September 2017 - Marina eNewsletter
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Nielsen Beaumont

Sun Harbor Marina
5000 N. Harbor Drive
San Diego, CA 92106



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From the Sun Harbor Marina
Welcome to the September edition of the Sun Harbor Marina newsletter.

In this month's issue, we have interesting articles about Vessel Documentation 3rd Party Awareness; How to Prevent a Boat Fire; How to Prevent Thefts; Day Shapes and Navigational Draft.

Tenant of the Month
Our thanks to tenant Pat Hanly for assisting Carolyn with the extraction of dumped bait fish that had washed into our marina last month.

September is National Honey Month
Honey is usually a sweet addition to our lives. It is good for us in multiple ways. It is also the term applied to that list of things to do. Now for boating as we prepare for the First Day of Autumn what is on your Honey Do List?

  • Schedule that last trip to Catalina (and all that it entails: Scrub the decks, Get Fuel, Check water in the batteries, Check oil level, Fill the water tanks, Test the radio, Look over the Anchor Chain, Practice getting into your life jacket in the water See tips in the two Life Jacket articles below.

  • Invite my closest friends down to the boat for a Labor Day Celebration (Get E-vites out, Provide directions and parking instructions, Prevision for the day, Hang the American Flag ...

  • Get a jump on winterization. Check the bilge pump, test the sea cocks, clean seals on the hatches, check air pressure in fenders, replace warn dock lines ...

Bottom line - Keep your Honey happy so you don't get any bee stings.

Special Dates in September
September 1st - 4th Annual Festival of Sail
September 4th - Labor Day
September 7th - Buy a Book Day
                          See Great Summer Reading
                          options at the end of the
September 9th - San Diego Blues Festival
September 10th -
Swap Ideas Day
                            Your slip mate might have some
                            great ones to share on where to
                            anchor out or who to call for
                            engine work
September 11th - Patriot Day

September 16th - Coastal Clean Up Day
September 19th - Talk Like a Pirate Day
September 22nd -
1st day of Autumn
September 29th - Yom Kippur –

Sun Harbor Marina Office Hours
As the seasons change so do the office hours, effective September 16th the office will be open Monday through Saturday 8:30 am to 5:00 pm. As always if you have an urgent matter call Bradley 619-416-1224 or Kathy 619-808-9518 on their cell phones. If it is an emergency call Harbor Police 619-686-6272 or 911.

Local Events
Taste of the Port - Enjoy an evening on the Bay at the Port of San Diego's Taste of the Port event on September 21. Experience tastings from top waterfront restaurants, while watching three of San Diego's best chefs square off in a live Green Chef of the Bay cooking competition. The event will highlight sustainable cooking including locally sourced ingredients and fresh fish. Enjoy live entertainment, drinks, and product demos.

World Maritime Day - The International Maritime Organization (IMO)– is the United Nations specialized agency with responsibility for the safety and security of shipping and the prevention of marine pollution by ships. As a specialized agency of the United Nations, IMO is the global standard-setting authority for the safety, security and environmental performance of international shipping. Its main role is to create a regulatory framework for the shipping industry that is fair and effective, universally adopted and universally implemented.

Sun Harbor Marina's Annual Chili Cook-off - Saturday, October 28th. If you want to start practicing – the staff is willing to test your practice batch and give feedback up to a week prior to the event.

A Word About Marina Trespassers
Recently, homeless people and fishermen have been repeatedly trespassing on, under, or along SHM docks and the in the breezeway. For your safety and security we urge tenants to be alert for the presence of any strangers and NEVER open gates or restroom doors for them. Please report them to the SHM staff immediately or notify SD Harbor Police at 619-223-1133.

Coast Guard Documentation - Know Your Paperwork
Read the application's fine print to be sure you're not unnecessarily filing through a third party. The devil is always in the details – and this rings especially true whenever a "Vessel Renewal Courtesy Notice" shows up in your mailbox.

Maintain a vigilant eye whenever you receive such a notice, as not all renewal notifications are created equally. There are times when a third party, not the U.S. Coast Guard, sends you a renewal notice. The notices themselves look official and might lead you to believe it was mailed directly from the Coast Guard.
Read More

How to Prevent a Boat Fire
(As seen in Boating Magazine)
Want to avoid getting burned? Follow our 10-point fire-protection checklist to keep the flames away.

Boat fires are ridiculously rare. You're much, much more likely to actually perish from a car accident, plane crash or even a cataclysmic storm than you are to even be injured from a boat fire. Out of the nearly 12 million registered recreational boats in the U.S., owners of only about 250 are likely to experience and report some kind of fire this year. You might as well rest easy and presume you won't be in that tiny 0.002 percent of boat owners destined to burn, right?

Sure, that's one strategy. But when it comes to protecting you, your family, your friends and your property —and even your fellow boaters — from fire, there are a number of surprisingly simple steps you can take to virtually guarantee you don't become a statistic. Plus, you'll probably find you feel much better about hitting the water knowing you've taken action to ensure a boat fire — possibly one of the most frightening experiences imaginable — will not happen to you.
Read More

What Boat Owners & Boating Facilities Can Do to Prevent Thefts (Part 2)
(As seen in Boating World
Don't be denied: boat owners can do a lot to ensure their claims are paid in their time of need.
Insurance companies want to do right by their policyholders, but some of the onus for claims denials falls at the feet of the insured. Boat owners have to do their part to ensure their policy is utilized to the fullest. Sometimes, an extra few minutes of attention can mean the difference between a disaster that gets remedied and one that gets exacerbated.

We reached out to a few marine insurance carriers and asked them for some of the reasons a claim might end up on the denied list — and for how policyholders can avoid such a fate. They were kind enough to contribute to a delicate subject and give boat owners a leg up in prepping for the worst.
Read More

Do You Know Your Sailboat's Navigation Draft?
By: Captain John from
Navigation aboard Coast Guard cutters began with awareness of the Captain's standing orders for navigation safety. Navigational draft designated the least amount of water that the navigator was allowed to take the ship across at any given moment.

In most cases, this was a minimum of 1½ times the ships aft draft. So, on a 210 foot medium endurance cutter, an aft draft of 12-14 feet meant that we were required to keep her in water deeper than 18 to 21 feet.

On the 295' USCG sail training ship Eagle, her 17' draft required a navigational draft of 26'. Of course, some channels didn't allow this much water. Like the day the Captain said he wanted our team to take him through a channel on Bermuda's eastern side.

It was the first time the Eagle had ever attempted this tight passage. Successful it was, but my pucker meter stayed pegged until we cleared the coral heads on both sides, entered deep water, and were once again bound for sea.

For power and sailing vessels, I suggest an even more generous safety factor of 2x loaded draft (boat fully provisioned with fuel, water, stores and crew). If your draft isn't an even number, round up before doubling.

Here are two examples:

  1. The Contessa 32 sloop carries a 5½' draft. Round up to 6' and double. She should stay in waters deeper than 12 feet at mean lower low water.

  2. A Bertram 47 cruiser carries a 4' 7" draft. Round up to 5' and double. She should stay in waters deeper than 10' at mean lower low water.

Be aware that many charts, including those on your trusty electronic plotter, were last surveyed in the earlier part of the 20th century. Some foreign charts show soundings going back to the days of the tall ships. Correct charted depth up or down using the latest tidal data.

Clean Marina Minute - Liquid Waste - Checking Bilge Before Pumping.
1. Use oil-absorbent pads to soak up oily bilge water and dispose of the pads at an approved collection site. The closest ones are High Seas Fuel Dock across the bay or Person's Fuel Dock. If you need one pad, you can exchange one in the office just for filling out a short survey.

2. Always check for traces of contaminants before pumping the bilge. Recently we had a boater that found their black water tanks were leaking into their bilge. Not a happy moment, but because they checked the bilge before pumping the problem was contained, reducing the magnitude of the unfortunate problem. Do not pump any bilge water that is oily or has a surface sheen.

3. Clean bilges of debris and remove loose containers of paint, solvents and other oil-based products before having your boat hauled

Honey - Not Just a Delicious Sweetener
- By Laura Brownwood
Although you can find concerns about almost any food, come on Honey, let's look at all the pluses.

Yes, this magical concoction created by flower nectar and the digestive tract of a bee, has been used as a medicine and natural remedy for thousands of years. Scientific studies confirm this ancient healer wisdom. Besides the importance of bees as a pollinator of food crops, their honey is an important natural source of sweetness and is also good for treating or preventing certain conditions. Here are just a few health benefits of honey .
Read More

We encourage everyone to visit YELP and write a review of Sun Harbor Marina.

That's it for Us! - Enjoy your summer boating. We hope you have a great September boating month.

Best Regards,
Your Sun Harbor Marina Team

Christian Marine Surveyors

Life Jackets (Part 3) - What Kind of Life Jacket Would Entice You and Your Guests to Wear it?
- By Kells Christian
I advocate for inflatable PFDs (personal flotation devices/life jackets), primarily because they are more likely to be worn than foam style PFDs, and the most effective lifejacket is the one that is worn.

As boating parents our young children wore life jackets like they wore seat belts, it's automatic (and mandatory). Inflatable PFDs are like flat screen tvs, an evolutionary step forward for boats and boaters.

An under considered aspect of boating is non swimming guests. Sea sickness keeps many of your land lubber friends from accepting your boating invitation but non swimmers also decline without explanation. Many non swimmers can be made comfortable by inflatable PFDs; they are not as cumbersome as foam type PFDs and much more fashionable.

I recently completed a safety inspection for a foreign flagged vessel that included checking PFDs for "suitability". The country provided very little specificity and I was basically on my own, which to me means will the device work as designed and anticipated. I contacted a dealer for the brand of PFD aboard and they had no specific service interval requirement, but were happy to perform the inspection for us. I decided to use one year as the inspection interval, though this was somewhat arbitrary.

I read the literature provided with the PFDs and began a short study to accomplish my goal. I disassembled one of the PFDs and learned about the replacement parts, bobbin, activator, CO2 cartridge and these units had man overboard lights with batteries. Some of the parts had a manufacture date and some had an expiration date.

There are different types of inflatable PFDs, some inflate if you pull a rip cord (jerk cord), some inflate if they get wet and some inflate with hydrostatic pressure (being submerged, but only a few inches).

The likely usage of the PFDs will help select the style. A knowledgeable boater or the vessel's master should assess the various needs. Will they regularly be worn by crew on a wet deck or will they be kept in guest cabin lockers until needed?

An important point is that inflatable PFDs do require maintenance and it makes more sense to understand how they work and how they deploy before an emergency. The master of the vessel and I decided to deploy one of the PFDs and I took the opportunity to be the "dummy". It took very little time to understand the components involved, develop reasonable service intervals and a proper inspection protocol. There are loads of web sites and videos that provide more details on specific brands of these devices.

If you have never seen one deploy and are interested, check this video:

If you have never considered maintenance on your inflatable PFDs, take a minute, do a bit of research and have the crew witness an inflation.

Kells Christian has been an accredited Marine Surveyor since 1990. His expertise extends to both recreational and commercial vessels. Kells was Regional Director of Society of Accredited Marine Surveyors (SAMS) for 2 years and a prominent member of numerous other industry organizations. You can e-mail your marine surveyor questions to or Click Here to visit his web site.

Kicking the Flare Disposal Problem Down the Road
Editorial - By Gus Giobbi -
They're not just hazardous waste; they're explosive hazardous waste.

We're talking about out of date flares. Each year, the number of places that will accept expired flares for "free" continues to dwindle. Topping the list is the recent decision of the U.S. Coast Guard and the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary to no longer accept them, preceded by the same decision by most fire department stations.

The emphasis here is on the word free. So what are boaters doing with their expired flares? Unfortunately, many boaters are just letting them accumulate on their boats, or worse yet, hazardously igniting them or tossing them into the trash or dumping them into the ocean, creating a whole different sort of environmentally hazardous conditions.

In what is a truly Catch-22 situation in California, you have the U.S. Coast Guard on one hand mandating boaters to have current signalling devices which includes flares, but they won't accept expired flares for disposal; and on the other hand, it is actually currently illegal in California to even "collect" expired flares to send out of state to places that will take them. (See California Department of Toxic Substance Control Pilot Program for flares).

Even the companies that sell flares to boaters are distancing themselves from this "hot" potato. West Marine for example told BlueSkyNews that they "do not accept expired flares for disposal at their store locations", and that "they are not aware of any places in our area to dispose of flares."

There are of course places you can take expired flares for disposal (See Clean Harbors for example), but it costs money, and it involves much more effort than simply taking the old flares up to the marina manager's office.

According to the California Coast Commission, "An estimated 174,000 expired pyrotechnic marine flares are generated each year by recreational vessels in California. With this large number of pyrotechnic flares expiring annually in California, increased public awareness of proper disposal options is needed."

While California struggles to find an environmentally acceptable solution to the flare problem, a long term solution lies in the replacement of flares with the newly available Coast Guard compliant electronic distress signalling devices.

Mark's "Fish 'n Tips" - Fishing the "Slide"
- By Captain Mark Moffat
In this article we discuss the craft of "fishing the slide".
Boats create a vibration while making way and this vibration, along with bubbles from the propeller white wash, is attracting fish.

The term "slide" is defined as the forward motion the boat is making when the captain pulls the throttles back to bring the boat to a stop.

The main targeted species is tuna. The vibration and white wash excites them and their curiosity. If there are lures in the water the fish may grab them. This means the school is directly under the boat. The angler will then grab their rod for fishing the slide and put the bait in the water.

When the boat is sliding the bait/lure goes below the trolling jigs and out. As it is going out the fish will take the bait. I discussed in last month's article about some of the artificial lures that can be used. Now I will discuss how to use them and also live bait.
Read More


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Tommy's Favorites - Alexseal Yacht Coatings
- By Tom Jarvis
Some recent changes in coatings found on the Beneteau and Jeanneau sailboats and power boats. They are now being painted with the Alexseal Coatings.

This is a great product line, and it all started for me in 2004. I was in Florida at an IBEX show where I was introduced to Alexseal Yacht Coatings.

Alexseal is a popular Linear Polyurethane Coating used in the maritime industry for painting small boats to large mega yachts.

The developers of Alexseal were the visionaries who decades ago first brought their formulations from the aerospace industry and then to the marine market. In 2002, they set out to create a linear polyurethane product designed for the yachting community utilizing the very best raw materials.

Every batch of Alexseal products are first mixed in smaller test volume, sprayed out, and matched to a set of master paint chips. After the pilot batch matches the master chip, it is scaled up to complete the production run. The chips on the Alexseal Premium Topcoat 501 color cards you receive are actual paint, not printing ink. giving you the peace of mind for an exact match

The durability and repair-ability of ALEXSEAL® Topcoat will last longer and resist damage from rubbing fenders. Alexseal Topcoat maintains the pigment through the entire coating layer. When you do have to make a repair, you won't have to worry about having to repaint a large area. Since there is no clear layer to sand through and the pigment of Alexseal is uniform through the cured topcoat, it is easy to spray topcoat over the repaired area and buff the finish in quickly for an almost invisible repair.

The Alexseal line of products provide the end user the necessary tools to apply a coating system from easy to sand primers to a topcoat finish. To see their full product line visit their website.

Editor's Note: Tom Jarvis provides outside Marketing and Sales services for the San Diego Marine Exchange. Click Here to email your boating product questions to Tom or Click Here to catch up with him on Facebook.

Great Summer Reading
The Wreck of the Titan
By: Morgan Robertson
Written fourteen years before the historic event it presaged, parallels the descriptions and fate of the Titanic with psychic precision. His tale, however, doesn't end with the passengers' watery demise; rather, it chronicles the detective work instigated by members of Lloyd's of London, embroiling Scotland Yard, when word comes in that the heavily insured ship has sunk to the bottom of the ocean. What ensues is a battle between insurers and attorneys, in London and New York, and a survivor who has rescued another passenger's daughter.

Robertson draws upon his own rich and wild experience as a seaman on the Atlantic to weave a narrative interspersed with colloquial dialogue, bringing to life the conflicts between the rich merchants who rely upon shipping and the sailing men relied upon to chart their courses.

A Sea of Troubles
By: Donna Leon
A Sea of Troubles offers a rare glimpse into the scrupulous Commissario's personal life. When Brunetti investigates the murder of two local fishermen on the island of Pellestrina, the small community closes ranks, forcing him to accept Signorina Elettra's offer to visit her relatives there to search for clues. Though loyal to his beloved wife, Paola, he must admit that less-than-platonic emotions underlie his concern for his boss's beautiful secretary. Suspenseful, provocative, and deeply unsettling,

The Sea Hunters II
By: Clive Cussler & Craig Dirgo
Adventure novelist Clive Cussler chronicles true adventures with famous shipwrecks which documented the formation of his nonprofit organization named after the fictional agency in his novels, the National Underwater and Marine Agency which is dedicated to the discovery of famous shipwrecks around the world.

This volume documents the search for the final resting places of fourteen additional ships or other historical sunken artifacts not documented in the first work. Unlike the first book, this volume documents searches for ships that Cussler's group has found, and searches that were ultimately unsuccessful. As in the first work, preceding the details of the search is a fictionalized imagining of the events that led to the loss of the ship.

Life Jackets (Part 1) - What Are Your Odds of Surviving if You Go Overboard Without One?
- By Commodore Vincent Pica
People end up in the water for a variety of reasons but the two main times are when a boat capsizes or someone falls overboard.

Nearly 60% of all drowning fatalities happen in these two circumstances. In these cases, for every 16 boaters that go into the water without a life jacket, only a single one will come out alive. The other 15 will die!

Another statistic I've seen is this. Boaters who have over 100 hours of boating experience –and are 35 or older –and who have not taken a formal boating safety class –account for over half of all boating accidents - and over half of the fatalities.

Note: If you haven't taken a boating safety class yet, or haven't taken one in a long time, email me below and I will help you find one in your neighborhood.

What to Wear by Who? - USCG regulations require that you have a life jacket for every person aboard. And persons under 13 years old must be wearing them.

But why only require the kids wear it? Let me suggest a better example. All those kids seeing dad not wearing one, are saying to themselves, "I can't wait until I'm old enough not to wear one!" What a bad example you're setting, skipper.

I'll tell you a story that ought to bring the point home. One fine day while patrolling Moriches Bay, we came upon a family fishing in an open boat. It looked like there were children aboard and further we couldn't see any with life jackets on.

As we approached, I heard the grandfather say to one of the kids, "Get down, the Coast Guard is coming!" Unfortunately for grandpa, sound travels well over the water and I heard it at the helm. As we came alongside, I gave the wheel to one of my crew and walked up to where our boats were closest together.

All I said to grandpa was, "You ought to be ashamed of yourself." We watched, without another word, as all the children put their life-jackets on.

The moral of the story is this. A "Personal Flotation Device" might be fine in a swimming pool with mom and dad watching, but a "Life Jacket" is something that can save your life! With all of the comfortable and stylish options of Life Jackets to wear these days, why wouldn't you wear one and set the example - and maybe save your own life.

Life Jackets (Part 2) - If You Do Go Overboard Without a Life Jacket On, What Are Your Odds Of Getting It On Once You're In the Water?
- By Commodore Vincent Pica
On the boat it's easy to put on a life jacket. You stick one arm through a hole; swing the jacket around your back; then stick your other arm through the other hole.

However, this sequence of actions will be impossible to duplicate in the water. Most of your body will be submerged with just your head and shoulders exposed above the sea surface.

So unless you actually have your life jacket on at the time you go into the "drink", you're not likely to be able to get it on in the water unless you know the secret of how to do it.

Here's the idea, which I thank friend and colleague Captain John Konrad for detailing. You must use this simple, little-known method to don any life jacket in the water. Follow these five easy steps.

  1. Grab the collar of the life jacket. Pull the life jacket close to you. Turn the jacket so that it floats with the front pointed toward the sky. Unclip all snaps and straps.

  2. Open the life jacket all the way so that it lies almost flat on the water surface. Keep the collar close to you (illustration 2).

  3. Thrust each arm as far as possible through each arm hole (illustration 3).

  4. Raise both arms in a smooth, fast motion above your head and slightly back (illustration 3).

  5. Fasten all snaps and straps.

You can practice this important skill in the comfort of your home. After two to three minutes of practice, most folks can do this in less than 30 seconds. Here's how to perform the practice:

  1. Kneel down next to a table about chin height.

  2. Place the life jacket on top of the table.

  3. Follow steps 1 –- 5 above.

Practice until you can complete all steps within 30 seconds. Be sure to also train your boating crew.

BTW, if you are interested in being part of USCG Forces, email me at or go direct to the D1SR Human Resources department, who are in charge of new members matters, at DSO-HR and we will help you "get in this thing!"

Commodore Pica is District Directorate Chief; Strategy & Innovation; First Coast Guard District, Southern Region USCGAux. He is also a U.S. Coast Guard licensed Master Captain. I Like
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