Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Dinghy Smock Review: Gill Pro Top

Andy takes a look at the Gill Pro Top. 

Designed for the active dinghy or keelboat sailor, the Pro Dinghy Top by Gill offers unrestricted movement and completely waterproof garment.   This smock is a lightweight waterproof, 2-layer laminate fabric with fully sealed seams which is perfect for inshore or day sailing where performance matters.

The Pro Top has PU (PolyUrethane) seals with Velcro adjustment tabs at the wrist and neck as well as the adjustable neoprene waist band, which provides a custom and secure fit.  The Velcro adjustment on the neck is unique - You simply pull two elastic tabs backward and adjust for a snug fit.

My favorite feature of this Smock is the single side zip pocket.  It’s not in the front which prevents bulk at the midsection and allows for unrestricted hiking. 

Being on the side also allows you to access it even with a life jacket on – making this smock even more suited for dinghy sailing.Also, it’s big enough to keep all sorts of things (it’s where I keep my granola bar!).  

It's available in many different sizes and colors.  If you are looking for something lightweight, waterproof and durable, add the Gill Pro Top to your shopping cart now!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Sunglasses Review: Kaenon Burnet

While the average “gas-station sunnies” are better than nothing, if performance is what you seek, I present you the Burnet by Kaenon. 

For anyone having fun in the sun all day long, sunglasses are a MUST.  Not only do they protect your irreplaceable set of eyes from harmful UV rays and glancing blows, they make “seeing” the wind easier, a necessary skill for any racer.

Kaenon glasses are created with a special SR-91 lens that is lightweight and shatter-resistant like polycarbonate, yet boasts the minimal distortion only found in glass lenses up to this point.  

The polarized lenses are available in different tints as explained here, but overall it breaks down like this: 
Gray for crystal blue water - great for Miami
Copper for color enhancement in dark water or lower light situations - perfect for the Chesapeake. 
Brown for a combination of both worlds - for the jet setter 

The frames are designed to contour the face in an athletic fit; better protecting your investment from flying off and into the drink.  

I have a pair myself and don't leave home without them.  Kaenon's have been trusted by sailors all over the world for their classy looks and unique lenses.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Hardware Review: Harken 57mm Carbo Airblock Ratchet

Drew looks into the features that make up the Harken 57mm Carbo Airblock Ratchet.  

Whether it is a main sheet block for a dinghy, or a large block for a running backstay, we can usually find a block to fit our needs.  Harken has designed the Carbo Airblocks to fill the need of a strong, lightweight, multi-purpose block.

The 57mm Swivel Carbo Airblock RatchetBlock features an on/off switch for the ratchet than can be switched from either side of the block.

Turning it off will allow the block to run freely when the breeze is light, yet if needed, you can leave it on when the sheet is loaded for added control while trimming.

At the top of the block it has a lock on the shackle. You can either set it locked or unlocked to allow the block to swivel freely. This allows you to use the block in any situation you may need on the boat, showing its true diversity.

The Carbo Airblock itself is made out of durable UV resistant material allowing for years of use. It allows the block to be lightweight, while having a high breaking strength, the 57mm block has a 792 lb breaking strength.

The 57mm block can handle lines up to 3/8.  The full line of Carbo Airblocks work in many different applications and come in ratchet and non-ratchet combinations.  

So if you are looking for a new block to use while hand holding those loaded sheets, the 57mm Carbo Airblock Ratchet by Harken is the block for you.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Dinghy Boot Review: Sperry Waterproof SeaHikers

Finally, someone has stepped up to the plate and come out with a lace up boot.  The Sperry Waterproof Seahikers are designed for dinghy sailors employing hiking straps or sportboat sailors who want good foot/ankle protection. 

 I’ve used the Aigle Maramu lace up boots for a long, long time.  If you miss those boots, here’s your answer.

They have slightly thicker neoprene that provides great protection for feet as well as providing insulation for cold weather sailing.  The extra padding on the top of the arch makes hiking much more comfortable.  

Great for frostbiting, the lace up side makes it really easy to insert a drysuit booty into the boot as well as allowing the ability to tighten the laces to whatever tightness you’re looking for.  

With plastic grommets instead of metal, you won't have to worry about rust. The sole is flexible and grippy made with Sperry’s Hydro Grip Technology.  

They run true to size, I'm a size 10 across the board and the 10s fit well. Overall, they're a well built boot ready for life on the water.