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About Calson

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    Senior Member

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    Monterey, CA
  1. I like the Shimano Evair Marine/Fishing shoes along with NRS Hydro Skin neoprene socks. Good traction on the rocks and lots of holes for sand to drain out after coming through the surf zone.
  2. The Outback is wider and roomier than the Revo and has molded in trays for setting things down. It also has enough space to replace the round hatch with a Hobie rectangular hatch like that provided with the PA boats and this works a lot better for storing tackle in Plano boxes. If you plan on adding a fish finder there are brands and models that are easier to install and I would do this before you head out of the country. A good local dealer can advise you on best way to do this and there are numerous articles online as well.
  3. I have pulled out 3-year old impellers that had zero flex from age and so that is my maximum. Hours is not important as the rubber ages over time and becomes less flexible and less effective in moving water through the unit. If redoing the lower unit due to hours of operation then I would replace the impeller at the same time as it is a low cost item.
  4. The Outback is rated for towing 3,000 lbs. and my only concern would be stopping distance if your trailer does not have surge brakes. I towed a 3,000 lb. Whaler and trailer load with a 1998 Chevy Tahoe full size SUV and it took a very long distance and amount of time to bring it from 65 MPH to a full stop. I had to do that once when an idiot was making a left turn and then stopped right in front of me on the highway. Now I tow a 10,000 lb. boat and trailer load and with the surge disc brakes if feels like the boat is not even there when making a stop. 3,000 lbs. is the maximum trailer load in most states where you can get away without trailer brakes but even if it is legal I would not recommend doing it.
  5. "Marine" batteries are a hybrid deep cycle and starter type of battery. Good for light current drain from electronics as with a fish finder. Not good for running a trolling motor.
  6. Problem with a cell phone is that they are not waterproof and if you end up in the water and need to call for help you have no way to provide your location to would be rescuers. To me a VHF with DSC is cheap life insurance. With the push of a button my radio sends my exact position out and I can do this while bobbing in the ocean. My Icom M92D cost me only $240 and my life is worth it. Being able to provide your exact location is important and with the DSC function in a GPS equipped VHF radio it is always going to be received correctly. Huge difference (as much as 15 miles) depending upon degrees and decimal minutes or degrees, minutes, and seconds when reporting your location. A powerboat off of Newport Beach in California found this out when it took more than 8 hours for a tow service boat to find them. FYI US Government CISAR operations: The standard Latitude/Longitude format for CISAR operations is Degrees, Decimal Minutes (DD°’). Latitude is always read and written first noting “North” since the U.S. is North of the Equator. Longitude is always read and written last noting “West” since the U.S. is West of the Prime Meridian. When speaking Latitude and Longitude coordinates for 39° 36.06' N by 76° 51.42' W stated as: “Three nine degrees, three six decimal zero six minutes North by seven six degrees, five one decimal four two minutes West.” The words, “degrees,” “minutes,” and “decimal” must be spoken. Decimal denotes the decimal point "." in the string of numbers. It is also helpful in many areas to be able to use channel 69 to contact other kayakers out on the water. No way to do that with a cell phone.
  7. The Thule Hullavator is a great device. Mount it on the rack bars and it lowers to the side of the car at which point you place the kayak into the cradle and air pistons move 40 pounds of boat weight for you. If you have a 70 lb. kayak you are having to lift only 30 lbs. when raising or lowering the Hullavator. I use one on my truck as its racks are more than 7 feet off the ground. With the Hullavator I only need to lift the kayak chest high and place it on the cradle arms. Much easier as I am using stronger muscle groups than would be the case with anything at shoulder height or higher.
  8. Boats that come to mind are the Pro-Line and the Trophy walk around boats in the 23-25 foot range. Weight will be approximately 4500 to 5500 lbs. with twin outboards. You pay a lot more for a boat with an outboard than an inboard or sterndrive and you pay even more for twins. A Yamaha 175HP sells for around $13,000 and with two you have an investment of $26,000 when new. Even a pair of Yamaha 175's or comparable outboards will add $12,000 to the price of a used boat. An alternative is to get a boat with an inboard or I/O motor and a kicker motor. There is a 2008 Pro-Line Sport 23 with a single 250HP Yamaha outboard listed on *************** in Delaware for $32,000 as a point of reference. What I like about a cuddy walk around is that there is space below deck for a head/porta potti, small fridge, V-berth, and your gear, and yet you can get from the stern to the bow without having to be up on the deck where you could land in the water. The very last thing you want is to have your family onboard and for you to be going forward and fall into the water. The odds of a successful recovery are extremely slim - much better to stay on the boat. Something I love about my Trophy 2502 is the very wide walkaround area provided. It is a lot more than on a friend's Pro-Line 23 and there are many "offshore" boat where there is no walk around provided and you have to go through a forward hatch to deal with the anchor. With a walk around you can work a fish around the boat with no problems. There are those who will say it has to be a Grady White or similar boat but these boats do not have a stronger hull and they have the same engines and fittings and other gear as less expensive and equally well performing craft. I put Boston Whaler in the same category and although I owned one and it was a great offshore boat it was by no means a good value in terms of price versus performance - it did have a full rail around the deck.
  9. Get a SUV with the lowest gears you can find. All of mine had 4.10 gears and it helped both with towing and with fuel economy with and without a trailer in tow. An SUV is going to be heavier than a pickup truck so forget about fuel economy. Better to have a vehicle for towing the boat and another for your daily driver. In my case I tow with a 3/4 ton diesel pickup and my daily driver is a Prius that averages 45 MPG on regular gas. 90% of my driving is done with the Prius. You can save quite a bit of towing weight with an aluminum trailer and it may make the difference in what car can tow it. In my state any trailer that weighs 3,000 lbs. or more with its load is required to have brakes. For marine use surge brakes and disc brakes will be the most trouble free. The trailer brakes have to self activate if the trailer becomes detached from the vehicle. A pizza business last year had a portable oven on a trailer that became detached and it did not have the activator on it and it killed the 32 year old drive and seriously injured 3 other passengers in another car. Pizza guy was charged with manslaughter and needless to say he is going to lose his business and probably his home. The pizza guy failed to have the self-braking device installed on the trailer and even neglected to connect the safety chains which were on the trailer. Talk about a hanging offense this would qualify in my book.
  10. Hobie sells an ama kit for their kayaks to make them more stable when a sail is used. These would work equally well on any kayak to make them a lot more stable for use as a photography platform. The cross bar can be rotated so the height of the amas off the water can be changed while out on the boat.
  11. I have an aversion to a refurbished camera or lens as it one that had a defect when it left the factory and then had to be returned to the manufacturer to be repaired. Refurbished means repaired 99% of the time. The one possible exception is that some pro cameras will have a shutter replacement after 150,000 activations and a new factory installed shutter will extend the life of the camera for many more years. I would sooner buy a used camera or lens from its original owner that had not had to be repaired. I have always recommended buying a used pro grade lens over a consumer level lens. For example the Nikon 80-200mm f2.8 ED IF is a much better lens and costs less when purchased used than a new Nikon 70-300mm f5.6 zoom lens that provides only 25% of the light transmission to the camera (both to the autofocus sensors and the main sensor). Any lens purchased from a reputable dealer, like B&H or Adorama, can be returned within 30 days if there is a problem with it. Better to buy an import lens and save 10% to 15% than to buy a lens that has needed to be repaired. Often when a new version of a lens is released the old version is sold by their owners to get the new one. This is a great time to find very lightly used lenses at a great price.
  12. Camera use a 1/4" -20 thread for a tripod mount so it is easy to take a 1/4"-20 bolt and mount it to something to make your own camera support. I have a 1 foot square piece of plywood that has a bolt and the I mount a ball head to the board and it makes a great ground level support for shooting on grass or sand with any camera and lens combination, even large telephoto lenses.
  13. I have been using the High Sierra Clampette for the last 30 years ($12 at B&H) and it is a terrific device. It is a C-clamp with a rotating section that has a screw for the camera mount. I can clamp it to a railing, to a branch, to a stick, or a small book, and get a very stable support for a camera. It weighs only 2 ounces and easily goes inside a shirt or pants pocket. It is a lot more stable than a small tripod. I often use it with a piece of a branch I pick up from the ground as it makes a very sturdy improvised support for the camera and then I "recycle" the branch when I am done.
  14. You can use deck screws with SS fender washers and have the holes in the cabinet drilled oversize to allow the butcher block to shift slightly independent of the base. I have butcher block as the counter beside the cooktop in my kitchen and it was handy but it did not wear well over the years. Now the countertops are all granite.
  15. Floor stands are easier to work around if you have the floor space. The extra cost for the column is minimal. Check the distance of the throat as it varies quite a bit and this is where the hobbyist level drill presses can fall short. Best are the ones with a variable speed motor and an electronic control but they are going to be double the cost. This is a good item to try to find for sale on craigslist or industrial auctions. With millions of machine shops and cabinet shops going out of business since 2008 there is a great deal of used pro level machinery on the market. Cheaper drill presses will have cheaper chucks but these can be replaced with a higher quality one.