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On Sailboats with Dieter Loibner

Plastiki gives a glimpse of the future

The voyage of David de Rothschild's plastic bottle catamaran could prove useful to boatbuilders

David de Rothschild will sail Plastiki, a 60-foot catamaran partially constructed from more than 12,000 recycled plastic bottles, from San Francisco to Sydney, Australia. The construction of this cat could teach us a more sustainable way to build.Sailing across an ocean is not a big deal these days. Kids do it, grandmothers do it and just about everyone in between does it. But if you do it on Plastiki, a catamaran that's partially constructed from 12,500 recycled plastic bottles and if you are David de Rothschild, that's a whole different matter.

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Bora Gulari: master of the Moth

Dark hair, scruffy beard and a winning smile.

Bora Gulari is the master of the Moth and the high-speed balancing act required to keep the boat on the foils.That's the new face of small-boat sailing and it belongs to Bora Gulari, the 2009 world champion in the Moth class and the Rolex Yachtsman of the Year.

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Darwin's voyage; 21st century eyes

The great-great granddaughter of the famous naturalist re-creates the voyage of the Beagle

Sarah Darwin's voyage highlighted just how much has changed since Darwin first set foot aboard the HMS Beagle.Charles Darwin was born Feb. 12, 1809, the same day as Abraham Lincoln. With all due respect to one of America's great leaders and his achievements, Darwin is a better story for a sailing column.

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Sitting down with the 'other Herreshoff'

Classic book written by L. Francis Herreshoff entertains with handsome designs, candid writing and horse sense

Boats, designers, builders and sailors are a nautical writer’s daily bread. However, there are times when I try to go on a diet by picking up a hoe, a shovel or a rake to work the soil in the garden. And when the dirt gets old, I try the Body, Mind and Spirit aisle of a used-book store, taking my chances with serendipity.

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The mystery of a message in a bottle

Thousands are launched and lost, but when they do turn up, it’s memorable for sender and recipient

Our sailing editor comes across that rarest of nautical missives: a message in a bottle.The sea was as calm as a millpond. The stroke of the paddle was rhythmic as clockwork. Like a prowling cat, the boat glided along silently, dodging a slight but persistent current.

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