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Revolutionary new propeller design…

The new  SHARROW PROPELLER™ is perhaps the biggest prop design advance since the 1930’s.

Its design, enabled by modern computer modelling has made a significant impact on performance and fuel efficiency.

imageOver the past 6+ years, extensive testing data collected at the University of Michigan’s Marine Hydrodynamics Laboratory, along with results from internal CFD and FEA analysis have been collected and analysed by Sharrow Engineering.

Additionally, Sharrow Engineering implemented a rigorous in-water test program using manned vessels in lakes, rivers, and bays. Results from this extensive research program demonstrate that the Sharrow Propeller is 9%-15% more efficient than the industry standard Wageningen B-series design.

The SHARROW PROPELLER™ also exhibits a wider peak efficiency curve for greater utility over a wide scope of operational ranges.

Additionally, The SHARROW PROPELLER™ generates more thrust and uses less energy for a given RPM than a standard propeller design, which increases acceleration dramatically.

See the Boatest.com trial here…



Well done Coppercoat !

I had Coppercoat on my Moody 44 “Enterprise” and I can vouch for its effectiveness. After over 5000nm including 3 Biscay crossings and the Atlantic, when I lfinally lifted the boat in Trinidad I had to ask the boat yard to use a normal hose instead of a jet wash … there was just the faintest slim …absolutely amazing.

The announcement today is that when the 2017-2018 Clipper boats were finally lifted out after 40,000nm of racing and 16 months of continual immersion, the Coppercoat on their hulls revealed almost no loss of coating thickness. Barring the faintest trace of slime at the waterline in some parts, the hulls were virtually spotless.
To see a video of a hull on liftout before cleaning click here.

This enormously successful outcome understandably delighted us, the crews and the race organisers in equal measure,” says Coppercoat Director Ewan Clark, “and we are reviewing our partnership with Clipper for the 2019-2020 event. Look no further for a clear vindication of Coppercoat’s efficiency and longevity.”

So well did the Coppercoat antifoul perform in the 2017-2018 race that, for the first time in the Clipper’s 22-year history, the boats did not need to be lifted out at the race’s halfway mark in Sydney. As every boat owner is all too painfully aware, lifting out vessels to clean off old antifoul and apply a new coat can be a slow and costly business, so Coppercoat’s matchless resilience meant substantial savings in time and money for Clipper Race organisers and crews alike.

Such positive feedback contrasts markedly with recent testimony received from sailors involved in other global circumnavigations, who reported that rival coatings used on their boat hulls only lasted for less than six months. Even by this point, barnacle growth on hulls was so advanced that it was estimated to be responsible for a 0.5 to 1 knot reduction in boat speed for every hour sailed.

“How the yachts perform is critical, not only to racing success but also to the planning and logistics of a race on this scale,” observes Clipper Race Director, Mark Light. “Coppercoat has surpassed our expectations, and as our preparations commence for the 2019-20 edition we have every confidence that the antifoul will allow superb performance of our race yachts for many circumnavigations to come.


New Type of Class B+ AIS Transponders at METS 2018

The UK based company Digital Yacht will introduce a new range of Class B+ AIS transponders at METS 2018.


Class B+ is a new AIS standard. This is performance similar to Class A transponder but for non mandated users. This new standard is ideal for ocean sailors requiring the best possible performance and future proof satellite tracking applications, fast power boats and smaller non-mandated commercial vessels. It still inter-operates with existing Class A and Class B systems.

  • It utilises SOTDMA format transmissions which offer a 5W power output (2.5x more powerful than a regular Class B)
  • A guaranteed time slot for transmission in busy traffic areas
  • Faster update rates depending upon the speed of the vessel

There are two models. The AIT2500 is priced at £575/€745 and the AIT5000 at £875/€1050, which has a patented ZeroLoss VHF-AIS antenna splitter allowing the main VHF antenna to be shared with VHF and AIS.

Both models incorporate:

  • Full function transponder with NMEA 0183, NMEA 2000 and USB data outputs
  • A wireless interface for connecting to iPads and tablets
  • AIS SART alarm which is great for use with personal AIS MOB devices
  • Compatible with the Digital Yacht iAIS app which is Navionics enabled too, allowing AIS targets to be overlaid onto the popular Navionics iPhone and iPad charting

For more information go to www.digitalyacht.co.uk or www.digitalyacht.eu.com


Panoptix LiveScope …Down and Forward Sonar

Garmin have released their new Panoptix LiveScope. This is the most amazing sonar technology ever. This is a downward and forward scanning sonar. You can actually see easy-to-interpret live scanning sonar images of fish swimming under the boat.

The Panoptix LiveScope scanning sonar system includes a compact GLS 10 sonar black box with LVS32 transducer and retails for around £1,800


Preventing electrical failures…

How many of you have these terminal block connectors on board ?..


How many times have I seen so called professional marine electricians using this type of terminal block….Pitiful isn’t it !

There are so many type of electrical connector – all claiming to be for marine use ….

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imageThe ML-XT Sealed Connection System by Molex claims to be the best sealed system in the market today, preventing electrical failures in critical wiring applications. Premium grade liquid silicone rubber (LSR) material ensures the ML-XT connector system meets J2030 requirements for advanced sealing. The thermoplastic plug housing forms a covalent bond with the LSR seal, resulting in an extremely strong interlock which prevents fluid ingress and seal loss or misalignment, even through repeated mating and unmating. ML-XT connectors offer a better seal design and a better rating (IP69K), and are drop-in replacements for other industry standard connectors currently available.

Heat shrink v Don’t Heat shrink…

There are so many pieces of advice on how to seal wires on a boat …

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Will you be sealing moisture in?.. will the end allow water ingress and corrosion? Have you twisted the wire tempting strands to fail?… have you taken into account the surface conductivity property?

Probably the best method to join two wires is the solder splice type of connector with both solder and heat shrink techniques applied at once plus adhesive to stop water/humidity ingress…


If you are using non-tinned bare copper wire don’t twist the stranded wires together…. try to push each bunch of strands into each other so that as many surfaces are in contact as possible from each cable. This is because of the strange property of electrons to try and travel mostly at the outer surface of any given cable….

Tinned v Not Tinned copper wire ….

Then there is the debate on whether to use tinned or not tinned…

On the lab bench and under ideal circumstances, bare copper is going to outperform the `tinned’ variety. It isn’t quite that easy. If it was, we would be done, end of discussion. However, you can’t have an “age old argument” if the situation was straightforward can you? I have experienced different results than the lab testing would suggest. My own testing has proven both types of copper can be right if you add in the missing variable…time. Fresh, new, bare copper conductor works great. Unfortunately, I have found that it will oxidize much more quickly than the tinned variety which leads to a degradation in electrical performance.…

To the naked eye, a copper conductor may appear to be smooth and uniform, however microscopic pits and cracks still exist and moisture can easily penetrate these imperfections. The hydrogen atoms present in the water vapour will combine with other elements to form acids which eventually cause even more metal to be exposed by enlarging the imperfections in the base metal. It gets even worse when sodium is present as in the case of salt water. Sodium accelerates the chemical reaction that forms the destructive oxide compound. As more of these atoms combine they weaken the integrity of the original metal making it brittle and crumbly, a process commonly known as corrosion.so in practice use tinned – if you can afford it !