Product Review: Barton Marine Winchers

Do you have winch envy? I mean do you wish you had shiny new self-tailing winches like on bigger and newer sailboats? It’s easy if you think about how you have to go to the extra effort to cleat off your sheet on every tack when the other guys only have to give them another…

DIY Soft Shackles for Quick and Easy Headsail Changes

Do you still tie your headsail sheets on with bowline knots or cow hitches? Do you have separate single-length sheets for each headsail? Do you procrastinate when you should make a headsail change because it’s a hassle to tie or reeve the new sheets?

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. The halyards in particular were difficult…

How to Reinforce Your Stem Fitting

While removing and rebedding all the deck hardware on Summer Dance with butyl tape, I decided that I would reinforce the stem while I was at it. A popular only Catalina parts retailer’s website says: “Boats built before ’82 had an inherent weakness: The forestay load was forward of the stem fitting’s forward mounting bolts, supported only by…

Handy and Cheap Line Hangers

Until recently, I stored all my unused lines, sheets, and cords in a large plastic bag in the starboard lazarette. I knew there was a better way to organize them, but I hadn’t seen it yet. First, I came across these teak line caddys on eBay. And while I like their design and the fact that…