recycling sails

Don’t Be So Quick To Trash Your Old Sails

Raritan Engineering Company your marine hot water heaters specialists would like to share with you these topics we thought would be of interest to you this month regarding finding new uses for old sails.

Your marine hot water heaters experts talk about how upcycling is a bit of a buzzword these days, but the concept is nothing new to the cruising sailor. While ­traditional recycling involves breaking down used ­products to create new raw materials (think old water bottles made into a new fleece vest), upcycling refers to the creative reuse of an item without so much processing (more along the lines of a table made from an old door). 

After we trialed our new main to make sure it fit properly, I looked for a spot to store the old one, planning to keep the damaged sail as an emergency backup. All I found was the settee in the main saloon. Keeping it as a spare was not an option. 

Sails, like all equipment, eventually need to be replaced, but major damage doesn’t have to take the wind out of your sails forever. With a little imagination, not only can you get a return on your investment, but, more important, you can save most of the material from ending up in the landfill. 

Made for the Shade

A boom tent is a basic ­rectangle, an easy project to start with. Here’s how I went about it:

  1. To determine the width of the boom tent, I measured the distance between the center of the boom and the bottom wire on the lifelines and multiplied by two. 
  2. Starting from the tack, I measured the needed length along the luff of the sail. By incorporating the grommets that were at regular intervals along the luff (and removing the slugs), I already had strong points on one side of the boom tent to use for tie-downs.
  3. I measured the width of the tent out from the luff and marked a dot every foot or so. By connecting the dots with a straight edge, I had a cut mark for the other side of the tent.
  4. After double-­checking my measurements, I made the cut and hemmed the raw edge. This particular sail had a fairly flat cut, so I simply used the foot of the sail as the other short end, with the added bonus that the large grommet at the tack worked as a strong tie-down point.
  5. I now had three edges of my big rectangle complete. The clew had too much reinforcement to do much with (quite heavy and near impossible to sew), so I cut it off, effectively squaring off the fourth side.

Playing the Angles

Breathe New Life Into Your Sails

The awning for the foredeck was more of a triangle than a rectangle, but the theory was all the same. I planned to use the spinnaker pole as the support, and I needed tie-downs at the two outboard edges, as well as one fore and one aft on the centerline.

Check out our marine water heaters selection here at Raritan Engineering, where we always take care of your marine sanitation supply needs.

  1. Instead of working from a straight edge, this time I measured out from the center, drawing a capital I that was as tall as I wanted my awning long. 
  2. I measured and drew the top and bottom lines to the correct lengths, and then connected the four corners to create the outline of the awning.
  3. Since this was a much smaller piece of material, the tie-down attachments didn’t need to be quite as robust; a loop of strong webbing, well sewn at the corners, would be good enough.

Bug Off

We had been sleeping with a standard off-the-shelf mosquito net draped over the V-berth, but it wasn’t quite the right size. No matter how much tape I used to stick it up, the net came falling down after a few nights of tossing and turning. Instead of surrounding us with netting, I wanted to build a wall that enclosed the whole V-berth.

While the sewing machine was hot, I whipped up a storage bag for the dinghy, both for the offseason and to protect it when we store it on passage, rolled up and strapped down with ratchet straps.

Tools For the Job

  • Most industrial-strength sewing machines with a walking foot can handle sailcloth and other heavy fabrics. Sailrite, Juki and Adler machines are popular options, as are older Pfaff and Singer models. 

  • Sun exposure for a given project will inform your choice of thread. “We use a 200-denier PTFE or Teflon thread because it’s impervious to UV or any chemicals, and lasts the life of the fabric or even longer,” says Mark Hood.

  • You’ll need a sharp-point needle in the 20- to 23-gauge range to punch through sailcloth. Increase the gauge if you’re planning to sew through more than a few layers. 

  • Sailcloth is tough stuff, so you’ll need a large, sharp pair of scissors to cut patterns. To get through multiple layers and reinforced panels, try a razor blade.

So don’t forget these great reminders on which tools you will need so that you can find new life for your old sails. You will need an industrial-strength sewing machine, thread, sharp-point needle in the 20 to 23 guage range, and a sailcloth.

California Police Officer Saves Dog From Burning Sailboat

Upon reaching the burning boat, he realized that in order to save the dog he would have to earn the scared animal’s trust first. As a horse trainer and all-around animal lover, Ruggles knew he was the right man for the job, and did what he could to calm the dog as the crowd watched tensely from the harbor.

“When I first got there, I reached out for the dog and he started barking and growling. So I tried to talk to him in a soft voice, and see if that would help,” Ruggles said. “He was very wide-eyed and his ears were up, so you could see how scared he was.”

Order your marine water here at Raritan Engineering and see how we provide you the best products in the marine sanitation industry today.

Be sure to watch our latest video on marine hot water heaters below.  

via Upcycling Your Sails

via California Police Officer Saves Dog From Burning Sailboat

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You Really Can Get Your Boat to Smell Great Again

As our long-term examination regarding sanitation hose makes its way through another long, scorching– and progressively smellier– summer season, it is actually a good time to consider methods to keep your plumbing system from turning into an olfactory horror. Listed here are simply a few of the suggestions that hose producers discussed with us when we launched our test of sanitation hose.

Hose routing: Constantly slope pipes and hoses toward the holding tank after the preliminary rise. Any type of hose is going to eventually permeate if sewage is left standing in it. If long runs are simply inevitable, think about using well-secured Schedule 40 PVC pipe– not DWV (drain-waste-vent) PVC, which has thinner walls.

Antifreeze: PVC hoses are not compatible with glycol- or alcohol-based winterizing products. The glycol or alcohol can draw out some of the PVC plasticizers, resulting in enhanced permeability and tightness. Even though the hose will certainly not fail, it may permeate.

Oil: Synthetic rubber hoses made of EPDM or butyl rubber might not endure large quantities of mineral or vegetable oil. Having said that, little amounts of oil which might find their way into a head due to owner maintenance practices must not be hazardous– but this is certainly another reason why greasing head pumps with heavy silicone grease at the beginning of every season is a much better technique than the often-suggested practice of flushing a tablespoon of vegetable oil in the head. In fact, the vegetable oil will merely quicken the grease’s washout.

Wipe test: In the event that you think a permeated hose, scrub the hose area clean, wait for several days and after that wipe the suspect hose with a moist towel and sniff the cloth. In the event that it is permeation, the odor will certainly come back soon enough.

Leaks: Even though permeation is certainly a typical cause of hose stench, it is by no means the sole cause. Slow leaks around fittings and hose clamps, and sewage that was inadequately cleaned up are likewise regular reasons; examine the ends before presuming you have a failed hose.

Hose connections: Barbs vs. smooth adapters. SeaLand, maker of the SeaLand hose brand name, is definitely a believer in smooth connections. Properly sized, the company claims, they are easier to make use of, seal better, and do much less damage to the hose. ounded profiles. Not all fittings are a good match; if fit appears too loose, consult the hose maker.

Hose lubrication for installment: A suitable lubricant could be a huge help in getting a hose installed properly. Read the hose specifications to be certain the lube is appropriate. EPDM, for example, is not suitable with petroleum, so K-Y, glycol, or glycerine are actually much better choices. Soap will work but can leave a non-drying residue that can interfere with a secure fit, particularly when utilizing non-barbed fittings.

Fit the hoses a few inches long: Hose removal often includes destruction of the hose. Providing a few extra inches to play with will streamline future repairs, rather like leaving halyards a few feet too long to allow for wear and cutting off knots.

Visit us here at and see how Raritan Engineering always takes care of your marine sanitation supply needs.

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Your Boat Cleaning Products Experts Promote Safety In All Boating Situations 

Raritan Engineering your boat cleaning products professionals would love to share with you this week these helpful tips for surviving areas with high tsunami potential.

The first step to survival is preparation, and we hope sharing the Neal’s insights and firsthand experience will help others cruising tsunami-prone waters to be better prepared in the event of an earthquake.

From Mahina Expeditions:

As sailors, we need to be aware of the ever present threat of a tsunami. By establishing emergency procedures for your crew and vessel along with knowing what to expect and what to do in the event of a tsunami, it will be far less likely that you or your crew will become casualties or that your vessel will sustain damage.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Pacific Tsunami Warning Center is located at Ewa Beach, Hawaii. They have seafloor and coastal sensors located around the Pacific, but after an earthquake, it takes them at least 12-15 minutes to analyze data to determine whether there is the potential for a tsunami.

When Ashore in a Coastal Location

In any coastal location, always note the tidal range and times. If you ever see the sea level receding lower than normal, realize that this is the natural warning sign of an approaching tsunami. 

A tsunami can strike anywhere along most of the U.S. coastline. The most destructive tsunamis have occurred along the coasts of California, Oregon, Washington, Alaska and Hawaii.

Earthquake-induced movement of the ocean floor most often generates tsunamis. If a major earthquake or landslide occurs close to shore, the first wave in a series could reach the beach in a few minutes, even before a warning is issued. 

Your Boat Cleaning Products Specialists Know That Having an Emergency Kit For Your Family s Crucial

Tsunami Preparedness Checklist

  • Your boat cleaning products analysts suggest that you make a disaster supply kit and have a family emergency plan.
  • Talk to everyone in your household about what to do if a tsunami occurs. Create and practice an evacuation plan for your family. 
  • If the school evacuation plan requires you to pick your children up from school or from another location. Be aware telephone lines during a tsunami watch or warning may be overloaded and routes to and from schools may be jammed.
  • Knowing your community’s warning systems and disaster plans, including evacuation routes.
  • Know the height of your street above sea level and the distance of your street from the coast or other high-risk waters.

During a Tsunami

  • Follow the evacuation order issued by authorities and evacuate immediately. Take your animals with you.
  • Move inland to higher ground immediately. Pick areas 100 feet (30 meters) above sea level or go as far as 2 miles (3 kilometers) inland, away from the coastline. If you cannot get this high or far, go as high or far as you can. Every foot inland or upward may make a difference.
  • Stay away from the beach. Never go down to the beach to watch a tsunami come in. If you can see the wave you are too close to escape it. 

When Aboard

If you are docked and experience an earthquake or rapidly receding water, immediately start your engine, cut your docklines and motor at full speed to water deeper than 150 feet. 

At Anchor

If you are at anchor and experience an earthquake or rapidly receding water, immediately start your engine, raise your anchor and get to deeper water. In the 2009 tsunami that hit Niuatoputapu, friends aboard a 39-foot sloop tried to raise anchor immediately after the earthquake but found their chain wrapped around a coral head, so they let out all of their chain. 

When leaving the boat

Here are some priorities to quickly grab:

1. Passports, cash and credit cards

2. Iridium satellite phone

3. Cell phone

4. VHF hand held radio (this proved very helpful in Samoa)

5. Flashlights

6. Knapsack

7. Water bottle

8. Granola bars or similar foods

9. Necessary prescription medicines

10. Running shoes

11. Jacket

Visit us here at Raritan Engineering and see how we always have everything to take care of your marine supply needs.

via Earthquake and Tsunami Awareness and Response

via Prepare For a Tsunami

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Your Seacock Specialists Caution That Boats Can Sink Even If Something Bad Doesn’t Happen 

Raritan Engineering your seacocks professionals would like to share with you these topics we thought would be of interest to you this month regarding how to keep your boat from sinking while its docked.

A boat shouldn’t sink ­unless something ­really bad happens, right? Your seacock analysts know that a high-speed collision, a fiery fuel explosion, a ­direct strike by lightning — these events ­certainly can sink a boat. 

Studies of insurance claims by BoatU.S. back this up, showing that more than two-thirds of recreational-boat sinkings happen at the dock or on a mooring. BoatU.S. further ­estimates that only 35 percent of such sinkings are out of an owner’s hands.

The (Not Always) Mighty Bilge Pump

A bilge pump can really save the day in the event of an unexpected gusher, and it’s great for cleaning up the condensation and other unavoidable drips and drops that collect in the bilge. 

Do Winter Right

When it comes to winterizing, an ounce of prevention can be worth gallons and gallons of cure. Ice can damage hoses below the waterline, strainer baskets and through-hull valves. Water can contaminate the gear lube during the boating season — if it freezes, it can crack metal and blow seals. 

Your Boat is Full of Holes

Not to be an alarmist, but your boat is likely already full of holes below the waterline. These can include holes for a drain plug, mounting bolts, transducers, sensors, through-hull valves and other items. In a perfect world, these — and any downstream hose clamps, fittings and strainers — would all be properly fastened, sealed and/or clamped to keep water out. And they likely were when the boat was brand-new. 

Come visit us at Raritan Engineering because we have all the seacocks for all your sanitation needs.

Be Good to Your Bellows

Your seacock experts feel that the bellows maintain their watertight seal while allowing the drive to turn side to side and trim up and down, but these repeated movements can eventually result in tearing from fatigue. Age and deterioration can cause the rubber to break down over time, especially if exposed to heat or other harsh conditions. 

One Drop at a Time

One below-the-waterline hole that deserves special attention is the opening where the propeller shaft passes through on an inboard boat. This will often be sealed with a few rings of packing material and a tightening gland all nicely referred to as the “stuffing box.” 

Batten Down the Hatches

This simple step would prevent countless sinkings. At some point, it is going to rain. If the hatches leak — ­especially cockpit hatches where rainwater can accumulate — then we can end up with water in the bilge, an overwhelmed bilge pump, and a progressive sinking situation. 

Good Lines

A falling tide can easily trap a boat beneath a dock, where it will fill up with water as the tide rises — often leaving it hanging on its side by its lines. Good dock-line ­technique can save the day. 

Weighty Issues

It’s not uncommon to see a boat with cockpit scuppers or freeing ports designed to sit barely above the waterline once people, gear and fuel are aboard. Now replace that two-stroke outboard with a heavier-by-200-pounds four-stroke and watch the scuppers sink down to the ­waterline before people and gear are aboard. 

Cockpit Crisis

There have also been a surprising number of sinkings due to cockpit drain fittings and hose fittings leaking into the bilge. Sometimes these are routed through the bilge area with little to no access, making it difficult to ensure hose clamps are tight and the hose is in good condition. 


Of course, there are always a few bonehead mistakes that send boats to the bottom every year. Forgetting the drain plug when launching, forgetting to tighten the lid after cleaning a strainer, and leaving a shore hose running on deck after cleaning have all resulted in multiple dockside sinkers. 

Choose your marine supplies here at Raritan Engineering, where we always take care of your marine supply needs.

via 10 Ways to Prevent Your Boat From Sinking Dockside

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Your Marine Toilet Systems Professionals Know the Frustration of Removing Layers of Bottom Paint 

Raritan Engineering your marine toilet systems experts would like to share with you this week these tips on how to remove many layers of bottom paint.

So, a couple of years back, you acquired a good old boat at a pretty good price—thanks to the market—but now you’re wondering how many coats of bottom paint it has. And what kind? You’ve put on a few coats of ablative antifouling since you’ve owned the boat. It has adhered well and has done its job. But each year, the bottom looks rougher and rougher—with big recesses where paint has flaked off. You sweated out some extra prep-work this season, and thought you had a nice, durable subsurface for painting, but each pass of the roller pulls up more paint. What’s going on here?

More than likely, you probably have too much paint built up on your hull, and this is affecting adhesion. How much is too much? Well, that depends on the type of paint: hard or ablative. With a hard paint, adhesion loss will begin around 20 mils of thickness (approximately 10 coats). Having more layers built up will make the inner layers less flexible and more likely to chip, flake, and lose adhesion. 

Ablative paints will begin to lose adhesion around 15 mils of thickness—but since the coating ablates over time, it should not build up like a hard paint. As you use the boat, the paint should wear away, or ablate, and every time the product ablates, it is releasing fresh biocide. 

Your Marine Toilet Systems Analysts Offer the Best Paint Removal Suggestions For You

If you’ve been applying two coats of ablative each year for the last three years, that’s already six coats of paint for a total of 12 mils, not including the previous applications. Your marine toilet systems specialists know that if you aren’t using the boat often enough, those layers are building up, and a slow-moving sailboat will not ablate at the same rate as a powerboat.

Paint removal options vary, and what’s best will depend on how much old paint there is and your personal preference. If there aren’t that many layers of bottom paint, you can sand them off with an 8-inch, dual-action orbital sander and 60-grit sandpaper, but this is hard work and requires careful safety precautions. Overzealous sanding can lead to dings and divots in the gel coat.

Another option is using a chemical paint stripper like Peel Away or Franmar Soy Strip. Chemical paint strippers break down the paint’s adhesive bond on the hull and make it easier to scrape down to clean substrate that can be repainted. 

Both of these methods will be time-consuming on larger boats. Before tackling this project, check out our October 2011 article, “A Mathematical Decision Maker,” which outlines a formula for determining whether the DIY approach is right for you. 

For owners of older boats with unknown, well-adhered coatings, a tie coat can help make sure successive coatings stick. The major bottom paint manufacturers—Interlux, Pettit, and Sea Hawk—all have priming/tie-coat products. 

How long you wait to strip down the old paint depends on how bad the adhesion issue is and your tolerance for a rough bottom; work boats go years without stripping. Eventually though, adhesion will suffer. 

Click here and see how Raritan Engineering always takes care of all your marine supply needs.

via Too Many Layers of Bottom Paint?

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Your TruDesign Experts Are Excited to Show You These Offshore Fishing Tips

Raritan Engineering your TruDesign Professionals would like to share with you these topics we thought would be of interest to you this month regarding improving your offshore fishing skills.

Fishing Tips for Offshore Success


Capt. Damon Sacco, Castafari
East Sandwich, Massachusetts

“Always clean your leaders when you check, re-deploy, or change lures or baits. Your TruDesign analysts know that rubbing alcohol, plain saltwater, and/or even a clean rag has worked well for me. Wiping the leaders helps remove any diesel soot from your exhaust that builds up on your leaders like it does on your transom. Your marine parts supply specialists feel that it sometimes also wipes off any algae that dirty up your leader. You will be surprised at how dirty your leaders and line get, and in a very short amount of time!”


Capt. Bouncer Smith, Bouncer’s Dusky 33
Miami, Florida

“Always have one rod on the boat rigged with a lure. Prime example is I always have a 1 oz bucktail with a little bit of mylar in it rigged and ready to grab at all times. That makes you ever ready to cast to any species of fish. Your TruDesign experts know that many times you run offshore without a bait rigged, and ready to go, and a lure is most accessible.”

Here at Raritan Engineering, we are proud to be your TruDesign supplier and are always ready to take care of all your marine supply needs.


Your TruDesign Specialists Understand That There Is Always Room for Improvement

Capt. Tony DiGiulian, Saltwater Pro Consulting
Fort Lauderdale, Florida

“All of our brains are wired to forget things that no longer seem useful. This forgetting is natural and it is adaptive because it clears our memory for things that keep coming at us. Your marine parts Europe professionals know that the problem, however, is that in the process of all of this memory purging, our brain often forgets important information and useful little details. Fishing is a game of knowledge, and we gather knowledge from a variety of places. From weekend anglers to the top tournament angler, we seek more information to help us catch more fish, more consistently. We work with other anglers within our network, we search the internet, magazines, television shows and tournament results for information that will help us catch more fish. Nothing, however, beats the knowledge we learn from first-hand experience on the water. The problem is storing that information and recalling it when the time is right. It’s interesting how I can remember catching a particular fish on a bait on an exact spot five years ago. At the same time, I might forget the adjustments I made to the outrigger clips or the hook style I was using or sea conditions that led to catching that fish on that particular day. That’s why I try my best to keep a log book of my fishing trips. I keep logbooks dating back 30 years when I started as a professional mate.

“Some of the things I keep in the book are date, water temperature, wind direction, current direction and speed, hook style, size and brand, leader size, drag settings on my reels and a host of other seemingly small details. I may also write down a few notes on how aggressively or lazily the fish came up in my spread and how fast I was trolling or take notes on lure performance and which were the most productive and unproductive styles of lures at that time. Your marine parts house analysts feel that the whole point of a logbook is to refresh my memory with the archives of what I have done in the past, which can help me make better educated decisions. I find, keeping a log book is most necessary when I travel to different destinations as we all easily forget certain details over time and coming back to that destination we retain only 10% of what we learned there the first time.” 

Don’t forget to order your Trudesign Composite Fittings at Raritan Engineering, where we always know how to take care of your marine supply needs.

Please watch our latest TruDesign Composite Fittings Video below


via Fishing Tips for Offshore Success

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Drew Frye

Why Not Try Do-It-Yourself Mildew Preventers?

Experts recently made a pleasant little finding when they were investigating and checking various anti-mildew protectants. A couple of inexpensive do-it-yourself concoctions did as well as or better than market solutions which are 20 to 100 times more costly. Now this was not a big a surprise for the team of experts, who based the homebrew solutions on a few of the more efficient anti-mildew products from former tests.

The 13-product evaluation field consisted of liquid sprays, and gels and solids which work through producing a vapor. The three vapor products were Star brite’s NosGUARD SG, which reacts with water in order to release chlorine-dioxide gas; Forespar Tea Tree Power, a tea tree oil-based solution in a vented tub; and Pur-A-Fy Air from Nature’s Innovative Solutions, a lemongrass oil-based gel.

The liquid-spray group included Forespar’s Tea Tree Oil Spray, Henkle Chemical’s Renuzit, Siamons Concrobium, Goldshield, and 3M’s Marine Mildew Block, that performed effectively in our June 2010 test. Concrobium is readily available in liquid as well as vapor form; we tested the liquid. Our most efficient commercial product, Goldshield 5 (diluted to the equivalent of Goldshield 75), is an quaternary ammonium formula established by scientists at Emory University. As our dehumidifier field examinations demonstrated, the first line of defense is controlling humidity. One thing I have touched on in previoius blog articles about combating mildew. When it comes to sealed lockers, or tight quarters which are challenging to treat or ventilate, you may additionally wish to look at our report on chemical dessicants like DampRid.

The two do-it-yourself spray formulas we evaluated each cost about one penny per ounce. Just like the additional mold preventers in our test, you make use of those as cleansers by simply spraying the product on, cleaning any type of excess away, and leaving it on. Before applying to any fabric, test the spray on an inconspicuous sample area.

Formula A.

1 quart hot water.

1 tablespoon baking soda (sodium bicarbonate).

2 tablespoons washing soda (sodium carbonate).

2 tablespoons trisodium phosphate (TSP) 5.

Similar To Concrobium (which it is actually designed after), our homemade Formula A removed the mildew and mold from test carpeting on board and kept it away, even though the spot got moist again. It was also extremely effective in the moist-environment lab test.

Formula B.

1 quart hot water.

2 tablespoons baking soda.

2 tablespoons Borax.

1 tablespoon TSP.

Formula B was actually the second-place performer in the fluid group. It was definitely the very best value. It cleaned effectively, protected against mildew and mold from coming back to the carpet, and significantly slowed down mildew contamination in the moist-environment test in the lab.

We also had a go at treating with plain vinegar, which apparently works on some hard surfaces, but testers found the smell a little too overwhelming. A 10-percent solution of household bleach (3-percent sodium hypochlorite) was one of the best cleansers, but this has to be used with care. Bleach will bleed or degrade many fabrics, and could damage the marine environment.

Visit us here at and see how Raritan Engineering always takes care of your marine sanitation supply needs.

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Don’t Get Caught Off Guard – Install a Remote Boat Engine Kill Switch

Raritan Engineering Company your electric toilets suppliers would like to share with you these topics we thought would be of interest to you this month regarding the benefits of a remote boat engine kill switch.

Your electric toilets experts talk about how a safety-stop lanyard — aka engine kill switch — comes standard with marine power systems to instantly shut down propulsion if the helmsman gets tossed from the boat. Yet many skippers forget that they’re tethered and walk away from the wheel, inadvertently killing the engine. 

Fell Marine’s MOB+ wireless man-overboard systems resolve this issue. Essentially, a remote xFob that you wear connects wirelessly using the WiMEA protocol to a Fell xHub on the boat. When a wearer falls overboard, it breaks the signal and the engine shuts down. 

Install the xHub

Select a spot near the wheel and cut a standard 21/16-inch-diameter hole, making sure you have clearance behind it for the 61/2-inch-long xHub antenna (it is flexible and can bend slightly). Remove the xHub nut and attach the antenna to the back of the unit.

Connect to Power

Take care to turn off the onboard battery power before wiring the connector cable to an onboard power source. The connector cable has a five-wire color-coded pigtail. Connect the red (positive) wire to a stable, positive 12-volt DC source with a 1- to 3-amp fuse with either a marine in-line fuse holder or a fuse block, neither of which is supplied with the Fell system. 

Remote Boat Engine Kill Switch Can Save Lives

See your choice of electric toilets here at Raritan Engineering and see how we always take care of your marine sanitation supply needs.

Connect Signal Wires

Two of the remaining three pigtails are used to connect the signal wires to the existing kill switch on your boat. To determine which two, visit for a wire schematic for your engine brand.

Test the System

Test while tied to a dock. Turn on the engine. If you wired the system to the existing kill switch, pull the lanyard to ensure it works. Reconnect the lanyard and restart the engine. Submerge the xFob Multifob in the ocean or lake, or walk with it until the engine stops. The xHub will light up red and emit a sound signal to indicate a man overboard. 

What good is a kill switch that you don’t use?

Many (most) operators of small, outboard-powered boats do not use their corded kill switch as it was designed, by clipping it to their clothing. Properly attached to you, the kill switch ties you down to a very limited space onboard. 

If you happen to fall or get thrown out of your boat and you’re not properly tethered to the outboard by your kill switch lanyard, the boat will either spin in circles or just keep motoring straight–two disastrous alternatives. 

If you fall overboard, the xHUB cuts the engine, sounds an alarm and flashes red lights on your dash. The device includes an “Override Mode”. In Override Mode, any passenger or crew onboard can restart the engine without the need to interact with the MOB+ system. 

Don’t forget these easy steps for installing your remote boat engine kill switch. 1) Install the xHub;  2) connect to the power;  3) connect the signal wires;  and 4) test the system.

Fleet of sailboat drones could monitor climate change’s effect on oceans

Two 7-meter-long sailboats are set to return next month to California, after nearly 8 months tacking across the Pacific Ocean. Puttering along at half-speed, they will be heavy with barnacles and other growth. No captains will be at their helms.

That is not because of a mutiny. These sailboats, outfitted with sensors to probe the ocean, are semi autonomous drones, developed by Saildrone, a marine tech startup based in Alameda, California, in close collaboration with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in Washington, D.C.

After World War II, most sea surface data were collected from ships. Then came buoys and satellites. Now, NOAA scientists want to send in the drones. “We could be making the next epochal advancement in oceanography,” says Craig McLean, NOAA’s assistant administrator for oceanic and atmospheric research and acting chief scientist.  

Richard Jenkins, an engineer and Saildrone’s founder, smelled an opportunity. He had built a sailboat on wheels called Greenbird that in 2009 broke the land-speed record for a wind-powered vehicle, reaching 202 kilometers per hour on a dry lake bed in Nevada. Afterward, he helped two ocean-minded philanthropists, Eric and Wendy Schmidt, outfit their research vessel, the R/V Falkor, at a cost of $60 million.

The first Pacific test started on 5 September 2017, when two saildrones, 1005 and 1006, set out from San Francisco, California, for equatorial waters. Satellites had spotted cold tongues of surface water extending westward from the South American coast, an indicator of a strong La Niña, El Niño’s opposite number. 

In addition to temperature, wind, and solar radiation data, the Pacific saildrones are measuring how the ocean and air exchange gases like carbon dioxide and oxygen, and they are using Doppler instruments to gauge currents coursing up to 100 meters below the surface. 

Order your marine toilet parts here at Raritan Engineering and see how we provide you the best products in the marine sanitation industry today.

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

via Installing A Remote Boat Engine Kill Switch

via MOB+ Wireless Man Overboard System

via Fleet of sailboat drones could monitor climate change’s effect on oceans

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Check Out Some Easy Ways to Upgrade Your Boating Gear

Expert riggers are skilled tinkerers: Put a length of rope in their hands, and they’ll immediately start thinking of ways to splice it, strip it, taper it, and eventually prevent making use of any type of knot, that we all know can compromise a rope’s breaking strength.

Switch out your wire lifelines.

Wire lifelines are history (unless your one-design class guidelines state otherwise). Dyneema is the best choice, particularly Dyneema SK90, which is up to three times stronger compared to comparable sized 1×19 stainless steel wire. You are likewise able to get rid of all the affiliated hardware, consisting of toggles, eyes, and turnbuckles.

See your sheets or halyards at night.

Anyone can now have customized lines produced with glow-in-the-dark markers wound right into the cover. A few manufacturers, such as Marlow, now provide this with regard to full lengths, or specific spans of your specified lines. Make use of it with regard to all your halyards and sheets, or perhaps select a couple of control lines that you have to quickly identify at night.

Blend hoist markings into your halyard covers.

As with the glow-in-the-dark markers, these marks could be woven right into the cover at a pre-determined place in the rope. Gone are the days of permanent markers, whippings, or tape. These types of markers are particular to your line and are certainly not going anywhere.

A new way to connect your jib sheets.

T-Ring systems are a fantastic option available to sailmakers and riggers. A fitting, which resembles a clew ring with a “T” facing into the sail, is sewn into the clew of your jib. Your sheets merely have an eye spliced into the end of each. In order to attach the sheet to the sail, the Dyneema loop goes over the T, through the two sheets’ eyes, and then over the T the other way.

Attach blocks and fittings using soft loops.

Dyneema loops, whether single pass or covered multiple-pass loops, have actually been around for many years. Over the last few years, however, manufacturers have made a concerted attempt to design their items to use this specific technology for attaching their products.

Maximize your winch power with the right cover material.

Using the best cover material, despite the core material you select in your high-tech lines is actually essential to getting optimal grip from your winch drum. The cover is really where the rubber meets the road– where your line hits the winch.

There are multiple options available outside of the outdated standby polyester cover. However the more preferred common-use covers consist of a selection of blends. Polyester/Technora is a combination which incorporates great hold to your winch.

Lock your jib halyard and calibrate tension on the fly.

A halyard-lock along with cunningham is definitely a highly effective tool. Halyard locks possess numerous advantages: Mast compression is removed, and tuning becomes a lot more repeatable. However, another advantage is the capability to change luff tension easily while sailing upwind. When a jib halyard is set onto a lock, the head is at a fixed height. Small modifications while the sails are loaded come to be simple.

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 safety tips

Try These Easy and Cost Effective Ways to Stay Safe While Boating

Raritan Engineering Company your marine heads specialists would like to share with you these topics we thought would be of interest to you this month regarding simple ways to stay safe while boating. 

Your marine heads experts talk about how to open up your boat for a vessel safety check: You may think getting a vessel safety check from the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary or U.S. Power Squadrons can open yourself to problems. However, a no-risk, free vessel safety check does the opposite. It points out both the required and recommended items to have aboard, such as fire extinguishers, life jackets, distress signals, first-aid kits, and engine spark arrestors.

Believe the numbers – take a safety course: Statistics from the U.S. Coast Guard Office of Boating Safety show that only 13 percent of all boating deaths in 2016 occurred on vessels where the operator had taken a nationally approved boating safety education course.

Give a safety talk before you head out: Taking out guests is half the fun of boating, but before you head out give a little talk about how to stay safe aboard your boat. Some important things to include may be how to distribute weight in a small boat, how to hold on when crossing a wake, how a tuber or water skier should safely reboard after being towed, how the VHF radio works and the location of important safety equipment.

Be Weather-Wise

Always check local weather conditions before departure; TV and radio forecasts can be a good source of information. If you notice darkening clouds, volatile and rough changing winds or sudden drops in temperature, play it safe by getting off the water.

Safety Doesn’t Always Have to Be Expensive

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

Follow a Pre-Departure Checklist

Proper boating safety includes being prepared for any possibility on the water. Following a pre-departure checklist is the best way to make sure no boating safety rules or precautions have been overlooked or forgotten.

Use Common Sense

One of the most important parts of boating safety is to use your common sense. This means operating at a safe speed at all times (especially in crowded areas), staying alert at all times and steering clear of large vessels and watercraft that can be restricted in their ability to stop or turn. Also, be respectful of buoys and other navigational aids, all of which have been placed there to ensure your own safety.

Develop a Float Plan

Whether you choose to inform a family member or staff at your local marina, always be sure to let someone else know your float plan. This should include where you’re going and how long you’re going to be gone.

Avoid Alcohol

Practice boating safety at all times by saving the alcohol for later. The probability of being involved in a boating accident doubles when alcohol is involved and studies have shown that the effects of alcohol are exacerbated by sun and wind.

Learn to Swim

If you’re going to be in and around the water, proper boating safety includes knowing how to swim. Local organizations, such as the American Red Cross and others, offer training for all ages and abilities. Check to see what classes are offered in your area.

So don’t forget these great tips for keeping your and your family safe while out on the water. 1) Take a safety course;  2) be weather wise;  and 3) use common sense.

Centuries-old sailing ship found on Florida beach

A 48-foot section of an old sailing ship has washed ashore on a Florida beach, thrilling researchers who are rushing to study it before it’s reclaimed by the sea. 

At first, Turner thought it was a piece of a pier or fence, but then, she realized it was a centuries-old ship that had washed ashore. 

“We walked and checked it out and immediately knew it was a historical piece of artifact,” she said. Researchers with the St. Augustine Lighthouse and Maritime Museum have been documenting the artifact and say it could date back as far as the 1700s.  

“To actually see this survive and come ashore. This is very, very rare. This is the holy grail of shipwrecks,” Anthony said. 

Museum historian Brendan Burke told the newspaper that evidence suggests the vessel was once sheeted in copper, and that crews found Roman numerals carved on its wooden ribs.

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

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

via 3 Easy, No-Cost Ways to Be Safer on the Water

via Safe Boating Tips

via “Holy grail of shipwrecks”: Centuries-old sailing ship found on Florida beach