World-famous Gipsy Moth IV yacht headed to Jersey Boat Show

| March 10, 2016

The restored Gipsy Moth IV will be in attendance at next month’s Jersey Boat Show to commemorate the 50th anniversary of its historic round-the-world sail. Source: World-famous Gipsy Moth IV yacht headed to Jersey Boat Show – YBW

Sailing into volcanic ash and pumice on the water

| February 28, 2016

Under water volcanos spewing up floating rocks and pumice is something that I have not read or heard much about. It is both interesting and dangerous for those who are voyaging and cruising. In August of 2006, a small yacht called the Maiken encountered a bizarre shadow on the ocean. Upon closer inspection they discovered […]

Archive: Motor mount adjustment tools need for Encore

| February 4, 2016

While working on aligning the Volvo diesel on Encore last week, I realized that my tool bag didn’t have the correct wrenches to adjust the motor mounts. I’m archiving the correct tools  for the future. To adjust the Volvo alignment requires a feeler gauge and TWO 15/16” open ended wrenches – one needs to be […]

Two steps forward, one step back … boat projects.

| January 23, 2016

The weather isn’t perfect in Florida, but it sure is a lot better than most states to the north. As the snow comes down on most of the eastern part of the country, I at least won’t have to deal with it until I fly back. I’m going to declare success in removing hatches, shipping […]

Hatch repair is high on the priority list for Encore

| January 22, 2016

Noticing the weather back home this past week, it was not a bad few days to head down to Florida for a couple more boat repairs. High on the list was to remove and send my Lewmar Superhatches (predecessor to the Ocean series) off to Select Plastics in hopes THEY can prevent them from dripping; […]

Replacing a Volvo Penta raw water pump on our sailboat

| November 25, 2015

As mentioned last week, the Volvo raw water pump (840557) aboard Encore was beginning to drip. This usually indicate a little corrosion (cough, cough) and leakage around the seal closest to the impeller. Instead of sending the pump out to be re-built for $165, decided to purchase a new Johnson “direct replacement” (10-24707-01) pump ($350) […]

Boat tool failure – checking with SeaDog to see about support

| November 22, 2015

The first time I tried to use my relatively new Sea-Dog Impeller Puller and it FAILED. Really bumming that the threads seized at first use and I had to resort to the needlenose pliers again. As soon as I applied a little torque to the T-handle, it froze in place. No amount of heat or […]

Tania Aebi’s semi-famous Varuna sailboat in the marina

| November 19, 2015

I know semi-famous boats can end up anywhere, but ever since I saw Robert Mandry's Tinkerbelle (Ohio) when I was a young boy dreaming of sailing … and Robin Lee Graham's Dove on our honeymoon after idolizing his adventure as a teenager … I keep my eyes open. Low and behold, Tania Aebi's Contessa 26 […]

Mantus Snap-On Light is a sturdy and handy boat gadget

| October 30, 2015

Well know anchor manufacturer Mantus created a nifty light that they debuted at the fall boat shows this year; the Mantus Snap-On Light look well made and like something Encore needs ($55.00).  I also like their RAM mount Mantus Rail Clamps!

A stopper knot that won’t slip – Herb McCormick

| October 13, 2015

From Cruising World’s Facebook page: It’s How-To Tuesday! Here is one of our favorite, quick and easy ways tie a dependable stopper knot that won’t slip.

Archive: Try Shoo-fly bug sprays for screens and openings

| October 12, 2015

Lynwood Laboratories, Inc Shoo-Fly – save information and purchase link to be tried aboard Encore. It doesn’t matter what you call them—no-see-ums, gnats, sand fleas—yeah, you know who I mean … those maddening flying teeth! And it’s beyond belief how these little Houdinis can get through, or around, even the finest and most tightly-fit hatch […]

Anchor Marker Floats – Currents

| September 16, 2015

Archiving anchoring advice from a September 9, 2015 article in Bluewater Cruising‘s online Currents web publication. Anchor Marker Floats by Fran and Jean-Guy Nadeau Arriving in a crowded anchorage can be a daunting challenge. The degree of apprehension skyrockets while you bumble about trying to find that perfect spot while the skippers of the surrounding […]

What are the odds of my boat getting hit by lightning?

| August 31, 2015

Archiving an educational post on lightning and boating. Although there may not be one perfect way to protect yourself or your boat when thunderstorms appear, putting the odds in your favor does make sense. According to Boat U.S. “The feature reports that in any one year the odds of your boat being struck by lightning […]

What’s the probability of a little wind in Florida from Erika?

| August 27, 2015

Looks probable. Should have removed the Bimini on Encore this summer … thankfully the sails are down and stowed safely away. Lines are doubled, but no longer as new and stretchy as they once were. Hm … as my buddy Mark would say, “that why we pay for insurance.”

A favorite YouTube channel: Tips from a Shipwright

| July 18, 2015

By far, my favorite woodworking and sailing YouTube channel is Tips from a Shipwright. It is sponsored by Jamestown Distributors in Rhode Island a great source for boat paints, finishes and epoxy materials. I will go there before looking elsewhere because of their sponsorship. The filmmaker Halsey Fulton of Fish Hawk Films brings the impressive […]

A Hamlet-like mortal coil: To sew, or not to sew?

| July 16, 2015

IF … a big IF … I learn a little more about sail repair and “sewing,” I would like to have a few projects to practice on before wasting too much material (or time and money!) We still don’t have the proper sewing machine (perhaps a Sailrite?) BUT KNOW will not try using Brenda’s old […]

Traveller repair: It is always something on an old boat

| July 9, 2015

So much for checking the old IYE traveller carefully on Encore before ordering $81 worth of the wrong bearings. It’s not all bad, since the previously purchased Delrin bearings will be needed eventually as they will either wear out or fail before long.   Unfortunately the broken pieces in the top photos during a recent […]

Corrosion and planning updates to anchor and chain

| June 16, 2015

The photo above is not mine (thankfully) but from a sailing aquaintance anchoring in SE Asia. He has been noticing fairly rapid chain corrosion in only 3 years and in particular on his anchor shackle. It spends a significant amount of time under the saltwater and we suspect that the shackle of inferior grade — […]

Happy 26th Birthday to my son Taylor #TBT

| June 10, 2015

This is a birthday greeting for my son Taylor and the video below may not fit the #TBT criteria as well as the one I posted for my daughter Katelyn last month, but the “original birth announcement card” above sure does (the artwork is the handiwork of his older sister). I think a little sailboat […]

A spare Racor 500FG diesel fuel filter and water separator

| May 30, 2015

My good friend Mark replaced his old Racor 500FG fuel filter on his boat last year with one of the newer versions with a heat shield around the bowl (although Mark and Dar recently sold Zola).   From what I can tell the heat shield” was about the only change Parker Hannnifin has made to […]

Contemplating sailboat anchors and anchor chain options

| May 17, 2015

  I’m looking for some anchor chain advice and before posting to a sailing/cruising forum and figured posting the links to my blog might be a good first start. In April I cut off a rusted link from Encore’s anchor chain and brought home a 4 foot length to measure, inspect and contemplate re-galvanizing (also […]

Sailor Donna Lange prepares for her Sail Twice Around

| May 16, 2015

  One of my sailing acquaintances, Donna Lange, is preparing to sail around the world for the second time (news story) beginning in late-July. She’ll leave Rhode Island planning to solo circumnavigate non-stop via Cape Hope (South America), the southern oceans south of New Zealand and Australia and then around Cape Horn (Africa) back to […]

Four Delrin bearings from Rig-Rite, Inc. – $81

| May 5, 2015

Last week the traveller on Encore started to shed a few pieces of plastic when we were out sailing and I knew this meant a few new bearing were in my future. What I didn’t know is that the IYE Traveller is no longer made and that the parts are a bit scarce. Unfortunately being […]

Video: A 30 year old Westerly Corsair II sailing at 6.5 knots

| May 1, 2015

Sharing and archiving a little left over video from our recent trip sailing on Encore with our son Taylor last week. He stretch out a week using some of his vacation time (wisely … more later) while coaxing Brenda and me to do the same for a few days. We had great spring weather (80s) […]

Sailing and small repairs continue on our sailboat Encore

| April 29, 2015

While enjoying some time day-sailing aboard Encore this past week, I squeezed in a couple of repair projects. First I replace the plywood shelf in our lazerette with a new 2×2 X-braced shelf. I really wanted to add a couple coats of paint to protect it from moisture and dripping water, but a single sprayed […]

Does our Zodiac inflatable really look like a manatee?

| April 28, 2015

A friendly manatee visiting Encore and our Zodiac inflatable. 🙂

Life is good …

| April 25, 2015

We are so fortunate to have great kids, steady employment and the flexiblity to escape once in a while to enjoy the fruits of our labor … AND to recharge our batteries for a few days.

Archiving a few Westerly Corsair links

| April 24, 2015

Adding an older (2012) video from a boat broker from Europe as it is always good to see other Westerly Corsairs.

Archive: Encore improvements and repairs from March 2015

| April 5, 2015

The advantage of having a “desultory” blog is that  I can archive any and everything without guilt. This post includes a collection of photos from last weekends’ projects aboard Encore. First, I added a small semi-permanent shelf to the galley for our Sodastream device. Although I haven’t convinced Brenda to give up her cans of […]

How long will paper magazines like Cruising World survive?

| March 25, 2015

My magazine reading has slipped in recent years and after 35 years of nary a missed issue of Cruising World magazine, I’m considering canceling my paper issue. Actually with all the  information available on the Internet I may not even want a digital copy? I’ve posted numerous tips and comments associated with the publication, but […]

The best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry

| March 22, 2015

Last year about this time I had mentally decided that Brenda and I would be cruising the Bahamas aboard our sailboaat Encore in March 2015, but as “life happens” those dreams were not meant to be. As the year progressed, both of our surviving parents had health concerns requiring more of our attention, Encore started […]

Functional bolt-on gadget from Mantus to secure an anchor

| March 4, 2015

Elegant, but simple solution to fitting and securing one of the new Mantus anchors or other modern anchor on the bow roller. Eventually I’d like to upsize our Bruce claw anchor (photo below) and will be looking at the Mantus or Rocna.

More work than expected on the Volvo diesel

| March 3, 2015

“Nothing that's worthwhile is ever easy” wrote Nicholas Sparks; that must be true since getting Encore's Volvo diesel back in shape is testing my patience and finances (but then we're talking about a boat, so that second part is a given). Thankfully I have a very experience diesel mechanic who keeps one boat here in […]

The hatch screen idea and a Whale Gusher Mk3 pump rebuild

| February 23, 2015

  While getting sidetracked from the Whale Gusher Mk3 pump rebuild (soaking and cleaning), I started working on Encore’s hatch screen idea since it will soon be bug season on the sailboat in Florida. I’ve been mulling around a few way to “frame” the fiberglass screen material and ending up forgoing the stainless steel for […]

Archive: Saving the dimensions for missing Cape Horn vanes

| February 16, 2015

Eventually I’m interested in getting the Cape Horn Self-Steering gear working aboard Encore, but I’m still missing a few parts. Two of the crucial items are the Light and Heavy vanes that make the corrections that pivot the steering gears paddle. The paddle (in the water) amplifies the force in order to control the rudder […]

Catching up on a few more Encore projects from last week

| February 9, 2015

When I was down working on our sailboat Encore last week (helped my friend Mark on Zola), I must admit it felt good to be in shorts and flip-flops for a couple days. The weather was sunny but not necessarily hot … but perfect for boat work. Primarily the goal was to meet up with […]

More work on the boat — the Volvo diesel among other things

| February 4, 2015

While walking out to the boat in the evening, I glanced down to see an odd looking object floating and then sinking in the water next to the dock. Sure enough a quick LED light from the iPhone illuminated the Manatee “sleeping” just beneath the water. The purpose of this trip was primarily to meet […]

Halyard Knot — better than a bowline for some purposes?

| January 30, 2015

Besides splicing a shackle to a halyard on a sailboat, I’ve used the mighty bowline tied directly to a sail grommet or to a shackle. Here’s a knot I haven’t tried — the Halyard Knot — and considering that it is most likely a permanent knot, perhaps whipping the end to the standing line would […]

Archive: A mini woodstove for a sailboat

| January 15, 2015

While posting a few bits on Facebook this weekend, I ran across a January  “sale” for Cubic Mini Woodstove sized for RVs and boats. I’ve entertained the idea before and concluded that a small propane fired bulkhead stove aboard Encore would be the best way to warm up the cabin, but there is something attractive […]

A boat project: The Easy Climb for sailboat mast climbing

| December 30, 2014

One of the challenges aboard a sailboat is go up a mast to inspect or take care of maintenance items. The tasks is not for those who are uncomfortable swinging back and forth on a stick 55-60 feet in the air. When I was in young and stupid, and only 165-170 lbs, the thought of […]

Desultory - des-uhl-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee

  1. lacking in consistency, constancy, or visible order, disconnected; fitful: desultory conversation.
  2. digressing from or unconnected with the main subject; random: a desultory remark.