Gaff rig1

What’s in a Rig? The Gaff Rig

What’s in a Rig Series #6 – Gaff Rig

What’s a gaff rig? Well, first… what’s a gaff? A gaff is a spar, or a strong pole. A gaff rig employs a spar on the top of the sail and typically other sails can be set in conjunction with that mainsail with the gaff. Often, on the smaller, non tall ship, gaff rigs, there will be a small triangular sail that fits between the main and the mast like a puzzle piece – this is the topsail.

The gaff rig was the standard manner of rigging a sailboat a century ago and before. The thinking at that time had to do primarily with the ability to manage sail area. The sails weren’t made of the lightweight synthetics of today and there was solid logic involved in dividing the sail plan into pieces for the purposes of balancing and reefing in strong winds. Like today, sailors wanted horsepower via sail area and fractioned rigs allowed skippers to also manage it more easily.

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News-2015-09-SailTime and Boatbound-Featured

SailTime Group signs deal with Boatbound


SailTime announced an industry-first partnership with the nation’s fastest growing peer-to-peer boat rental marketplace, Boatbound. This partnership aims to provide a hassle free sailing experience to new boaters. The SailTime fleet of boats will be available for captained charters for a half, or a full, day of sailing. If you’re already a sailor this presents an easy, and affordable way for you to share your passion for sailing with your friends and family.

The full press release is below…

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Lake Dillon

ASA’s New Horizons – Sailing in the Rocky Mountains

In our second installment of New Horizons we asked Shannon Jakoby, who is the Marina Manager for (ASA certified) Dillon Marina’s Sailing School in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, what it’s like to sail in the Rockies? Jakoby said Lake Dillon is an amazing place in the world to catch the mountain breeze and get a great sail in.

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American Sailing Journal ASJ Summer 2015

American Sailing Journal – Summer 2015

The Summer issue of the American Sailing Journal (available here) includes:

What do you get when you sprinkle a helping of education into an already awesome vacation? Answer: A Sailing Fun Experience, which is also the name of a great new program the American Sailing Association is spearheading with Beaches Resorts. Continue reading on page 3
What are Phytoplankton? They are microscopic, plant-like cells that live at the sunlit sea surface and they begin the marine food chain. Like plants on land, phytoplankton use the sun’s energy to combine carbon dioxide and water to create sugar and oxygen in the process known as photosynthesis. Continue reading on page 8
ASJ Tartan 4000FEATURED SAILBOAT: The Tartan 4000
The Tartan 4000 is a performance cruiser in the truest sense of the word in that it is a boat that does well on all points of sail and takes good care of its crew whether underway or at anchor. The Tartan 4000 design embodies all of the recent Tartan leading technologies and advanced performance cruising conveniences. Continue reading on page 10
ASJ Sailing Destination MaltaSAILING DESTINATION: Malta
And just where is Malta? So many people ask this and you just might be asking yourself the same thing. Well, get ready to jump feet first into a country that is spectacularly beautiful and historically fascinating. Continue reading on page 12

One basic definition of “dead reckoning” is “operating a vessel using only information available directly on the boat.” This time, we expand that a little and cover apps that simplify measurements frequently done onboard. Continue reading on page 15

Download the Summer Edition of ASJ for these articles and lot’s more great tips and stories from the world of sailing.

To receive the latest copy of the ASJ in your inbox or mailbox become an ASA Member today and enjoy this as well as many other benefits!

First Sail Workshops

First Sail Workshops

At this year’s United States Sailboat Show in Annapolis you can experience the joy of sailing with our hands-on First Sail Workshops designed for beginning sailors.

ASA has partnered with Beneteau America and Sailtime to host First Sail Workshops where participants can learn the basics of sailing in a 45 minute classroom session immediately followed by 90 minutes on the water sailing on a new Beneteau ASA First 22.

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News-2015-09-Hobie Catamaran Design-Featured

Catamaran Design Competition

The excitement that the new generation of America’s Cup Catamarans generate when sailing is palatable. The speed and excitement these sea monsters create hopefully will inspire a whole new generation of younger “action sports” enthusiast to try sailing.

In an attempt to bring that possibility to the millions of young men and women who’d now like to try to learn to sail a Catamaran. The American Sailing Association has teamed up with Oracle, sponsors of the 2014 America’s Cup winning Team Oracle USA, and Hobie Cat to introduce a new and exciting special edition of Hobie’s successful WAVE catamaran that might make that experience possible by building an inexpensive easily sailed performance available to the general public.

Take a look at some potential designs below, and help us choose which one to use for our special edition catamaran, by voting in the comments. If you have an idea for a design in mind please draw it up on the blank template below and submit it to ASA.

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Boat galley pic 2

Cookin’ on the Boat!

Looking for some new recipes that you can actually make in your boat’s galley? Good food, but not gourmet?  Ingredients you can actually find and store on your boat?  Recipes that don’t require a bunch of electric appliances?

The Boat Galley Cookbook has the answers! We tapped one of the authors, Carolyn Shearlock, and said, “Carolyn! Kick us down a little boat-cooking advice!” Here is what she provided: Continue reading

Lenny & Cindy Shabes Picking Up Trash

Picking Up Trash Makes You a Better Sailor!

Here at the American Sailing Association, the waters of our earth are obviously on the top of our priority list. With The Ocean Cleanup as our inspiration, we have thought more and more about the harmful affects of plastics in the oceans and want to do our part to make a bad situation at least a little bit better.

While Boyan Slat and The Ocean Cleanup team work to remove the plastics already in the waters, we want to remind all sailors that controlling the garbage while it’s still in our possession is a big deal.It’s easy to forget how damaging a simple water bottle or plastic bag can be and we implore you to not only be mindful about the plastic all around and dispose of it in the right way, but if you see stuff in your travels, make it work to your advantage. How? MOB drills! Picking up trash can make you a better sailor!

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Clipper Round The World Race

We Like The Clipper Round the World Yacht Race!

While racing isn’t the focus here at ASA, we definitely see it as a very effective way to learn and solidify knowledge. We recognize that the sport is not for everyone, but for the competitive folks in the crowd, there’s no doubt racing reinforces the fundamentals of a sailing education and broadens horizons. So, with that said, we keep an eye on what’s going on in the racing world and one of the races that speaks to our sensibilities in particular is the Clipper Round the World Race that just started their tenth anniversary edition this past summer.

The Clipper Round the World Yacht Race is a (mostly) bi-annual adventure/competition where ordinary people with little to no “sailing resumes” vie for a spot on a boat that will race around the globe – everyday people, who don’t need any sailing experience, scratching “sailing around the world” off the bucket list. They happily pay for the privilege of being part of a team that will sail a well-equipped ocean racer around the world.

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