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All Mud Isn’t Created Equal
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 34 times and there are 0 comments
Posted In Cruising Log
Posted: December 08, 2014
There are at least three problems with any "scientific" anchor test. (1) Anchoring well requires old fashioned seamanship which, in my opinion, is far more complex than that which can be defined by any practical scientific protocol. (2) Anchoring isn't so much a science, as it is an art. And (3) all mud isn't created equal. So while some were surprised at the results of a well planned and executed major anchor test this summer, some weren't.
I'm not a scientist (as is obvious, I am sure) but I've been testing anchors for almost 60 years in every kind of bottom, in hurricanes, in &q...... Read More

The ICW From On High
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 135 times and there are 0 comments
Posted In Cruising Log
Posted: November 03, 2014
A part of the very essence of being on the water is that even a familiar passage is never really the same. But you usually see it from the same perspective; that of your deck. Take a different look of the ICW.
And I looked down from on high... Sounds like it's from the Bible, doesn't it. Actually I kind of felt like that, but not because I have an exalted image of myself (well, maybe a little). Mel, my wife, and I were in the top story of a very tall building in Portsmouth, Virginia, looking down on Mile One of the ICW and also a mile or so of that waterway as it wound south. We were l...... Read More

Finishing Touches
Contributed by clanders - This blog has been viewed 147 times and there are 0 comments
Posted In Cruising Log
Posted: October 27, 2014
Howdy all,
It's been a while since I posted, and I apologize for that. My hard drive crashed and I lost a lot of pictures, so I had to retake them to show what I've been doing on the boat.
With the "new" engine installed and the interior patched and painted, I went ahead and installed the ski racks that run almost the full length of the boat. The old ones were plywood, and almost completely rotten, but they held together enough to use as patterns, so I made new pieces. In a break from tradition, I didn't use plywood for the "shelf" of the racks. For starters, they were lon...... Read More

How Old Is Too Old For A Boat
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 208 times and there are 0 comments
Posted In Cruising Log
Posted: October 07, 2014
How old is too old for a boat? Buying an old boat may be the only option for you or the best option. A boat's age isn't the sole criteria. Let's look at a more complete picture.
My current "Chez Nous" was launched in 1975. She's fiberglass. Some would say she's old. Let them. What do they know? She's tugging at her line ready to get underway as I write this. She's a Gulfstar 53' motorsailer.



Set screws... Read More

Engine Troubles
Contributed by clanders - This blog has been viewed 226 times and there are 0 comments
Posted In Cruising Log
Posted: September 09, 2014
With the transom done and reconstruction starting, this is rapidly becoming two separate projects. On the boat side, I need to patch some cracks on the outside, rebuild the ski racks, and install the seats. I can figure all that out, and I'm not really worried about it, but the more daunting challenge is the engine. I'm a mediocre motorcycle mechanic, but I don't know much about old outboards, so I've got some learning to do.
The boat came with a 1964 Johnson 60hp V4 outboard. The previous owner assured me that it ran when it was put away a few years ago, which is a stock Craigslist phrase mea...... Read More

Marley’s Mantra
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 235 times and there are 0 comments
Posted In Cruising Log
Posted: September 05, 2014
I don't think Bob Marley had a boat. If he did, he probably got somebody else to keep it floating. I get this idea because of a famous phrase in one of his best songs: "Every little thing's gonna be all right." Not on a boat is every little thing going to be all right. Yes, I know he was inspired by three little birds. I also know what birds do to my boat. And I also know that a boat is full of little things, many of which we don't see and probably don't know are there ... and they're always going bad. And that's not all right.
Usually when we think of the stuff that can go wron...... Read More

A Little Polish, A Little Paint
Contributed by clanders - This blog has been viewed 294 times and there are 0 comments
Posted In Cruising Log
Posted: August 11, 2014
... Read More

Waves Can Sink Boats Even When It’s Calm
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 369 times and there are 0 comments
Posted In Cruising Log
Posted: August 04, 2014
We're all familiar with the perils of sinking. We all spend a lot of thought and effort to avoid it. Yet there's one type of sinking that few of us consider. It's a type and a cause, rolled into one catastrophic disastrous event. And many of us have been on its brink but didn't even know it.
Picture a good fishing day. You're trolling along the drop off, they're hitting and you're taking them in over the stern or quarter. The person at the helm has to play it just right, backing down to relieve line stress and to help getting that fish aboard. His goal is just that, before it breaks fre...... Read More

The Office in the Islands
Contributed by Tom Neale - This blog has been viewed 962 times and there are 0 comments
Posted In Cruising Log
Posted: July 07, 2014
In the far gone good ol' days of Bahamas cruising I used to love the fact that I did my work from my boat, not from an office in the US. But I soon realized that even in the Bahamas I had to go to an office. It just wasn't quite the same.
If you had to make a telephone call back in the day you usually had to find a booth on an island or go to what we called a BATELCO office. I preferred the latter, although there were a few problems.
First, the islands didn't have BATELCO offices unless there was also a village on the island. You had to sail to one that did. This was usually easy to figure...... Read More

Pouring the Transom (Finally)
Contributed by clanders - This blog has been viewed 1035 times and there are 0 comments
Posted In Cruising Log
Posted: June 06, 2014
Runabout, by Chris Landers... Read More

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