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.

Lifestyle

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With old boats every repair seems to uncover something else needing attention.  Removing the ...
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Reader Lorraine Gentleman took some liberty with our request for Photo of the Week shots from the ...
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Boat Reviews

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With a philosophy of quality and 'doing things right Ranger Tugs launches the all new R-25 at the ...
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Beneteau Flyer 32By Andy Adams

Summer sun boat! The handsome new Beneteau Flyer 32 is all about entertaining and the bow area is one of the main attractions. It's a wide shape forward with a huge anchor locker and opening centre section in the railing that invites you to beach the boat and go swimming. The bow is really one giant sun bed area with armrests that fold down and head rests too, for fall-asleep comfort. 

 

 

Read more about the Beneteau Flyer 32....................

 

Dufour 460By Katherine Stone

When one does an October yacht review on the Great Lakes you can never be sure of what kind of weather you will get…. and did we ever luck out! A beautiful sunny day with a high of 31 degrees and a perfect 8-10 knot breeze with light chop made for a champagne sailing day. Lucky for me we were at Swans Yacht Sales located in the Whitby Marina on Lake Ontario, trying out the Dufour 460 Grand Large, a flag ship for the midrange Dufour boats. With an overall length of 46’5” and a hull length of 44 ‘, this boat is majestic, not only in size, but also in elegance with timeless and contemporary style. 

Read More about Dufour 460..................

Destinations

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Boom & Batten Restaurant is suspended over the water adjacent to the Songhees Walkway and ...
Provincial Boat Havens are those special places to drop anchor in British Columbia’s West Coast and ...
NW Explorations, a Bellingham, Washington-based yacht charter, brokerage, and marine services ...

Moorings In BrazilWith an increasing amount of interest in South America as a charter destination, The Moorings has responded with a new base in Paraty, Brazil. Surrounded by towering jungles plummeting into the waters of Baia Carioca, this charter cruising region features bays peppered with islands and world-famous beaches.

Centrally located between Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, Paraty (pronounced “Para-chee”) holds the key to many natural wonders you can only discover by boat.

Read more about Moorings' Brazil Charters......................

 

Marine Products

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Since the days of the astrolabe, sailors have looked to the skies to determine the weather. If only ...
Since 1984 PORTS Cruising Guides have been the cruising boater's essential companion. But now PORTS ...
Canada’s largest independent fiberglass boat builder, Campion, has launched Muskoka, The M26 is 8.4 ...
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Every cruiser in the region has used it for years, but now there’s a brand new edition of the ...
When you visit the Toronto Boat Show, come to the Canadian Yachting booth (#1741), trial a pair of ...
With the Davis Scrubbis Underwater Hull Cleaning Kit it's easy to rid a boat of algae, grass, and ...