Free Bottom Paint

Bob, the owner of Admiral Ship Supply, has several gallons of bottom paint he would like to give away in exchange for a report on how well it has preformed after one year.  If you need bottom paint and would like to try an experiment, talk to Bob and he will set you up.  Admiral is in the Boat Haven shipyard near the heavy haul out.

By |2019-05-30T20:01:54-07:00May 30th, 2019|Boat Maintenance|0 Comments

Return of the Riblets

It’s almost bottom paint time, how smooth are you going to sand and burnish? Could super smooth be slower? From Scuttlebutt.

1987 America's Cup winner Dennis Connor

Washington, DC (January 17, 2014) – From the sleek hulls of racing yachts to Michael Phelps’ shaved legs, most objects that move through the water quickly are also smooth. But researchers from UCLA have found that bumpiness can sometimes be better.

“A properly designed rough surface, contrary to our intuition, can reduce skin-friction drag,” said John Kim, a professor in the mechanical and aerospace engineering department at UCLA. Kim and his colleagues modeled the fluid flow between two surfaces covered with tiny ridges. They found that even in turbulent conditions the rough surface reduced the drag created by the friction of flowing water. The researchers report their findings in the journal Physics of Fluids.

The idea of using a rough surface for reduced drag had been explored before, but resulted in limited success. More recently scientists have begun experimenting with rough surfaces that are also extremely difficult to wet, a property called superhydrophobicity. In theory this means that the surfaces can trap air bubbles, creating a hydrodynamic cushion, but in practice they often lose their air cushions in chaotic flows.


By |2014-01-20T17:09:59-08:00January 20th, 2014|Boat Maintenance|0 Comments

Boat Winter Checklist

Post by Beth Leonard on the Boat US Seaworthy blog.

Good chafe protection can prevent shredded lines.

Good chafe protection can prevent shredded lines.

Fight the winter blues by paying your boat a visit and making sure all is well. Whether it’s stored on the hard or in the water, you may just forestall some spring problems.

The Walk-Around, If Your Boat’s In The Water

Take a close look at the waterline. Is there a change? If the boat looks lower on its lines than the last time you saw it, or if it’s down at the bow or the stern, check for water in the bilges when you get aboard.

Check docklines along their entire length for security and any signs of chafe. Adjust the chafe guards if necessary (heavy hose, fire hose, or commercially made chafe guards will keep your lines from shredding during bad weather). Smaller boats can get caught under a dock at low tide and then be overwhelmed by the rising tide and sunk. Make sure docklines are tight enough to keep the boat off the dock, but loose enough to allow for variations in water level.

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By |2013-12-11T13:35:44-08:00December 11th, 2013|Boat Maintenance|0 Comments

Heresy! Modify a T-Bird?

Does This Make Sense?

Does This Make Sense?

Down in Australia some kids who didn’t know any better cut the cabin off their T-Bird in an effort to make it more race friendly. Looks pretty good from that aspect but not as comfortable to cruise. Wait a minute, they’re already too fast.

By |2013-11-22T12:17:59-08:00November 22nd, 2013|Boat Maintenance|0 Comments

Clean and Green Boating Products 101: non-zinc anodes

Spring time is coming and with it a haul out and time to get your boat ready for the year. For many of us that means making hard choices: balancing a desire to use more environmentally friendly products against the need to protect our boat from the sea’s ability to quickly degrade it. The problem is that many of the tried and true materials work because of their toxicity – for instance Trinidad SR with its high copper content – and many of the new non-toxic products have not proven to work very well. Aluminum anodes MAY be an exception, a product that works better than traditional zinc anodes and is safer for the marine environment. From the Seattle based Clean Boating Foundation.


The Clean Boating Foundation is often asked by boaters about products they can use to reduce their environmental impact while enjoying their boat and the beautiful waters of Puget Sound.  The three major responses are: cleaning supplies, non-copper bottom paint and aluminum/magnesium anodes.  Let’s talk today about anodes.

What are anodes?  They’re sacrificial lumps of metal attached to the bottom of your boat to prevent the wasting of the good metals of your boat (hull, shaft, propeller, etc) through galvanic corrosion.  Basically, the anode corrodes before the boat does, saving you costly repairs and headaches – anodes are a good thing.  Heard of Zincs?  Zincs are anodes.  But anodes don’t necessarily have to be zinc.

In fact, even though zinc has been the choice metal in traditional marine anodes for years, there are more effective and environmentally preferable (and sometimes less expensive) choices out there.  The problem with zinc anodes, besides the fact that zinc itself is dangerous to the marine environment when it corrodes away into the water (it is actually regulated in Washington’s NPDES industrial and boatyard permits), is that they require cadmium as an activator for the galvanic protection process.  Cadmium is an extremely toxic metal, regulated at the federal level.  Bad stuff.


By |2013-02-11T17:55:52-08:00February 11th, 2013|Boat Maintenance|0 Comments

Marine Battery Types and Charging Tips

Story by Peter d’Anjou, from Boat Trader

battery-charging-diagramMost boats under 50 feet in length have 12-volt electrical systems. Yet many experienced boaters can’t tell you much about the batteries they have on board, let alone how their batteries and charging systems work. Take my buddy Jeff, for instance. It’s the middle of the season and one of the two 12-volt batteries on his 30-foot sailboat is nearing the end of its life. When I asked Jeff, an engineer by trade and an experienced boater, what kind of battery he was choosing to replace the old one, he blithely said, “Oh, a cheapo X-mart wet cell.” Clearly driven by short-term economics, my friend may not have realized that batteries using the same charging system should be replaced in sets.

There’s a lot to know about marine batteries. I’ve written briefly about them before in Lay-up Tips, but now I realize a primer on batteries would be helpful. Modern day conveniences such as laptop computers and cell phones using lithium ion batteries have contributed much to the knowledge and design of batteries since Gaston Plante initially invented the lead-acid battery in 1859.  However, marine batteries, especially the wet-cell kind, are still in the relative dark ages of battery design.

battery smart regulator

A smart multi-step regulator can sense charge, adjust to the batteries’ charging phase, and optimize longevity. A smart regulator with optional temperature sensor sells for $275 at West Marine.

They are purpose-built and their internal structure will reflect their use—starter, deep-cycle, or dual-purpose—as well as their limitations.   For instance, a battery designed for starting your engine will typically have more internal plates closer together, providing more surface area to give that higher, one-time discharge required in powering a starter motor, but will not be as good at the long, steady discharge that deep-cycle batteries, with thicker active plates and higher antimony concentrations give. Deep-cycle batteries can be discharged from 50 to 80 percent and recover easily, while starting batteries don’t like to be discharged more than 50%.

Chemical Types:

Marine batteries are available in three chemical types: Flooded, Gel, and Absorbed Glass Mat (AGM).  Regardless of chemical type, they’re rated by energy output, generally expressed as ampere hours, and categorized by how many charges (cycles) the (more…)

By |2013-02-04T15:10:04-08:00February 6th, 2013|Boat Maintenance|0 Comments

Superstorm Sandy damages more than 65,000 boats

Record-high surge levels caused hundreds, if not thousands, of boats stored at low elevations to drift away. Photo courtesy of BoatUS

This doesn’t bode well for anyone, including those of us who write a yearly check for boat insurance. From Three Sheets Northwest.

Nov 15 2012 in Currents by Deborah Bach

More than 65,000 recreational boats were damaged or lost as a result of Superstorm Sandy, according to BoatUS.

The insurance and advocacy association also estimates that Sandy-related damages to recreational boats total $650 million, making the late October storm the single largest industry loss since BoatUS began keeping records in 1966.

“We are all reeling from the huge impact this storm has had on communities and people’s lives,” BoatUS spokesperson Scott Croft said. “We’ve never seen anything like it.

“The scope of the damage to boats is unprecedented, affecting large areas from the Atlantic seaboard as far inland as the Great Lakes, with the majority of damage in New Jersey, New York and Connecticut.”

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By |2012-11-20T11:22:53-08:00November 20th, 2012|Boat Maintenance|0 Comments

What’s your boat look like from underwater?

Here is a interesting concept, Roth Diving Services, one of our club sponsors, has set up the ability to do on the spot videos, for inspecting everything from zincs, props, rudders, hulls, anything you may want inspected and captured on video.

I plan a haulout to repaint the bottom on the one week off we have during the Spring Whitecap series. Looks like it is due, as there is some hard growth starting in some places, not exactly a race ready bottom! If you would like Mike Roth to do a video inspection, his contact information is on the scrolling Sponsor banner on this page.

See you on the water…



By |2012-04-08T17:02:52-07:00April 8th, 2012|Boat Maintenance|0 Comments

Tuning the Rig to Balance Your Boat

Photo by Christophe Favreau,

From Elliot / Pattison Sailmakers website, another early season boat tune-up post.

The basis for tuning a boat starts with an understanding of what it is you are trying to accomplish. While many one design classes publish tuning guides the top sailors realize that those guides are merely starting points and have to be adjusted to fit individual boats, sails, and even the way that different people sail.

The basis for tuning your boat should start with balancing the boat. This means having your sailplan balanced with your hull shape or having the Center of Effort of your sails (the CE) in line with the Center of Lateral Resistance (CLR) of the your hull. This gives you a neutral helm because you don’t have to have the rudder turned one way of the other to keep the boat going straight and the associated drag that causes.


By |2012-03-24T09:39:13-07:00March 24th, 2012|Boat Maintenance|0 Comments