Keep your boat fungus-free in winter

Keep your boat fungus-free in winter

By Dave Osmolski

You’ve winterized your boat, perhaps wrapped and sealed it against the elements so it will be clean and ready to sail come spring. Or will it?

Most boaters pull and winterize their boats before the onset of cold weather. If your boat has been shrink-wrapped or has closed-off areas with little or no ventilation, the trapped air contains much more moisture than the cold winter air will hold.

If you’ve taken the USPS Weather course, you understand relative humidity. For example, air at a temperature of 70 degrees Fahrenheit will hold more water vapor than the same volume of air at 36 degrees Fahrenheit. This means that when you seal up your boat at 70 degrees in the fall and the temperature drops to 36 degrees in January, the excess water vapor condenses as it does on the outside of a glass of iced tea.

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How to retrofit a laptop to a nav station

How to retrofit a laptop to a nav station

By Scott Mackenzie

Convergence can mean the capability of a piece of electronic equipment to perform more than one function or activity. For instance, today’s multifunction chart-plotters can function as GPS-driven chart-plotters as well as displays for radar, engine or sailing instrument data. However, all this capability comes with a hefty price tag.

I chose a different route. When loran-C was decommissioned, the nav station on our 36-foot Morris, Salty Spouse, had a gaping hole that cried out for attention before my wife, Inza, and I took our next cruise.

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5 tips for safe docking

5 tips for safe docking

By Bill Gesele

  1. Always make sure the slip isn’t too small or too large for your boat. A too-small slip spreads the poles and may affect the boat next to you. In a too-large slip, your boat could swing past the bow poles and damage neighboring boats.
  2. Always have your stern lines attached to the cleats before docking. This sounds basic, but haven’t we all been tossed an unattached line while the boat flounders?
  3. Never (and this happens all too often) allow anyone to stand on the swim platform or outside the boat while docking. One wrong move could put that person in the water and in the path of the running gear.
  4. Have fenders, not hands, ready to avoid the boat next to you. Fenders and boats can be replaced—limbs, not too easily.
  5. Keep the engines running until your boat is securely tied to the dock. You may have to give a short forward burst if your boat gets too close.

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Onboard kit for all your first-aid needs

Onboard kit for all your first-aid needs

By Craig Grosby
Marine 600 Adventure Medical Kit $200 (available starting February 2015)
Pros

    • Water-resistant
    • Comprehensive medical supplies
    • Compact
    • Flotable
Cons

    • None
The new Marine 600 Adventure Medical Kit departs from the company’s blue soft-sided marine design and features a hard, yellow, impact- and water-resistant plastic container. Useful in emergency rafts, at sea or when heading down the Colorado River, the readily visible, airtight container will float if it falls overboard. The container also keeps medical supplies safe and dry in the humid marine environment and when stored on board for long periods.

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Errors trip up experienced boaters

Errors trip up experienced boaters

By Earl Gillespie, Ernst Hofmann and Ken Poole

It seemed simple enough: Three members of Banana River Sail & Power Squadron/23 would meet at Lake Washington boat ramp and motor across the lake to the St. Johns River, up to Sawgrass Lake, and through the canals to Lake Hell n’ Blazes. Not terribly difficult, right? But they forgot about Murphy’s Law, which says if anything can go wrong, it will. Maybe if they hadn’t ignored the warning signs, what followed might not have played out like a Three Stooges movie.
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Couple falls for Vancouver marina

Couple falls for Vancouver marina

By Jim West

During the middle of the September, Cheryl and I set off for the Canadian Gulf Islands. We ended up spending two nights in Ganges, three nights in Ladysmith, and one night in Montague Harbor. Ladysmith was a new destination for us, and we fell in love with the marina, the town and the area’s beauty.

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January 2015 Star Calendar

Star calendar 1–31 January 2015

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1 Jan      High in the east at sunset, the Pleiades Cluster is 1 fist-width above or to the upper left of the moon. Aldebaran is 3 finger-widths to the lower left.

2 Jan      Gemini and Orion are high in the southeast by midnight.

3 Jan      Just after dark, Gemini is to the moon’s lower left and Orion to its lower right.

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In memory

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Stargazer calendar December 2014

Star calendar 1–31 December

[vc_row padding_top=”0px” padding_bottom=”0px” border=”none”][vc_column width=”1/1″]4 Dec    The Pleiades Cluster is 1 fist-width to the moon’s left or upper left tonight.

5 Dec    The brightest star in Taurus, Aldebaran, is 1 finger-width to the moon’s lower left at dusk. [Binoculars]

6 Dec    By mid-evening, Aldebaran is 1 fist-width to the moon’s upper right, and Capella is 3 fist-widths to the upper left, with Pollux far below. Orion is to the moon’s lower right, with first-magnitude stars Betelgeuse 1 fist-width to the moon’s lower right, and Rigel at the opposite corner beyond the belt.
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Stargazer calendar November 2014

Star calendar 1–30 November

[vc_row padding_top=”0px” padding_bottom=”0px” border=”none”][vc_column width=”1/1″]1 Nov    In the southeast at sunset, Fomalhaut is 2½ fist-widths below the moon. Mercury reaches its greatest elongation of the year, 18.7 degrees west of the sun.

3 Nov    Mars is less than ½ finger-width above Kaus Borealis, the uppermost star in the dome of the Teapot constellation, Sagittarius. [Binoculars]
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Stargazer calendar October 2014

Star calendar 1–31 October

[vc_row padding_top=”0px” padding_bottom=”0px” border=”none”][vc_column width=”1/1″]1 Oct    The moon is above the dome of the Teapot constellation, Sagittarius, low in the south tonight. Mars and Antares are 3 fist-widths to the lower right.

2 Oct    The bright star 2½ fist-widths above the moon is Altair.

3 Oct    The moon lies between Altair, 2½ fist widths to the upper right, and Fomalhaut, 3½ fist-widths to the lower left.
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