We boaters have a lot of things to be thankful for. In fact, boating has become easier, more reliable, less environmentally costly, and safer than ever before, in the past few years. What gives? As technology marches forward, boats and engines just plain get better. How shall we be thankful this year? Let’s talk turkey…
1. All boaters should give thanks for vacuum-infusion. This process, where a pre-measured amount of resin is drawn through the fiberglass hull or part of a boat, reduces the weight of the boat – without losing one bit of strength. That makes boats more efficient, and easier to trailer. While resin infusion has been around for a while, it’s now become wide-spread throughout the industry.
2. We should be thankful for satellite messengers. These little do-dads are as small as a cell phone, yet allow you to send 911-messeges to the authorities and texts to those poor guys stuck on land. They’re so inexpensive any boater can afford them, and as of this year, two-way texting is even available.
3. Thanks, thanks, and thanks again, for all of the new fish-finding abilities modern fishfinders give us. First there were down-lookers, then side-finders, then hi-res versions, and now, “spotlight” and 360-degree models are out there. (To learn more about those just now being introduced, check out Garmin enteres Side-Finder Fray, and Lowrance Rolls out SpotlightScan and Sonar Hub).
4. The new lean-burn abilities of small outboards are worth a thank you, too. Today, outboards as small as 15 hp burn such a tiny amount of fuel at idle, your fuel bill drops and your carbon footprint shrinks.
5. Let’s also be thankful for dual-console cabin boats. Although these aren’t commonly the number-one choice of anglers, for those of us with a family to please, they add an entirely new design to our pool of choices. The cabins include heads, berths, and in some cases even galleys. And models reaching into the 30’s are now available.
Now… are you ready for some turkey and stuffing? I know I am – and I’ll remember to say thanks.