We. Love. GeaR.
We've had the pleasure and privilege of utilizing a lot of different gear on our boats, and workng with seasoned pros to get us on the water and keep us on the water, sailing farther and faster.
Which brands & providers have helped keep us on the water? See below.
HH has been there from the beginning and has been amazingly supportive. From training gear to base- and mid-layers to ocean racing foulies that incorporate HH's latest innovations, HH had us protected on and off the boat, and looking good of course. We showed you How To Dress a Sailor. And we used our Aegir offshore foulies (and ski goggles) to keep us dry when power reaching in 28 knots of breeze from Newport to Bermuda.
Go find your gear at http://www.hellyhansen.com.
Best iPhone app for sailing. The J/120 doesn't have a chart plotter in the cockpit. So this smartphone app is a useful tool when I need a quick check of the boat's position without having to go down below to have a look at the laptop or the Zeus3. So much more functionality, including ability to connect with boat sensors via WiFI, AIS display, tracking, and exporting planned and actual routes as well as waypoints.
Visit iNavX at http://inavx.com/.
PredictWind's offshore forecasts, charts, and route optimization tools have helped us plan our deliveries, races, and qualifiers. We relied on PredictWind's forecasting and routing information when we "raced" to Bermuda on the 21-foot Pogo2 Mini Transat, Abilyn, in June 2016. Predictwind was spot on.
Visit PredictWind at http://www.predictwind.com.
Eldrige who? While Eldridge is a non-technical boat essential, AyeTides is a great smartphone app that gives you information on high and low tide. But, even better, at certain stations (including, e.g., Plum Gut and the Race on the Long Island Sound), AyeTides will give you (1) time for max ebb and flood (with speeds) and (2) time for slack before ebb and flood. This is abundantly useful for racing, cruising, deliveries, planning, etc.
Visit AyeTides at https://www.hahnsoftware.com/ayetides/AyeTides.html.
Expedition is well-known among racing sailors as providing top-of-the-line data analytics and communication with boat systems. Abilyn 3.0 is equipped with a B&G 5000 system that handshakes seamlessly with Expedition. From our dedicated Panasonic Toughbook laptop, all boat data, including AIS, is fed into Expedition for routing, tracking, and data analytics.
Visit Expedition at http://www.expeditionmarine.com/index.html.
In February 2016, Jason Barron skilled craftsman over at Barron's Marine on City Island gave our Mini Transat 6.50 her first bottom job since being built. Jason and his crew were amazingly attentive and accommodating, and gave us what we needed to attack the ocean in June. Race boats and cruisers alike are well taken care of at this yard.
Jorge and his team are J Boat experts. They assessed the the soundness of the hull and fixed up some of Abilyn 3.0's decks and bulkheads to make sure she was as strong as she needed to be for heading offshore.
International Marine is not on the water, which means boats need to be trucked in. Logistics are all taken care of by the yard, rates are the best in the area, and winter storage might be on the house if you're having work done.
Visit International Marine at http://www.imcne.com/.
Tucked away in Barrington, RI, near the Massachusetts border, Stanley's is a hike from Larchmont, but well worth it. This part of Rhode Island is beautiful, especially when arriving at the end of October. Stanley's hauled the J/120 in October 2017, and put her on a truck bound for International Marine--4 miles inland. The yard is clean, very close to food and fuel services, and was a great jumping off point.
Visit Stanley's Boat Yard at http://www.stanleysboatyard.com/.
For the Pogo 2's first bottom job since being built, we selected VC® Offshore Baltoplate anti-fouling paint and InterProtect HS (high solids) epoxy primer to help us get to Bermuda as fast as we can. We chose Baltoplate because of reported superior performance in light air, which is important when your mast is only 36 feet tall and you have a wide ass.
Visit Interlux at http://www.yachtpaint.com.
UK Sailmakers has supplied sails for the Pogo2 Mini Transat since the boat was built in 2013. Back in 2016, they built the smallest Code Zero they've ever had ordered--a Code Zero for our 21-foot pocket rocket. UK integrated a Dyneema luff cord attached to a Karver spindle for easy attachment to our Karver KF1 ECO furler. More than great craftsmanship, I know that I always call up "my sailmaker"--Butch, Adam, or Peter--for advice I can trust.
Visit UK Sailmakers at http://www.uksailmakers.com/.
The current set of sails on the J/120 were supplied by North. They're rugged and bulletproof. North's 3DI technology has been used on boats that have raced tens of thousand miles around the globe, including the maxi trimaran, Macif. These sails are tried and true.
Visit North Sails at http://www.northsails.com.
We worked with Doyle on a small project: mesh panels for the J/120 bunks that separate the bunk from the cubbies, and my kids' faces from the compressor to the refrigerator. We hope to work with them on more projects.
Visit Doyle Sails at https://www.doylesails.com/.
hardware & lines
Aboard the Pogo 2, we carried a Karver KF1 ECO furler courtesy of Bainbridge International and Karver Systems. When conditions got light and we needed to make way upwind, we deployed the 2016 UK Sailmakers Code Zero on the furler that is designed for boats like the Mini Transat. The unit is small and light--I feel like I could lose it between the cushions of my couch. But it does the job, furling the Code Zero with ease.
Sometimes, you just need to climb your mast by yourself. ATN's Mastclimber let me complete various punch-list tasks on my own, including repairing a broken runner, inspecting the masthead tri-color light, and installing bungees on the runners to ensure they don't get caught in front of the spreaders when you need to trim on.
For the J/120, we have two ATN spinnaker socks for double- and single-handing.
Visit ATN Inc. at http://www.atninc.com/index.shtml.
Vela is our choice for lines. Great selection of high-tech Marlow and Maffioli lines at great prices. Knowledgable staff. Convenient LiveChat capabilities on their website. Quick shipping--usually free because we buy lines in bulk. Soft shackles don't splice themselves.
Visit Vela Sailing Supply at http://www.velasailingsupply.com.
After becoming a bit frustrated upon receiving a yard bill of $150 for installing two splices on the ends of two eight-inch lines, I taught myself to splice and have been continuously refining the art and science of manipulating ultra-high-molecular-weight polyethylene fiber (i.e., Dyneema®), using a custom jig located in the ABL Ropework nook of my Brooklyn apartment.
Oprah loves bread. We love soft shackles (and really anything made of Dyneema®). It's light and strong. What's not to love.
If you have a GoPro or camera that you use for action sports, then you know you need mounts. We used RAM Mounts' rail, pole, and suction mounts along with their extension pole aboard our Pogo2 MiniTransat to get some cool shots. We also used their iPad mount to create a flexible display mount in our companionway so that the iPad could be viewed while in the cockpit or down below.
Visit RAM Mounts at http://www.rammount.com.
Without the support of Landfall Navigation, we could never have gone offshore and Into the Washing Machine, or around Block Island just for kicks (and to add 90 miles to our end-of-season delivery). Landfall set us up with emergency beacons, flares, and an unbelievably light offshore 4-man life raft--all of which we hope never to use, but are nevertheless essential to offshore sailing.
Visit Landfall Navigation at http://www.landfallnavigation.com.
If you're doing it properly, sailing is an intense, heart-pumping, muscle-burning, sweat-inducing endeavor, especially in the heat of summer and when the breeze is on. Z Blok saved us from sun burns, and also didn't sting our eyes when the sweat started flowing. Best stuff ever.
Visit Z Blok at http://zbloksun.com.
Quick energy when calories are essential. I can't recall a watch where, before coming on deck, I didn't stuff my pockets with a few bars and bloks. Great for when you just can't bring yourself to make a meal.
Visit The Clif Bar Company at http://www.clifbar.com.
Our preferred choice for freeze-dried meals when weight- and space-savings are important. Their Classic Bucket made food prep for our adventure from Newport to Bermuda on our Pogo2 MiniTransat painless. Just add water and hot sauce. Boom--a hot meal to warm you up on your late-night watch.
Visit Mountain House at https://www.mountainhouse.com/.
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