A better solar shower from Duckworks

by Tim on February 25, 2015

I have mixed feelings about the conventional gravity-fed floppy-bag solar shower products, and have never used one on my boat. But when Bob at Boat Bits posted about this product—the Duckworks Pump-Up Solar Shower—I was intrigued.

I envision using this on my boat, or on wilderness road trips. True, it doesn’t roll up to a convenient stowage size, but it has a lot of advantages worthy of consideration. I’m thinking especially about rinsing grubby children off BEFORE they climb back into the boat or car!

Watch these videos for a good introduction:

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NMEA 0183: Not Dead Yet!

by Tim on February 18, 2015

I’m not the only one nursing along older but perfectly functional marine electronics. Stu over at S/V Ripple has recently conquered his own tricky networking issues:

It should be noted that Stu’s diagram is a lot prettier than mine from 2008:

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Marty McOmber has this entry over at Three Sheets Northwest, and I think it’s the sort of thing Navagear readers will appreciate…

Seacocks are one of those critical pieces of boat equipment that probably don’t get enough attention. After all, they are pretty much the only thing standing between a great day on the water and watching your boat sink.

So what do you do if that seacock fails? Most boaters carry a few tapered wooden plugs — or bungs — for just such an emergency. But what if there were a better solution, one that could be used to stop an unexpected leak and also allow you to replace a seacock without hauling the boat out of the water?

Seabung to the resuce.

Seabung to the rescue.

Turns out that a small company in England has created just that. The Seabung is a deceptively simple, but intriguingly clever solution for keeping your boat afloat while you fix, maintain or replace a seacock.

This device is a must-have for any boater who is contemplating cruising in places where haul-out facilities are few and far between. And it should be considered standard safety gear to augment those wooden or foam bungs in the emergency repair kit.

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100th anniversary of the “Act to create the U.S. Coast Guard”

January 28, 2015

[Written by Scott Price, Historian’s Office, USCG] One hundred years ago today, from his office in the Treasury Building in Washington, D.C., Captain-Commandant Ellsworth P. Bertholf, head of the now-former U.S. Revenue Cutter Service, or USRCS, ordered his Chief Clerk to send telegrams or radio messages to all offices, stations and cutters around the country […]

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Seattle Boat Show closes one day early for Seahawks Super Bowl Re-Pete

January 22, 2015

[The show opens Friday January 23rd, but it closes on Saturday January 31st, not on Sunday. Apparently there is some sort of athletic competition scheduled for that day. Go Hawks!–Tim] Show attractions include drawing for 2015 Seahawks season tickets Upon further review, the ruling has been confirmed — it’s a repeat for the Seattle Seahawks […]

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2015 Seattle Boat Show: January 23-Feb 1

January 12, 2015

It’s back! “The boat show. The boat show. The big Seattle boat show…” Sing with me, my lovelies! Take a quick look at this press release, because there are a few new features, event, and promotions to be aware of. If nothing else, please note the one about FREE ADMISSION AFTER 5 pm Monday-Thursday for […]

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Panbo update on Real, Synthetic & Virtual AIS Aids to Navigation

January 9, 2015

Long-time Navagear readers will know that I’m an enthusiastic fanboy for virtual and synthetic AIS aids-to-navigation. I just think there’s tremendous potential there. Ben Ellison has provided a great update on these over at Panbo: One way to spend a frigid night in Maine is learning about AIS AtoNs, an electronic augmentation to the aids […]

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Preventive maintenance tip: Engine Oil Analysis

December 30, 2014

Marty McOmber at Three Sheets Northwest taught me something new today. I’d never heard of an “engine oil analysis”, but it makes perfect sense. I definitely want to do this next oil change. Read on… What if there was an early warning system that could tell you when little problems were taking place inside your […]

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Drones over Sucia Island!

December 16, 2014

Lovely video of one of my favorite places in the world… See more of Kevin & Laura’s boating adventures at their blog Riveted, including a video of Sucia’s neighbor Patos:

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‘Tis the season…for boat fires!

December 12, 2014

Great post over at Windborne in Puget Sound. Some shore-power plugs have thermal protection that opens the circuit if the plug gets too hot. SmartPlug is the one I’m most familiar with. Every winter there are boat fires – fires which rapidly lead to marina fires except in the most fortunate circumstances.  And these fires […]

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