altIt’s an old joke; you can’t take it with you but when it comes to gasoline and your boat, there is a concern that some people already have to take it with them - to their dinghy, their fishing boat, their summer place, wherever you need fuel on the water, but where no one is selling it.

The media is currently buzzing about most provinces experiencing gasoline prices at the city and highway pumps in the $1.35 to $1.40 range and speculation is that this may rise as the summer progresses.

Boaters are generally sensitive to environmental issues, especially when it comes to our lakes and rivers, so a decline in the availability of on-the-water fuel is a worry. To keep on boating, people may have to take it with them.

Through our marine industry trade publication, Boating Industry Canada, we surveyed fuel retailers in a recent On-The-Water Fuel Sales Survey to learn more about the availability of on-the-water fuel for this coming summer.

For Canadian Yachting readers with larger gasoline or diesel powered boats on major bodies of water, fuel availability looks pretty good…make that basically “unchanged” from 2010.

Also, we have all seen high fuel prices before and we now realize that for summer vacations and family fun, the price of fuel is unlikely to deter people from using their boats, especially in the great summer weather.

So, anticipate a high price per liter at the marina pumps this summer…and it will be noticeably higher than highway prices.

There are several reasons why. First, marinas and other on the water fuel retailers do their best to secure ethanol-free gasoline. Very little gasoline for automotive use (which is about 99% of it all) is ethanol-free. If you read the labels on the pumps where you buy your gas, you will see virtually all pumps say, “May Contain Up To 10% Ethanol”.

At present, only Shell V-Power Premium has pump labels saying, “Contains No Ethanol” and even then, not every area may have ethanol-free V-Power. This is a premium fuel and pump prices are always ten cents or more higher than regular grades of gasoline anyway.

Then, the on the water retailer has a seasonal operation and a short season at that. This greatly increases the ‘per liter’ costs to maintain tanks, pumps and other gasoline retailing equipment.

Adding to those costs, the government requires special catchment basins and other infrastructures designed to prevent a fuel spill from entering the water. For smaller spills, most on the water retailers have also invested in fuel spill training, containment booms and other equipment that a highway retailer does not have.

It all adds to costs and most retailers hold their price so low that many lose money on fuel sales in order to support their customers while hoping to recover a fair profit from storage and other services.

As a boater, it is in your best interest to support your on the water fuel retailer and make a point of asking about ethanol – do they have it or not? We have written about ethanol in greater detail before so to keep this brief, ethanol is an alcohol and it is hygroscopic; it absorbs water, even from the moisture in the air. A big boat with many gallons of fuel that contains 10% ethanol can absorb so much water from the vented tank systems that the water and alcohol can “phase separate” out in just a few weeks.

So, know what is in your tank, use a fuel stabilizer to prevent problems and use up the fuel – keep it fresh.

Here is the main point though. If you don’t have a convenient on the water fuel retailer, you may have to take a jerry can or two with you, re-filling the boat yourself. This risks spilling fuel into the water, either directly as you pour from the jerry can into the fuel filler or by spilling some into the bilge which then gets into the water via the bilge pump.

Our best environmental advice here is to replace your old jerry cans with new ones that have vented spouts, bigger and more ergonomic handles and that pour slowly with good control. Better yet, get a portable fuel dispenser like the Scepter Flo’N’Go that lets you safely wheel a reasonable quantity of fuel to the boat and dispense it with a shut-off type fuel nozzle.

Then, you won’t spill a drop!

Boat Reviews

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CY Virtual Video Boat Tours

Virtual Boat ToursWe all love boats and nothing can break us up! So, what better way to spend our time than looking at interesting boats and going aboard in a virtual ride or tour. We have asked our friends at various dealers and manufacturers to help us assemble a one-stop online resource to experience some of the most interesting boats on the market today. Where the CY Team has done a review, we connect you to that expert viewpoint. If you can’t go boating, you can almost experience the thrill via your screen. Not quite the same, but we hope you enjoy our fine tour collection.

 

Read more about the CY Virtual Boat Tours....................

AXOPAR 37 XC

 

Axopar 37 XCWhole new ball game…

 

Set aside your assumptions and expectations for a few minutes while we try to describe the new Axopar 37 XC that made its American debut at the 2020 Miami International Boat Show. This boat represents a whole new ball game in terms of design, performance, seakeeping and functionality. In fact, I’d say it takes a ‘clean sheet of paper’ approach to boating – it’s that different.

Read More about the Axopar 37 XC..................

Destinations

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If you have four hours to enjoy a fine tour of one of Canada’s most interesting waterways (let’s ...
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NW Explorations, a Bellingham, Washington-based yacht charter, brokerage, and marine services ...

Exiting Hogs BackBy John Morris

History: right after gym and just before chemistry class. Fifty minutes of naming the prime ministers by date and looking out the window. Who knew it was actually interesting.

And in some ways it hardly matters because the Rideau Waterway is just so amazingly beautiful. Driving your boat through the locks is wonderful fun for kids of all ages (adult kids, too) and the scenery is sensational. The history is a huge bonus however, and worth understanding from both as a political lesson and from an engineering perspective.

Read more about The Rideau...........


Lifestyle

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Recently while admiring the boats in Victoria Harbour my eyes locked into a 58ft yacht named ...
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The Council of British Columbia Yacht Clubs with over 50 yacht club members has become the voice of ...
Classic boat restoration expert and wooden boat builder Stan Hunter recently sent us this great ...

DIY & How to

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The BucketI was cleaning up my workbench the other day. My eyes then scanned across my workbench and fell on ‘the bucket’. Everyone has a one. On a boat, it’s usually in a cockpit lazarette. It’s full of old paint cans and half-used tubes of caulking. There might be some white grease, painters tape or epoxy in there, too. I take my bucket everywhere and it’s full of all sorts of tubes of grease and sealants and adhesives.

I thought to myself that I should probably sort through the bucket and get rid of the stuff that isn’t useful. I quickly realized, though, that each of the items in my bucket (except that had gone bad) were useful, and each is used for a particular job.

Read more about The Bucket..........

 

  

Marine Products

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