Even if you are on salt water and your boat can safely stay in the water year-round, are you using it regularly? Metal fittings are corroding all the time, the sun beats down on fibreglass and woodwork, and the rain and damp air all contribute to the slow but inexorable process of deterioration. When engines are used, oil and other lubricants are warmed up, spread around and parts are kept running freely. Air circulates through the interior when you are out and moving. Boats just like to be used more than they like being stored.

It was always a bit sad when we “put to bed” our power-boat at the end of the cruising season. Then, one year, our favourite mechanic suggested creating a service program at the end of this season, rather than the beginning of the next one. Price savings could be had, he explained. From then on we regarded the winterizing phase for our boat as a start of the next cruising season, not the end of the current one. What follows are some ideas to make this as easy as possible — and perhaps even less expensive.

altPutting your boat away with a clean engine room and bilge at the end of the season is extremely important.

A coating of oil, or a mixture of oil and fuel, will dry out over the winter and cake onto all of the bilge systems, fasteners and mechanical equipment that it touches. Then, over the winter, the storage wrap traps the oil fumes giving it months to permeate every part of your boat. It also makes the bilge a lot harder to clean out in the spring, but spring is a time when a clean bilge has particular value.

altWell it’s spring and time to organize most people’s least favourite spring outfitting job. Time to get the bottom painted. These days, when it comes to antifouling paints, we need to consider not just the cost to ourselves, but also the cost to the environment. With a little education, boaters can make both a green and a cost-effective decision for their antifouling paint.

First, a little history. From early days, copper in various forms, from copper sheathing to cuprous oxide in paint was the best available biocide for antifouling. Remember TBT (tributyltin).

altAhhh… The snows have melted (mostly) and spring is in the air. That means it’s time to think about commissioning and getting our boats ready for another summer on the water. Not surprisingly most of us have a bit of work to do on our boats so now is the perfect opportunity to look at cleaning up our act, so to speak.

With interest in all things environmental sweeping the globe, it’s worth thinking about how we can get our boats ready to go and do our part to keep our waters, and ourselves, healthy.
 

altWe’ve all seen it, or worse, had the experience ourselves; an older boat making a less than elegant landing due to sticky throttle cables, or stiff, balky steering. There are lots of older boats out there that get less use than they deserve due to old and uncooperative cables.

This is confirmed by the amount of discussion on various chat rooms concerning the problems associated with cables. Assuming your engine is in good working order, your steering and control cables are the next most important systems on your boat. Yet so often we see boats where these cables are poorly installed or corroded.

diy-maintenance-winterizing_main-smallJust this past winter, my own transmission cooler, which should have been mounted in a more upright position, froze and split the casing, causing water to steadily leak into my bilge until we discovered the problem and corrected it.

By "corrected" I mean dump money into replacing a perfectly good transmission cooler just because I thought it was fully drained when it wasn't.

diy-maintenance-tender-smallI'll never forget what a sad looking boat it was – a flaccid little inflatable with a wood floor, awash in perhaps 6 inches of slimy brown water that was slowly lapping into and out of the engine cover of the fairly new 9.9 Mercury outboard. The Merc' had been left on its side on the floor. The dinghy was half under the pier and half in the rain, tied loosely at the back of the big boat's slip, banging against the pilings 24 hours a day.

maintenance-checklist-smallThis Spring Launch Checklist is intended to be helpful for owners whose boats have been winterized and stored professionally. This Checklist is to help you launch the summer of 2010 with a boat that is in tip top shape and ready to deliver a season of trouble-free boating enjoyment.

If possible, before the dealer takes your boat out of storage, go and inspect it visually for any sign of fluid leaks, damage by water intrusion or wildlife or missing or damaged pieces.

maint-oil_change-smallThose beautiful new 4-stroke outboards behind you are a wonderful power plant. Smooth and quiet, powerful and quick, they've come a long way from the "old smokies" that thumped along a few decades back. However, as the 4-stroke outboards have evolved, their maintenance has become something many owners feel may be too complicated, or just plain difficult to attempt. Most owners simply drop off the boat at the yard for a haul-out or call "the guy" when the scheduled oil change is due.

Destinations

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We’re gliding through green-blue waters, colours so vivid and bright they hurt your eyes. We’re set ...
The Halifax waterfront has been attracting more and more large yachts in recent years. However, a ...
Ah Canadian simplicity at its finest; small town, big marina. Little Hilton Beach (population ...
Vancouver-based Big Blue Yacht Charters Worldwide owner Emma Murdoch explains that luxury crewed ...
In the 1920s, a small cove in Canoe Bay was used as a shipping point and safe-haven for rum runners ...
Here’s an update from Caroline Swann with some news for the adventurous types who may be heading to ...
The New Glasgow marina is located about six miles up the East River of Pictou in the heart of the ...
The British Virgins took a huge hit last fall from Irma. Boats were stranded on the shore by the ...
Located about half way between Shediac and the Miramichi on New Brunswick’s Acadian Coast, the town ...
Suddenly the once forsaken city of Hamilton, Ontario is booming for at least two good reasons.

An Abacos Adventure

Great Guana CayBy Mark Stevens; Photos by Sharon Matthew-Stevens

It’s a perfect Sunday morning jaunt.

We’re gliding through green-blue waters, colours so vivid and bright they hurt your eyes. We’re set for a close reach out of a harbour guarded by a necklace of tiny emerald islands decorated by palms that dance in fifteen knots of wind.

Our boat, “Tropical Escape II” (perfect name for both the boat and our adventure), is a 44-foot Robertson and Caine catamaran, chartered from Sunsail’s Marsh Harbour base on Bahamas’ Great Abaco Island.

Read More about An Abacos Adventure...

 

Lifestyle

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“In Grenada, we had about 80 cruiser kids visit our boat...by dinghy of course! Sometimes you ...
Austin Edwards told students and parents at the Saanich School’s “Parents as Informed Partners” ...
As the sole arbiter of the Photo of the Week I, your editor, get to make the choice. This week, ...
Michele Stevens pointed us to this interesting project which recently came to fruition in Cape ...
Our Photos of the week this time come from BC where our friend Rob Stokes sent us a very nice ...
Our little treasure: Montague (Monte) taken at Pirate's Cove in the Gulf Islands. Monte is a ...
It has been a long, hot summer here on Georgian Bay and we miss Adamant 1 terribly. We did manage ...
On Thursday last week, at age 88, Bruce Kirby has been invested into the Order of Canada for his ...
The Olympic Qualification Regatta is now being held in Aarhus Denmark with unlimited entries. That ...
The demographics of sailing are changing, and more women are getting involved and are often rooted ...

Boat Reviews

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At the boat shows, the Ranger Tugs’ classic tugboat lines always grab the crowds, with the wives ...
Sometimes a great idea requires an encore, and French yacht builder Jeanneau got that with the ...
Tactical Custom Boats announces the sale to a North American client of a custom Tactical 77’ – Fast ...
Bruce Elliott is an inventor. And when he sold the technology he developed to build utility poles ...
One often asks of a winning achievement or a fabulous design, could it have possibly been done ...
The latest new model from Cruisers Yachts is the Cantius 42 and this yacht made its debut in the ...
The Sabre 45 Salon Express is new for 2017, making its debut at the Fort Lauderdale International ...
Jeanneau’s newest NC model is the NC 33, and it’s an exciting and innovative inboard cruiser ...
The Four Winns H290OB combines two of the most popular new big boat trends to come up with a great ...
Commodore’s Boats is a full service shipyard with over 50 years of generational history and ...

Hanse 388

Hanse 388By Katherine Stone

The Hanse group produced their second most popular boat of all time with the Hanse 385. The trick was to build on that winning formula when they upgraded to the Hanse 388, which they have done in spades. The German build quality is first rate and true to the Hanse tradition. Leaving the hull the same with a steep stern and straight stem for an optimal long water line, they went with a slightly stiffer, heavier displacement, new deck, interior layout and window line. Hanse’s highly experienced yacht construction team, judel/vrolijk & co., have combined ease of sailing, comfort and performance into the newly designed Hanse 388.

Read more about the Hanse 388...

 

 

 

Marine Products

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Sail shape is long gone. They have stained, feels thin and you see broken threads everywhere. Your ...
Stripping the antifouling paint from the bottom of a boat is physically demanding and is one of the ...
The 2019 Ultimate Sailing Calendar highlights the drama and excitement of blue-water sailing, as ...
Weather nerds and boaters of all stripes will be absorbed by Bruce Kemp’s account of the monstrous ...
Canada Rope promises that its new Night Saver Rope will illuminate at night and act as a reference ...
Take a look as a 68-foot yacht docks itself in between two Volvo Ocean 65 sailing yachts at the ...
Industry Firsts Include Direct Injection and Integrated Electric Steering System
Verviers, Belgium, 18 May 2018 — Mercury Marine, the world leader in marine propulsion technology, ...
Again, we return to the beginning. We started this column with a look at marine navigation for ...
Ga-Oh (spirit of the winds in Algonquin) creates bags and other items from re-purposed sails.