It may not feel like it but sailing season is about to begin. For those who haven’t been lucky enough to sail during the winter season (frostbiting or sailing in the Caribbean) here are some tips to get yourselves ready for the season.
Spring Sailing Check List
- Inflatable PFD check. It’s time to check your firing mechanism. Some mechanisms require periodic replacements. Also consider manually inflating the jacket and check to see if it holds air overnight. Check batteries in lights or other battery operated devices in your PFD. Check whistle on PFD. Even if you have a non-inflatable PFD – its good to give it a thorough check.
- Sailing shoes and boots. Check soles for adequate traction on slippery decks. Also check for fraying shoe laces that may not survive the upcoming season of sailing. US Sailing membership benefits include a 25% discount for Sperry shoes.
- Sailing jacket and pants. Check for tears, leaks and mildew. Empty pockets. Lubricate zippers if required.
- Spring sailing gear. Dust off any cold weather gear such as watch caps, warm base layers, socks and layering.
- Sunglasses. Clean lenses, tighten arms with a jeweler’s screwdriver. Check eye straps.
- Water bottle. Clean out.
- Rigging knife. Clean, lubricate and sharpen. Check securing lanyard.
- Sailing gloves. Do you need replacements?
- Sailing bag. Check for tears, leaks and mildew. Lubricate zippers.
- Check sailing watch and spare tape.
- If you have a VHF radio, check out the battery and its ability to take and hold its charge. Recheck programmed channels, volume and squelch levels. Check securing lanyard. Please note that Weather Station WX01 (KW035 is out of service) for the New York Harbor area. (http://www.nws.noaa.gov/nwr/outages/outages.php).
- If you haven’t done it over the winter, you should start your fitness program. Getting fit and do some stretching exercises on a regular basis.
Be safe and stay warm.
Director of Sailing Operations