GPS Tips & Tricks for Sailors

Handheld GPS devices have been around for over 30 years now. If you have one but don’t use it for sailing or if you’d like to try using a GPS but don’t want to buy a more expensive, dedicated, marine GPS, then this is the article for you. I’ll share some of the tips and…

Do it Yourself Trailer Surge Brakes

If you’re new to trailer sailing, you might be unsure about your trailer’s brake system (or lack thereof). If you own an older trailer, the system could be badly corroded from many wet launches and need repair or replacement. If your trailer doesn’t have a brake system, you might be wondering why and if you…

How to Fly a Flag Above a Masthead

One of the hallmarks of sailing artwork is a flag or streamer flown above the masthead. You often see them in vintage photographs, paintings of tall ships, and modern digital art. But you seldom see them in reality anymore. Why is that? Maybe it’s a dying tradition. Maybe its a practical result of all the…

How To Measure Standing Rigging Tension

Whether or not you’ve replaced your standing rigging, you may be wondering how to adjust it. How tight should the rig be? How can you measure it? After all, what good is great rigging if it isn’t tensioned properly to perform its best?

Upgrade Your Galley With An Electric Water Pump

The first mate didn’t care much for the original equipment water pump in the galley of Summer Dance. She uses a lot of water for making coffee in the mornings, sponge baths, or to wash her hair. Pumping that much water by hand with the tiny, manual pump was more trouble than she wants to…

How To Cross-Sheet For Better Single-Handing

Single-handed sailing can seem like playing as a one man (or woman) band sometimes. You have to do everything yourself and play all the instruments simultaneously. If done well, it’s poetry in motion. If done poorly, it can be a train wreck.

How to Add a Draft Stripe to a Sail

This project is a companion to my previous projects, How to Add Numbers to a Sail and How to Reproduce a Class Insignia on a Sail. If you’re getting started in club racing or if you just want to get the best performance out of your sails for cruising, draft stripes can help. A draft stripe…

How to Refinish Your Aluminum Propeller

Is the propeller on your outboard motor looking a bit worse for wear? Is the paint chipped and is corrosion setting in? It could be time to refinish it before it’s too far gone. Before I continue, a bit of legal housekeeping. This post contains affiliate links. That means I receive a small commission if…

Choose Your Running Rigging Colors Logically

When we purchased Summer Dance, she had an odd assortment of line colors, mostly the original equipment, run of the mill white with blue tracer. But the main sheet was white with a red tracer, the jib sheet too, and the genoa sheet was white with a black tracer. None of the colors gave you…