East Coast Alerts by Mel Neale July 21, 2011
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 2798 times and there are 0 comments
Posted: July 21, 2011
Special Notices
Another Coast Guard Warning and Marker Change for St. Augustine Inlet:
The entrance channel is subject to frequent changes in depth and direction due to dangerous and shifting shoals. Buoys marking the channel are not charted due to frequent changes in position. Mariners are advised to seek local knowledge prior to entering the channel. (7th District LNM 28)*
St Augustine Inlet Lighted Buoy 5 (LLNR 9495) has been removed.
St Augustine Temporary Lighted Buoy 5A has been renumbered to Temporary Lighted Buoy 5. St Augustine Temporary Lighted Buo...... Read More

Toms Tips About Tools
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 2850 times and there are 0 comments
Posted: July 21, 2011
1. Don’t buy cheap tools. They’ll likely break or damage the equipment you use them on.
2. Be careful about buying “complete” tool packages. Usually the contents are cheap and often they include a lot of tools that you’ll never use.
3. Do buy sets such as a set of wrenches open at one end, closed at the other and a set of socket wrenches. You’ll probably need metric as well as standard.
4. It’s usually best to buy basic tools first and add to your arsenal as you develop your skills and understanding of the things you might need to work on and...... Read More

You Too CAN Be a Good Mechanic
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 2737 times and there are 0 comments
Posted In Cruising Log
Posted: July 21, 2011
You hear a lot of folks brag about how they do all their repair work on their boat. But then there are so many others who just can’t seem to fix anything…or at least that’s what they think. It’s true that some people are more mechanically inclined than others. But many of those others are capable of doing much more than they give themselves credit for, if they so choose. They may not know it, but they can. And if you are one of those, and don’t know it, you can be in for some pleasant surprises if you want to work on this set of skills. You can save lots of ...... Read More

The Joy of Books
Contributed by Feel Free - This blog has been viewed 3394 times and there are 0 comments
Posted In Cruising Log
Posted: July 15, 2011
West Lemmon Cays
Kuna Yala (San Blas Islands), Panama
The skies are heavy, clouds metal grey, the wind is howling, it’s raining off and on. A rare phenomenon in these parts, but it does happen. And who cares? Not us. Our anchor is secure and we’ve got books, glorious books. Is there anything more enjoyable than curling up with a good book on a gloomy day no matter where you are in the world?
The Voyage of the Northern Magic (McClelland and Stewart Ltd., 2002) by Diane Stuemer is one of those books to curl up with. It appeals not only to people who mess about with boats but also...... Read More

The Water and The Boater Home
Contributed by kismet - This blog has been viewed 3399 times and there are 0 comments
Posted In Cruising Log
Posted: July 15, 2011
Lisa and I live across the street from “the water” and we feel very fortunate to be able to enjoy the view of one of nature’s wonders every day. Water is captivating for us – we’re never very far from the natural pull it seems to have on us. It lures us into its beauty as we drive, walk, or sit by its shores to witness its ever-changing personality. We marvel at the days it is calm and peaceful and sigh and exclaim how we wish we were out cruising. On other days, when we see how rough it is – elephants on the horizon kind of conditions, we’ll state how ...... Read More

Transducer Seducer
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 3469 times and there are 0 comments
Posted In Cruising Log
Posted: July 07, 2011
For years I’ve installed my depth finder transducers inside my fiberglass hulls. It’s easy to replace the transducer if it goes bad, it’s less likely to go bad in the first place, it’s not going to be damaged by hitting an object such as a stick or log while underway, and you don’t have to put that extra hole in the bottom of your boat. There are also drawbacks. Most transducers are designed to read only through clear water. However, at best, you should expect less than optimal performance if it’s reading through the hull. If you put it in the wrong place ...... Read More

Toms Tips on Making a Cheap and Easy Transducer Water Box
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 2956 times and there are 0 comments
Posted: July 07, 2011
1. I use a plastic yogurt or cottage cheese container. And I don’t buy them from West Marine. Since my wife eats the stuff (and makes me eat it), they’re free. I save the top.
2. I cut out the center area of the bottom, leaving around a half inch or so of the inturned rim. This gives the container support and gives a broad surface for sealing. The hole cut out of the bottom must be large enough for the transducer, so it’s reading only through water and hull—not through the container bottom.
3. I smoothly sand and clean the hull thoroughly with acetone or a simila...... Read More

East Coast Alerts by Mel Neale July 7, 2011
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 2804 times and there are 0 comments
Posted: July 07, 2011
Special Notices
This is the season of fireworks displays, sailing events, regattas, races, rowing, tall ships visiting, swimming around islands and across bays and many other types of summer events. There are far too many to list here. Bridges may be closed, channels inaccessible and waterways blocked, usually only for a few hours. Events for each USCG District are listed either within the body of the Local Notice to Mariners or as an enclosure at the end. Check http://www.navcen.uscg.gov/?pageName=lnmMain.*
*Italicized text above and below indicates our comment or paraphrase. Plain text is...... Read More

The Sailors of San Blas
Contributed by Feel Free - This blog has been viewed 3677 times and there are 0 comments
Posted In Cruising Log
Posted: July 01, 2011
Waisaladup, San Blas Islands (Kuna Yala)
Panama

Even before we got the hook down off Isla Gerti (Tupsuit Dummat in Kuna) in the Robeson Islands (Tadarguanet in Kuna, meaning “where the sun sets”) of the Gulf of San Blas, we knew that we’d arrived in the sailing center of Kuna Yala. In every direction we looked, we could see dugout canoes (ulus) with sails of every colour and apparently almost every variety of fabric. Bed sheets, table cloths, old sails and awnings left by cruisers, rice bags, old advertising banners- you name it, they’ll stitch it and hoist it.
...... Read More

One Step Closer
Contributed by kismet - This blog has been viewed 997 times and there are 0 comments
Posted In Cruising Log
Posted: July 01, 2011
The post date for this BoatUS log is July 1. On, or around, this date the production of our Ranger Tug R-27 will be starting, which will bring Lisa and I one step closer to some new boating adventures – this time by trailerable trawler. By the time we take our first cruise in Washington State’s Puget Sound, around the third week of August, it will have been almost 1.5 years since we closed out our five-year live-aboard lifestyle. The 18 months we’ve spent off of the water have been very rewarding and have enriched our lives; much like the five years we spent cruising. We&rsquo...... Read More