Sail5 min read
People With Gusto
Steve greeted my boyfriend, Phillip, and me as soon as we tied Plaintiff’s Rest, our 1985 Niagara 35, up to his dock on one of the Berry Islands in the Bahamas. He was tall, cheerful and clad in a hodge-podge of clothes one might wear to paint a hous
Sail3 min read
The Perfect Fit
Owning a yacht in charter sounds exotic and enticing, and it may have crossed your mind to give it a try. Maybe you’ve heard stories of good experiences (or bad ones). Maybe you haven’t heard any stories, but you’ve romanticized the idea into the per
Sail4 min read
Dogs Afloat
We dog owners understand the general expectations of ourselves in public places, like picking up after Fido and keeping him on a leash. There are, however, certain places where additional unspoken rules or expectations may apply—as in harbors or mari
Sail3 min read
The Young And The Restless
Back when I was a young man, sailing back and forth across the North Atlantic in an old fiberglass sailboat, it seemed fairly obvious to me how all that was wrong in the world might be set right. Everyone should be issued a boat at birth! Or so I dec
Sail2 min read
Cruising Tips
Most errors with GPS and paper chart navigation are caused by the operator punching in the wrong numbers or plotting the lat/long incorrectly. The surest way to double-check a waypoint is from a known position, and the best position you’re likely to
Sail2 min read
Flying High
San Francisco was the venue of the biggest come-from-behind victory in the history of the America’s Cup when Oracle Team USA beat Emirates Team New Zealand in 2013, so it seems only fitting that the first American round of Larry Ellison’s new SailGP
Sail5 min read
Jud Smith
Sailmaker Jud Smith won his 10th world title last year with a decisive victory in the J/70 Worlds, sailed in his home waters of Marblehead, Massachusetts. His achievement was recognized with a second Rolex Yachtsman of the Year award. Head of the Doy
Sail2 min read
Developed for the Volvo Ocean Race, Spinlock’s Deckvest Vito inflatable lifejacket includes a host of features designed for sailing to the far ends of the earth. Not the least of these is the company’s proprietary Harness Quick Release System (HRS) f
Sail3 min read
Made for Adventure
France’s Garcia Yachts, which teamed up with bluewater legend Jimmy Cornell in 2013 to create the Exploration 45—a concept that has since been extended to a 52-footer and even a 60-footer—has now launched its first catamaran. The Explocat 52 is to be
Sail5 min read
Beneteau Oceanis 46.1
The Beneteau sailboat line has long represented a kind of continuum, both in terms of the many models the company is offering at any given moment and over time. This does not, however, in any way diminish the quality of its individual boats. Just the
Sail5 min read
Bali 4.1
Coming fast on the heels of its predecessor, the Bali 4.0, the Bali 4.1 adds a number of improvements, many of them inspired by feedback from owners and charterers. She’s an evolution of a concept that has already proven popular and very much benefit
Sail7 min read
Sound addiction
Depending on where you are, Puget Sound can look no bigger than a mountainous version of the Intracoastal Waterway. That’s what I thought when I first laid eyes on it from the lighthouse at Mukilteo Park on a sunny day last July. Then I went to the t
Sail6 min read
Careening In Croc Country
On December 23, 1816, His Majesty’s cutter Mermaid was launched in Calcutta, India. Built of solid teak and sheathed with copper, she was 56ft long and weighed 84 tons, with a beam of 18ft 6in and a 9ft draft. Australian-born Royal Navy captain Phili
Sail10 min read
Abandon Ship!
To encourage yachts to join in the 2017 America’s Cup festivities, I had been working with Spirit of Bermuda and the replica yacht America in the spring of 2016 to create a race from Antigua to Bermuda. Once the idea was in motion, I also decided to
Sail2 min read
Let’s be Careful Out There
When you’re talking about the thorny but important subject of onboard safety it’s easy to come across as pedantic and condescending—after all, as sailors we are imbued with a healthy respect for water and weather that arguably does not extend to many
Sail8 min readScience
Forty Winks
The young racer had been sailing for days without sleep, but he was ahead of the fleet in the Solitaire du Figaro, a grueling, singlehanded race off the coast of France. Sailing into the harbor to the cheers of the crowd, he stepped from his boat ont
Sail8 min read
Love Your Ground Tackle
Your ground tackle is like a relationship—the more you care for it, the longer it will last. So, how do you enhance the relationship? First up, think of the accommodations—a damp, salt-rich, often warm environment, just the kind of thing to encourage
Sail3 min read
And don’t forget to sign up for our free eNewsletter, Under Sail, via our website I have been using inflatable lifejackets for 25 years and I’d like to add to the comments of Don Casey (Ask SAIL, February). 1. The bobbins MUST be rep
Sail5 min read
Ask Sail
Sail5 min read
X-Yachts Xp 55
The Danish builder X-Yachts, founded in 1979 by brothers Lars and Niels Jeppensen, has focused on creating high-quality cruiser-racers for many years now. Mixing lightweight construction techniques with no-nonsense structural integrity, the company h
Sail3 min read
Boot Camp
In the 50 years since its inception, Boot Düsseldorf, the indoor extravaganza held each January on the banks of Germany’s Rhine River, has grown to become the 1,000lb gorilla of boat shows. The demise this year of the competing London Boat show and t
Sail5 min read
Tartan 395
In a time when most new cruising boats are coming from Europe, it is refreshing to meet the Tartan 395, a brand-new design from a respected American builder. Not only that, but this is a proper yacht in the traditional American sense of the term that
Sail9 min read
Cruising In The Sea Of Cortez
We had left San Diego in early November and spent a month sailing down the west coast of Baja California on board Distant Drummer, our Liberty 458 sloop. After a week in Cabo San Lucas, a brash and brassy town at the southern tip of the Baja Peninsul
Sail7 min read
Making Maiden
As recently as the late 1980s, the idea of an all-female sailing team in the Whitbread Round the World Race (the predecessor to the Volvo Ocean Race) seemed laughable to many. How could women handle the competition? They weren’t strong enough. They w
Sail14 min read
Around, Alone
What is it that makes someone want to sail alone and nonstop around the world? I’m just an average guy from Petosky, Michigan, who learned to sail on his dad’s Hobie 16. When I first started sailing offshore in my 20s, mostly working as crew on deliv
Sail6 min read
Flight Of The Owl
It was the summer of 1952. The Eisenhower/Stevenson race was in full swing. I was in my junior year, studying naval architecture at the University of Michigan and had been offered a summer job at Jakobson Shipyard in Oyster Bay, Long Island. Practica
Sail6 min read
Light Air Sails: How to Handle Them
It’s easy to look at long-distance racing yachts of 60ft and above with multiple downwind sails set on roller furling gear and assume similar setups are ideal for cruising yachts. To some extent this is true, and much of the excellent gear now used o
Sail6 min read
Highly Strung
As with so many other things on our 1987 Pearson 39-2 project boat, the lifelines looked to be original equipment. Made of vinyl-coated 3/16in 7x7 stainless steel wire, they were bleeding rust where the sheathing had cracked, and it was obvious they
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