Merry Christmas

Just wanted to wish everyone a Merry Christmas!

Hopefully you all got some good boating stuff, or maybe just some time to work on your hobbies and visit with friends and family.

Most importantly, lets remember the ‘reason for the season’ as they say…

Merry Christmas!

SpaceX Lands!

OK, it’s not a boat… but it’s sure exciting technology.

Contrats to SpaceX!

They landed their Falcon 9 first stage back on solid ground… the first orbital launch craft to return a first stage for reuse.

Incredible, just incredible.

That was one of the most exciting launches I’ve watched in years.

Drainage Pipe Clamps

>>> Drainage Pipe Clamps

One thing a boat builder can never have enough of is clamps, but those little things can get pricey pretty quick.

Often the need is for lots of "gentle" pressure, not tons of force.

This paddle board maker has come up with a nice solution – split drainage pipe.

As a professional builder of hollow wooden paddle boards I have a lot of clamps. One of the handiest clamps I use are these spring clamps made from 4" Schedule 20 perimeter drain pipe. These clamps were originally made for building the rails on my wood paddle board kits, but this summer my wife started stealing them for holding down row-covers in her garden. The clamps do not have crushing clamping force but for their weight they are surprisingly strong. There are many things that make these clamps really awesome:

  • They can clamp at weird angles.
  • They can be used individually with a very light touch or nested together to increase their clamping force.
  • They stay put on narrow edges where other clamps eject themselves
  • They are rust-proof
  • They weigh next to nothing

Probably the coolest thing is they are made from the waste cutoffs that would otherwise end up in the landfill. Every new construction project throws out enough perimeter drainage pipe cutoffs to fill a Rubbermaid with these clamps. It is because of this upcycling benefit that I feel this secrete should not be limited to just wood surfboard builders.

Passing of Ted Pike

I received this from Jay Greer from the CommonsenseBoats mailing list.

Our condolences to Ted’s friends and family.

A very good man has just crossed the bar. I was over at Edensaw Hardwoods today and learned, much to my sorrow, that an old friend I and many of you may have known over the years has passed on. Ted Pike left this world about four weeks ago. Ted aside from being a great sailor and boat builder was one of the top sales reps for Edensaw here in Port Townsend WA. He had not been feeling up to par for over a week and so checked into Jefferson County Hospital. They ran a few tests and put him on a chopper for Swedish Hospital in Seattle. Shortly after arriving he lapsed into a coma and passed on a few weeks later. He never regained consciousness. Sorry to have to say goodby to a pal!
Jay Greer

Portland Pudgy

>>> Portland Pudgy

Billed as the "World’s Best Dinghy", the Portland Pudgy certainly seems to be an interesting (and tough) design.

Made from rotation-molded polyethylene, it has closed-cell foam filling making it "unsinkable". Easily rightable (they have videos of it being done by a person in the water), it looks like a tough, serviceable boat.

How may dinghys have you seen flying?

A Portland Pudgy was used as a gondola under a bunch of helium filled balloons on an attempted Atlantic aerial crossing. Really.

MJM Yachts 50z

>>> MJM Yachts 50z

Manufacturing the worlds most advanced cruising yacht to the highest standards of speed, efficiency, and stability takes lots of technology and an uncompromising discipline.

Pretty boat… that system that allows the boat to "hover" on its on is really slick. Not sure how much I would care to trust in "by itself" in a crowded area like he did in the video. Not sure if there is a wireless remote or not. The triple (claimed to be more efficient than dual – seems counterintuitive to me, but) Volvo-Penta IPS600 is an interesting setup.

Synthetic teak and no brightwork is a trend I like seeing on upper end boats. I want to enjoy the boat, not spend all my time on maintenance.

Sailing Totem

>>> Sailing Totem

This is an incredible blog of a family who moved onto their boat and went away, cruising full time since 2008.

They continue to post about their adventures. Lots of information for those wanting to "sail away" along with lots of tidbits about raising a familiy on a boat.

Welcome aboard!

I’m Behan. In 2008, my family went through a radical lifestyle change. We sold most of our belongings, moved onto our boat, and sailed away from home. With a deep commitment to sustainable living and a desire to live life to the fullest, we’ve been slowly traveling afloat since 2008.

We hope to encourage anyone thinking of taking the leap to live a differently by sharing a slice of the cruising life through inspiring stories, practical tips, and destination information.

Fixes and breakage

Just in case you notice, I’ve been doing a bunch of work tracking down a lot of the old, broken links on the site and cleaning them up. External links (links to other sites) may be broken if the other site is "gone", but I’m leaving them in place for now, for historical sake. Internal links I’m attacking and have significantly improved.

Feel free to drop me a note if you find issues: [email protected]