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Sun exposure on board

By Gino C. Bottino, M.D.

Although it’s winter, I’d rather talk about the sunny boating season to come.

At the turn of the 20th century, people endeavored never to be exposed to the sun (especially women), and doctors recommended sunbathing for good health. After World War II, sunbathing and deep tanning became popular and remain so today.

Medically speaking, although some sun exposure is required for good health, getting a suntan is not. Anyone who spends time on or near the water gets plenty of sun without sunbathing. As a doctor, I believe sunbathing is almost as bad for you as smoking and should be totally avoided.

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How to turn a boat at the dock

Have you been tied up to a long dock on a boat that won’t back up with any degree of certainty with boats sitting on each side of the fairway you could crash into on the way out?

how to turn a boat at the dockIf so, you may be able to turn the boat at the dock within its own length. First, check the wind and current. They don’t have to be completely in your favor, but they should be enough in your favor to allow you to turn the boat and go forward.

First, ready a bow line and a stern line long enough to reach the bow and the dock while turning the boat. Leave one person on board to handle the stern line by bringing it forward to the bow on the opposite side of the boat from the dock. You can do this without a person on board by bringing the stern line forward to the bow and having it available as you turn the boat.

When all is ready, push the stern off from the dock and walk the bow down the dock to where the stern was previously located. You can do this with the bow line or by holding onto the bow pulpit. The wind or current will push the stern around to the previous bow position as you walk the bow down the dock. If the wind or current is in the perfect direction, the stern will come against the dock with little or no help. If not, the stern line can be used to pull the boat into position against the dock. You have now turned the boat in its own length at the dock even with boats ahead and behind you.

If the wind is in the opposite direction, you can still turn the boat by pushing the bow off and walking the stern to where the bow was with the long line on the bow. –Jerry LeCocq


This article first appeared in Boulder Beacon, the newsletter of Boulder Valley Sail & Power Squadron/30.

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How to remove water from a soggy fiberglass boat transom

How to remove water from a wet fiberglass boat transom

By Dave Osmolski

This past year, the brass tube for one of my boat’s self-bailing scuppers came loose. I decided to refasten the brass tube and make it watertight before we left on our annual fall trip to our homemade tropical paradise in Southwest Florida. First, I removed the tube and waited for the transom to dry out. Despite the warm, dry weather, the transom stayed as wet as the day I first removed the tube.

This led me to a discovery: Transoms, rudders and other thick constructions on fiberglass boats are not solid. They are built with air spaces between the laminations primarily for weight reduction.

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Chartering the islands of Grenada and the Grenadines

Chartering the islands of Grenada and the Grenadines

By Van Diehl, with help from Ted and Claudia Bowler

A group of us recently took a wonderful sail charter to Grenada and the Grenadines. One of the Caribbean’s nicest sailing areas, the Windward Islands consist of Grenada, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Saint Lucia, Martinique and Dominica. The islands got their name from the British, who had to beat to windward to sail there from their colonies. The islands lie almost across the easterly trade winds, which makes for an easy northerly or southerly passage. Just far enough apart to allow for an exhilarating open ocean sail, the islands are lush and richly tropical, with high mountains that trap the clouds and produce dense green vegetation.

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Sailing the Door Peninsula

Sailing the Door Peninsula

By Dan Balch

We set sail on Lanikai for our annual cruise around the Door Peninsula late last August. Lanikai, a 1969 Pearson 300 sloop, was originally purchased by my parents, who sailed it 25,000 miles before shipping it to me 20 years ago. The sturdy boat sleeps three to four crew easily.

Its four-cylinder diesel engine was installed in 1995. Lanikai (Hawaiian for “beautiful sea”) displaces 10,000 pounds with 3,800 pounds of ballast, is 30 feet long, has a 9-foot beam, and draws 3½ feet. Our crew consisted of my son Richard, my brother Michael from Iowa, and me. My first mate, Bonnie, declined to join us.

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George Doerner

George H. Doerner died on Friday, November 15, 2019. His daughter Christa and her husband David were with him at Northwest Community Hospital, Arlington Heights, IL. He was born on March 26, 1936, to George A. and Viola (Shunneson) Doerner. He married Bridget (Bette) Keating on July 20, 1957.

George Doerner

George Doerner

He was an Electrician for IBEW Local 134. He volunteered as Police Reserve in Des Plaines, IL. He was a member of the Loyal Order the Moose for over 50 years. He was past commander and a Life Member of the Skokie Valley Sail & Power Squadron. He remembered many good times with his friends from Elmwood Park and the Skokie Valley Sail & Power Squadron. He was preceded in death by his parents and his sister June Soyer (Louis). He is survived by his devoted wife Bridget. Survivors also include daughter Christa (David) Hanson and son George A. Doerner: five grandchildren and five great-grandchildren, his sister-in-law Andrea Lenberg, his brother-in-law Thomas (Carole) Keating.

In lieu of flowers please make donations to the Lenberg Health Fund to support music and art therapy for residents of St. Coletta of Wisconsin. Attn: Development Office, N 4637 Co. Road Y, Jefferson, WI 53549 (www.stcolletawi.org).

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DIY bird deterrent

DIY bird deterrent for your boat

By Dave Osmolski and Doug Carlson

This time I’m sharing a project developed by friend and fellow Charlotte Power Squadron member Doug Carlson. Doug and I often get together for breakfast at a local diner, where the conversation usually turns to the subject of how we should use our boats more often but can never seem to find the time.

One of the problems with leaving a boat at the dock is that many different birds, mostly big birds, use it as a rest stop and leave their “calling cards.” In addition to being an unhealthy problem, bird guano can harm the gelcoat, upholstery and other fabrics. Some birds have hard shells from small mollusks and crustaceans in their droppings, which can do serious abrasive damage to the gelcoat.

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Alcohol and safety risks on board

By Gino C. Bottino, M.D.

According to the U.S. Coast Guard’s 2017 Recreational Boating Statistics, 658 people died from recreational boating accidents.

Alcohol use was the leading known contributing factor in fatal boating accidents. Where the cause of death was known, alcohol was listed as the leading factor in 19% of deaths.

Even moderate alcohol consumption substantially increases the risk of drowning, and consuming larger amounts of alcohol increases the risk of drowning 30 to 50 times more than that of someone who has not been drinking.

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Taming the winds and seas

Use a bridle

Have you been in an anchorage where the wind keeps the boat at odds with the waves, rolling your boat from side to side, making you uncomfortable and nauseated? Some people deploy flopper stoppers on each side to slow down this motion, but you have to store them somewhere, and they take quite a bit of effort to deploy.

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Are you ready to hit the waves?

Traveling by boat is not always smooth sailing. If we’re not properly prepared, the waterways around us can wreak havoc with the boat and people aboard. Before you leave the dock, take a close look at the inside and outside of your vessel.

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Woman to Woman

Lessons learned while docking

By Capt. Kathrine Redmond

In my next few articles, I’ll share information as though you have just completed your boating safety class and are gathering on-land, theoretical knowledge of the docking process.

In my previous column, I mentioned that the helmsperson must stop the movement of the boat in the slip so that the line handler can step off the boat, not jump off. Over the years, I have seen line handlers suffer broken and sprained ankles and have seen them fall into the water when skippers come into the slip too quickly and line handlers attempt to stop the boat by jumping onto the dock to tie a line. This practice is dangerous. The helmsperson’s job is to stop the movement of the boat in the slip!Read More

Mljet

Chartering along Southern Croatia

By Walter LaMendola with Bruce Cochran, Michelle Denton, Pam McCain, Charley Oliver and Nancy VanDeMark

“Why?” I’d wondered when Nancy told me that our group of sailor friends wanted to go to Croatia on holiday. I only had half-formed notions about Croatia and its people, but I should have known the “why” was typical sailor stuff.

The reasons included a long archipelago of sparsely inhabited Mediterranean islands; miles of beach, rock, vineyards, forest, palm trees, farms and olive groves; the southern Adriatic’s clear waters; and the generous people sustained by its riches. Mostly, it had to do with history and sailing with sun, wind and stars.

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