2018 March 1
We live in a 9-to-5 world, our calendars, computers and appointment books jammed with scribbled must-dos and don’t-forgets, and we have very little time that isn’t scheduled. The very concept of “spare time” has disappeared from our vocabularies. Kids scurry from soccer practice to dance lessons without pause for either kid or parent.
2018 March 1
A popular one-design dinghy class association recently announced that its rules committee had approved new class-legal digital compasses. I was curious to learn more about the breakthrough, wondering if the committee had finally given in to data. Cruisers and handicap racers find that data can simplify sailing: inexpensive computers tie routing to actual weather, a start can be precisely timed with clocks that account for speed and distance, and tactics can be determined based on actual fleet and global positioning. Instead, I learned that the committee had barely budged: Finally allowing its sailors to pick from two 20-year-old digital compass designs, in addition to the analog kind, but only “provided that the devices do not have the capacity for information other than heading.” 
2018 March 1

Over the course of two years, the Alden 44 Tioga sailed an Atlantic loop, with 33 friends and family taking turns crewing

It began with a dream of sailing bluewater. In 2008, Philip Kersten, owner of the 1978 Alden 44 sloop Tioga, assembled a rookie crew to sail from Nahant, Massachusetts, just north of Boston, to Bermud
2018 March 1

A diesel engine expert shares a list of jobs to get the iron genny in gear for sailing season

Engine maintenance is rarely at the top of anyone’s list of favorite fitting out chores, but skipping it is hardly a wise option. With luck, major jobs were done before the boat was laid up, so the list of spring jobs is short enough that most DIYers should be able to get through them relatively quickly. And then you can sit back and enjoy the sailing season, knowing that you’ve done what you can to avoid engine problems. 
2018 January 1

Buying a boat for charter offers owners a chance to skip the maintenance and finance their charter vacations

Most sailors aspire to own a brand-new boat, but the rising cost of boat ownership can make that dream seem out of reach. The good news is that the charter business has also ballooned in the last deca
2018 January 1

Modern design capitalizes on a bright and airy layout

This very nice looking sloop was designed by Berret-Racoupeau and is built by Wauquiez. Here we see the design pendulum swing hard to the comfort side of the scale. I would call this a raised saloon configuration with an aft cockpit. If you are tired of dark and gloomy interiors, this is the boat for you.
2018 January 1

Moderately sized racer-cruiser is a reinvention of a classic design

This new Grand Soleil model is an attempt to produce a boat with the same impact that the previous Finot-designed GS34 had. More than 300 of the early 34s were built. But to replicate that success takes more than good design and build. It takes good timing and an element of good fortune. The new 34 is designed by a team with Skyron doing the naval architecture and the builder Cantiere del Pardo collaborating with Skyron on the interior and styling. Where the X49 put the emphasis on comfort in the racer-cruiser blend, the GS34 puts the emphasis on performance while not ignoring comfort. This is my first review of a Skyron design.
2018 January 1

A contemporary-styled cruiser with a focus on performance

The X-Yachts have long been one of my favorite European production boatbuilders. Given the trends of today, i.e. modern Euro-type styling, comfort and convenience mixed with some performance, I see X-Yachts as always one step ahead of its competition. The design work is in-house and led by Nils Jepsesen. The new X49 is a 49-foot 6-inch performance cruiser. I like that term and I reflect on how much that category has changed since the Valiant 40 introduced it in 1974. In 1974 it was considered by many to be a radical approach to cruising. The words “cruising” and “performance” were seldom used to describe the same boat. But the world of yachting learned that those were not mutually exclusive at all. Today you can have maximum comfort with maximum performance and it’s considered “normal.”
2018 January 1

Hurricane-ravaged schools and charter companies are getting back on their feet, with a little help from friends

As the worst hurricane season in decades ravaged the Caribbean, Texas and Florida,  marine businesses immediately sprung to action to assess the damage and get back on their feet in hopes of still being able to capitalize on the lucrative high season just months away. 
2018 January 1

Upgrading your boat’s power grid is a good investment in time, money

Some upgrades and repairs on a sailboat are no-brainers. It’s not difficult know when you need new sails or the paint job and brightwork need attention. But figuring out if a battery upgrade is necessary and how to do it is at times less obvious. Odds are, though, that if the house batteries are more than five years old, you are going to want to think about replacing them. Wet-cell lead acid batteries have a life span of about five years. Some can be coaxed to perform longer, but their performance will degrade over time. If you’ve found that you are constantly charging the batteries or can’t run many of the systems you’d like to for long periods, it may be worth considering a battery upgrade as well. 
2018 January 1
I’d like to install some USB ports to charge phones and tablets on my boat. I have a J/35 built in 1986, so the entire interior has exactly one 12-volt receptacle built into the electrical panel next to the starboard quarterberth. I’m OK with that, but my kids seem to run their iPods all the time, so I need a way to charge them without fighting over the single receptacle. My thought was to install two USB ports, one going forward to the V-berth and one over to the port quarter berth. How do I connect them to the electrical system?
2018 January 1

Famed lensman Onne van der Wal set a deadline for the mostly DIY refit of a classic cruiser fit for the family

It was 40 degrees in the Pearson 36 Onne van der Wal had propped up on jackstands next to his house some nights. Although the boat, which was undergoing a mostly DIY refit, was heated, snow would pile up on its cover, making any project a bone-chilling affair. 
2017 November 1

An aluminum hull holds useful attributes

Here is a very interesting boat from the French builder Boréal. It’s 44 feet on deck and 47 feet 9 inches overall. What makes this boat unusual is the fact that it’s built in aluminum using a multichine hull form. On top of that it has a centerboard that reduces draft from 8 feet 3 inches to a beachable 3 feet 4 inches.
2017 November 1

Farr’s cruising design with performance features for the foiling-focused

Here is a high-performance cruising boat from the Farr office in Annapolis. As the promotional material says, “We are entering the age of foil-assisted sailing.”  
2017 November 1

Water-ballasted speedster offers performance and comfort with a small crew

The new J/121 is an extension of the formula used for the J/70. The idea was to develop a fast 40-footer that could be cruised or raced with a small crew, meaning five or fewer people. Racing would be organized with strict one-design rules and the J/Boats people have a lot of experience and success with this format. I see the boat as good all around and particularly a fun cruising boat for mom and dad. The designers at J/Boats seem to have a knack of drawing the perfect boat for Bob. This is most definitely a boat I could enjoy. Look at it: It’s beautiful, clean, unaffected and well proportioned. What’s not to like?

Perry on Design

  • This offshore cruiser meets the demands of the Pacific Northwest and its curmudgeonly owner

  • A way-out-of-the-box cruising catamaran has no speed limit

  • New flagship for the Oceanis line has speed and comfort in a stylish package

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