Boat Maintenance and Upgrades

Does taking care of your boat seem like a never-ending process? Then we bet you’re on the right track. Boat maintenance and restoration are essential to ensuring that you enjoy every minute you spend on the water. When you know your boat is in great condition, you can spend your carefree days on the water listening to the waves instead of wondering, what is that noise? We will share some restoration stories and maintenance tips and tricks to help you along the way. Or share some of your own – everyone can use a helping hand!

Used Boat Buying Quiz: Are You Ready for This?

You may locate a used boat you've been dreaming about, but take a deep breath and consider whether you're ready for the project list after you've made the purchase.

It’s probably safe to say not everyone is cut out for the rigors of used-boat ownership. Before you let your boat-buying fever get ahead of you and your … [Read more...]

Exterior Marine Wood Finishes: Part Two — Oils, Sealers, Hybrids

A couple of coats of Amazon teak oil makes this teak deck shine, but without making the surface smooth and slippery like varnish or Cetol would. Photo courtesy of Teak Decking Systems.

It's a sign of spring: Boaters have been walking out of the marine supply shop where I fill in part-time with fistfuls of brushes, thinners, and wood finishes … [Read more...]

Exterior Marine Wood Finishes: Part One, Traditional Varnishes

Varnish looks great and does a great job protecting wood, but getting it right requires a deft touch and some clever tricks. Photo by Gary Reich.

In recent years, real wood on new boats has definitely gone out of style. Unless you’re looking at a polished Chris-Craft launch, a 64-foot Jarrett Bay … [Read more...]

Boat Wiring: Use Good Terminals and Tools

This ratcheting crimper places a precise amount of pressure on the crimp fitting while also making two crimps—one on the wire and one on the wire jacket—at the same time. Photo by Gary Reich.

Maybe you’ve seen this at your marina or boatyard before: an able-bodied weekend warrior hanging upside down in a bilge or wet locker mumbling obscenities … [Read more...]

How to Fix Gelcoat Gouges

Preval sprayers let you spray gelcoat without the need buy a compressor and professional paint equipment.

I wrote recently about how to about fix light scratches in gelcoat, and also outlined how to find gelcoat suppliers. But what if you’re looking at a … [Read more...]

Koul Tools for Stainless Steel Braided Engine Plumbing

The Koul Tools kit is available for a range of AN hose and fitting sizes.

I've worked with stainless-steel-braided hose on enough boats over the years to know that its benefits outweigh its drawbacks. The benefits come in the … [Read more...]

How to Fix Light Gelcoat Scratches

If the gelcoat scratches aren't too deep, you may be able to eliminate them with a combination of wet-sanding and compounding. 3M makes a variety of products used by the pros.

Used boats often have scratched gelcoat. If you've been shopping used boats for any length of time, you probably knew that already. The good news is that … [Read more...]

These Are a Few of My Favorite Boat Tools

Gear wrenches have box ends that ratchet. I take out my socket set less often now. All photos by Brett Becker.

Now that my tool box is well stocked, it’s getting difficult to take fulfilling trips to Sears. When a mechanical problem presents itself, it’s less … [Read more...]

Depthsounder Transducer Cables: Airmar-Gemeco Retrofits

If you have a reliable old transducer, there may be no reason to rip it out and start over when you buy a new sounder.

One of  the first things people think about when they buy a used boat is whether and how to upgrade the electronics. These days, sounders, plotters, radars, … [Read more...]

Replumbing Your Used Boat Engine

High-performance engines such as this HP1200SCi from Mercury Racing, have used stainless-steel braided hose and AN fittings for years. They’re strong, reliable, and now they cost less than they used to. Photo Courtesy of Mercury Racing.

You never know what you’ll find when you open the engine hatch on a used boat. One thing you can count on finding is the need to replace a few items. … [Read more...]



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