Friday, November 14, 2008

The "Star of Lewmar"

T minus two days to the restart of leg 2 for the 2008/9 VOR. Imagine the flurry of activity going on at this hour! Cases of freeze dried food being loaded, stacks of sails being lumbered on and off, batten tensions being checked, kites being banded and stuffed, rigging being inspected, etc... A myriad of mind-numbing and seemingly menial tasks that could ensure victory or seal fate of defeat. But, what I really want to know is what's being snuck on to swash buckle potential pirates? We've heard about the required security briefings and of panic buttons to summon the Navy but what else? What are the secret weapons? What would you bring? What would you reach for when a one-eyed bandit was swinging from their yardarm into your mainsail? There would probably be no time to get the flare gun from below.

My advice would be to remember the tools at hand...

Literally, surely a winch handle would suffice as a bludgeoning device. Give that scoundrel the "star of Lewmar"!

Ok, ok...all joking aside you want to know what that winch handle is you've never seen before? It's the new Lewmar LiteTouch that Lewmar will introduce at METs this year. Here's what they say about it...(the following content is pirated from the latest Lewmar dealer communications, all rights are reserved by them...or so I'm guessing)...

"Introducing the LiteTouch. A new, lightweight, robust winch handle designed for complete ease of use. The LiteTouch allows you to push the release button and unlock in one quick easy motion - all with one hand. What makes the LiteTouch so unique is that it is made of buoyant composite material, which allows the handle to float if it falls overboard.

• It floats (editors note: people seem to think this is important but in a race are we going to stop to try to fish it out of the water using the spin pole jaws? No, we're not.)
• Lightweight composite material
• One-handed push and release
• Designed for ultimate rigidity
• The world's only replaceable Drive Lug & Locking System
• Power Grip Handle for easy one- or two-handed operation
• Bright yellow cap for easy spotting should it go overboard"

So, there you have it. I can't hardly say that it's really anything terribly new but think of it as the next generation of their very popular Lewmar One Touch model. While I think the floating bit is marketing spin for the cruisers I do like that it's a lightweight composite material. Sure, bludgeoning devices should have some oomph behind them but when it comes to spinning a winch quickly it's all about hand speed and that makes this the new star of Lewmar handles.

Ps. No, it's not yet available but sign up for the APS weekly E-list or keep your eyes on our Hot New Items page to be the first on your dock with them.

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