A picture of a captain's hat and a steering wheel on a boat

The Rewards of Teaching

Honoring the 2017 Charles F. Chapman Award for Excellence in Teaching recipients

By Yvonne Hill

To a one, the 2017 Charles F. Chapman Award for Excellence in Teaching recipients find teaching to be its own reward. Their joy comes from the success and skill their students enjoy as well as the act of teaching itself.

This year’s recipients, Frank Kemp, Vic Stewart and Larry Byrd, received the 2017 Charles F. Chapman Award for Excellence in Teaching at the 2018 Annual Meeting in Orlando, Florida. Named after Charles F. Chapman, a founding member, former chief commander and noted educator, the award honors talented instructors who share their boating knowledge with exceptional passion and skill.

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Five Islands Harbor, Georgetown, with Artemis and other moored vessels.

Back to the Sea

Learning to slow down and enjoy cruising

By Laura Landis

I’ll never make up the 18 years I spent too far from the sea. I left the New Hampshire coast for New Mexico in 1996 and didn’t return until the summer of 2014 when I could no longer bear to be away. Thus began my return to cruising.

Last year was my third year on Artemis, a 1983 Sabre 34 I bought on eBay. The first year was challenging. The second year, I brought Artemis from Oriental, North Carolina, to Yarmouth, Maine. I pushed hard, was mostly alone and never had a real crew.
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Seavester with past chief commanders

Sea Vester: The life and times of an animatronic teaching aid

By Drex Bradshaw

The story of Sea Vester as an educational tool for District 5 began when I saw Seamoor the Sea Serpent astride a land-based personal watercraft at the International Boating and Water Safety Summit in Panama City, Florida, in 2003. The Army Corps of Engineers called it a training aid. I immediately said, “We need one.”

I spoke with Robotronics, who built the ACE unit, and asked if District 5 could borrow Seamoor with the possibility of buying this kind of unit later on. Several District 5 squadrons taught boating safety in middle schools, and a training aid like this would be an outstanding asset.

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Photo of father helping daughter secure her life jacket.

Educational Horizons

Charting the future of United States Power Squadrons boating education

By the USPS Educational Department

The strength of United States Power Squadrons lies in its talented members and the strength of its boating educational program. To survive and thrive, we must update our courses and expand the delivery and range of our educational portfolio. Educational Department volunteers are hard at work ensuring that our curriculum responds to the wants and needs of the boating public, our members and their families. Take a look at the future of United States Power Squadrons education.
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Photo of a Giant Pacific Octopus accompanying A Fish Tale.

A Fish Tale

The Big One That Got Away

By Rich Rutkowski

Sometimes it’s all right if one gets away, even if it is the “big one.” That may seem strange coming from an inveterate angler, and I wouldn’t say it if I hadn’t been there on that August day in 2001.

The day dawned calm and still with a chilled-apple crispness in the air. Winter Harbour, located at the northern end of Vancouver Island, British Columbia, is generally a serene place, and that morning was no exception.

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Photo of Sails 2.0 author's sailboat Principia

Sails 2.0

New sails breathe new life into an old sailboat

By Jeffrey Taylor

I replaced the jib on Principia a couple years ago and had the mainsail made to order just last year. The old sails had big, fat, blown-out bellies and, at over 10 years old, were long in the tooth for Dacron sails.

Before replacing the sails, I didn’t know my boat was behaving badly because I had no idea how sweetly it could sail with nice, crisp, new sails. The old sails weren’t so bad in a light breeze, but if the wind picked up, they dragged the boat so far over on its ear that Principia was in danger of rounding up and behaved like a pig going to windward.

After getting the new jib, the improvement was so great that even with the old mainsail I could hardly believe it was the same boat. I hadn’t planned on replacing the main until Principia got caught out in a violent, intense thunderstorm at the beginning of the season. I rolled up the new jib before the first 45-knot gust hit, but the storm tore the old mainsail to shreds.

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Sailing in Greece

Greece is the word

Planning and sailing a charter boat in the Dodecanese Islands

By Van Diehl

Fulfilling a lifelong dream of sailing to faraway destinations, my wife, Cida, and I have organized four charters, two in the British Virgin Islands and two in Greece. On our first Greek charter, we sailed around the Cyclades Islands in a Bavaria 45. For our second Greek charter, we wanted to sail the Dodecanese Islands, which was on my bucket list.

When we started planning the charter, the first person I contacted was Bob Miller, the San Luis Rey Sail & Power Squadron educational officer. He and his wife, Sharlene, loved the idea and signed up, along with their friends and former squadron members Neil and Renee Scheuerlein. Eudes and Beth Lopes from Brazil and Werner Rech from Germany rounded out the group.

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Sailing through the fear

Offshore sailing course teaches sailor to trust herself and her skills

By Libby Cross

My husband, David, had always been into boating. After taking a United States Power Squadrons boating course, he joined Greenville Power Squadron (now Lake Hartwell Sail & Power Squadron), bought an 18-foot bowrider and later moved up to a 26-foot cabin cruiser. He took all the courses for a full certificate. I joined the squadron a few years later and made it to Advanced Pilot.

After we retired, we planned to move onto a trawler and do the Great Loop while visiting friends in the eastern U.S. and Canada. At some point, David started talking about sailing the Caribbean. It sounded like a wonderful dream, but I didn’t think of it as a reality.

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Lake Michigan

Hybrid power refit

Taking a solar-electric hybrid approach to marine propulsion

By Phil Shelley

As an engineer interested in renewable energy, I’ve long considered the viability of electric propulsion for marine vessels.

In recent years, large vessels such as cruise ships, ferries and tugboats have increasingly adopted hybrid electric drives. Now that solar panels have become more efficient and dramatically cheaper, I decided to try converting a medium-sized hull to a solar-electric hybrid. Read More

Honoring the 2016 Charles F. Chapman Award for Excellence in Teaching winners

By Yvonne Hill

You don’t become a Charles F. Chapman Award winner by remaining safely in port; you must chart new educational ground and expand the limits of your teaching skills. The 2016 winners, sailors all, exemplify this Chapman spirit. They share a wealth of boating knowledge and experience, a love of teaching, a dedication to their students, and a desire to make the water a better place through education.

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Outboard problems underway

Troubleshooting outboard problems

Learn how to fix outboard problems while underway

By Rick Lavoie

Before starting to troubleshoot outboard problems on the water, make sure to secure the boat. Anchor if the boat could go aground or if wave action makes moving around difficult. If you can’t anchor, rig a sea anchor using a line with some life jackets and a bucket (or two) attached and deploy it off your bow.

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