Whimsy From Water’s Edge

A collection of yachting and regatta articles: great gear for sailors, silliness and humor, dazzling boats, divine times on wonderful wooden classic boats, clothing for cruisers, boat maintenance tips and more.

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1. Bananas on Boats

To paraphrase something that Jerry Seinfeld might say: “So what’s the deal with bananas? I mean, they’re small and neat and come with their own packaging. Why don’t sailors like them on boats?”

 

2. Death of a Classic

A maritime obituary for a grand old San Francisco Bay queen, one whose life will soon be terminated on land. A vessel with quite the pedigree, over the years she has fallen on hard times. Black and white photographs from the 1950s and 60s display the grace within her four sails. At her best in wide open waters when reaching and running in moderate to strong winds, Escapade is today at her worst.

 

3. 1971 Mail Order KOOL Boat Paves Way for Today’s Carbon Sleds

For just $88 and one KOOL cigarettes carton end flap, you can mail order your cardboard box kit. Assembly takes an hour. Hoist it onto your Buick — it is “car-toppable.” This styrofoam sailboat glides through the smooth puffs. Get your KOOL Snark sailboat. Step aboard your 11-foot expanded polystyrene, thirty-eight inch beam and .17-foot draft beauty. She boasts a weight capacity of 310 lbs. and a hull oozing with confidence, courtesy an iron-clad “unsinkable” claim.

 

4. Breaking Up Is Hard To Do

Boating is a major industry in America. As of 2016, there was an estimated 11.9 million registered boats in the U.S. — the vast majority being made of fiberglass. An average fiberglass boat has a lifespan of 30 to 40 years. Durable and relatively lightweight, production of fiberglass boats began to take-off in the 1960s as manufacturers were able to quickly and affordably produce them for a growing middle-class; a boom in sales was seen between 1960 to the late 1970s.

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