Investing in a reusable winter cover is a sound environmental choice and a practical way to facilitate winter maintenance on your boat.

Over the past few decades, more and more boats in Canada have been put away for the winter under shrink wrap. Properly applied, shrink wrap seals the boat from water and intrusion by creatures, its slippery surface sheds snow (when we get it), and it resists wind and sun all winter.

Shrink wrap can also be recycled quite effectively, and some shrink wrap suppliers have created programs to gather used wrap to ensure that it’s recycled and not disposed of in a landfill site.

Unfortunately, not every shrink wrap user is aware of this recycling opportunity. We saw a large quantity of it being stuffed into the back of a garbage truck at a yacht club this spring.

Before the advent of shrink wrap, we used to keep boats stored inside or under a canvas cover. Inside storage will always be best but it is hard to find and invariably expensive. That is why shrink wrap caught on so fast and has become so successful, although “shrink” isn’t the only new material to come along.

Recently, we’ve had a number of conversations with Nat Genco. The topic that caught our interest was the fact that he produces high-quality reusable winter boat covers that offer an alternative to shrink wrapping.

The material Genco uses is a coated polyester which is light, strong and very durable. It was first used as far back as the 1970s for covering snowmobiles, and it doesn’t rot the way traditional canvas eventually does.

For the environmentally conscious boater, these new, lightweight coated polyester covers typically enjoy a 10 to 12-year lifespan (some last up to 15 years) – and that alone represents a big reduction in environmental impact.

An equally important reason to choose a reusable cover is that it can facilitate access to the boat to do winter projects, whereas a shrink-wrapped boat is generally inaccessible until spring.

We think the smart boat owner plans ahead at this time of year, working with their marina or yard to determine what maintenance and upkeep needs to be done over the winter to ensure that the boat is going to perform to expectations all next summer. It makes sense to get the work done this winter when you are not using the boat. A reusable cover can really help facilitate that.

Some marinas can build a zipper into the shrink wrap on a larger boat, but a zipper can become a significant additional cost when shrink-wrapping a cottage-size boat. We rarely see wrappers with zipper access.

The reusable cover is also fastened differently. As Nat explained, “It’s an easy job to untie the cover, peel it back and replace it later. We generally supply loops every three feet and webbing or line to tie it tight. To keep it tight, we hang sand bags or water bottles, six pounds each. The tension keeps the cover from moving.”

He showed us a very clever wooden frame. Genco offers hardware to make the frame quickly and easily, using just a drill and saw.

The covers have vents that are sewn in, and you can specify custom features like points for lines to pass through, special shapes to go over superstructure and more. Doing this with shrink would require a lot of skill by the technician and obviously much more labour, given that shrink is a one-time-use product.

On covers for bigger boats, Genco fits seven vents and a door, but even smaller boat covers can have a door that is big enough for a man to bring in tools and work inside.

The framework can facilitate more air circulation to reduce the effects of condensation. There are solar-powered vents available to boost air circulation, too.

Nat pointed out that marinas using inexperienced help can safely use these covers. There’s no skill required to fit them, as there is in using tape and a torch to get the right tension on shrink wrap without burning the gelcoat.

So, while the reusable cover costs more initially, Nat claims that an owner will get a payback on the investment in just three years, and from then on, they are saving money as well as reducing their environmental footprint.

The advantage of winter access for service is a no-brainer. But consider also that easy winter access can facilitate showing the boat if you decide to sell or trade up.

Finally, a few brave souls actually leave their boat in the water under the reusable cover and live there! Sufficient air circulation can be engineered in, and the zippered access door can be robust enough to withstand regular use.

While we thank Genco Marine for sharing these ideas, there are many custom canvas shops and marinas which can create a cover for your boat. It may mean a little more effort and a little higher cost, but getting easy access to do winter projects and keeping some shrink out of a landfill site makes it seem both a practical choice and sound environmental practice.

By Andy Adams

Destinations

  • Prev
Toronto sailor and former RCYC coach/sailing instructor Ryan May is now a US coast guard captain ...
Just before the weekly party at Shirley HeightsSunsail staffer Chris Donahue conducts our chart ...
Chartering in the Caribbean conjures up images of turquoise sea, palm fringed beaches and great ...
Since anyone who opens an independent bookstore is at least as brave as a small boat shop owner, I ...
You’re on your way east to the 1000 Islands or the Trent-Severn. By entering north of Prince ...
I have lived in Ontario my whole life but have only recently had the pleasure of visiting the City ...
My trip to the Northwest Passage started long before I boarded the flight to Kangerlussaq with ...
During the summer of 2016, my wife and I cruised through the North Channel in Lake Huron on our ...
It’s like we’ve waved a magic wand and disappeared into a picture perfect painting, our ...
The Schooner Cove Yacht Club is situated between Nanaimo and Parksville, on the east coast of ...

Cowichan Bay to Genoa Bay – Almost the Gulf Islands

Cowichan Bay to Genoa Bay – Almost the Gulf Islands

 By Catherine Dook

“So you’re going offshore to Genoa Bay,” said an old salt at coffee that morning. Genoa Bay was 15 minutes away from our homeport of Cowichan Bay and hardly counted as offshore, but it was our first destination that fall. The fog had socked us in all that morning, so John and I drank coffee and gossiped with the neighbours while waiting for the weather to lift. We’d provisioned with cans of chilli, a sack of apples, and tanks full of water. We’d tested the engine and the anchor winch. We were ready.

Read More of Cowichan Bay to Genoa Bay.....

 

 

 

Lifestyle

  • Prev
One of our most enthusiastic contributors, Rob Dunbar sent us this photo from Halifax.   ...
Checking back into the US was quick and painless. We made the call to Customs but we needed to ...
Two-hundred-year-old homes are what ghost stories are made of, and Beaconsfield Yacht Club (BYC) ...
This time our photos come from Gimli where Katie Coleman Nicoll was on the scene. She’s an ...
Recently we celebrated our country’s 150th anniversary, and in true form thousands of ...
   We left off Part 1 at the year 1914, and will here pick it back up, running through ...
This week’s POTW comes from across the pond. Who knew we had a European audience   ...
Here is our boat anchored at Hockey Stick Bay. We live in a beautiful country.     ...
Michelle Jacques of Cambridge ON share this memory of her adorable pooch. “This is Frodo. ...
  Our 150 year history began in 1867, but Canada was no stranger to watercraft prior to our ...

 By: Katherine Stone

Two-hundred-year-old homes are what ghost stories are made of, and Beaconsfield Yacht Club (BYC) has its fair share of both. Although no one has seen any apparitions, a former club restaurant manager swore she could feel a presence whenever she went down to the cellar to get supplies.

Shift back to the beginnings of an area known as Beaurepaire. The first land concession on Lake Saint Louis at Pointe Beaurepaire was obtained from the Sulpicians by Jean Guénet in 1678. 

Read More about the Beaconsfield Yacht Club....

 

 

Boat Reviews

  • Prev
Commodore’s Boats is a full service shipyard with over 50 years of generational history and ...
Cruisers Yachts debuts the all-new 42 Cantius. The sporty, luxury cruiser will make its first ...
Once again, the designers at Jeanneau have outdone themselves with the innovative new Leader 10.5 ...
The introduction of X-Yachts’Xc range in 2008 has proven itself to be something of a game changer ...
Hull #1 ZINNIA, the all-new, twin outboard MJM 35z left Boston BoatWorks on July 5 for Newport and ...
Following a 10-year hiatus, Richmond, BC-based Crescent Custom Yachts is once again launching ...
According to the folks at Fraser Yacht Sales, you couldn't ask for more - the new Azimut Atlantis ...
During those cold, cold, sunless, dreary months of January and February, I want to remember the fun ...
The Rossiter 23 Classic Day Boatis both a logical extension of the Canadian-built Rossiter line and ...
It's rare for Canadian Yachting magazine to report on the same boat twice, but that is how ...

 

A Trip To Iconic Italian Yachtbuilder Riva And Lake Como

Riva And Lake ComoStory And Photos By Iain Macmillan

Eyes turn and conversations on shore pause as one boat in particular approaches the Grand Hotel Serbelloni’s jetty that extends out into the sparkling blue waters of Lake Como off Bellagio, northern Italy. It’s not because the Clooneys, George Lucas or Richard Branson are on board, not this time anyway, the attention is on the boat itself. The world’s most valuable, most magnificent mahogany launch, a classic 1960s Riva Aquarama, is paired appropriately with Como’s most prestigious hotel, its Michelin star dining room and suites that have housed royalty; a perfect mix of pleasure, luxury and a distinguished history.

Read more about Riva and Lake Como....

 

 

Marine Products

  • Prev
With all the devastation in the eastern Caribbean a natural question to ask is ‘is our boat in that ...
During the heat of summer, many boat owners turn on their air conditioning units. Whether portable ...
A milestone has been reached. The new D13-1000 sees Volvo Penta move into the 1000hp marine leisure ...
  Still looking for the perfect slip for your boat? Look no further!    
Canadian Yachting traveled to Newport to review and sea trial the new MJM 35z.     ...
Erik Pawson Of Watertight Boatworks here in North Vancouver, BC, is really passionate about the ...
Hydro Clean Hull Wash is Canada's first automatic, mechanical hull wash system and the company has ...
For 2017 there were a total of 31 events planned and 2 were cancelled for a total of 29 events. All ...
When Terry Conrad, of Conrad Marine, offered me ride in a brand-new Sea Fox 288 Commander that he ...
EMCS Industries Ltd. has a unique antifouling system that’s quite clever and incredibly ...