Performance Reefing?

How to trim roller furling sails when reefed  (published June 2013) Like it or not, furling sails are the new norm. Sure, furling headsails have been around for years, and to a lesser extent so too have in-mast furling mains. But now they are commonplace on the vast majority of

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Shifty Eyes

What are all these wind shifts about and how can cruisers take advantage?  (published June 2013) Every sailor knows the wind is never static. We know this because we can see it on the water and feel it on our face. Constantly moving, the wind can shift over a matter

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Do It Yourself

Tips for anchor windlass installation  (published June 2013) I no longer need a mirror to see that time has finally caught up with me—let’s face it, I’m getting old. Having made this admission, high on our list of cruising equipment was a new 12-volt anchor windlass. As we sail shorthanded,

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Crew Overboard

A sailor's guide to crew overboard gear  (published May 2013) While perusing the aisles of West Marine the other day, I couldn’t help but stop and stare at the plethora of crew overboard (COB) gear available to the modern sailor. From your basic Type IV cushion to an inflatable COB

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Night Moves

Crew tips for completing safe passages at night  (published May 2013) Someone once asked me if I stopped to sleep every night when making an offshore passage. Initially, it is a funny question, but when you get down to it, they are actually focusing on a key component: sleep. Offshore

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Marlinspike Madness

Learn to splice your double braid lines  (published April 2013) Marlinspike seamanship is an often-overlooked aspect of sailing. Most cruising sailors know half-a-dozen knots that are applicable in various situations aboard their boats. But, not many sailors know how to splice an eye in double braid line. Double braid is

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Live It, Learn It

Hands-on sail repair and maintenance with Carol Hasse and crew  (published April 2013) Though my home was moored in the shadow of Carol Hasse’s front door at Port Townsend Sails, I didn’t feel the need to dig out the tape recorder for our meeting. The objective wasn’t to delve into

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Mast Hysteria

What to look for in your rig before heading offshore (published April 2013) Everything has its place, purpose and importance on an offshore quality sailboat. But when completing a blue water passage, nothing could be more essential to your safety and success than your standing and running rigging. With a

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Up, Up and Away

Tips and tricks for going aloft safely  (published February 2013) Climbing a sailboat’s rig is not something that prudent sailors should have to do on a regular basis, especially at sea. But at some point, every self-sufficient cruiser will need to climb his or her mast in order to perform

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Nav System Basics

Three options for building the perfect nav system for your boat and your budget  (published January 2013) Over the past five years, we have seen quite a bit of consolidation among marine electronics companies. As these mergers and acquisitions have been digested, there has been a lot of standardization of

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