Ryan and Keira Falvey

Your Marine Hose Professionals Discuss How to Boost Your Family’s Fun With a New Boat

Raritan Engineering your marine hose specialists would like to share with you these topics we thought would be of interest to you this month regarding how a family boat means more family fun.

Your marine hose manufacturers talk about how regardless of your income, buying a new boat probably represents a big financial commitment. But the return on investment can prove priceless. Allow me to provide some examples from my own life afloat.

Last Fourth of July, we took the boat out to view a large commercial fireworks display. Since we never even got on plane, even though we were out for hours with family and friends, it cost next to nothing. 

My youngest daughter (finally) got up on skis this year. It took her a while to get it, but when she did, we all exalted in her accomplishment, her victory over gravity, and her mastery of balance. Her smile was brighter than the sun, and the memory of that smile burns brilliantly too. At various times during the year, we were in close company with sea turtles, whales, porpoises, seals, and more varieties of bird life than space allows listing here. 

Planning a boating jaunt with children? Here are 10 ideas to make it kid-friendly and fun for everyone, whether you are looking forward to a day trip or a vacation afloat.

1. Get the kids involved! Assign responsibility onboard, and watch them step up to the task with pride of purpose. Children can look out for crab pot buoys, help plot a course, or watch for traffic. Our son assisted with communication relays between the bow and the helm during anchoring: he liked being needed, and we liked being able to anchor without yelling.

2. Explore life underwater. You don’t have to take a swim in chilly water to see incredible marine life. Make a bathyscope with a bucket or use a simple dipping net for an afternoon of entertainment while lying belly down on a dock. Check local tide tables to find daytime lows for tidal flat entertainment. 

3. Swing in the rigging! A child-sized climbing harness secured to fit and attached to a halyard can mean hours of fun (using common sense precautions). Little feet only need to be a few inches off the deck to prompt giggling; older kids may be ready to do more adventurous swinging out over water. Or ditch the harness and aim for getting wet! 

4. Go beachcombing together. A trip ashore is the fix for cabin fever with children. Create a simple list for a scavenger hunt: for the pre-literate, draw pictures. Make beach art from found objects or build a driftwood fort onshore.

5. Build boat skills on a smaller scale. The dinghy is a great tool to help kids learn with you and become better boaters while having fun. You can demonstrate rules of the road, judging effects of current and wind, rowing skills, even points of sail (if you have a sailing dinghy). 

Before you can leave the dock for your adventures afloat, make sure your family and visitors are prepared with a safety briefing and appropriate gear. Children age 12 and under are required to wear USCG-approved life jackets on an open deck or cockpit, and on all boats under 19 feet whenever underway. Avoid any late disappointments by making sure they can either bring their own, or you can supply them.

So don’t forget these great reasons why boating boosts family fun. 1) The kids are able to get involved;  2) the kids can explore animal life out on the water;  3) you are able to beachcomb together;  and 4) you’ll be able to build your boating skills together. 

Fun Winter Boating Activities To Try

It turns out that winter opens the door to some real adventures in floating fiberglass fun—if you know where to look. From plying slow southern waters to skidding across frozen northern lakes, here’s what boating lovers do in the “off” season.

SLOW IT DOWN

Cruise the Intracoastal

The 3,000-mile waterway, which runs along the Atlantic and Gulf coasts, is not just a means to an end—it’s a destination. Explore historic towns like Wilmington,

Savannah and St. Augustine; sample local cuisine, from Low Country to Cajun and Creole; and savor the changing scenery.

Try Charter Fishing

During their winter migration down the East Coast toward South Florida, sailfish favor the Gulf Stream’s warm waters and may be found less than 10 miles offshore.

Learn to Sail

Yes, you can become an accomplished sailor while enjoying a much-needed vacation. Several sailing schools offer opportunities for individuals, couples and families to fine-tune their skills and earn certifications that will allow them to charter a boat and go cruising.

SPEED IT UP

Go Winter Water-skiing

Don a dry suit for this fast-paced take on the Polar Bear Club. Some northern rivers and lakes remain ice-free, and their safe navigation sets the stage for never-say-quit skiers to enjoy thrilling (if chilly) rides. 

Sail an Iceboat

Frozen water is no excuse to stay indoors. Midwestern inland lakes with smooth, stable, snow-free ice and wind are prime ground for iceboats—sailing craft that can reach speeds up to around 100 miles per hour on their three skates, or runners. 

Try a Snow Kayak

Why put your kayak away when rivers turn icy? Obsessed paddlers can careen down snow-covered mountainsides, navigating trees and deep powder just like skiers. 

Purchase your marine hoses here and see how Raritan Engineering provides you the best products in the marine sanitation industry today.

Be sure to watch our latest video on marine hoses below. 

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Your Macerating Pump Professionals Share Great Ways to Stay Safe When Checking Out Your Boat

Raritan Engineering your macerating pump specialists would like to share with you these topics we thought would be of interest to you this month regarding how to stay safe while inspecting your boat during the winter.

Your macerating pump manufacturers share how “boating safety” usually means preventing injuries or accidents while on the water. Boats in winter storage have some unique safety concerns for boat owners who make periodic checkups over the long winter season. Here are five tips from the BoatUS Foundation for Boating Safety and Clean Water to help boaters stay safe while visiting the boat this winter.

1. Injuries from ladder falls can be severe but are preventable. When using a ladder to climb aboard your frozen boat, be sure it is firmly planted, secure it with a line to avoid shifting, and have someone hold the base. 

2. Don’t trust the nonskid to do its job. Nonskid decks are slippery when covered by snow or encrusted with ice. Brush away any buildup on the deck where you plan to step, and always hold onto something, just as you would if you were underway. 

3. Snow and ice are heavy. One square foot of dense, wet snow can weigh more than 20 pounds, so use caution when going underneath a tarp or winter cover that’s loaded with snow. 

4. Check your jack stands for proper support. Jack stands or blocking can shift as the boat gets laden with snow and ice, or due to repeated freeze/thaw cycles. Never adjust jack stands yourself. 

5. Trailer boat frames should be supported at the rear cross beam. This prevents the tongue from lifting off the ground like a seesaw when climbing aboard from the stern.

Regular maintenance to keep your boat safe and complying with the legal obligations when it is on the water should ensure a first-time pass.

Importance of Safety During Boat Inspections

Macerating pumps can be seen here at Raritan Engineering, where we always take care of your marine sanitation supply needs.

However, preparing your boat before its examination will pay off and success and safer boater should be your reward.

Firstly, will the examiner need to see any documentary evidence about a component’s manufacturing standard e.g. engine hoses manufactured to standard ISO 7840. Can you have it ready?

In addition to the advice on the page called Preparing for examination, we have the additional advice arising from the changes introduced in January 2013 for examinations on privately-owned, privately-managed boats:

Discuss your LPG cylinder locker arrangements with your examiner in advance of the examination as this may require your attendance or you to make prior arrangements involving service agents.

Where a boat uses A.C. shore-power and other a.c. power sources, the following notes on connection leads should be taken into account –

  • If practicable and safe to do so, boat owners should disconnect shore-power, battery charging, and other power sources in readiness for the BSS examination;
  • Boat owners should make available the shore-power, battery charging or other power source leads for examination of type and condition.
  • Information about the location of the a.c. consumer unit should be made known to the examiner in advance of the BSS examination.

So don’t forget these great safety tips for doing your personal boat inspection during the winter. 1) Injuries from ladder falls are preventable;  2) don’t trust the non-skid to do its job;  and 3) check your jack stands for proper support.

Frenchman Sets New Sailing Record : The Two-Way

French skipper, François Gabart, waves aboard his 100-foot trimaran as he celebrates his world record off Brest harbor, western France, on Sunday. 

There is a new world record for sailing solo around the world: 42 days, 16 hours, 40 minutes and 35 seconds. If verified, it is more than 6 days faster than the previous record, set a year earlier.

French sailor François Gabart, aboard a 100-foot trimaran, set out on Nov. 4 to break the record held by countryman Thomas Coville. On Sunday, Gabart crossed the virtual finish between France’s northwest tip and Lizard Point in southwest England at 0145 GMT before turning homeward to Brest in northwestern France.

Making such a journey is a difficult feat. It involves tackling the cold and stormy Southern Ocean that rings Antarctica, all the while tending a high-performance sailing vessel at the edge of its performance envelope.

After reaching Brest, Gabart, 34, said he was “aching all over.”

“[It’s] been like that for weeks, weeks since a proper sleep – I can hardly go on,” he told reporters after making landfall at Brest.

“It was hard and I was on the very edge of things the whole time.”

Exhausted or not, Gabart managed to share a bottle of champagne with his shore crew.

“It hasn’t sunk in yet but I know it’s a great time,” he said.

Gabart’s record must be verified by the World Sailing Speed Record Council, which will scrutinize his vessel’s GPS data before signing off on the new record.

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I Learned About Boating From This: The Great Escape

Your Macerating Toilet Distributors Talk About How to Make Your Plan B for Boating Emergencies

Raritan Engineering your macerating toilet suppliers would like to share with you these topics we thought would be of interest to you this month regarding the importance of having a backup plan for emergencies while boating.

Your macerating toilet manufacturers talked about how the plan sounded good. I would cross Chesapeake Bay aboard my 16-foot outboard-powered Dory skiff for a weekend of hanging out with friends during Downrigging Weekend, an annual event held the last weekend of October in Chestertown, Maryland.

The weather report stated wind from the northwest at 17 to 23 mph, gusting to 34, with seas of 2 to 3 feet — borderline conditions for a boat like mine. But I balanced this against my years of experience operating small craft. Besides, my John Dory skiff is seaworthy for its size.

I set out. Halfway across the 10 miles of open water, it became tough to steer. Then the waves steepened considerably. While surfing down a large wave, the outboard motor clicked into the partway-up position, eliminating my ability to control the boat. 

It got uglier. I stuffed the bow into a trough and put 8 inches of water into the boat in a second. Noticing a smooth patch of water, I pulled the transom drain — the bilge pump was already working — and sped along at full throttle until the water was out.

Finally, I spotted a pier. Tied up, I lay down on the warm wood. The air was cold, but the shining sun warmed me. I rose, called my friends, and waited for them to pick me up.

From this experience, I learned you cannot fight wind and waves and sometimes must change course for safety’s sake. This makes it important to have a Plan B destination. I also learned that my waterproof VHF radio did not work, not because it shorted out, but because the ­speaker filled with water and I could not hear it. 

I was lucky. I was dressed correctly and wearing a life jacket. But I wouldn’t do it again.

Preparing for All Boating Scenarios

Just like in your home, you should implement an emergency preparedness plan on your boat. Regardless of where you boat you should always identify potential threats. Then evaluate what types of resources you will need if any emergency arises. 

You should always check the weather before planning a day on your boat. Conditions on the water can become dangerous during even small weather events. Weather is also quick to change over the water, it is important to stay aware and return to shore before conditions get severe. 

Tsunamis are a succession of oversized waves that occur after the displacement of large amounts of water. They can occur with or without warning, however, a common cause of tsunamis are earthquakes. If you are on the water and notice the trees on shore shaking and other telltale signs of an earthquake, you should evaluate your best course of action. 

Find your marine toilet of choice here at Raritan Engineering and see how we always take care of your marine sanitation supply needs.

A good skipper always prepares for the worst and hopes for the best. When preparing you should make a list of general items, but also include things that are specific to your family and their needs. The following are less specific items that any good boat emergency kit should contain. 

  • NOAA Weather Radio- Keeping track of the forecast and any emergency broadcasts can help you avoid severe weather.
  • Clean water- Salt or lake water are not going to be sufficient if you are stranded and need to stay hydrated.
  • Food and a way to prepare it- Store foods that are high in protein and nutritious. Having a heat source if not only good to keep you warm but also for preparing any foods that need to be warmed.
  • Extra clothing- Extra layers and dry clothes to change into from your wet ones are good to keep on board.
  • Shelter- Shelter from the sun and rain are both important. Many boats have built in shelters, but a tarp or sheet can easily be used as a makeshift shelter.
  • First aid kit- For anything from bumps and bruises to broken bones, bug bites and open wounds.
  • Paddle- In case you encounter engine troubles it is good to have an alternate form of propulsion.
  • Something to bail out water- If it rains hard enough your boat might not be able to keep up with pumping water out of the boat. Having a bucket or two to help bail it out can save your boat from capsizing.

Not only should you have a plan and the proper emergency items, but you should also take a class or research about emergency procedures. Things like first aid and boat repair techniques can make the difference between life and death. 

Don’t forget these important items when making your backup plan for boating emergencies. 1) NOAA weather radio;  2) clean water;  3) food and a way to prepare it;  4) first aid kit;  and 5) something to bail out water.

Small Boats for Big Emergencies

From top: When your raft is out of its canister or valise during servicing, you can check out all of its neatly packed components. In the water, ballast bags will fill and help stabilize the raft. Dur

Fully inflated and sitting in the middle of the workshop floor, our life raft looked rather small. This wasn’t the first time I had seen a Viking RescYou four-person life raft in all its glory, but it was the first time ours had been unpacked from its tidy black valise.

I sat in the strange orange glow with my legs fully extended in front of me, imagining three other people sharing the space. It would be cozy, to say the least. Even with only Steve and me, the ditch bag and any other items we might manage to grab, it would be tight. I tried to imagine what the raft would feel like afloat; the floor constantly undulating, the sound of the ocean crashing around us, the slick, sticky feeling of salty skin and damp clothing. 

Spending time in a life raft is probably not on anybody’s bucket list, but any sailor who has spent a night or two at sea has no doubt stopped to consider the possibility. Like an EPIRB, a search-and-rescue transponder, a sea anchor and a good medical kit, a life raft is a vital piece of safety equipment that should be on board every boat. 

A life raft packed in a valise is lighter than a canister, most weighing in between about 50 and 75 pounds, versus roughly 65 to 90 pounds for a canister. That said, a smaller crew member might not be able to lift that much dead weight up the companionway, especially if the boat is heaving. A canister may weigh more but is usually deployed directly from its storage location. 

Canisters often are fitted with a hydro-static release. This automatic device activates when submerged and inflates the raft if the vessel suddenly sinks. A “weak link” in the painter will part under stress, allowing the raft to float to the surface. It’s important to consider what obstructions might hinder the automatic inflation or release of the raft when choosing where to mount the bracket. 

What is often overlooked — and is of the utmost importance — is serviceability. After all, what good is carrying a life raft aboard if you cannot get regular safety checks and maintenance done on it?

In a typical service, after breaking the seals on the canister or valise and cutting open the interior vac-pack bag, the technician will remove, inspect and weigh the CO2 cylinder that is included to inflate the raft. This process is similar to dive-tank inspections and is extremely important because a raft might not inflate when the painter is yanked if it has a faulty cylinder. 

The cost of servicing a life raft fluctuates from port to port. The bill is usually broken down into a base service charge that includes unpacking, inflating, inspecting and repacking the raft. Any components that are required or supplies that are replaced are priced individually and then added to the base cost. 

Choose your Raritan marine products here and see how Raritan Engineering provides you the best quality and selection in the marine sanitation industry today.

Be sure to watch our latest video on macerating toilets below. 

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Your Toilet Macerator Suppliers Share Amazing Tips for Keeping Your Sails in Great Shape

Raritan Engineering your toilet macerator manufacturers would like to share with you this week some great information regarding the importance of good sail maintenance.

1. Keep your sails out of the sun

If you have furling systems, this may be just a matter of furling sails when not in use. For non-furling sails, this means covering or stowing sails. There are cover options for both mainsails and headsails, allowing the sail to stay rigged and protected between uses. 

2. Protect your furled sails

Most owners use sewn-on sun covers to protect furled sails. Sunbrella and WeatherMax are the fabrics commonly used for sun covers. For racer-cruisers and some racing sails like furling code zeros, there are lighter weight options such as UV-treated Dacron.

All sun covers should be inspected regularly and repaired if damaged. Generally speaking, covers should be re-stitched every three years or so to prevent more extensive damage to the fabric that can occur from flogging due to compromised stitching.

To provide maximum protection for your sails, sun covers require care and maintenance. Remember, if you can see the sailcloth below the cover…so can the sun!

3. Keep your sails clean

After sun, the second-worst enemy of any sail is salt; but other types of dirt and debris can be just as damaging. Periodic sail washing is key to maintaining your sails. A couple common-sense rules apply to frequency: 1) a sail that has been exposed to saltwater should be washed sooner rather than later, and 2) all other varying degrees of grime should be removed when possible. 

4. Protect them from the elements

Sailmakers generally refer to the life of a sail in hours or seasons, rather than years. The lifespan is affected by the amount of time sailing and the level of care given to the sails. In the mid-Atlantic region, the main sailing season can begin in early spring and extend late into the fall. 

If you know your sails are going to be sitting idle on the boat in a marina for at least a month or more during a sailing season, you can extend sail life by taking the sails off of your boat and stowing them. 

5. Inspect sails regularly

At least once-a-year sails should get a check-up. To do this yourself, find a dry place in good light where you can lay them flat, then work your way over every inch of the sail, looking for trouble spots such as abrasion or loose stitching. Small problems can turn into bigger problems later, so be sure to note even the smallest details. 

We Continue to Discuss Ways to Extend the Life of Your New Sails

6. Tape the turnbuckle

Your toilet macerator experts talk about how if you’ve ever scraped your finger on a piece of hardware, then you know it’s sharp enough to damage your sail. Even seemingly blunt objects (like a spreader) can damage sails on a tack, so take a look around (and up) to see what can or should be covered to protect your sails. If you have an extra piece of spinnaker cloth, wipe it across every surface of your boat and rigging. 

7. Check the leech

Even a well-protected spreader-tip or navigation light can wear a sail tack-after-tack. For these areas, a spreader-patch (or navigation light-patch, etc.) might be the answer.

8. Don’t wait for repairs

A lot of catastrophic sail failures can be traced back to a small repair that was never made. When you notice a small hole or a chafed spot that’s getting increasingly worse, save yourself serious head- and wallet-ache by addressing the problem while it is still small. 

9. Bag It

Pretty simple here. There’s a good reason new sails come with a sturdy bag and it’s not just another place for a logo. That bag is a much cheaper sacrificial covering than the sail inside of it. Take a look at an old sailbag that’s scuffed and torn-up, now imagine if that were your sail. 

10. If you don’t know, ask

Curious about some sail-care method you’ve heard somebody touting on the dock or trying to figure out if your sail could use a new piece of webbing on the tack? Feel free to call the service team at your local Quantum loft. We’re happy to field your questions and provide helpful pointers. Consider us a member of your team.

So don’t forget these great ways to keep your sails in great shape for a long time. 1) Keep your sails out of the sun;  2) don’t wait for repairs;  and 3) tape the turnbuckle.

Quieting Your Boat’s Engine

The engine in my 1977 Down East 45 schooner, Britannia, is a tried and trusted — but noisy — Perkins 4-236, an 85-horsepower four-­cylinder diesel. 

I call the space the equipment bay. It runs 12 feet under the saloon floorboards and is 3 feet wide at the sole level, then tapers to just 15 inches at the bottom of the 41⁄2-foot-deep bilge. Seven removable floorboards give amazing access to all the equipment below, but the large space also acts as a massive boombox.

There are a number of products that claim to significantly reduce noise from machinery, and some are specifically designed for boats. The trouble with most of these is they are also specifically aimed at your bank balance! 

In simple terms, the object of sound insulation is to absorb noise at its source, and thereby minimize what filters into the interior of the boat. It would be practically impossible to eliminate this altogether, but I had effectively reduced the engine noise from a similar diesel on a previous boat simply by installing a false floor beneath the cabin sole. 

Before I started work on Britannia, I wanted to take a reading of the sound levels to have a numerical comparison after the modifications were complete. I downloaded a neat iPhone app, a decibel meter by Decibel Meter Pro, for the vast sum of 99 cents, from iTunes. It was very easy to use, and I took readings at head height in the center of the saloon. 

Fitting the False Floor

To get started, it was first necessary to make support battens for the false floor panels to lie in, under the existing plywood sole. I bought a 24-by-48-inch sheet of ½-inch plywood and cut it into 4-inch-wide strips with my table saw. I also made ¾-inch square battens out of hardwood. 

I screwed the ¾-inch square battens to the sides of each aperture to support the ends of the false floors. I painted the beams and all the new timbers white.

The sound-deadening properties of a ½-inch-thick sheet are actually better than the ¾-inch-thick marine plywood sole, which is roughly 35 pounds per cubic foot. (The MDF sheets were also available in ¾-inch thickness but would have been heavier and more expensive. In the end, I decided to compromise between weight, density and price, and go for the thinner stock.)

The simplest, time-­honored method to handle boards covering apertures is to cut a hole in the board big enough to get a couple of fingers through to lift it in and out. But these MDF boards were too big and heavy for that, and it would also have allowed a little bit more noise and heat to escape.

The weight of the new fiberboards was 60 pounds, but it’s all positioned low in the hull, and it was a small price to pay for reducing the noise. When lying between the beams, their weight also keeps them firmly in place. The sole and subfloor now has a combined thickness of 1¼ inches, with a density of about 80 pounds per cubic foot.

Beat the Heat

To complete the project, there was one more thing I wanted to do. We could often feel heat permeating through the single-­thickness cabin sole when either of the diesel engines had been running a long time, especially on our own soles when walking barefoot. 

I bought two 4-by-8-foot sheets of Rmax Thermasheath R6 foam-board insulation from Lowe’s for $21.98 each. These are 2 inches thick, with aluminum foil on one face and an insulation rating of R6, which is the highest available for this thickness of foam. I cut them to the sizes I needed at the store using a sharp knife, which helped me fit them in my car. 

The section of floor around the Perkins engine was particularly awkward because parts of the top of the engine were higher than the bottom of the floor beams. In fact, the valve cover was only an inch below the sole. This was, of course, the principal source of all the noise, so it needed special attention anyway.

I fitted battens all around the engine as I had in all the other openings, then shaped pieces of fiberboard to fit around the engine as well.

The remainder of the floor now had the ¾-inch plywood sole pieces, with 2 inches of foam glued underneath, then a ½-inch air gap, then the ½-inch MDF false floor. It was now certainly a compact floor.

After all this backbreaking work, I was naturally keen to take new readings on the decibel meter. With only the main engine running at the same revolutions per minute as before, my iPhone app meter read 65, a reduction of 20 db! 

In addition to a considerable reduction in noise, there is now no perceptible heat coming through the floorboards, which helps to keep the living area cooler. Heat is carried outside by the engine-room extractor fans, and the noise from them is much reduced too.

Most projects I have undertaken on Britannia resulted in visible improvements, most notably when I renovated the teak-and-holly sole. 

This method of sound insulation would be very worthwhile for any boat, offering excellent noise reduction for minimal financial outlay. I actually used some spare pieces of MDF to double the wall thickness in the spaces where my two air-conditioning units were installed, and this reduced the noise of the compressor and fan as well.

There are, of course, no labor charges factored into the cost of the job, which took me four days to complete, but messing about on boats is supposed to be fun.

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Chart Plotters to Catch Fish

Great Tips On Using Your Chart Plotter to Fish

Raritan Engineering your electric toilets suppliers would like to share with you these topics we thought would be of interest to you this month regarding catching fish with the aid of chart plotters.

Your electric toilets manufacturers discuss how the aptly named fish finder ranks at the top of every angler’s list of necessary electronics. But where does the chart plotter fit in that high-tech hierarchy?

In the past, plotters helped anglers efficiently find the fishing grounds, and little else. But these days, using tracks, routes, waypoints, overlays, trolling-motor connectivity and sonar-logging features, plotter charts become more like treasure maps, leading anglers to optimal fish and bait concentrations.

Pro fishermen and charter captains liken plotters to computers. Here’s how five of them use their units to find and catch more fish.

Plotter and Trolling Motor Connection

“I think of my boat as my office and my plotter as my office computer, and everything I need is on there,” says Capt. Phillip Wilds, who runs Anchored Charters Guide Service out of Panama City, Florida. 

When fishing offshore, Wilds uses tracks and the Minn Kota’s SpotLock to see the boat’s relationship to the structure he’s fishing and to stay on that structure. 

Use Tracks to Pattern Fish

Nugent targets stripers, chasing them under the birds in run-and-gun fashion. “Tracks allow me to see the direction the fish are trending at any time. Whenever we find bait or a bunch of birds on the water, or if we’re trolling and get a knockdown, I drop a waypoint.”

Because he targets migrating fish, he does a master reset on his Raymarines at the end of each fishing year. Other captains, particularly those who tournament-fish or bottomfish for species such as snapper and grouper, religiously catalog their points and tracks on SD cards by region. 

Keep and Catalog Plotter Tracks for Future Use

Maus uses tracks to troll for a variety of species and to help him navigate back to unfamiliar locations. He also employs Simrad’s TrackBack feature on his sonar to enter waypoints when he sees something new. 

We Continue Talking About This Great Way to Go Fishing 

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If he’s pre-fishing an area for sails, he might mark 20 or 30 waypoints where he found bait. The next day, though the bait will have moved, Maus says he’ll run-and-gun the points because “something will have held bait in those locations.”

Changing Track Colors Based on Temperature

Capt. Greg Shute fishes much of the Chesapeake Bay out of his 27-foot Judge. He uses his Furuno TZtouch2 and 1870 units when he’s drift-fishing for stripers. “Usually, I’ll have a point or something I’m trying to drift over,” he says.

“I can zigzag over areas while looking for fish and note where the bottom composition changes,” he says. “I will then use where I see the color changes in conjunction with marks I had on the fish finder.”

Shute also changes the actual color of a given day’s track so that he can tell the different trips he has made. By looking at the tracks and waypoints he has used, he can tell where he has fished and where he has caught fish. 

Hunt and Scout with Waypoints

Tournament captain Bill Platt keeps his data on SD cards based on region. “I can see where I catch fish year after year. The plotter is a computer now, not just a navigation chart.”

He uses his Helm Master’s Set Point function to stay on the fish and keep the stern to the current. If the fish move, he drifts again and watches his track.

“I find so much stuff looking around my different waypoints,” he adds. “If I run a charter, I go to a spot and I look all around. It’s like finding treasure.”

So don’t forget these great ways to use chart plotters to be a great compliment to your fishing arsenal. 1) Use tracks to pattern fish;  2) changing track colors based on temperature;  and 3) keep and catalog plotters tracks for future use.

Sailing Generates Pleasure and the Feeling of Self-Reliance

I have ataxic cerebral palsy, a condition that I have had since birth, which affects my fine and gross motor skills. I am unable to walk and have to use a wheelchair to get about.

In 2009, I was keen to find a sporting activity in which I could take part. I was certainly interested in giving it a go, so they asked what opportunities were available and I was invited down to check it out.

At the time Wealden Sailability, founded by Brian Stanley, was based at Bough Beech Reservoir near Edenbridge. The first day I spent there was thoroughly enjoyable. I was taken out on the water by one of their volunteer instructors in a Hansa 303, a boat which is specifically designed to be sailed by a disabled sailor. 

They have 80-90 volunteers, hundreds of clients and cater for 35 visitors per session and take them out twice a week. I race in one of the two Paralympic class 2.4 dinghies, which are part of a fleet they use for weekly racing events.

There are few sports where disabled people can compete with non-disabled people on the same terms, but on the water everyone is equal.

The charity’s trustees and volunteers put in a lot of hard work and give up a great deal of their time from April to October each year. To give disabled people such as myself the opportunity and sheer exhilaration to get on the water.

So it was no surprise to me that in 2015 Wealden Sailability received the Queen’s award, the highest recognition of volunteering in the UK.

My advice to others would be to encourage anyone who has a disability, whatever it is, to get in touch with Wealden Sailability and give it a go.

After all, I have been sailing with them for eight years and I can’t swim. So there is no excuse – and I promise you’ll thoroughly enjoy it!

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Be sure to watch our latest video on electric toilets below.

via How 5 Pros Catch More Fish with Chart Plotters

via Blog: “Sailing generates pleasure and the feeling of self-reliance”

Image result for maximize Cell signal while boating

Your Marine Toilet Specialists Share How to Successfully Make Cell Phone Calls While Out on the Water

Raritan Engineering your marine toilet distributors would like to share with you these topics we thought would be of interest to you this month regarding how to maximize WiFi and cellular reach while boating.

How can I send and receive emails or texts when I am on the boat and away from the dock? Your marine toilet suppliers talk about how one way is to maximize your Wi-Fi and cellular reach by linking your mobile device with specialized range extenders from companies such as Digital Antenna, Aigean Networks, Shakespeare, Wave WiFi and WeBoost.

You can also use satellite messengers such as the ACR 406 Link, which lets you use your ACR EPIRB or PLB to send short pre-written messages (e.g., “I’m here, I’m OK”) along with your position to family or friends.

The SPOT Gen3 can deliver emails and position reports via the internet and SMS to a computer or cellphone. You can also save a track of your trip for future reference.

Each satellite device above requires an annual subscription and has an emergency SOS Mayday function.

How to Email and Text While at Sea

Want ways to send and receive emails and texts while at sea? Here are products that can help.

WebWatch WC-1 by Shakespeare is a mini antenna dome (12 by 12 inches) that combines Wi-Fi and cellular signal amplifiers in one housing with cell speeds up to 4G standards. It is smart enough to automatically switch from cellular to a Wi-Fi connection when within Wi-Fi range to save on airtime costs.

See your choice of marine toilets here at Raritan Engineering, where we take care of all your marine sanitation supply needs.

Tip: Be wary of Wi-Fi-product range claims because performance can vary widely. Also, you may not always experience optimum speeds at all times. On a busy boating day, high Wi-Fi activity can slow connection speed.

Safety First

The most important feature of a satellite communicator is the ability to send an emergency Mayday message to summon first responders to your location. Be advised that VHF radio coverage extends out only to slightly beyond the line of sight. 

Double Duty

As most of these satellite communications devices are pocket-size and portable, they are great to take along with you when you venture beyond cellphone coverage on land. 

Worldwide Service Extras

SkyMate M2500 consists of a fixed-mount transceiver module, external antenna, and keypad control that bundles global email, SMS, navigation, position reporting and weather forecasting with satellite imagery. 

Add Voice

The Iridium Go! is a palm-size portable hotspot that lets you make a wireless connection to your smartphone, computer or tablet. In addition to email, data and text messaging, you can update weather reports, post to Facebook and Twitter, and even share photos with friends. 

Don’t forget these great tips on how to boost and maximize your cell signal while boating. 1) Linking your mobile device with specialized range extenders;  2) you can also use satellite messengers;  and 3) spending a little more money on these products will be worth it in the long run.

Want to sail with your dog? Three sailors on how to train a boat dog

Many people can’t imagine heading out on a bluewater sailing adventure without their best friend: a boat dog. But training a dog to use the bathroom on a sailboat, and dealing with customs and immigration in various countries can be a drag.

I’ve wondered how people do it, so reached out to three awesome women sailors who’ve been loving living aboard with their canine friends. I loved learning about how people get on with their boat dog while sailing full-time.

What heart warming stories and lovely boat dogs!

Potty training your boat dog

So how on earth do you train a dog to go to the bathroom on a sailboat that’s always moving and rolling with the waves?

Kym Helwig and her husband are living aboard their sailboat in Vero Beach, Florida, and said it wasn’t all that hard to train her Sheltie, Solly. “Training him went smoothly. He’s naturally smart, and the second time I asked him to use the astroturf in the cockpit he did! Now, we have his astroturf on the cabin top and I scoop his poop regularly and throw it in the garbage.”

“Did we need turf, a carpet, pheromones? For Kala, she hated all of those things.  It was just a test of patience,” said Molly. “We were assured by vets that a dog wouldn’t hurt themselves (bladder infections, etc…) by holding it so when we were anchored in a creek overnight, we encouraged her to go with treats. 

Passing quarantine with a dog on your sailboat

Kristiann said before they started cruising they’d already lived in several countries with their dog, so they were prepared with the proper vaccinations and paperwork.

“The most valuable test you can get is a rabies titer test that checks for rabies antibodies. I keep Friday’s vaccinations up to date and research the protocol in each new country before we enter. 

“There is one country, for example, whose law is ‘any animal brought into Tonga will be destroyed’ so you must know the rules and understand the requirements and limitations,” Molly said. ” We cannot circumnavigate while we have Kala because of the restrictions in the South Pacific (technically we could by putting her in quarantine or flying her to Australia but we are not interested in doing that). 

How to keep your dog healthy and safe on deck

Kym said when her dog was small, she was afraid he’d lose his footing and fall overboard.

“We have a life jacket for him that he wore during stormy, windy or rocky conditions, just to make sure he’d be okay if he did accidentally go in the drink,” she said. “But now on our mooring ball he spends most of his time topside and is super agile. 

What about getting a dog enough exercise when doing a passage, where there’s nowhere to run or swim?

“That’s a limitation, for sure. If conditions are very calm, Friday has the run of the boat and decks,” said Kristiann. “If it’s rough, he’s clipped in or inside the salon. What we’ve found is that everyone is exhausted by being constantly underway, including our dog. 

Kymberly said her main challenge is getting the dog to the vet, but otherwise, living with Solly aboard has been a great joy.

“Solly is just wonderful to have aboard. He loves to play, and we love to play with him,” she said. “He brings some recreation and humor to our lives. I’ve taught him not to bark, a tall order for a Sheltie, but he is usually quiet.  He has alerted me a few times to something he thought was unsafe and I praised him.”

All in all, it seems like a great adventure having a boat dog, where you can share a life of freedom and adventure with your very best friend.

Purchase your marine items here and see how Raritan Engineering provides you best quality and selection in the marine sanitation industry today.

Be sure to watch our latest video on marine toilets below.

via Ask Ken: How to Send Emails and Texts While Boating

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via Want to sail with your dog? Three sailors on how to train a boat dog

Anglers adjust trolling rigs in very rough seas.

Your Marine Heads Professionals Talk About How to Fish Successfully in Choppy Waters

Raritan Engineering your marine heads specialists would like to share with you these topics we thought would be of interest to you this month regarding how to handle fishing in rough seas.

Your marine heads distributors talk about how fish often bite as the sea stirs. Steep waves and a stiff breeze also whet anticipation for some anglers and enliven action aboard.

“Wahoo definitely bite better when the breeze kicks up,” says Bermuda charter and tournament captain Allen DeSilva. In DeSilva’s waters, that’s 15 knots and 6-foot seas. “Marlin are the opposite. The days we get five, six, seven fish are not rough,” he says. 

Adjust Your Trolling Speed

One reason average or calm seas favor marlin fishing is that it’s easier to see trolled lures and fish in the spread. “When it gets rough, bring everything in closer,” DeSilva says, to overcome the decreased visibility.

He also simplifies his overall presentation on bumpy days so that when a bite happens, he can avoid tangles.

This decreases snarls between the teasers and the short-rigger lures, he says, plus the mates have less to clear when you hook into a fish.

Change Up Lures to Match Conditions

“You want lures deeper when it’s rough, so the fish can see them through the whitecaps,” compared with a normal day, when lure surface action attracts fish’s attention, DeSilva says.

We Continue Sharing Great Tips for Fishing in Rough Waters

Browse our selection of marine heads here at Raritan Engineering, where we always take care of your marine sanitation supply needs.

Amaral places heavier lures on the upwind side when he can, and also closer to the boat so the wind separates his spread. Heavier, ballasted lures also track better when speed fluctuates as boats surf down following seas. 

Trolling Baits in Heavy Seas

Whether he’s fishing infamously rough Venezuela or placid Costa Rica, charter captain Bubba Carter runs two dredges with teasers atop, plus swimming ballyhoo on two flat lines clipped to the transom, and two long rigger baits.

Weight helps hold baits more squarely behind the boat and also keeps them swimming in the water, not skipping on top. Just a quarter-ounce more makes a big difference. He also trolls outrigger baits farther aft. That extra bit of line in the water helps hold the bait down.

Capt. Ronnie Fields typically uses small scoop-faced Mold Craft Chuggers ahead of his baits whether he’s in the Carolinas, Costa Rica or the Caribbean, fishing private or tournament boats. He switches to flat-faced Mold Craft Hookers in rougher water so baits won’t somersault when they pop out of the water on wave crests, which tends to foul circle hooks.

Fields’ biggest changes are in his teasers. “When it’s rough, flat lines blow into the squid chains, so I’ll take the squids off,” he says. “Whatever I would have put behind the squid chain, maybe a mackerel with an Iland Express, I’ll just run without the squids.”

So don’t forget these great tips for fishing in rough waters. 1) Adjust your trolling speed;  2) change your lures when conditions change on you;  and 3) remember that boat weight can make a difference.

Crazy Deep Sea Fish and Other Creatures Caught by Russian Fisherman

Known for his ability to pull up all sort of interesting sea creatures, Russian fisherman Roman Fedortsov’s well followed Instagram and Twitter accounts are littered with images of the critters he hauls up in his work as a trawlerman in Murmansk, Russia. 

Here’s a warning, these deep sea fish as likely to haunt you, as they look ready-made for a horror film. Accounting for just 2% of known marine species, these fish typically live at depths of more than 3200 feet (1000 meters) below the sea, in a hostile area where light doesn’t penetrate. 

For instance, due to the lack of light, many fish are blind, but others have developed extremely large eyes that are sensitive to light given off by living organisms, also known as bioluminescent light. In fact, many deep sea creatures are capable of bioluminescence, which makes sense if you’re living in the dark. 

As you can imagine, even though some species demonstrate deep sea characteristics beyond 650 feet (200 meters) of depth, getting at these creatures isn’t exactly easy and there’s still much that marine biologists do not know about these elusive fish.

Buy a marine head here and see how Raritan Engineering provides you the best products in the marine sanitation industry today.

Be sure to watch our latest video on marine heads below. 

via Gale-Force Fishing — Trolling in Rough Seas

via Crazy Deep Sea Fish and Other Creatures Caught by Russian Fisherman

Ralph Naranjo

Your Thru Hull Fittings Professionals Share Why LED Mastlights Make Your Boating Experiences Better 

Raritan Engineering your thru hull fittings specialists would like to share with you this week some great information regarding the benefits of using an LED mastlight.

Your thru hull fittings distributors talk about how if you have your mast down this season or are contemplating an annual inspection aloft, it is a good time to consider a switch to an LED tri-color mastlight, which can cut the mastlight’s energy consumption by 90 percent. 

In the past, the most popular means of meeting the U.S. Coast Guard’s navigation light requirements for boats under 65 feet (see “Nav Light Requirements,” below) was to use an Aqua Signal Series 40 tri-color lamp housing with its long-filament incandescent bulb. Its 25-watt energy appetite not only puts a significant load on the house battery bank, but it requires a heavier-gauge wire be run up the spar in order to avoid an energy-robbing voltage drop. 

What accounts for this great efficiency? Since the late 1960s, LEDs have followed a trend that amounts to almost a doubling of light output every 36 months. (If Wall Street had done the same, a $100 investment made in 1969 would today be worth over $500,000.) 

In order to achieve white or colored light, phosphor coatings are used. Another significant breakthrough is the prism-like lens and epoxy-sealed cavity that bundles up many of these semiconductors. The resulting “bulb” reflects and refracts the light energy produced, delivering a color-controlled beam. 

We Continue Talking About Why LED Mastlights Are the Way to Go

Your thru hull fittings suppliers discuss how because of this challenge, you have to be careful about simply swapping out bulbs and using your current lens housing. Even if you decide that saving money is worth the risk of non-compliance with international and federal code, you should at least do a careful visual comparison of the new and old light combinations.

When it comes to navigation lights aboard sailboats, brighter is definitely better. And our tests of LED nav lights proved that more light can indeed be made with less energy.

NAV LIGHT REQUIREMENTS

Rule 25 of the U.S. Coast Guard’s rules state that a sailing vessel shall exhibit sidelights and a stern light. Boats shorter than 65 feet may have these combined in one fixture (a tri-color masthead light). To comply with accepted standards, the lights must meet the following visibility minimums:

  • Sidelight: 2 miles for boats over 36 feet; 1 mile for boats under 36 feet

  • Sternlight: 2 miles

  • Towing light: 2 miles

  • All-round light: 2 miles

So don’t forget these great reasons why an LED mastlight could be the answer for you. 1) You will save on energy;  2) the investment is worth it in the long run;  and 3) they meet the US Coast Guard’s requirements. 

ZR48 CORVETTE BOAT Powered By Mercury Racing Twin Turbo Marine Engines Delivering 2.700 Horsepower !!!

After a thorough research for the best Muscle Cars videos, we have come up with something that left us speechless and we couldn`t wait to share it with you. It is a word about an amazing video featuring the long-talked 2,700HP ZR48 CORVETTE BOAT in action! All media headlines were filled up with this Darth Vader`s palace on water when it came out for the first time, but now, we finally have a decent video where we can see this Dark King in an attention-grabbing action.

Anyways, this video is recorded in the right moment! Namely, the guy recording, turned on his camera right when this ZR48 Corvette boat was trying to get away from the coast guard. And it did it with no difficulties at all. After that, this boat is recorded speeding way off shore at a velocity of something between 85 and 100 miles per hour. 

This astonishing MTI built ZR1 Corvette themed Speedboat is powered by two Mercury Racing Twin Turbo Marine Engines and it is fully carbon-fibered! Thanks to the engines and the lightness, it can develop 2700 horses on water, which is, without a doubt a massive power for a boat. 

Visit us here at http://raritaneng.com/product-category/trudesign/thru-hulls/ and see how Raritan Engineering provides you the best products in the marine sanitation industry today.

Be sure to watch our latest video on thru hull fittings below.

via Making the Switch to an LED Mastlight

via – ZR48 CORVETTE BOAT Powered By Mercury Racing Twin Turbo Marine Engines Delivering 2.700 Horsepower !!!

algae floating in water

Your Macerating Toilet Experts Talk About Why Fish Love Seaweeds

Raritan Engineering your macerating toilet professionals would like to share with you these topics we thought would be of interest to you this month regarding the secret to successful fishing spots.

Your macerating toilet specialists discuss how on a summer morning when the blue, glassy waters 10 miles off Port St. Lucie, Florida, appeared devoid of life, a distant patch of golden-brown sargassum loomed enticingly on the horizon.

Anglers might call them weeds, but these are actually species of marine algae, with different types producing different game fish, depending on where you’re fishing. In the Atlantic Ocean, Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean, the main species are Sargassum natans and Sargassum fluitans, both of which are holopelagic, which means they grow free-floating in the ocean and never attach to the seafloor during their life cycles.

That’s not to say that weeds are the only form of structure under which offshore life collects. Debris such as logs, palm fronds, wooden pallets, ladders and even the floating carcasses of cetaceans and pinnipeds can attract a chain of marine life. 

What’s the Attraction to Weeds?

Avid offshore anglers know almost ­instinctively that weeds can hold fish, but they might not know exactly what actually attracts fish to these spots. 

Much of the sargassum in the Gulf of Mexico and along the Eastern Seaboard originates in the ever-shifting and borderless Sargasso Sea, an aggregation of sargassum spanning approximately 1.4 million square miles in the middle of the North Atlantic Ocean. 

Mahi Attracted to Sargassum

In a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration study off North Carolina, 81 fish species were documented using sargassum for shelter and food. “Most of these fishes are juveniles and occur within Gulf Stream waters.”

Data collected by the program indicates 60 to 70 percent of mahi that are caught are taken around sargassum along the East Coast, he says.

“Dolphin[fish] can grow to 40 pounds in 12 months,” Hammond points out. It takes a tremendous amount of food to fuel such fast growth, and mahi find much of their fodder under and around the weeds.

Interestingly, holopelagic sargassum depends on fish as much as fish depend on it, says Oxenford. “Sargassum relies on the feces of its inhabitants for nutrients,” she says.  

Finding Kelp Paddies Offshore

Schools of warm-water game fish such as mahi, striped marlin, yellowfin tuna and California yellowtail often migrate northward along the Pacific coast of Baja and Southern California in summer. In El Niño years, anglers might also get a shot at wahoo or blue marlin.

Yet, as with patches of sargassum, not all offshore kelp paddies hold game fish. Like that McDonald’s I mentioned earlier, but with no customers, some are devoid of large predators at any given time. While little or no scientific research exists on what makes one floating kelp patch better than the other for attracting fish, anglers rank paddies on a number of factors. 

It’s impossible to determine age, and recruitment times vary, Sepulveda points out, but schools of bait species, such as anchovies, chub mackerel and jack mackerel, under the paddy indicate that it’s mature enough to attract game fish. 

Fishing Near Sargassum

In the waters off Miami Beach, Florida, the best pieces of offshore sargassum are those concentrated into relatively large patches, says Capt. Jimbo Thomas, whose 42-foot Post, Thomas Flyer, is a top-producing charter boat in the region. 

If he sees a bait school, Thomas likes to drop a sabiki rig and catch a few to identify the species and add the prevailing forage to the livewell.

Find your marine toilet of choice here at Raritan Engineering, where we always take care of your marine sanitation supply needs.

The same holds true on the West Coast, but frigates don’t reach as far north as Southern California. Terns, shearwaters and jaegers are prime indicator birds in this Pacific region. Flocks of terns fluttering low around a paddy serve as a sure sign of mahi or other predatory fish.  

Finding Weeds

Some days, weeds can be difficult for boating anglers to spot, particularly when large patches are scarce and an overcast sky or glare reduces color contrast. Choppy seas complicate the search. On any day, elevation helps — a big reason many fishing boats are equipped with towers.

Slowing the boat speed can also help, giving your eyes more time to scan the surface. Many anglers troll lures and/or rigged baits at about 7 knots while on the hunt. Captains encourage all crew members to stay on the lookout — the more eyes the better.

Brightenburg likes to shut down on the lee or down-current side of the weeds and then drift away, with live baits placed fairly far behind the boat, while chumming with liveys and chunks. 

Feeding Style

Some days, fish under a weed patch get finicky and refuse to bite most lures or baits. “Often, mahi get keyed in on small baitfish like 1-inch minnows under the weeds,” Thomas says. “They get their minds set on one thing and ignore everything else.”

Whether the golden-brown algae is kelp or sargassum, paddies, patches and lines of floating weeds rank among the most consistently productive offshore hot spots. 

Find Your Own Weeds

Moving in on another boat that has already found a productive weed patch is, to put it mildly, frowned upon by serious anglers. So-called poaching not only creates frustration among the crew that worked hard to find its own patch of weeds, but it can also result in ugly confrontations between the two boats. It also makes the offending skipper look like a hack. Better to hunt up your own patch than poach one and lose all respect.

So don’t forget these great tips on how to find your next great fishing spot. 1) Don’t encroach on another boat’s fishing area;  2) patches and lines of floating weeds rank among the most consistently productive offshore hot spots;  and 3) slowing the boat speed can also help, giving your eyes more time to scan the surface.

Oceans under greatest threat in history, warns Sir David Attenborough

The world’s oceans are under the greatest threat in history, according to Sir David Attenborough. The seas are a vital part of the global ecosystem, leaving the future of all life on Earth dependent on humanity’s actions, he says.

Previous BBC nature series presented by Attenborough have sometimes been criticised for treading too lightly around humanity’s damage to the planet. But the final episode of the latest series is entirely dedicated to the issue.

“For years we thought the oceans were so vast and the inhabitants so infinitely numerous that nothing we could do could have an effect upon them. But now we know that was wrong,” says Attenborough. 

Attenborough says: “Surely we have a responsibility to care for our blue planet. The future of humanity, and indeed all life on Earth, now depends on us.”

The series producer, Mark Brownlow, said it was impossible to overlook the harm being caused in the oceans: “We just couldn’t ignore it – it wouldn’t be a truthful portrayal of the world’s oceans. We are not out there to campaign. We are just showing it as it is and it is quite shocking.”

Brownlow said much of the footage shot of albatross chicks being killed by the plastic they mistake for food were too upsetting to broadcast. The programme also filmed on the Great Barrier Reef in 2016, witnessing the worst bleaching event in its history.

Carbon dioxide from fossil fuel burning also dissolves in seawater, making it more acidic. Prof Chris Langdon, at the University of Miami, says it is “beyond question” that the problem is manmade. “The shells and the reefs really, truly are dissolving. The reefs could be gone by the end of the century.”

The noise from shipping, tourism, and fossil fuel exploration is also revealed as harming sea life. Steve Simpson, at the University of Exeter, who works on coral reefs in southeast Asia, says: “There is a whole language underwater that we are only just getting a handle on. They use sound to attract a mate, to scare away a predator. You hear pops and grunts and gurgles and snaps.” He shows the noise of motorboats distracting saddleback clownfishes from warning against a predator attack.

Overfishing, which remains prevalent around the world, is also addressed. “Every night thousands of miles of fishing lines laden with hooks are set – there is enough, it is said, to wrap twice around the world,” says Attenborough. But the programme also highlights some success stories, such as the revival of sperm whales off Sri Lanka and herring stocks off Norway after bans or restrictions were put in place.

 Orca, Herring fishing in Norway

Strict management of the herring fishery in Norway has saved it from collapse. Herring now draw in humpback whalesandorca. Photograph:AudunRikardsen

Pauly also warned of the dangers of plastic attracting toxic chemicals and then being eaten: “They become poison pills.” Pauly said the question facing humanity now was simple: “Are we going to fight for the oceans or not?”

Choose your Raritan marine products here and see how Raritan Engineering provides you the best products in the marine sanitation industry today.

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via Why Fish are Attracted to Weeds

via Oceans under greatest threat in history, warns Sir David Attenborough

Courtesy of Torqeedo

Your Boat Toilets Suppliers Discuss Some Great Ways to Motorize Your Small Sailboat

Raritan Engineering your boat toilets distributors would like to share with you this week some great information regarding great portable electrical propulsion for tiny sailboats.

In part one of our two-part test of five and six-horsepower engines in the upcoming January issue of Practical Sailor, we take a second look at portable electric motors. Practical Sailor’s interest in modern portable electric propulsion dates back to 2004, when then editor Doug Logan began to lose faith in the two-stroke outboard on his Boston Whaler. 

Logan’s initial review of the Minn Kota focused on its potential as a dinghy motor but he also tested it on larger skiffs. We later heard from several Practical Sailor readers who use trolling motors to power their sailboats (some as large as 30-feet!), but most said they used them mainly for short distances and in mostly flat water. .

Although people often compare such trolling motors to the $2,000 Torqeedo Travel 1003, there are several key differences. The Torqeedo uses a dedicated lithium magnesium battery that has a longer life and a more favorable power-to-weight ratio than a lead-acid battery. 

In 2005, we tested four popular trolling motors with rated thrusts ranging from 40 to 80 pounds. The results highlighted a major drawback of all electric motors: available horsepower and range is closely tied to battery capacity. Driving a sailboat with one of the more powerful trolling motors at full throttle for more than a half an hour will nearly drain a standard Group 24 battery. 

If you need more power, there are other options. In our most recent foray into electric outboards, we tested a motor called the SolidNav Traveler. The hefty 48-volt, four-horsepower outboard was manufactured by Parsun Power Machine, China’s largest outboard exporter. The outboard’s brushless solid magnet motor was built by Mars Electrical Co. of Milwaukee, Wis. (now Motenergy). 

We Share More Information On How to Boost Your Small Sailboat’s Engine

Your boat toilets professionals share how our testers were impressed by the motor’s heavy duty design, and the way the electric motor was incorporated into the familiar gasoline outboard form factor. Performance was good, but again, it was limited by the constraints of electric power. In our test of the Solid Nav, four North Star Energy group 24 AGM batteries with 140 amp hour reserve capacity were wired in series to deliver the required 48-volts.

Of all the electric outboards available to the sailor, the Torqeedo holds the most promise, but the niche is rather narrow. This is the third time we’ve looked at these motors. In our first preview, we tested an early iteration of the Travel 801L, an ultralight electric equivalent of a two horsepower outboard. 

As with all electric motors, power and range are limited. On our test boat, a Catalina 22, the range on a single battery at 4 knots speed is about 2.5 miles. At slower speeds of about 2.5 knots, the maximum range is about 7 miles. 

Bottom line: For the average daysailer with high power demands, a small gasoline outboard remains the most practical choice for portable propulsion. An electric motor can work, but for longer range service it will require significant investment in big battery banks, and perhaps a solar charging system. 

So don’t forget these great benefits to using portable electrical propulsion for your small sailboat. 1) These motors have a lot of potential;  2) you will save money on fuel;  3) there will be less maintenance involved.

The Fastest Single Engine Outboard Boats You Can Buy Right Now

At Wave to Wave, our favorite boats are smaller, single engine sport boats. This covers a large spectrum because some boats are semi offshore, some are lightweight lake hot rods and some are somewhere in the middle. Most people like something that can do it all, handle some chop, get some decent speed in a straight line; while bringing the family along. 

Allison, GrandSport 2003

The XS-2003 Allison GrandSport is the gold standard for small single engine family boats. Allison makes a slightly smaller boat, the SS-2001 SuperSport but the GrandSport offers a little more room and usability. Both are exceptionally fast. Probably the fastest production boats available in this category. Allison has been a pioneer in using high quality materials too. They have had full composite construction for a very long time and they have bullet proof transoms, by integrating aluminum in them. In racing, Allison is obviously well known and revolutionized the light, pad bottom design that has been emulated by many. With a steep deadrise, pronounced notch and aggressive strakes, the GrandSport gets incredible lift. I believe Darris Allison once said he was concerned with making not the fastest boats but the most efficient boats. With a Grand Sport, you can run a stock 175 Pro XS and be in the high 80s (MPH). 

Click here at http://raritaneng.com/raritan-product-line/marine-toilets/marine-elegance/ and see how Raritan Engineering provides you the best quality and selection in the marine sanitation industry today.

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via Portable Electrical Propulsion for Small Sailboats

via The Fastest Single Engine Outboard Boats You Can Buy Right Now