NEWSLETTER -- February 2004







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Good Old Boat Magazine
7340 Niagara Lane North
Maple Grove, MN 55311-2655
763-420-8923; 763-420-8921 (fax)

Karen Larson, Editor
Jerry Powlas, Technical Editor
Mary Endres, Design

karen at goodoldboat dot com
jerry at goodoldboat dot com

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Thank you for your opinions

Good Old Boat recently conducted a readership survey. Many magazines do this, but their surveys are often little more than thinly disguised data-collection efforts with an emphasis on ad sales. They ask questions about the readers' household income, age, things they own, and things they intend to buy soon. Our survey focused instead on magazine content. We asked every 30th reader (a random sample) how much of the magazine gets read and which articles are read the most. Those who responded (52 percent did!) represented the rest who did not receive a survey.

Our goal was to evaluate our editorial content to see if there are any types of articles that are not well read. We'd hoped to stop publishing superfluous or unpopular types of articles in order to make room for other kinds of content that would be better read. The results surprised us.

We found all of our content to be very well read. There really weren't any stand-out losers that we could drop and few readers would miss. We learned that we pretty much have to keep doing what we are doing. Some of our findings:

There was more, of course. We have an even better picture of who you are, what sort of boat you sail, and what sort of sailing you do. As we suspected, our readers are our kind of sailors.

Our thanks to those who participated. The survey was a mandate from our readers to continue doing what we have been doing. This does not mean we can't find ways to do it better. We are always looking for ways to improve. We appreciate your suggestions. We want to hear from you even when we're not doing a formal survey. In other words, our door is always open. We want to be your sailing magazine.

What's coming in March

The spring issue of Good Old Boat is on the way. Here's what you can expect:

For the love of boats

Speaking seriously

Just for fun

What's more

Ship prefixes

In the December newsletter we also asked readers about ship prefixes:

Being an old submarine sailor, SS stands out as Submersible Ship, this being a diesel submarine.
Similarly there is SSN (Submersible Ship Nuclear)
SSBN (Submersible Ship Ballistic Nuclear)
and SSGN (Submersible Ship Guided Missile Nuclear)
Olli Wendelin

HMAS, Her Majesty's Australian Ship. (Mine was HMAS Torrens (DE-53), for two weeks in 1992 as part of a junior officer exchange.)
NSY, Navy Sailing Yacht, i.e., the larger-than-daysailing sailboats used by the Naval Academy and Navy ROTC. (Mine was Vindicator (NSY-28), a Morgan Out Islander 51 which -- after being seized in a drug-running bust -- was part of Cornell's Navy ROTC unit for several years in the 1980s.)
Theodore Enders

Another magazine on the horizon

We must be doing something right. (What is it they say about the sincerest form of flattery?) We hear that Sail magazine is launching a Good Old Boat takeoff to be called BoatWorks. It is supposed to hit the newsstands April 15. You may even receive one in your mailbox if you are a Sail subscriber. (That's what we would do if we were launching a second sailing magazine.) We understand that only one issue (perhaps as a trial?) will be published in 2004. Naturally, we're extremely interested in this new kid on the block. If you receive a copy, we'd like to hear what you think of it.

The boat name game

Boat names continue to fascinate us.

It's never too late
We once bought a Hunter 25.5 at half the going price at the time so naturally we had to name her Bargain Hunter. Our Starwind was bought as a trailersailer so she received the name Amphibi-us, complete with a frog decal following the name. Our Columbia 8.3 has beautiful classic lines and a transom that truly looks like a wine glass, so naturally she became Classical Glass.
Jerry Dechert

Several more

From Judee Stalmack: My Last Boat VI, She Got the House, No Egrets, and Flynn's Inn with a companion boat named Inn Like Flynn.

JR Walsh sends: Dawn Naughts.

Artist Charles Duhon's boat is: Artistry with a dinghy named Sketch.

Nikk White sends: Balance with a dinghy named Off and also Tobe (named after a daughter named Tobie) with a dinghy named Knot (Tobe).


Events of interest

Flotilla from Maine to New Brunswick
Points East magazine is organizing its fifth annual two-week Fundy Flotilla from Downeast Maine to interesting ports of call in the Bay of Fundy and beyond June 19 through July 4. For more information, call 888-778-5790.

Ericson rendezvous
Gathering of the Vikings 2004, June 19 to 20, Poets Cove Marina, Bidwell Harbor, South Pender Island, British Columbia, Canada. For more information contact Stuart MacKenzie: stuartm at pureresults dot com. Resort information at

Alberg 37 rendezvous
The Alberg 37 International Owners Association will hold its annual winter rendezvous at Harrison's Chesapeake House, Rt. 33, Tilghman Island, Maryland, March 6, 2004. Cocktails at 1800 followed by dinner at 1930. For further details, contact Tom and Kaye Assenmacher, 804-472-3853 or visit

Pearson rendezvous
The Pearson Sailing Association of the Chesapeake Bay will be having a brunch and annual meeting March 7 at 10 a.m. Details will be posted on the website soon.

Pet peeves of the marine kind

We also asked people what misused nautical words irritated them.

My pet peeve is calling the Intracoastal Waterway system the Intercoastal Waterway. "Inter" means between. "Intra" means within. If you're making an InTERcoastal voyage (between coasts), it might be like going from New York City to Le Havre, France. If you're making an InTRAcoastal voyage (within the coastline) you might be going from Norfolk, Virginia, to Charleston, South Carolina, without ever going out into the ocean. There's a weekly TV show on boating that always makes this error -- and it drives me crazy.
Don Launer


Oh, I've been waiting to vent on this one. The expression "on the hard" drives me crazy. Its background is British, where boats typically are left on the hard when the extreme tides come and go. It has nothing to do with boats hauled out and stored ashore. It just sounds so irresistably salty that folks have picked up on it.

And don't confuse boot top with waterline. A boot top is placed at or just above the waterline.
Art Hall

Mail Buoy

Hinckleys for the rest of us

I greatly enjoyed J Kolb's article about his restoration project (November 2003). I also feel very fortunate to own a Hinckley 38 and would like to add a few details that might be of interest. It was explained to me by one of Hinckley's employees that Henry Hinckley was not interested in building the H-38. The New York Yacht Club commissioned Sparkman & Stephens to draw up plans for a sailboat that would go to weather in a more lively fashion than the venerable Bermuda 40. Hinckley did not want to build such a modern-looking boat, but he relented to the pressure after making a minor change in the blueprint to give a sweeter sheerline. I have a copy of the blueprints, and the change is notable.

S&S drew up plans for a boat with two rudders! All 22 hulls were built from 1969 to the middle of 1971. Each boat had one rudder where you would expect it to be, and a second rudder was placed on the aft end of the keel. There was a standard wheel to control the main rudder, and there was also a lever off the wheel shaft to control the second rudder. Unfortunately the "experiment" did not work well, and most of the boats have had the experimental rudder and the associated gear removed.

The H-38 was the first boat built by Hinckley with a cored hull. There were some problems with this new technology and it is not unusual to see some repairs to areas that have suffered. Finally, Henry Hinckley was not happy about placing the engine in the bilge. While it does lower the center of gravity to create a stiffer boat, the engine is difficult to get at and may be more vulnerable to water damage.

After all that, the Hinckley 38 is an amazing boat to sail. She is weatherly, stiff in a breeze, and very well balanced.
Dave Bernard
Sharon, Mass.


Copper sheathing
Here's a question that might be of interest to GOB readers. First a bit of background. A friend and I bought a replica of Ralph Munroe's famous sharpie, Egret, in 1999. If you visit and go to the page on small boat adventures, you'll see all the changes we made. One change -- cat ketch to schooner -- was inspired by a Ted Brewer article in Good Old Boat (November 1999) on "lead" -- the distance between sail center of effort and CLR.

Our problem is bottom paint. Our Egret is mostly sailed in Charlotte Harbor where the fouling is intense. Barnacles, mussels, sea squirts, and weed. Every fall we've used Trinidad which has worked well everywhere except on her flat bottom. For as she was intended, we frequently run her up on the sand bars and mud flats to goof around with the kids or to make it easier for some of our mobility-challenged friends to board her. In one two-week period after I cleaned the growth off with a brush, a 3-inch mat of the above flora and fauna appeared.

My question: Considering the $100-plus for Trinidad bottom paint each year plus all that labor, I've been looking into putting real copper sheet on her. Phil Bolger says he thinks it a good idea based on his own experience with his personal boat, Endeavor, but had some doubts about our Egret's marine plywood construction -- the problem of ringshank nailing into the plywood -- and possible effects of water intrusion. On the whole, he thought it would work. I lean strongly toward doing it. I can't see how the little water intrusion, if any, could seriously compromise the plywood's strength. Our Egret has two layers of 3/4 inch on bottom and 2 layers of 3/8 inch on topsides, thus, 1-1/2 and 3/4 inches respectively.

What are your thoughts on the matter? If in support, what opinions concerning thickness, pure copper or alloy, fastening schedule, and other details -- such as tar paper and asphalt under the sheet -- might you share?
Dennis Bradley


Ted Brewer replies
I think copper is a good idea in your situation. I've no idea of thickness but would lean toward something substantial, say 1/32 inch. I'd drill pilot holes with a stop on the bit so that it would not penetrate into the inner layer of plywood, use bronze anchorfast nails, but dip the nails into 3M 5200 sealant before driving them home in order to eliminate any moisture penetration.

I don't know that tar paper under the copper would improve anything. As far as fastener spacing goes, I'd guess not more than 3 inches c-c, but try it and see how it goes. I could be tempted to try to solder the joints, too, but that might be going too far. Good luck with it.
Ted Brewer


Blown away
Recently received your sample copy and was "blown away," not only with the quality of the product but also with the quality of the content and how your contributors' writings held my interest. Can't put it down, some articles I've gone back and read for the second time. So . . . here's my subscription order. I'm looking forward to the next Good Old Boat issue.
Tom Favorin


We were touched also
Here in Italy, we have plenty of yachting magazines, but they are mostly devoted to advertisements and regattas reports. They talk about new, large, expensive boats for the "happy few" or dream-style sailings toward tropical islands. There is only one little magazine which talks also of old family boats, domestic cruises, home-made repairs, but it is somehow "cold" and unfriendly toward me. Good Old Boat, instead, which I've read two sample issues of, welcomes me warmly, even talking in a foreign language about boats I've never heard of, or about a sailing world that is light-years away from ours here in Italy. That's why I felt touched by your magazine and decided to subscribe.

Ah, I'm forgetting! I'm not a boatowner, neither old nor new: at present I can only go strolling about the piers of some marina looking at the boats moored. But reading your magazine, I can breathe the mixed smell of sea wind and varnished woods as well as if I were on a boat of my own. Thank you for this.
Marcello Grillini
Rome, Italy

Book reviews

How to Sail Around The World: Advice and Ideas for Voyaging Under Sail, by Hal Roth (International Marine, 2004; 400 pages, $29.95)
Review by Frederick Street
Zimmerman, Minn.

In the hands of most other authors, this might be a presumptuous title. Yet Hal Roth's latest offering distills years of voyaging and many thousands of sea miles into a clear, no-nonsense discussion of what it takes to voyage far and wide in a sailing vessel. This book presupposes a certain knowledge of and skill level in sailing. But Hal makes the argument that people of average abilities of any age can sail around the world and that experience is the best teacher. He writes, "... you must find out about sailing firsthand. You do not become a seaman by reading." Having said that, he launches right into what turns out to be an incredible wealth of information for the prospective circumnavigator.

The first several chapters of the book deal with the process of finding, evaluating, and outfitting an appropriate vessel for bluewater sailing. Certain widely-held beliefs are shaken a bit here; Hal takes the unusual view that a boat with a fin-keel and a skeg-hung rudder can be a perfectly good vessel on the open ocean. Indeed, a good portion of his voyaging has been done on such a sailboat.

His biggest thrust in the subject of outfitting is that a vessel that is simple and simply rigged is going to serve its owner far better than one rife with complicated systems. This is not to say that Hal and his wife, Margaret, are a minimalists; they have not gone so far as to espouse doing away with engines and electronics. But Hal makes the case that simplicity, reliability, and forethought are to be valued highly and will pay off in time spent enjoying the cruise instead of time spent repairing equipment. He maintains that simplicity will also result in greater safety, a subject he takes very seriously.

The next section of the book discusses route planning and heavy weather sailing. Hal takes a decidedly conservative approach here and once again gives comfort and safety priority over nearly all else. While he deals in detail with several different approaches to handling storms, he suggests that the reader should try to sail in storm-free seasons and avoid getting into situations where more drastic measures are necessary.

The final third of the book covers additional subjects, including a bit on provisioning and refrigeration (or rather, the lack of it), costs of cruising, engines and propulsion, and schooling at sea. The section on children and schooling aboard seems to be offered as an afterthought and includes mostly secondhand information.

The last chapter, titled "The Dream and the Reality," neatly sums up Hal's love of the life aboard in its opening sentences: "The big secret of world travel is to do it in a sailing yacht. It's by far the best way to see the globe." In spite of the huge amount of practical data in this book, Hal remains a romantic at heart and urges the reader to strive after "the pleasure and the freedom" of a life under sail. I highly recommend this beautifully written and well-balanced volume to those committed to working toward that reality, as well as to those of us who can only dream.


Navigating the Edge, by Jill Knight (Harper Collins, 2002; 309 pages;$10.60)
Review by Karen Larson
Minneapolis, Minn.

Australian Jill Knight has written a number of articles for Good Old Boat and others about her sailing adventures and sailboat maintenance while cruising aboard Cooee, a 37-foot wooden cutter . . . a boat now more than 100 years old . . . on which she circumnavigated . . . alone. As they say of the female in a dancing team, she did everything a male dancer does, except that she did it backward and in high heels.

Those of us already in awe of what Jill has accomplished are not surprised, therefore, that she next sat down and wrote a rather powerful first novel. Called Navigating the Edge, her book is set in the Atlantic Ocean from Cape Town, South Africa, to the coast of Brazil.

Her background as a corporate psychologist makes it possible for Jill to develop a cast of characters, primarily sailors, who are reacting to a range of traumatic life experiences as they interact. As could be expected, some grow healthier while others grow distinctly crazier drawing others and their sailboats into harm's way as they do.

Armchair sailors reading this book are soon drawn in and navigating the edge of their seats as several life-and-death struggles occur in mid-ocean.

Without giving away the plot, I'll say that Jill's sailing scenes are descriptive and accurate, her characters well developed and interesting, and her plot line is fantastic and frightening. This one could make a good gift for a friend. The recipient need not be a sailor to enjoy it. It wouldn't be cheating (would it?) to read it yourself before you wrap it up.


Call of the Ancient Mariner, by Reese Palley (International Marine/McGraw-Hill 2004; 258 pages;$19.95)
Review by Karen Larson
Minneapolis, Minn.

Reese Palley has gone around in the world long enough to develop character. He has followed his own course long enough to become a character. And he has gone around at sea long enough to qualify as a salty character. In his newest book, Call of the Ancient Mariner: Reese Palley's Guide to a Long Sailing Life, this old salt would tell others how to do likewise. It hasn't been a bad existence for Reese. On the contrary. Now is the time for those who would do likewise to listen up. The master is speaking.

By his own definition, Reese may be old (he's celebrated his 80th birthday and then a few). But he hasn't lost any brain cells yet. Looking over his shoulder, Reese sees the aging Boomer generation just behind him. The Boomers (forever young at heart) would like to keep sailing. Reese has just written the handbook they need.

In his no-holds-barred manner, Reese has always put strong opinions forth . . . take 'em or leave 'em. He advises his readers (those who would like to grow old, particularly since they find the alternative unattractive), "Slay dragons, go east as the Aardvarks go west, put yourself in harm's way, hold unpopular opinions loudly, and always seek an opportunity to tug at the tail of the tiger. At your great age, you have little to lose. You gain the admiration of the world while they acknowledge your audacity." That's been his plan all along, and he's sticking to it.

Reese offers suggestions about healthy eating, staying active, pacing yourself, and other rules for living life to the fullest. In addition, he interviews other aging skippers to prove that he is not the only one out there. One of these interviewees, Dave Clark, tells Reese: "Of course there are dangers and some risks, but what kind of a life would it be if there weren't a bit of daring in each of us? I'm not so afraid of dying as I am of not living while I'm here."

My own definition of what is "old" has slowly ratcheted upward, I've noticed. With this book in hand, I think I'll target 80 as an age at which I can still go sailing. My hat's off to Reese Palley for convincing me that I can do it.


Chapman Piloting & Seamanship, 64th edition, by Elbert S. Maloney (Sterling Publishing, 2003; 928 color pages; $49.95)
Review by Karen Larson
Minneapolis, Minn.

A book like Chapman needs no introduction and no review. It's an extraordinary reference book full of information useful to all sailors. It's enough to say that a new edition was released in late November 2003. If your own edition is decades old, as ours is, this may be the year to go for an updated copy.



How Boat Things Work, by Charlie Wing
(International Marine / McGraw Hill, 2003, 175 pages, $29.95)
Review by Don Launer
Forked River, N.J.

If you have ever tried to disassemble a winch, fix your steering system, repair a galley pump, or rebuild your head, the chances are that you have been frustrated more than once. Charlie Wing's book, How Boat Things Work, addresses these projects and many more. If you're at all interested in how things work -- and what boatowner isn't -- then this thin, hardcover, large-format book is a gold mine of information. The first thing you notice, when leafing through the book, are the extraordinary illustrations. I found them so perfect that I immediately looked for the name of the illustrator, but none was listed. In an email exchange, the publisher explained that Charlie also did all the illustrations. This accounts for the close melding of text and artwork. These illustrations portray intricate, exploded, color drawings of 80 different systems and devices and show how they're assembled, how they work, and how they can malfunction. Although Charlie has his Ph.D. in Oceanography from MIT, it could just as well be in English, drafting, or art. The text accompanies these illustrations in short, clear, concise sentences. It leads the reader through each phase of the disassembly or assembly process; in fact the combination of writing and illustrations is the best I have ever seen in a book of this genre. The exploded views of parts of a diesel engine alone are worth the price.

When Charlie and his wife departed Portland, Maine, on their 39-foot cutter to follow the sun to the Caribbean, all the tasks he describes in the book were a mystery to both of them. Finally, after many miles and many equipment failures, it was clear that learning to take things apart and repair them were essential skills for these cruising sailors. The result of this learning process is How Boat Things Work, the book they wished they'd had when they first started their cruising odyssey.


The Silent Landscape: The Scientific Voyage of HMS Challenger, by Richard Corfield (Joseph Henry Press, 2003; 285 pages; U.S. $24.95, Canada $34.95)
Review by Wayne Gagnon
Antigo, Wis.

In December, 1872, the British ship HMS Challenger left Portsmouth, England on a voyage that would last until May, 1876, cover 68,900 miles, and add volumes to the already growing body of knowledge of the sea. Until that time, any scientific voyage, including that of HMS Beagle of Charles Darwin fame 40 years earlier, was also charged with expanding the British Empire. The Silent Landscape: The Scientific Voyage of HMS Challenger, by Richard Corfield, is the story of Challenger's historic voyage, the sole purpose of which was a purely scientific exploration of the world's oceans.

The reader is given some idea of what life on board was like for the "scientifics," as they were called by the crew, as well as for that crew, one-fourth of whom deserted by the end of the three and a half-year voyage. However, the larger portion of the narrative is devoted to Challenger's scientific findings and what they have lead to today. For example, the author gives a detailed explanation of the technology Challenger used as they stopped every 120 miles to take soundings and every 300 miles to dredge a bottom sample as they crossed the Atlantic Ocean. He then goes on to follow the evolution of that technology until we arrive at the modern methods of multibeam sonar and satellite navigation systems used today. The author details the Challenger's findings on the Sargasso Sea, the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, deep-sea exploration, plate tectonics, coral growth, the Bermuda Triangle, Antarctica, and many other fascinating discoveries.

At times the book seems like a textbook; some sections may be beyond the grasp of those without a strong scientific background. But the author's style is such that the reader can glean enough information to make reading it worthwhile. He also includes a useful list of suggestions for further reading and a detailed topical index. If you're looking for something to entertain you with swashbuckling heroics, you'll probably find little in here to satisfy you. But if you're interested in history or science or if you're naturally curious about how we've come to know as much as we do about the oceans, you will probably find The Silent Landscape to be, at the very least, an excellent reference book and, at the most, a valuable asset to your personal library.

Looking for
Sea Air 27
Ever heard of a design called a Sea Air 27? It's a modified full-keel sloop with spade rudder, vintage '60s/'70s glass hull, ply/glass decks, built like a bomb shelter . . . but be darned if I can find any ancestry. Any information on the design would be greatly appreciated. It has the potential, and I have the bits and pieces to turn this little puppy into an offshore motorsailer which will sail from Vancouver Island to Scotland and beyond.
Fred Bailey
bailey at island dot net

12-Meter Anitra
Possibly you can help me, or at least head me in the right direction. I had a call from a gal down in Texas who is trying to help out a man in Germany. Seems he bought a 12-Meter in this country named Anitra. It was built in this country somewhere around 1928. He has taken it back to Germany where he plans to completely restore it for a couple million bucks. Know anything about it?
Ray Walker
dockcatcher at comcast dot net

Sunfish parts
We're looking for Sunfish parts and pieces for our sail training and class racing program in Maui, Hawaii. We are planning to hold a regional race in December 2004. We'll take any donation and will issue a tax-deductible receipt from our non-profit organization (Big Island Sailing Foundation or Waiakea Settlement YMCA).

We will also purchase [boats or parts] if the price is really good. One of the problems here is shipping since we are on an outer island. Masts, booms, and hulls cost too much to ship to us unless the donor is willing to assume the expense of shipping to the port of Hilo, Hawaii. Daggerboards, rudders, and fittings can be sent USPS parcel post at reasonable cost.
John Luchau
skiprjohn at aol dot com
HC2 Box 6661, Keaau, HI 96749, 808-982-5959
Vice Commodore, Na Hoa Holomoku of Hawaii Yacht Club and Senior Sailing Instructor for Hilo's YMCA. (Na Hoa Holomoku is Hawaiian for "shipmates.")

A tall man's boat
Because I do not want to spend more than 50 thou, I have been looking for the smallest keel cruising boat which has 6-foot 4-inch headroom, a forward berth, and a non-claustrophobic aft berth. We do not want a full keel. The boat will be used in San Francisco Bay, not for bluewater cruising.
John MacCready
rhone at innercite dot com

John is looking for suggestions regarding boat types and specific boats.

LaFitte 44
I always loved Bob Perry designs, especially the Valiant 40. I purchased a LaFitte 44 in 1979. I met many of the early buyers at the time. What ever happened to the company or the boats? I think they made perhaps some 10s of boats, but one rarely sees one for sale. Their values are holding firm, but there are no associations, registry, or mention of them in current sailing magazines. I owned mine for five and a half years, lived aboard, cruised to Mexico and San Francisco/Oakland. But they seem to have vanished from the scene. It was a well-found boat which got me through some big seas off Point Conception. (18-foot seas followed by lumpy seas for two more days. The wind blew away my anemometer somewhere above 66 knots -- my last log entry for wind!). A fine, fine Bob Perry design . . .
Mel Malkoff
Mel at Malkoff dot com

Many years ago I read an article about Tom Colvin's Gazelle. I am now looking for a good old boat, have seen a couple for sale, and wondered if any of your readers could expound on its virtues or lack thereof. I've found the information they have provided on other boats exceedingly helpful in narrowing my search. Thomas Colvin designed it as a 42-foot junk-rigged schooner, although several have been built as gaff-rigged schooners. It was designed to be built of aluminum or steel.
Mike Cutlip
mike_cutlip at msn dot com

Ask the Surveyor
Surveyor and Good Old Boat contributing editor  Bill Sandifer is our answer man. To contact him with your questions, email Bill at devilsel at ametro dot net.

Q My inboard sailboat vibrates a lot when underway. How do I fix it?

A To fix it, you first need to know what is wrong. It could be barnacles on the prop, a bent prop blade, or a rope or debris caught on the prop. It could be misalignment of the engine with the shaft or it could be a worn Cutlass bearing caused by misalignment.

The easiest thing to check is the first one. Dive on the prop. Even if you cannot see it, you can feel the prop and determine if it is bent or has barnacles or debris on it. Clear the prop, try to bend the blade to match the others and try the engine. You may not be able to restore exact pitch, but sometimes you can get close enough to last through the season until you can get the prop professionally restored.

While you are down there, try moving the prop and shaft up and down. If there is a lot of motion, the Cutless bearing is probably badly worn. This is a shipyard job.

If it is none of these things, you'll have to check the alignment. It's easier to hire a mechanic to do this, but you can do it yourself. Disconnect the coupling bolts and separate the coupling halves about the thickness of a sheet of paper, no more than this. Using a feeler gauge, measure the space between the coupling halves at 12, 3, 6, and 9 o'clock positions. The measurements should be within .003 of each other. If more than that, you need to align the engine to the shaft. Good advice on how to do this can be found in Nigel Calder's Boatowner's Mechanical and Electrical Manual.

Q I have an Irwin 30. I sail on a fresh water lake in Illinois. How long can I leave the boat in the water before I need to bottom paint it?

A If you do not have bottom paint on the boat, you could have a problem with zebra mussels in several weeks in warm water. If you do have fresh bottom paint, I'd expect you'd get four years out of a paint job, as I usually do. I do not haul my boat in the winter as you probably do. It would depend on the type of paint you applied if it would still be good after drying out. There are paints made that will withstand drying out and still be active. Check the label. Fresh water should not be as fouling as salt water, except for the mussel problem. If your lake does not have zebra mussels, then you should be good for one season without paint, but I would not take the chance. It is easier to paint before than after fouling.

Q The glass in our Com-Pac is starting to bubble around the edges. Can the glass be replaced? Also what is the best way to keep the brass/bronze looking good inside the cabin?

A I've never heard of glass bubbling but maybe it's the sealant it is set into. The glass can be replaced. I would contact the builders and ask them for the name of the supplier of the ports and contact them. They should have information on how to fix the problem and how to keep the inside of the ports polished. If it were my ports, I'd use metal polish or live with tarnished ports. It is a lot of work to keep them bright.

Other bits of info
Annapolis Classic Watercraft
We recently became aware of Annapolis Classic Watercraft, a relatively new concept for good old boating enthusiasts, begun by Bill Donahue. Here's a sample of what the company is about from the website:

"Annapolis Classic Watercraft was created for that enthusiast; the knowledgeable sailor or powerboater who owns, seeks, or simply appreciates boats that are beyond the ordinary. Located in the heart of the historic Eastport maritime district of Annapolis, Maryland, on the Chesapeake Bay, ACW offers an unusual range of services and products for boatmen and boatwomen who want to acquire, renew, or learn about classic boats.

"Like our clients, we at Annapolis Classic Watercraft are enthusiasts. We love boats: designing them, building them, rebuilding them, using them, or just talking about them. Visitors are always welcome in our shop, and we encourage you to stop by the next time you are in Annapolis."

The company restores boats, offers classes in boat restoration, and - here's the real breakthrough concept -- makes indoor space available for the do-it-yourself restorer. This space is offered with tools, supplies, and advice nearby. For more information, contact Annapolis Classic Watercraft at: 866-263-9366; ACW at uncommonboats dot com; or visit the website

Preggie pops
Nausea isn't exclusively for boaters. Women in the first trimester of pregnancy share our feelings of distress. It is said that taking ginger helps relieve the sensation. But the remedy may be inconsistent. It turns out that some ginger ale, ginger snaps, and other ginger products are made with artificial ginger flavoring. So those suffering from mal de mer can't always count on the results they're seeking when drinking ginger ale or munching cookies.

What's new? We recently learned about Preggie Pops, a ginger-filled lollipop made to ease morning sickness (and coincidentally nausea of other varieties). We're naturally suspicious of anything named Preggie Pops, but we suspect they won't make you pregnant. Still, just to be sure, we're not testing them (some of us on the editorial staff would rather be 50 than pregnant)! If you'd like to test these ginger pops, we'll publish your report in a future newsletter. A box of 21 lollipops costs $9.95. Call toll-free: 866-773-4443 or visit

Pumpout education
The BoatU.S. Foundation for Boating Safety and Clean Water is offering some new tools to make onboard waste management a little easier for boaters. Three handy information cards are now available: Basics of Boat Heads, Basics of Boat Pumpout, and Basics of No Discharge Areas. Boaters can download the information cards by visiting

Vessel safety check
The U.S. Coast Guard offers an ongoing free Vessel Safety Check program, and spring's a good time to ensure that your boat is in compliance. To take advantage of this service, contact your local unit of the Coast Guard Auxiliary and the United States Power Squadron. To find your local unit, visit or call the Coast Guard Infoline at 800-368-5647. A qualified volunteer examiner will meet you at your boat at a prearranged time. The examiner will check the presence and condition of 15 items required by state and/or federal regulations and answer questions about boating safety. These volunteers do not issue fines or citations. If your boat successfully meets all requirements, your boat will have the VSC decal placed on it. While the VSC decal does not preclude boardings by the law enforcement authorities, it can give you confidence that such encounters will be as positive as possible.

Sailing quotes
Something in the water's wide spread both fills the mind and empties it.
Jennifer Ackerman
from the essay "When the Sea Calls," 1997

The ocean has always been a salve to my soul . . . the best thing for a cut or abrasion was to go swimming in salt water. Later down the road of life, I made the discovery that salt water was also good for the mental abrasions one inevitably acquires on land.
Jimmy Buffett from A Pirate Looks at Fifty, 1998

Until you do it all yourself, you cannot have any idea of the innumerable minutiae to be attended to in the proper care of a yacht.
John MacGregor

Sailing is the second sexiest sport.
Dr. Ruth Westheimer, 1998

Men often ask when it is time to reef. It is always time to reef when you think it is. The moment you would feel easier and your boat handles better by having less sail spread is the time to shorten down.
Thomas Fleming Day

If you have to ask what it costs to run a yacht, you can't afford one.
J.P. Morgan

Keep out of trouble. It is a disgrace to call for help when you have gotten yourself into trouble through ignorance and carelessness. Father Neptune has no patience with those who do not respect him.
L. Francis Herreshoff, 1950

Sailing is a good sport. You don't have to beat up the other guy, like you do in boxing or football; you just try to outsmart him, and outsail him, and then you go out and have a beer with him.
John Kolius

A good seaman, when he boards another vessel, has his eyes everywhere but on the comfort -- or lack of it -- below, or on the gadgets and fancy gear. He is watching the rigging, the deck fittings, the way the gear is stowed, the way the wires are spliced, and the way lines are coiled. Whatever he does, he is always learning.
Tristan Jones, from Yarns, 1983

I am not particularly interested in racing or record passages. After all, I go to sea to get away from the competitive rat-race, not to join it.
Jim Wharram

A knot is never "nearly right;" it is either exactly right or it is hopelessly wrong, one or the other; there is nothing in between.
Clifford Ashley from The Ashley Book of Knots

Published February 1, 2004