Author Archive | Patrick

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Harnessing the sun: Solar power on a sailboat

Adding solar power to Violet Hour is something we’ve been meaning to do since returning from our cruise last summer and were having trouble keeping our batteries charged because we weren’t motoring enough. Most sailboats in the PNW do a lot of motoring, which allows their engine’s alternator considerable time to charge up the batteries. […]

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A shakedown sail to the San Juans

The importance of a shakedown sail is, I think, often forgotten or underestimated. A shakedown sail before a longer one helps discover problems with boat work done over the long winter. And perhaps more importantly, it rebuilds sailing skills, especially physical and mental stamina that might have grown weak over the winter. Not just any […]

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We’re gonna need a bigger pry bar

The hardest kind of boat project, in my opinion, is any involving getting stuck things out of the thing they’re stuck in. Seized bolts, corroded screws, prop shaft couplers, etc. You may recall 3 months ago I started the project of rebedding our Navtec U-Bolts that connect the rig to the tie rods and chainplates. […]

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Choosing a non-skid paint

Recently we passed the two year anniversary of owning our boat – two years since Feb 14 2015. It’s amazing to think how far we’ve come in that time – with many major projects completed (a rerig, rudder removal + steering system repair, rebedding lots of deck hardware, etc), plus two major summer cruises (lower […]

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Splayed out wire ready for a swageless fitting.

5 tips from a DIY re-rig

A sailboat’s rig — the mast and wires that hold it up — is a critical component that allows us to convert the wind’s power into movement. This amazing harnessing of physics allows us to sail, but it’s also very important that it doesn’t fail — because a dismasting at sea can be a life […]

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