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Cruising Life through the Eyes of Tom Neale

Out with the old and in with the new

Is your pride and joy no longer proud? Here are some projects that can help restore that ‘new boat’ feel

Bob Touton gave us numerous jewels of advice, the most important of which was to celebrate each time you got an old porthole out.My boat was built in 1975 and, if my watch is right, it’s now 2009. I love my boat. They don’t make boats like this anymore, and if they did she would cost a fortune.

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An outboard that’s out of his world

Quieter, more efficient, less maintenance — it’s a whole lot for a hands-on type of guy to comprehend

Tom's new outboard put the 'A-HA' back in his 'YAMAHA' - and gave his Mako some additional pop.I don’t know what that thing is hanging off the stern of my boat, but I know danged well it ain’t no outboard.

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Tom’s tips: hanging a new outboard

There are numerous things you should have on your checklist whenever you put an outboard — small or large — on your transom. Here are a few.

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Eating humble pie with a side of reality

When trying to pull off slick moves at sea or around the dock, we usually need all the help that’s available.

Docking in less than ideal conditions - especially in front of an audience - can make even a competent skipper break a sweat.I just love those times when I know I’m really great.

I like it even better when I know there are plenty of people standing around who must be thinking the same thing about me. Unfortunately, these moments of perfection are much more likely to come when I’m somewhere out in the middle of the ocean.

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Picture your perfect cruising boat

You’ll want to consider hull material, power, equipment and seaworthiness, but don’t forget about comfort.

Good visibility at the helm is essential on any boat.  We, like you, dream of buying another new boat — the perfect cruising boat. We’ve owned dozens of boats, from sailing dinghies to our current 53-foot motorsailer. We’ve lived aboard since 1979, averaging 3,000 to 5,000 miles a year. We’ve lived on the hook in the Bahamas for months at a time. And we raised a family aboard.

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