Harken Rig Tune Pro 368
With the advent of stiffer hulls and low-stretch rigging, old-fashioned spring-gauge tension meters for measuring shroud tension just don’t cut it anymore. Lou Varney, of Diverse Yachts/Tropical Engineering, working with Harken’s Andy Ash-Vie, managing director for Harken UK, and Andy Reynolds-Jones came up with a digital tension meter, the RigTune Pro. As rigging is deflected over three pins on the back of the gauge, a load cell records the pressure on one of the pins and measures rig tension to the nearest kilogram. The measurement is displayed on an easy-to-read screen. The RigTune Pro accommodates a specific range of rigging sizes (2.5 to 5 mm), reducing the need for multiple gauges and eliminating conversion tables.
The RigTune Pro was recently given a Special Mention at the 2007 DAME Award competition in the Deck Equipment Sails and Rigging category. $297, harken.com
Any boat owner knows that an integral part of onboard maintenance is tightening hose clamps. They also know this chore often results in skinned knuckles, tools dropped in hard-to-reach parts of the bilge, and, unless you’ve got a stronger sense of self control than I, a string of cuss words that would make a pirate proud. Leaping into this technological breach is SMC Innovations, which has introduced the LockDriver, a nut driver that locks on to the head of a hose-clamp screw with the flip of a lever. The LockDriver is available in a range of sizes and shaft lengths with retail prices between $14.95 and $39.95.
SMC Innovations also introduced its take on the ubiquitous multitool, the PocketWrench, which they describe as a “flip” wrench that folds to approximately 5” long. The PocketWrench is available in both SAE (5/16” through 1”) and metric versions (8 mm through 25 mm.). smc-innovations.com
Because we don’t necessarily trust fuel gauges, we’ve spent a fair amount of time crouched next to fuel vents, hand on the fuel nozzle, ear close to the fuel vent, making sure we don’t overfill the tank and spill fuel in the water. To keep us from straining our knees, backs, and ears, there’s a new device called the Fuel Whistle. While the tank is being filled, a whistling sound is produced, loud enough to be heard from any point on the boat. As the tank approaches full, the sound turns to a warble. When completely full it stops, and you should do the same. To install, you simply cut your fuel vent line near the fuel tank and insert the Fuel Whistle. $29.95, 516-628-1255, www.greenmarine.com
Kubota diesel 12hp Marine Generator
On a racing sailboat, size and weight matters, and that’s why generators like the new Kubota diesel 12 hp Marine Power Unit from Next Generation Power is destined to be a big hit with racers, designers, and builders. Measuring 16” x 18” x 21” and weighing 150 pounds, the 2-cylinder Kubota produces 12 hp at 3,600 rpm, and can be used with a high-output alternator to charge batteries. Heat-exchanger cooled, this compact Kubota features a stainless steel, water-cooled exhaust. Oil pressure and water temperature safety shut downs are standard. $3,495,nextgenerationpower.com.