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The Sailboat Cruiser ~ Your Monthly Newsletter, Issue #68 for September 2021
September 12, 2021

The Sailboat Cruiser

The Sailboat Cruiser is the free monthly (OK, monthly-ish) newsletter of and sets out to bring you the news, views and general musings of, well, me - Dick McClary, a sailboat cruiser and creator/owner of

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The Sailboat Cruiser #68
September 2021

What's in This Issue:

Covid returns to the Caribbean

Many of you will remember that Mary and I spent quite a while locked down aboard 'Alacazam' in Prickly Bay, Grenada whilst Grenada's Government did everything they could to keep Covid at bay.

And very successful they were too - until now. From somewhere, out of the blue, the virus has hit the island with a vengeance. According to the New York Times, Grenada now has the highest number of new Covid cases - adjusted for population - of any country in the world. Cases are also increasing faster there than in any other country.

Here in the UK Covid cases are also increasing alarmingly, but as more than 80% of adults have had both vaccinations, cases requiring hospitalisation are relatively low, as are associated death rates.

But not so for the people of Grenada, where only 20% of the population have been double-jabbed at the time of writing.

We've already booked our flights to Grenada, and are planning to launch 'Alacazam' in December - but will it happen?

Win an eBook with your sailboat knowledge

The 'Mystery Boat' section of this newsletter attracts a lot of interest. I enjoy it too, as I don't recognise the boat either and am keen to find out what it is.

So I'm going to spice it up a little, with a bribe reward. In future, the first person to correctly identify the mystery boat can claim a free eBook of their choice.

I'm also putting the Mystery Boat on this new web page where you can also have a go at the unidentified mystery boats from previous issues - but don't worry, you'll get a shot at the latest one before anyone else!

Our New Liveaboard Sailboats for Sale Facebook Group - and a plea for help

In addition to offering free advertising for cruisers to sell their sailboat on this website, I've now set up a new Facebook Group - Liveaboard Sailboats for Sale - for everyone else.

To help get this fired up and running you can do me an enormous favour by going to Liveaboard Sailboats for Sale and joining the group.

Similarly, if you're selling your boat - even if it's already advertised elsewhere - please list it with our Group too, under Buy and Sell.

Thank you in advance for your help, it's much appreciated.

Flying Cringles & Captive Hooks

On Alacazam we like to keep things simple, practical and robust. Which is why - as I may have mentioned before - we favour a slab reefing & lazyjack system for the mainsail rather than any in-mast or in-boom furling/reefing system.

The initial version of our system was the standard one, where the reefing cringle on the luff of the sail is pulled over a hook fixed to the gooseneck - a task which is not always as simple as it sounds.

What often happens in practice is that you haul on the halyard and the sail falls off the hook. Wonderful fun!

But there is a way to avoid this - fit a 'flying' cringle.

This comprises two stainless welded rings attached to each other by a short webbing strop, made up through the cringle in the sail.The rings are larger than the cringle so they can't pull through.

It's now much easier to slip the appropriate ring over the hook than pulling the cringle over it.

But it's even easier for it to fall off, which is why you need the captive hook with a spring-loaded latch which prevents it from doing so.

This simple, inexpensive modification makes reefing the mainsail quicker, easier and safer. You heard it here first - or did you?

Sailors' Guts

When our regular contributor Michael Martin Cohen MD - clearly a master of the double entendre - writes about 'Sailors Guts', you can be sure he's delving into the inner workings of their digestive tract rather than praising their personal courage and determination.

In another wonderfully illustrated article, Dr Cohen explains just what is going on down there and comes down heavily on the side of probiotics and the mysterious microbiome that lurks in our brain.

Read more about Sailors' Guts...

Take a Look at Our eBooks!

But here's a tip - If you're thinking of looking at a secondhand sailboat, or just want to be aware of what to look for - and when to walk away no matter what - then you really ought to take a look at The Boat Buyer's Bundle...

This Month's Mystery Boat

First though, let's look back at 'Dandelion', last month's Mystery Boat...

There were several different suggestions for this one, but incontrovertible evidence was provided by Dandelion's current owners who confirmed that she was an Oceanic 46.

But let's see how you get on with this month's Mystery Boat...

This modern cruiser 'Xenon' sports a deck saloon and a solent rig.

Any ideas anyone?

If so, please let me know by clicking here

Cruising Boats for Sale

We provide a free platform for owners (but not brokers) to advertise their sailboats for sale on our website. These are the latest submissions:

The full list of monohulls and multihulls currently for sale can be seen at cruising-sailboats-for-sale.

Used Sailing Gear & Equipment

It's always worth taking a look at what visitors to are getting rid of. Remember that one man's junk is another man's gold!

Among other items this month, we have:

  • Lewmar Portlights;
  • Mast Chocks for Catalina 22;
  • Shore Power Cord;
  • Garmin Marine Radar Scanner;
  • Monitor Windvane Self-Steering Gear;
  • Garmin 18 xHD Radar;
  • Sail & Awning thread;
  • Beneteau 43 Interior Cushions;
  • Gale Sail;
  • Heavy Duty Winch Handles (Pair);
  • Boom Vang;
  • Barlow 32 Self-Tailing Winches (pair);
  • Grumman Sport Boat & Sail Kit;
  • Para-Tech 18' Sea Anchor;
  • Halyard Tension Tool.

Take a look at these and all the other stuff at used cruising gear for sale...

And finally...

If you know anyone who might be interested in the contents of this newsletter, please forward it to them. It's not secret!

And this newsletter can be a two-way thing. If you've read anything you'd like to comment on, or perhaps there's an event you'd like to see announced in a future newsletter, then please let me know.

See you next month!

Dick McClary

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