Archive for November, 2012

PostHeaderIcon Close Cover

a tactical maneuver where a windward boat impedes a leeward boat’s wind by keeping the leeward boat in the covering boat’s wind shadow. This is done to slow down the leeward boat or to force her to change course. At the same time, the covered boat can time her tacks to stay in phase with wind shifts and diminish any lead the covering boat has. Also referred to as hard cover or tight cover. See also: herding and sit in their face.

PostHeaderIcon Sneak

to ease into position without fully deploying. For example, you may sneak up (partially hoist) your jib as you approach the leeward mark so you can much more quickly hoist and set your jib as you round the mark.

PostHeaderIcon Dogs in the Doghouse

jargon for the act of sending a few crew members down below when the winds are really light. There, they can relax on the leeward cushions near the mast. This eliminates the wind drag from their being on deck (and clogging the slot), while their weight is concentrated closer to the boat’s center of gravity. This also helps to reduce pitching in leftover waves and swell. Not always fun for the crew, but they can get out of the sun, have some food, and catch up on some reading. Crew sent below are also sometimes referred to as bilge buddies or mushrooms, because it is dark and wet below. See also: sewer.

PostHeaderIcon Scrutineering

checking that a boat complies with all applicable requirements. To scrutineer or scrutinize. See also: Notice of Race.

PostHeaderIcon Mylar

DuPont Teijin Films’ trademarked name for the polyester film used in sail construction because of its high strength and light weight.

PostHeaderIcon Cheater

a spinnaker staysail. A small, lightweight headsail set under (i.e., to weather of) a spinnaker. See also: daisy.

PostHeaderIcon Furniture Barge

a disparaging term for a cruising boat. See also: Clorox bottle.

PostHeaderIcon Mainsheet

a line that controls the tension in a mainsail’s leech when sailing upwind and that controls the position of a boom’s aft end when sailing downwind. Usually connected between the traveler and boom. See also: main trimmer.

PostHeaderIcon Chart Plotter

a specialized navigation computer that overlays GPS and other data onto electronic navigational charts (ENCs). It is used to perform route planning and navigation functions, including real-time display of a boat’s location on the appropriate chart. A chart plotter may also display a boat’s speed and course, as well as the time, distance, and bearing to the destination or next waypoint, all in real time. Other data that may be displayed includes information from radar, automatic information systems (AIS), depth sounders and thermometers. See also: tactical/routing software.

PostHeaderIcon Microscale

small-scale weather phenomena that range in size from a few inches to a few miles or with life spans of less than a few minutes and that are strongly influenced by local temperature and terrain conditions. Larger phenomena are classified as mesoscale.

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