Tune Up

“It’s that time of year” by Chris Lee

The season is getting ready to start and I usually get ready by cleaning the crud and grime from the bottom of my boat and giving it a good inspection.  What could be better than this! Here I am getting some exercise in the sun and fresh air, very fresh, direct from the Russian steps probably! Better than a gym and costing me nothing. If you are at a loose end why not come down and give your boat a once over with some soapy water.

The check list below should help:


  • Do a general cleaning of hull, deck and topsides using a mild detergent
  • Make sure drains are clear
  • Look for loose screws
  • Put on a good coat of wax
  • Clean any wooden bits and oil / varnish
  • Put some air in your tyres?


  • Check for hull abrasions, scratches, gouges, etc by tipping on its side. and repair
  • Check cleats and blocks work
  • Check centre board and rudder surface and fittings
  • Do your tanks leak?
  • Have you done a buoyancy test?



  • Check general condition [are they worn out?]
  • Look for wear and chafing and mice!!
  • Check battens and batten pockets
  • Inspect bolt rope
  • Use some PTFE spray or wax on the bolt rope to ease its travel


  • Check mast and spreaders for corrosion or damage
  • Lasers check mast socket is clean, fit PTFE plate in bottom
  • Inspect spreader and shrouds settings
  • Inspect rivets and screw connections for corrosion
  • Check reefing points and reefing gear
  • Clean sail tracks and use some PTFE spray
  • Check rigging, turnbuckles and clevis pins for wear and corrosion
  • Inspect stainless steel shrouds for fraying and “fish hooks”
  • Check forestay connections
  • Check masthead fitting
  • Check and lubricate all blocks
  • Check halyards and consider replacing or swapping end for end
  • Tape turnbuckles, cotter pins, and spreaders to keep things in place