucial. Depending where you live temperatures can average in the 50’s throughout October and November. Make sure when you head out on your Fall boating adventure you are prepared for sudden drops in temperature or approaching storms.

A safety check of your vessel ensures that it is outfitted with the proper safety gear and is in good operating condition before getting underway.

The following is a list of safety tips all boaters should adhere to before leaving the dock:

  • Carry a VHF-FM marine radio. Cell phones often lose signal and run out of batteries after a day on the water. They are helpful, but not reliable for emergencies.
  • Register your EPIRB. Response time is the key to survival. The sooner help arrives, the better the chances for survival. Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacons (EPIRBS) provide the fastest and most accurate way the Coast Guard has of locating and rescuing persons in distress.
  • Have a Vessel Safety Check. It’s a great way of learning about problems that might put boaters in violation of state or federal laws, or create danger for boaters and passengers on the water. Best of all, it’s free!  Both the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary and the United States Power Squadrons have certified vessel examiners who will perform a free Vessel Safety Check (“VSC”) at your boat, at a time of mutual convenience. There is no charge, and no consequences if you don’t pass. Our goal is simply to help make boating as safe as possible for you, your family and your friends, through education.

Before getting underway let friends and family know where and their expected return time.  These planned actions ahead of starting the motor, hoisting the sail, or paddling the vessel are critical to ensuring a safe boating excursion or rescue if the need arises

0