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Author Articles

by Capt. Bill Pike

PMY Senior Editor:
Bill’s career incorporates a wide range of experience in both journalism and boating. He began his writing career in 1972 as a general-assignment reporter and columnist for the Watertown Daily Times in Watertown, New York. Later he went on to work as a feature writer and reporter for the St. Petersburg Times. Read more here...

Sanlorenzo SD92

By Capt. Bill Pike | Posted February 2010 | Add a Comment

  I’m an unabashed, unapologetic traditionalist when it comes to marine design and aesthetics. So, right off the top, I’m going to admit that my appreciation for the classical good looks of Retro Blue, Sanlorenzo’s newest semidisplacement SD92, should probably be taken with a grain of salt (and a healthy dollop of open-mindedness) especially by those readers who

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Game Changer?

By Capt. Bill PikeMarty Mason | Posted January 2010 | Add a Comment

Twin Disc challenges pod drives with a smooth, quick joystick system for shaft-drive boats.Most likely, it was the eyebrow that got me. I was winding up a pleasant dinner with a boatbuilding friend at the recent Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show and gabbing about one of my favorite topics—the super-sophistication of

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The Single-Hander of Vero Beach

By Capt. Bill Pike | Posted December 2009 | Add a Comment

How one man built a 40-ton steel trawler with little more than a stout heart, two hands, a welding machine, and a Toyota forklift. In a way, the whole thing began in Belize over a decade ago. Gil Devenport, an average Joe from Vero Beach, Florida, with none of the obvious attributes of a muscle-bound superhero (like hulking

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Misguided Angels

By Capt. Bill Pike | Posted December 2009 | Add a Comment

Twisted souls who help out, even when help’s not wanted.Truth to tell, I’m still suffering from a pesky old resentment. It originated several years ago at a marina in South Carolina when a stubborn youngster who was trying to be helpful snatched one of Betty Jane’s bow lines, and despite protestations from yours truly who was

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Love Story

By Capt. Bill Pike | Posted December 2009 | Add a Comment

Crewed or bareboat? The author samples both. Photo by Gary FeltonPhoto by Gary FeltonThis view of Marina Cay shows the house where Robb and Rodie White lived in the 1930’s, on the hilltop between two red-roofed

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Grand, Ain't It?

By Capt. Bill Pike | Posted October 2009 | Add a Comment

I grew up a few milesfrom a little miningtown in northernNew York State, andon Friday evenings,shortly after the paychecks came out,our family went to town to do ourgrocery shopping. We’d park our Chevyon Main Street to, as mom used to say,“watch the people go by.”Don’t laugh—this customwas the highlight of ourweek. Folks came frommiles around to

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Trick Your Ride

By Capt. Patrick S...Capt. Grant RafterCatherine PearsonCapt. Bill Pike | Posted October 2009 | Add a Comment

Everyone dreams about buying that new boat. Historically, PMY readers have traded up every three years. But for a lot of us, that usual step up is going to have to be deferred for a few months. However, that doesn’t mean we’ll have to put up with the same old boat. Take a look around, and you’ll see that there’s plenty of room for improvement onboard.In this section PMY’s editors offer 14

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Nautic Air Module - Got Allergies?

By Capt. Bill Pike | Posted October 2009 | Add a Comment

As an unabashed booster for boats and boating, I’m a tad amazed to find myself admitting that we boaters have a wholly invisible but smelly problem: onboard air quality. Consider my own 21-year-old, meticulously maintained trawler Betty Jane. Like lots of other vessels, she mostly gets used on weekends, and throughout any given weekend, especially during the summer, she’s likely to be almost

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Jabsco Oil Changer

By Capt. Bill Pike | Posted August 2009 | Add a Comment

When my buddy Bruce said he had a like-new Jabsco Porta Quick oil changer he’d give me for free, I was happy. When I discovered the unit sells for $209.99, I was ecstatic.The Porta Quick is a 14-quart plastic container/reservoir with a 12-volt electric impeller-type pump on top. A cord with alligator clips supplies battery power, and a toggle switch

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Toss the Sawzall!

By Capt. Bill Pike | Posted August 2009 | Add a Comment

So a guy walks into a boatyard and says, “Hey, I gotta have a bow thruster.” In a few days, an open-ended job begins, with the bill contingent upon the yard’s hourly rate, expertise, and the man-hours worked. When the guy returns he finds his boat starring in a veritable horror show. A couple of first-time thruster installers have blundered into a foam-cored transversal while cutting a hole in

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