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How to avoid expensive mistakes when you buy a new or second-hand yacht. 

Available on Amazon here


Icom IC-M35We review the Icom IC-M35 handheld.  Read the full review here.

GMDSS A User's Handbook

By Denise Bréhaut

GMDSS A user's handbook








The Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS) provides a fast and efficient way of calling for assistance at sea, whatever the size of craft or its geographical position. Since it was first published, this book has helped explain the system for anyone using GMDSS and has been excellent pre-course reading for students.



SafaSail HatThe SafaSail Hard Hat looks just like a sailing cap, but will help protect you if you get a bang to the head.  See our review here

The News


Somali Pirate Chief seeks end to piracy

One of Somalia's most notorious Pirate chiefs is now urging young Somalis to give up piracy, writes Peter Martell in (full story here).  Mohamed Abdi Hassan, better known as "Afweyne" or "Big Mouth", whose men once terrorised vast stretches of the Indian Ocean -- generating millions of dollars in ransoms from seized ships -- now claims to have renounced piracy.

"The young men need to be trained, to get skills and get integrated into society," Afweyne said, pulling out of his briefcase an official letter apparently nominating him as an "anti-piracy officer".

Afweyne, who says he earned his nickname as a child "because I would cry a lot", claims to have persuaded almost a thousand young pirates to quit.

"We are convincing the youths to give up piracy... I have influence, and have been mobilising the community... to keep the men from the water," he told AFP over a cup of tea in an upmarket hotel in Somalia's war-ravaged capital Mogadishu.


Danish Yachtsman rescued after dismasting

Twenty eight-year-old Christian Liebergreen, a Danish yachtsman who had almost completed a solo circumnavigaton, has had to be towed into Brixham after his yacht was dismasted in heavy seas in Lyme Bay last night.  He was making for Copenhagen. (Full story from South Devon Herald here).

Christian (pictured left by photographer Olivier Vergnault) said:  ""Two days ago I spotted Land's End. It was the first time I had sight of land in two and a half months.

Read more: Danish Yachtsman rescued after dismasting

Ben Ainslie Knighted in New Year's Honours

Ben AinslieBen Ainslie, the most decorated Olympic sailor of all time, has capped off his record-breaking 2012 with a Knighthood in the New Year Honours list, reports the RYA (full story here).

'Sir Ben' claimed his fourth straight Olympic gold – and fifth Olympic medal in total – on the waters of Weymouth and Portland this summer, with this most prestigious honour now coming as fitting curtain call to his lucrative Olympic sailing career, which he called time on last month in order to focus on his America's Cup ambitions.

Read more: Ben Ainslie Knighted in New Year's Honours

UK switches on GPS backup in English Channel

Trinity House LogoThe General Lighthouse Authorities of the UK and Ireland (GLA) have announced that ships in the Port of Dover, its approaches and part of the Dover Strait can now use eLoran radio navigation technology as a backup to satnav systems like GPS and Galileo. The ground based eLoran system provides alternative position and timing signals for improved navigational safety. The Dover area, the world’s busiest shipping lane, is the first in the world to achieve this initial operational capability (IOC) for shipping companies operating both passenger and cargo services.

Read more: UK switches on GPS backup in English Channel

Yachtsman given large fine for ignoring the TSS

SafranIgnoring theTraffic Separation Scheme (TSS) in the Dover Strait (or anywhere else, for that matter) can be very costly, as ocean yachtsman Marc Guillemot, skipper of the French racing yacht Safran,discovered when he was fined £9,381 and made to pay costs of £4,125 today for travelling the wrong way in busy shipping lanes near Dover.

Safran made an attempt in June this year to break it's own  record from 2011 for the fastest sail around the United Kingdom and Ireland.

Southampton Magistrates heard that at 11.43pm on 6 June, the Safran was seen by Dover Coastguard travelling in a North Easterly direction in the South West lane of the Dover Strait Traffic Separation Scheme ( TSS). On the 7 June at 4am, the yacht failed to proceed in the appropriate traffic lane in the Sunk traffic separation scheme.

Read more: Yachtsman given large fine for ignoring the TSS

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