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New Gear: October 2007


The Challenger Jacket is part of Hood Yachting Gear’s new Pro line of men’s technical gear. The water-resistant foul weather jacket is breathable and has taped seams, adjustable neoprene inside cuffs, a removable fleece-lined collar, and a fluorescent fold-away hood with reflective safety badges. Available in sizes from small to double-extra large and with a carbon/silver-gray color scheme, the Challenger Jacket has a suggested retail price of $379. Hood Yachting Gear, Joure, The Netherlands.


The AE Xenide flashlight uses High Intensity Discharge lighting to create what the manufacturer calls a “personal searchlight.” It delivers 10 times the lumen output of a standard incandescent flashlight, according to AE Light, and currently is available in 20-watt ($395) and 25-watt ($435) models. The AE Xenide HID Personal Searchlight has several features not found on its predecessor, the AE HID PowerLight, including a redesigned lamp and reflector for better focus and higher output, a new battery, more shock resistance and waterproofing. It’s also lighter and shorter than previous flashlights, measuring 11.5 inches to 13.5 inches in length, depending on the model. AE Light, Grants Pass, Ore. Phone: (541) 471-8988.


The G’zOne mobile phone from Verizon Wireless should be a hit among the boating crowd. The Type-V phone meets multiple military standards, according to Verizon, including submersion in 1 meter of water, exposure to temperatures above 140 Fahrenheit, extreme vibration, solar radiation and humidity. The phone also offers such features as a 2-megapixel camera, LED light, and access to Verizon’s V CAST video service. Price is $200 with a two-year service contract. Verizon Wireless, Basking Ridge, N.J. Phone: (800) 256-4646.


Marine hardware and accessories manufacturer Taco Metals has introduced an aftermarket T-top designed to look and perform like a factory-installed top. The welded, modular Neptune OEM-Style T-Top is built of anodized aluminum and has what the company calls a universal design that can be adjusted to fit most center consoles. The outer ring of the top [which has a fabric covering] has accessory-ready adapters for installing and adjusting rod holders and other equipment. Pricing starts at $1,999. Taco Metals, North Miami Beach, Fla. Phone: (305) 652-8566.


As 4-stroke outboards gain in popularity, motor oils formulated specifically for this class of marine power are being introduced. New oils from Mercury and Honda both carry FC-W certification for use in 4-stroke, water-cooled outboards, as rated by the National Marine Manufacturers Association. Mercury’s 25W-30 oil is a synthetic blend formulated for the company’s Verado supercharged 4-stroke outboards, and has a suggested retail price of $29.98 for a 4-liter bottle. Honda has introduced a 10W-30 weight oil with a manufacturer suggested retail price of $4.99 per quart. Mercury Marine, Fond du Lac, Wis. Phone: (920) 929-5040, Honda Marine, Alpharetta, Ga. Phone: (770) 497-6400.