Reliefband

Reliefband helps ease motion sickness

By Debbie Yeagle

Growing up, I was the little kid, green at the gills, crying at the Illinois State Fair. While the rest of my family rode the rides, I stood still, usually facing away from anything that moved. I suffer from vertigo and motion sickness. I never know when it will strike, and it can be quite awful.

I have tried everything: protein loading; ginger; pills of all kinds; getting up certain ways; lying down other ways; stretchy, tight elastic wristlets; and other well-intended suggestions from folks who have never suffered from motion sickness.

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Boathooks that get the job done

Boathooks that get the job done

By Craig Grosby

The innocuous boathook, though simple in form, is critical for docking and mooring. It acts as an extension of the human arm, assisting with ordinary daily tasks, and is one of the most overlooked but important pieces of boating safety equipment. During docking, a boathook should be used for fending off, instead of hands and feet. It’s also used to retrieve items floating in the water.

Today many boathooks serve as multifunctional tools, converting into deck brushes, mops, squeegees and fishing nets.

I tested three different brands and discovered some well-designed boathooks to meet almost every need. All three boathooks performed as advertised. They’re boathooks, after all—simple tools that make boating easier. Deciding which to buy depends on your idea of what a boathook should do. Is it a single-purpose device or multifunctional? I’ll leave that up to you to decide.

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Water system eliminates spots on your boat

Water system eliminates spots on your boat

By Craig Grosby

CR Spotless Water Systems
Starting at $349.99

Pros

    • Eliminates water spots
    • Great for isinglass
    • Total dissolved solids meter
    • Easy to use

Cons

    • Limited amount of clean water
    • Expensive replacement cartridges
The CR Spotless Water System, a portable de-ionization unit, produces clean, ultra-purified water for washing boats, cars, motorcycles and RVs. Water purified by the system contains no minerals and leaves no water spots.

Water spots occur because water contains minerals such as calcium, magnesium, sodium and other dissolved mineral salts. When the water evaporates, these minerals leave hard-to-remove rings or water spots on isinglass, painted surfaces, hulls, hatches and just about everywhere on your boat. We squeegee, chamois, polish and towel dry to get rid of these nasty water spots, but wouldn’t it be nice to just rinse the boat and walk away?

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Hand pump good for any scenario

Hand pump good for any scenario

By Armand Seguin

Beckson Marine Handy mate pump 212PC model
$31.80 (for 212PC model)

Pros

    • Safe for petroleum products
    • Large tubes allow for quick pumping

Cons

    • No storage container
    • Directions on packaging, not pump
    • Narrow tubes make for slow pumping
Although well known for its port lights, Beckson Marine manufactures other marine accessories including Handy Mate hand pumps. The model 212PC hand pump measures 13 inches long and can pump anything from water to petroleum products, such as diesel oil, gasoline or engine oil.

The 212PC comes with two different pickup tubes, including a quarter-inch diameter hose designed to go down the oil pickup tube to drain your oil. You can pump water or light liquids at 3.8 gallons per hour. A larger unit, the 16-inch 216PC, comes with a foot to keep it steady and a longer discharge line. It can pump up to 5 gallons per hour.

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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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Fight the bugs

Fight the bugs

By Craig Grosby

Thermacell Mosquito Repellent Outdoor Lantern (Model MR-9L)
$31.99

Pros

    • Portable
    • Easy to use
    • Safe for outdoor use
    • Long-lasting

Cons

    • Not recommended for windy conditions
Have you ever sat in the cockpit at dusk after a long day of sailing, only to find yourself being eaten alive by mosquitoes? Tired of having to retreat to the cabin and hide behind screens? Thermacell has the perfect solution with its Mosquito Repellent Outdoor Lantern.

The lantern can be operated separately and is pretty straightforward to use. It has eight LEDs powered by four AA batteries. An opaque, four-sided lens provides good light for up to 200 hours on the low setting and 50 hours on high. When using the unit just as a lantern, you can hang it from a Bimini using the small handle on top. When used as a mosquito repellent, however, it should be placed on a flat, stable surface.

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