This new family of laser lights is the best personal safety equipment introduced this year! The size of small flashlights and powered by AA or the included lithium batteries, these lasers have a night-time range of up to 20 miles! And they are eye-safe, and can be used to signal to aircraft. Light in weight at between three and six ounces and built of rugged aluminum, these have a quality look and feel. I did a personal test and immediately bought two. In three sizes with red and green lights priced between $100 and $200.

Always the industry standard in personal safety gear and flotation, Mustang has continued product improvement to make their life-saving gear more comfortable. Their new Survival Catalyst Jacket features lightweight, breathable and waterproof layers they call the M-Tech Comfort System. The fabric layers are also more flexible allowing work or play while still protecting the wearer from foul weather. This line has quickly become the favourite of professionals but is equally affordable by pleasure boaters. Retail price for the jacket is about $650 and comes in sizes from Small to 2XL in red and black.

This new “man-overboard” device is one of the best safety products that we have seen in a long while. If a boat loses someone overboard there are a variety of signaling and retrieving systems available, each with distinct advantages and disadvantages. The SOS Dan Buoy from Australia is a real improvement over any existing product in how it works. When stored, it is a compact package about half the size of a typical briefcase and it weighs only about six lbs. It can be stored nearby inside the cockpit or the main outside helm. When needed, it requires only a quick toss overboard, as close as possible to the person lost overboard, and it does the rest.

In the U.S., new engine shutdown regulations are being introduced but doesn’t a safety switch system make a lot of sense anyway?

Autotether's™ wireless lanyard system recently received the Connecticut Technology Council 2011 Innovation Pipeline Award as the most promising new technology product of the year.

altMustang Survival, the well-known Vancouver-area manufacturer of quality safety gear, has introduced a new generation of its familiar floater coat. The Catalyst model is the latest combination of a waterproof yet breathable exterior with a segmented foam middle layer that provides flotation and an inner layer that allows breathability and aids in wicking moisture away from the wearer.

Mustang calls this new design the M-Tech Comfort System and it makes for a more comfortable coat that still provides warmth and protection from rain, as well as flotation in an emergency.

altBOATaid is a mobile and web based service available 24/7 across Ontario to help boaters obtain emergency assistance on the water and much more. The first ever service of its kind providing boaters with location based information they can rely on in an emergency to obtain towing, on site repairs, battery boost, or fuel delivery.

The cost of these emergency services is covered by most boat insurance policies with no deductible. Until now it was not always easy for boaters to find qualified service providers in an emergency situation away from their home port.

altThe 9-in-1 SafetyPuck warning light is just that, a creatively designed puck-like product that sports 16 LED lights all around the unit that allows for a wide array of illumination patterns. The nine light patterns provide 360 degree light coverage and range from flashing or flickering, to pulsing or swirling, and even a flashlight-like beam. One side of the SafetyPuck is magnetic so it can stick to the side of any vehicle providing light visible for up to a half mile. It is durable enough to function in a temperature range of 130 degree to negative 20 degrees Fahrenheit, and even can be run over by a car and not be damaged. In addition to its use on land, it is waterproof and floats, making it ideal for use in boats and watercrafts.

altThe new Low Lux Night Vision camera is a safety-device that extends your play time or work hours on the water. The black and white picture allows for safe maneuvering of waterways or when docking. Use as a stand alone device or an enhancement to radar. This camera connects to any monitor with a RCA video jack or with a DVR you can record your trip.

The camera can be mounted permanently or use the optional vacuum mount for a quick and easy removal. Measuring only 6" in length and 3.5" in diameter, the camera is small enough to be stored after usage to prevent theft.

Do you really need a liferaft? Well, if you are out in water over your head, you certainly should consider having some alternative to your boat! Many small cruisers and sailboats do not even carry a dinghy, or if they do, it is stored in such as way as to be useless in most “abandon ship” situations. On striking an object, a boat can fill and sink in just a few minutes. Fire is another very real risk on a small boat. Do you have an “abandon ship” plan? Since the point of this article is to consider whether or not you should invest in a liferaft, I’ll concentrate on coastal and small vessels rafts.

safety-FLIR-smallWe think this is nothing less than incredible. See with significant detail and clarity even in total darkness for just $3,000 US.

The FLIR First Mate gives you a thermal imaging camera that is a remarkable tool for nighttime navigation. We think this is huge!

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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....................

 

 

 

World Cat 280 DC-XBy Andy Adams

Last September, we had our first encounter with a World Cat 280 DC – X and it was quite impressive!

We know of no other comparable Performance Offshore Luxury Catamaran in the Ontario market, but we expect to see more World Cats in the coming seasons. The test boat was supplied by Central Marine Midland, in Midland, Ontario and they report that they are doing quite well with the World Cat line. Built with vacuum-infused hull construction in North Carolina, the World Cat was designed as a big water boat.

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Dufour 430 Grand LargeBy Peter A. Robson

Without the optional bow thruster, getting the new Dufour 430 out of the impossibly crowded docks at Vancouver’s Granville Island was a challenge, but long-time broker Richard Hargreaves got us out without mishap.

Also aboard was Richard Carrier from One4 Yachts. We’d been watching the Windy app for weeks, waiting for enough wind to put the new Dufour 430 through its paces. Finally, today’s winds were forecast at 15 to 20 knots.

 

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Destinations

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View of Ganges HarbourText and Photos by Marianne Scott

Salt Spring Island, the largest among the Gulf Islands, has a certain mystique—much of it having to do with locally produced food. It started thousands of years ago when the Coast Salish First Nations used the Island as a summer camp, collecting wild foods while also processing the abundant sea food for winter sustenance.

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Lifestyle

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National Invasive Species Awareness WeekThis week, Feb. 22-26, is National Invasive Species Awareness Week and the American Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC) released an animated video to raise awareness about the threat Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) pose to the boating industry and what manufacturers can do to limit the spread.

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A Freedom Boat Club StafferAs a life-long marine journalist, it has often occurred to me, that it’s a big leap to lay out the cash, (especially for those with no previous boating experience), to try it out. How does someone even know that they will like boating it if they haven’t tried it? 

Well, joining a boat club, or a yacht club that has boats available for members to use, can get you started without the big financial commitment and with the support of the club’s education and resources. Try before you buy.


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DIY & How to

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Battery LifeBy John Connell, Vice President of SLI Products Group, Crown Battery Manufacturing

Your family is onboard and eager to cast off. What happens if your battery doesn’t start?

Early battery failure is costly and frustrating enough. But with a short boating season and unpredictable weather... if you lose a weekend, it hurts. Worse, battery problems can leave you stranded on the water -- a safety hazard and a leading cause of tows. Fortunately, anyone can extend their battery life. And it’s easier than you might think.

 

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TransducerA Transducer is a device that is installed below the waterline that provides underwater data to a display at the helm. This data is usually in the form of depth and speed – but in more advanced systems can also provide sonar, fish-finding and side or forward views.

A Transducer is a device that is installed below the waterline that provides underwater data to a display at the helm. This data is usually in the form of depth and speed – but in more advanced systems can also provide sonar, fish-finding and side or forward views.

 

 

 

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Marc's Boat AquaholicSpring has finally sprung! At least it has weather wise here in Montreal, so it is with great anticipation and boyish giddiness that I loaded the car with all the “things” I will need for this special day - the first of many pre-launch readiness days!

The club property is abuzz with members who, while social distancing from each other and wearing masks when required, are busy removing the winter blankets off their beloved boats and assessing the needed TLC and projects they hope to accomplish prior to be put in the drink.

 

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News

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Boating RegulationLet’s make it very clear – everyone is feeling the pain of the never-endemic but the authorities – health officers and legislators – should really take another look at boating.  While the rules vary from BC to the Maritimes, basically no-one is allowed to do much with their boats.

If you follow the rules in Ontario right now, you cannot even go see your boat on land, let alone launch it unless there’s an ‘essential’ reason. While big cruisers are obviously only available to some of the population, the same could be said of cottages and chalets; those vacation facilities are full of people. Cottage rentals are booked solid for months. But propose taking your boat for a trip to a remote island and you’re breaking the law.  

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Thousand Islands BridgePhoto copyright shutterstock

The CBC reported on May 6th that the top member of the U.S. Senate, Chuck Schumer from New York, has written a letter to members of the Biden administration making several demands regarding the border. According to the CBC story, Schumer has asked Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas for four things.

The first is a detailed Canada-U.S. plan — to be released as soon as possible — explaining what rules and health-related benchmarks will guide the return to non-essential travel. 

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Courtesy Vessel ChecksBy John Gullick, Manager of Government and Special Programs, April 21 2021

Finally after a few years without funding I can talk about why Squadrons should offer Recreational Vessel Courtesy Checks (RVCCs). We have now received funding from Transport Canada for the next three years.

Many Squadron Officers continue to talk about how their Squadron’s course participation, and hence membership, is down and continuing to drop. Well the opportunity is back to be able to talk directly with boaters, especially new boaters who have come o recreational boating in very large numbers over last season and the current season.

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