Archive for September, 2009

Rig your reefing lines

Monday, September 28th, 2009

When sailing offshore or, for that matter, any time when you know from the weather forecast that the wind may strengthen considerably, you must, I repeat MUST, run all your reefing lines.

If your mainsail has two reefs but you only have one reefing line, make sure you run a light line as a ‘mouse’ to the second reefing point in the leech. If/when you need to take in a second reef, you can then tie your reefing line securely to the mouse and gently pull it, drawing the reefing line up through the reefing point and back down to the boom.

Using a mouse is OK but it is preferable to have reefing lines available for all the reefs you can take in your mainsail.

If you don’t rig your boat so that you’re ready for the increased wind strength, when the time comes to take that second reef, conditions will be far too dangerous to allow one of your crew to try to lead the reefing line.

In Boat Handling I and II, I discuss how to reef a mainsail in detail.

Know your nautical buoyage – IALA Regions A and B

Friday, September 25th, 2009

Some years ago, approaching the finish of the Melbourne-Osaka double-handed yacht race, one boat came to grief. The crew, probably excited about completing the 5,500 mile race, forgot that Japan is located in IALA Region B. So, instead of steering their yacht through safe water, they ran it aground. Ouch! And after all that effort.

To save you from suffering a similar fate, we’ve developed Buoyage – IALA Regions A and B. As well as listing the countries under their region, there’s a section where you can learn or revise the cardinal, lateral and all the other buoys – their shapes, colours and the lights they display at night.

When you’re ready, you can take an interactive quiz to check your recognition of all the buoys.

Buoyage – IALA Regions A and B is just one of five quizzes we’ve developed in the Nautical Knowledge. The other subjects are:

  • Rules of the Road
  • Navigation Lights
  • Signal Flags
  • Fog and other Sound Signals

The Nautical Knowledge is available as a download for only AU$9.95.

Nautical Knowledge

Monday, September 21st, 2009

I’ve been having a bit of a break from blogging, working on an exciting project. But now I can announce the release of our new product. It’s called the Nautical Knowledge and is an audio-visual representation of the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea (COLREGS).

Yes. The team at The Boating Bible has developed a stand-alone download from the five interactive quizzes that are otherwise to be found on individual CDs in The Boating Bible Manual of Seamanship.

This means that you can learn, revise and then test yourself on five key areas of safety and seamanship:

  • Rules of the Road
  • Buoyage – IALA Regions A and B
  • Navigation Lights
  • Signal Flags
  • Fog and other Sound Signals

What’s more, you can refer to the Nautical Knowledge over and over again.

For instance, if you’re sailing at night and see a configuration of lights that puzzle you, you can scroll through the learning section of Navigation Lights to locate the vessel. At sea at night you need to know whether a vessel is fishing, towing or at anchor so that you can take steps to avoid it.

Why not get your copy today? The Nautical Knowledge download is available immediately after you have completed the order process. You don’t have to wait!