Monday, December 9

The Brooklin Boat Yard in Maine is building a cold-molded, modern replica of Ernest Hemingway’s famous Wheeler 38 Pilar, and it will be launched next spring. The new Wheeler Pilar was reverse engineered from the original by Bill Prince Yacht Design, of Port Washington, Wisconsin. Hemingway’s Pilar is one of the most famous boats of all time. He wrote about it extensively, particularly in Islands in the Stream and then in The Old Man and the Sea, which won the Pulitzer Price in 1953. Hemingway bought the boat in April, 1934, when he returned from a safari in Africa, from…

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43 Finalists Named in Boat of the Year Awards

Motor Boat & Yachting, the British magazine, has just announced the finalists in its annual Motor Boat Awards, and they include many boats that are familiar to owners in the United States. There are a total of 43 finalists in nine categories; the winners will be announced on January 21 in a gala party during the Düsseldorf boat show. The finalists are: Sportsboats and RIBs: Beneteau Flyer & Sundeck Brig Eagle 8 Brig Eagle 10 Chris-Craft 28 Launch GT Greenline NEO Highfield HX76 Hydrolift 26 Jeanneau Cap Camarat 7.5 DC S2 Nimbus T9 Superboats: Brabus Shadow 500 Black Ops Iguana X100…

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Stewardess Says She “Screwed Up” Having Sex with the Captain

We first wrote about this story in August, but now we have more details and it just keeps getting better and better. Now, in an interview played in court, the stewardess who had sex with the captain on the bow of a charter yacht in Australia while it crashed into a nav beacon and two other boats said she really “screwed up.” According to Australia’s Daily Mail, the 80-foot charter boat Crystal Blue suffered $140,000 worth of damage when the stewardess, Cheya Handley (above), 26, was drinking and having sex with the captain, Jeremy Piggott, 46, on the bow of…

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Great Holiday Boat Parades, from Coast to Coast

Now that we’re into December, the holiday boat parade season is well underway. It’s the time of year when boat owners decorate their vessels with everything from simple strands of lights to Hollywood-worthy productions of Santas, reindeer, elves and almost anything else you can think of with a seasonal theme. Most of the parades, of course, are in the warmer parts of the country, with enormous ones in Fort Lauderdale on the east coast and Newport Beach on the west coast. It’s no surprise that Florida has the most of all; you can see a list of all the parades there…

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NOAA Will Stop Making Paper Charts

I don’t know about you, but in a room upstairs at home I have rolled up charts that I’ve used for cruising in the Atlantic, the Pacific and the Great Lakes over the years. You may have a similar space in your home, or on your boat.  They remind me of many great (and some not-so-great) places I’ve been, miles under the belt. They’re a part of my history. Soon they may be relics. NOAA just announced that it will phase out all production of paper charts over the next five years. It will make electronic vector charts instead. NOAA…

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U SAFE Big Winner in METS Awards. See Video

The innovative remote-controlled U SAFE life buoy was the big winner in the recent DAME design awards handed out at big METS marine equipment show in Amsterdam. Indeed, U SAFE won the top prize in the prestigious annual design competition, and it also won the award in the Lifesaving and Safety Equipment Category. Garmin also won two awards, one for its Garmin GPSMAP 86i in the marine electronics category, and one, as a co-winner, for its Garmin Force Trolling Motor in the Machinery and Propulsion Category. The other co-winner there was the Navico GHOST Trolling Motor. The DAME design awards…

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Totally Over-the-Top Holiday Gifts for Superyacht Owners

Many, many years ago, when my children were young and we had a sailboat, they gave me a sailbag for Christmas. The next year, it was a hand-held compass. I was very happy with both of these presents; my children knew how to connect with my passion. Later on, when they flew down to Fort Lauderdale to join me on our Grand Banks for a holiday cruise to Ocean Reef in the Keys, they brought a set of drinking glasses that I still have to this day. Those are normal kinds of holiday gifts for boat owners. Last week we…

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The Most Awesome Engine Room on a 50-footer!

 

Kadey-Krogen Yachts broke the traditional raised pilothouse passagemaker mold and created a bluewater cruiser with an open and continuous saloon/galley/pilothouse main deck layout.  The stunning byproduct of this design was an engine room that is second to none for her size, or even for a 75 footer for that matter. Inside the water tight engine room doors reveals seven feet of headroom, easy access to all systems and abundant room to store tools and spares. Read about the build process and the result at the links below.

Kid in a Candy Store

Open 50 Progress Report #1

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Williams To Launch New Luxurious Evojet Tender at Düsseldorf

The new Williams Evojet tender just looks like fun. Williams will launch the Evojet, its largest and most luxurious tender yet, at the Düsseldorf show, starting Jan. 18. Judging by the pictures, it’s bound to be a hit. This almost 23-feet-long tender is the first in Williams’ new Evojet series, and it’s big enough to hold a crowd, with seating for 13, and small enough to serve as a couple’s dayboat or runabout. Williams has designed the Evojet as a large yacht tender, but it just as easily could be a second boat or a sport boat in its own…

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Palm Beach Motoryachts Will Launch New GT60 in Miami

The new Palm Beach GT60, with the same low profile, long sheer and elegant tumblehome as other Palm Beach models, will debut at the Miami Yacht Show, starting Feb. 13. It follows the launch of the GT50 Open at Miami last year, and the GT50 Salon Express at the Newport, Rhode Island, show in September, 2018. The GT50 Salon Express was named Best New Powerboat at that show; the judges said the beautiful, fast and light Palm Beach motoryacht was just plain “sexy.” The new GT60 has all the same lines and heritage as the GT50, except it’s ten feet…

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New Sirena 64: A Comfortable Cruiser at 26 Knots

The new Turkish-built Sirena 64, just displayed at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show, is one of the latest examples of contemporary European “fast trawlers” – really long-distance, comfortable cruising boats with a turn of speed – that include the Beneteau Swift Trawler line and the Azimut Magellanos. In the Sirena’s case, it offers an Italian design, by Tommaso Spadolini, a Germán Frers hull, and a top speed of more than 26 knots with twin 1,000-hp CAT diesels. Sirena spent a lot of time and research developing the hull, which delivers a fuel-efficient ride in the easy-cruising 8- to 12-knot…

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Ranger Tugs Launches New 25 Trailerable Pocket Cruiser

Ranger Tugs just launched its new R 25 trailerable pocket cruiser at the Fort Lauderdale show. This newest Ranger is powered by a single Yamaha 250-hp outboard and, like all Rangers, it’s packed with enough amenities to make cruising easy and fun. Over the years, I’ve cruised on several Rangers in the Pacific Northwest. They’re made by Fluid Motion, based in Kent, Washington. It also makes Cutwater Boats, and it’s one of the most successful boat companies in recent times. I’ve always felt that each cruise ended much too soon, as Rangers (and Cutwaters) provide a lot of room and…

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Foldable Oru Kayak Fits in a Duffle, Weighs 20 Pounds

If your boat is squeezed for space, and you have a hard time finding room for a kayak, take a look at the new foldable Inlet model from Oru Kayak. It folds up like an origami, fits into a duffle and weighs just 20 pounds. And it was just named one of Time’s 100 Best Inventions of 2019. Anton Willis, the founder of Oru, got the idea for a folding kayak after he saw a story in The New Yorker about origami. He was an ocean kayaker, but he didn’t have any place to keep his kayak in his San…

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Simrad Launches Two New Radars for Smaller Cruising Boats

Simrad Yachting just announced the launch of HALO20+ and HALO20 radars, a pair of compact, pulse-compression units designed for smaller cruising boats. Both radars provide excellent detection with short-range performance, while HALO20+ has the fastest rotation on the market and can detect targets farther away than the HALO20. With a 20-inch dome, the HALO20+ is Simrad’s smallest pulse compression radar yet, delivering a full 360-degree sweep every second. Simrad says it has an industry-first 60 RPM rotation at ranges up to 1.5 nm. These fast updates give boat owners an almost real-time view of close range activity, helping to avoid…

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Best Satcom Systems for Smaller Cruising Boats

Large yachts have been able to fit and house satcom systems for many years, letting their owners enjoy satellite-driven communications and entertainment at sea or at the dock. The only problem was that many of these systems were too large (and too expensive) for most cruising powerboats. Now that has changed. Many of the leading satcom companies now have internet, phone and data systems that are appropriate for smaller boats. Here, Marine Electronics Journal takes a look at the best on the market now: INTERNET, PHONE & DATA Intellian FB 250 The Intellian FB 150, FB 250 and FB 500…

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Garmin Launches New Hi-Res, Detailed Coastal and Lake Charts

Garmin just made navigation easier along the U.S. coastline and many interior lakes, expanding its coverage and improving the details and shading on its coastal and lake cartography. The new coverage, on Garmin’s BlueChart g3 Vision and LakeVü g3 Ultra premium cartography, will be shown at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show. The new high-resolution shading and improved detail showing the ocean floor and lake bottom cover the entire coastline of the continental United States plus 150 inland lakes. New hi-res satellite imagery overlaid on navigation charts provides a more realistic view of your surroundings and helps with situational awareness.…

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The Hottest Islands for 2020, from Coastal Living

We all love islands. At least I think we do. I certainly do. There’s something romantic about islands. They’re always away, a trip from home, a loosening of our ties to land. They bring out the sea captain in us, or the pirate, or maybe just the beach bum. Some of my best memories are of cruises, charters and vacations to islands. I’m thinking of mainstays like Nantucket, the BVI, and Antigua, but I also include some a bit more off the beaten path – I’m thinking of you, Rebak Island in Langkawi, Malaysia, and Rottnest Island, off Perth, Australia.…

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Oxford, Maryland, a Picturesque Boating Haven Since 1683

If you’re in Annapolis for the boat shows, or simply cruising through the Chesapeake on your way south for the winter, give yourself a treat and stop across the bay at Oxford on Maryland’s eastern shore. Founded in 1683, Oxford is small, with only 651 people, and quiet (its most prosperous time was during the Revolution), but it’s a picturesque boating haven simply invites you to slow down and relax a bit. Oxford is almost surrounded by water, with the Tred Avon River and Town Creek wrapping around it on three sides. Their banks are lined with restored 18th and…

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Want To Help the Bahamas? Go There. Here’s What’s Open

Here’s a good story from The Points Guy by Liz Hunt called Three Reasons Now Is the Best Time To Visit the Bahamas. It tells what’s open after Hurricane Dorian, which is a lot. Earlier this month, the Bahamas were hit very hard by Hurricane Dorian with winds up to 185 miles per hour at landfall — the destruction was deadly. Weeks later, at least 50 people have been confirmed dead and 1,300 remain missing. The northern part of the archipelago, including the Abaco Islands and Grand Bahama, endured the brunt of the hit while destinations such as Nassau, the…

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New Marina, with Incredible Views, Opens in Brooklyn

The first new marina in New York City in the past 50 years is now open on the East River, just south of the Brooklyn Bridge, with 100 slips for boats up to 200 feet and incredible views of downtown Manhattan. The marina, Oneº15 Brooklyn, is part of Brooklyn Bridge Park. It’s just below the River Café, between Piers 4 and 5, and directly across the river from the South Street Seaport and the Fulton Fish Market. More than five years in the building, the marina was delayed until the owners, Oneº15, a Singapore company, developed a new, proprietary, wave-attenuation…

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Get Faster Wi-Fi with Shakespeare’s Stream Internet Booster

Here’s something almost all cruising boat owners say they want: Faster Wi-Fi, both underway and at the dock. Shakespeare Marine has an answer for that. It’s the Stream Wireless Internet Booster, and it uses Shakespeare’s marine cellular technology to amplify weak cell signals, so you can access the Internet faster and more reliably along inshore, coastal and popular cruising routes. The new Stream Wireless Internet Booster is designed for boats of all sizes. It has an outside antenna that communicates with cell towers on land; a stream wireless booster that processes and amplifies the cell signal; and a helm antenna…

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Now, AIS on Your Phone with iNavX; No Transponder Needed

Now, with iNavX LIVE, you can get AIS data in the palm of your hand on your smartphone or tablet, without needing a transponder on your boat. The new addition to iNavX software lets you connect any mobile device to the AIS LIVE global network, so that you can see the movements of AIS vessels in real time on the iNavX display on your phone. INavX, an app you can download from the Apple App Store or Google Play Store, has all the advantages of a mobile chartplotter that you can take on any boat, anywhere, at any time. It…

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Raymarine, Vesper, Win Big at Best New Electronics Awards

The National Marine Electronics Association just gave 18 awards for best new products at their annual meeting in Portsmouth, Virginia. The awards were chosen by a five-person panel of judges. The Top award, the NMEA Technology Award, based on innovation, benefit to boaters, practicality and value, went to the Raymarine/FLIR ClearCruise AR (pictured above). Here’s what the judges said: “ClearCruise AR is an industry-first technology that combines augmented reality and advanced image stabilization to help boaters make smarter and faster navigation decisions by placing visual overlays of nav aids, AIS traffic and destination waypoints on Raymarine Axiom multi-function displays. The…

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FLIR Introduces New M300 Series of Thermal, High-Def Cameras

FLIR is introducing a new generation of marine thermal cameras, combining thermal and high-definition imaging for increased situational awareness and safer navigation. The new line, called the M300 Series, is a successor to FLIR’s M-Series of marine cameras. The next-generation M300 Series consists of five models with rugged new pan and tilt housings built for the harsh marine environment. Four of them have FLIR Boson 640- or 320-resolution thermal camera cores and various fixed field-of-view lenses, plus a visible-only model, the M300C, with a high-definition color, low-light camera with 30x zoom. The new cameras make navigation easier through improved image stabilization…

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Plan Now for an Unforgettable Charter in Historic Greece

Now is a great  time to plan your charter vacation for next spring or summer, and you would have a hard time finding a more historic or alluring place than Greece. It has just about everything – easy cruising conditions, beautiful landscapes, ancient ruins, secluded islands, gorgeous white sand beaches, and waterfront tavernas. The place to start is Zia Marina in Athens’ port of Piraeus (Athens is pictured above). To give some sense of history, Piraeus has been a port since the 5th century, B.C. Today, Zia Marina is a fully-equipped, modern marina with room for 670 boats; it’s also…

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BVI Update: Many Favorite Spots Now Open

It’s been more than two years since the hurricanes devastated much of the British Virgin Islands, and the recovery has been difficult. Many marinas, charter fleets and resorts were hard hit. But now some of our favorites are open again or getting back to normal. “Normal,” of course, is a high bar to reach, since the BVI are one of the best, easiest and most attractive cruising grounds in the world. Here’s an update from The Moorings, the worldwide charter powerhouse, on what’s open now. Pusser’s Marina Cay, probably high on the list of everyone’s favorite destinations in the BVI,…

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Cruise Through France’s Champagne Region on a Luxury Hotel Barge

For a truly different and totally relaxing charter, consider six nights on the Panache, a 12-passenger luxury hotel barge run by European Waterways that cruises through the heart of France’s Champagne region, with frequent stops at vineyards and historic sites along the way. (See the video, below.) The cruise starts on the River Marne, about 75 miles from Paris. The Champagne tasting centers on Epernay, where you can tour the home of Moët & Chandon and inspect thousands of bottles of Champagne in 17 miles of underground tunnels. After some sampling there, you can move on to a hillside tasting…

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Insider Tips: Cruising Mallorca to Ibiza on Chartered Power Cats

Cruising Mallorca to Ibiza – Insider Tips Published: October 7, 2019    The Moorings   Comments By Renato Seitenfus: Since I joined The Moorings and became hooked on the charter experience, I cannot let one year pass without stepping on a boat, exploring new waters, and discovering new cultures. Every year my friends and I set up an annual floating meeting, so after the Caribbean and Thailand, we decided to choose a destination that we’d all been to before and fell in love with – Spain. Our crew was bigger this time with 12 best friends coming from different places all…