Top 10 DIY Projects of 2019

2019 was another exciting year here at The $tingy Sailor!

So which were your favorite projects? Here in classic Tonight Show style, I count down the top 10 DIY projects of 2019…

#10 How to Completely Rewire Your Sailboat

Electrical problems on boats come in plagues. The only way to eradicate them is by rewiring.

Complete rewiring
Clean, organized switch panel wiring

This post shows you how to do a professional-quality job for less and expand your system with modern accessories.

 #9 DIY Soft Shackles for Quick and Easy Headsail Changes

Faster to tie than a bowline and useful all around your sailboat.

Jib sheet attached by an alpine butterfly knot and a soft shackle

Make some in your spare time this winter for $1 each!

#8 How to Sew Cabin Cushion Covers

You don’t have to settle for ugly or uncomfortable upholstery.

Image (16) dscn0991.jpg for post 89
Custom embroidery is just one way to add a personal touch

Get professional results with your home sewing machine and my tips in this post.

#7 Five Swing Keel Maintenance Blunders and How to Prevent Them

Swing keel hardware failures are always a top concern among readers.

Where did the keel go?
Neglect it and your keel will neglect you

This post counts down the five most common points of failure and how you can maintain them and stop worrying about them.

#6 Upgrade to a Bimini Top on a Budget

Cruise under the summer sun more comfortably.

Middle sailing position with support poles in the forward jaw slides
Middle sailing position with support poles in the forward jaw slides

With the tips in this post, you can add a bimini top to your boat that is both affordable and adjustable.

#5 How To Rig a Self-Tacking Jib for Free!

Sailing doesn’t get any easier than with this rigging trick. All you have to do is relax and steer.

Set it and forget it

If you already have two snatch blocks on board, it costs you nothing.

#4 How to Rig a Cruising Spinnaker in 4 Stingy Stages

Spinnakers aren’t just for racers, expert skippers, or rich cruisers.

Yes, you can afford a spinnaker!

I show you how to rig your sailboat with an asymmetrical spinnaker in stages that won’t break the bank.

#3 Upgrade Your Outboard Motor to Charge Your Battery

Don’t assume that you need a solar panel to charge your battery bank!

Rectifier/regulator installed
Location and connections for the rectifier/regulator

If your outboard motor can be upgraded with generator coils (or it has them already) and a rectifier/regulator, you can get less expensive, space saving, and more reliable charging.

#2 Turn Scrap Lumber Into An Outboard Motor Stand

Unfortunately, the plans for this stand are no longer available online but if I find them or equivalent plans, I’ll update the link in this article.

Mobility for the kicker

#1 How to Step a Mast Single-Handed With or Without Using the Boom as a Gin Pole

Stepping the mast is a fundamental skill of all trailer sailors but the multitude of methods and gear options befuddle many sailboat owners.

Mast stepping with the boom as a gin pole
Reuse the gear you already have to raise your mast single-handed

I show you two similar methods that you can try depending on your physical ability. Both reuse the main sheet tackle for power and a DIY mast crutch. Add the boom for a gin pole and you can almost do it sitting down. High quality videos show you each step in detail.

Those were the most popular posts last year.

You make it all possible

Many of you took the time to email me and introduce yourselves or to ask questions about projects here or that you read about elsewhere. I enjoyed hearing from you and offering suggestions. I look forward to finding out how your own projects turn out.

Lastly, I want to extend my most humble and heartfelt thanks to those of you who used my links to shop on Amazon. Without paying extra, you helped to keep this site free last year for everyone to enjoy. Please continue to use the links when you can.

Sail hard, sail well, sail safe in 2020!

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2 Comments Add yours

  1. Thanks for the great projects. I bought your ebook on canvas work and in the first stages of recovering the cabin cushions of my c-22. So far so good; I will send pictures when finished.

  2. Ed says:

    Thanks for sharing all the projects. It’s good to have them in a nice descriptive list! Cheers to a fun and productive 2020!

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