Let's start this book off with some simple rules you can put to work immediately to make maintaining your boat less frustrating.
Maintaining a Cruising Boat
When we think of voyaging, we think of tradewind passages and beautiful landfalls. But what will really govern how much fun your cruise will be is much more mundane: It will come down to how good you are at maintaining your boat.
In this book, Colin and John share knowledge gained from a combined 100 years of maintaining offshore boats.
Table of Contents:
Let's face it, cruising boats are horribly unreliable, and gear failures are the most common cruise-ruiner. But we can reduce the problems a lot by thinking about fault tolerance. Here are three real world examples you can use right now to make your boat better.
There is not a lot of point in writing about maintenance without addressing the 800-pound gorilla in the room: what it really costs to maintain a voyaging sailboat. Get this wrong and your cruise will be miserable and short.
In this chapter we give you a simple, but surprisingly accurate, tool to estimate what maintenance is going to cost.
A chapter that will give you a whole new way to think about boat maintenance, including an easy-to-use gear selection method that will save you a bundle as well as untold grief.
We in the offshore cruising community talk a lot about the right way and the wrong way to equip and maintain our boats, but that's all meaningless until we have answered one basic question...
You will never get everything done on your boat. This we guarantee. So one of the most important skills you can have as a boat maintenance technician is prioritization. In this chapter John tells a story of when he got his priorities wrong, and what he learned from that.
One of the many things I enjoy about the high quality comments we get here at AAC is that I draw pretty much endless inspiration for new posts from them. In fact, if I wrote a full post every time a comment inspired me, I would be posting twice a day...and have no life. The [...]
Having the right spare parts aboard is one of the biggest contributors to a fun and stress free voyage. But how do you decide what to buy and then keep track of what you have?
John answers those questions and provides downloads of our parts list and the program we use to keep track on "Morgan's Cloud".
Unstepping the mast for winter storage is a royal pain in the neck...but it's the right thing to do.
Unstepping the mast is one of the most stressful tasks we sailboat owners face, but here are some tips to make it a lot easier.
Question: Our Swan 51 is at Morris Yachts for a mini refit this winter and my plan, in addition to everything else, is to start to replace some of the existing rod rigging. It turns out that the rod is 24 years old. Navtec says it should be replaced every 11 years or 30,000 miles. [...]
When you have decades of experience running commercial research yachts where downtime is not an option, you learn how to make repairs while "out there". Colin shares information that could save your cruise, and maybe even your boat.
Your engine mixing elbow can damage your engine. Here's how to prevent that.
You should lubricate your seacocks every year before launching, and here's an easy way to do that.
Here's a simple easy-to-build gadget that will make a huge difference to the effectiveness of your freezer, by circulating the air so the stuff at the top and farthest from the plates does not thaw, while the food at the bottom and against the plates remains frozen, particularly when the freezer is packed tight.
Propane is an intrinsically dangerous fuel to have on a boat. Here are 10 tips to ameliorate the risk of an explosion.
"Morgan's Cloud" with a cockpit enclosure? Can it be true? Yes it is, and here's the why and the how. This will help you decide if you want one too. Chapter will be complimentary for two days only.
Considering a cockpit enclosure? Building one that a real sailor can love takes a deep fixation on getting the details right.
Andy's a big fan of Dux high modulus rope standing rigging. He takes a look at what Dux is and some really interesting uses for it. Chapter will be complimentary for two days only.
Andy takes a deep dive into when, if and how, to re-rig with Dux high modulus Dyneema rope. Techniques, advantages and disadvantages, it's all here.
We have been deep into cool gear and stuff in the last few chapters of our Online Book, Maintaining a Cruising Boat. Now it's time to take a step back and remind ourselves of the vital stuff that will actually get us out there voyaging.