New Products: September 2012

These beach shoes fit like gloves, a wireless intercom may quell topside yelling, a flex-neck LED fixture illuminates your charts, and drying packets and capsules work to keep camera gear an electronics dry.

October 17, 2012


Radio Check?
Need a quick radio check to make sure your VHF radio and antenna are transmitting loud and clear? With the ART-3 Antenna/Radio Tester from Shakespeare Electronics, there’s no need to hail the anchorage and hope someone responds. The pocket-sized ART-3 measures radio output power, antenna efficiency, and receiver functionality using simple switches and a dial knob. The sturdy die-cast aluminum meter displays RF output power up to 30 watts on an easily read built-in scale. The unit can either be connected to the ship’s 12-volt-DC power system or run off its internal battery.
$145, (803) 227-1590,
Courtesy of Shakespeare Marine


Twinkle Toes
If boots and Topsiders already weigh down your sea bag, here’s a pair of light, compact soles that are good for exploring the wrack line. A fashionable take on the Vibram FiveFingers footwear that’s gained fame in the world of running, the Classic Fresca slip-ons for women features a lightweight, stretchable upper with a back pull-tab so you can cinch the top rim of the shoe and get a secure fit. The outsole with serrated design provides flexibility, durability, and traction while you climb over broken seashells and glass, around slimy rocks, and through the muddy, sandy salt marsh. CW deputy editor Elaine Lembo gave them a serious workout hauling a dinghy ashore, then back out to explore shallow waters. These shoes are machine washable; air dry. Other water-sports models by Vibram for men and women include Flow, KSO, and Sprint.
$85, (978) 318-0000,
Courtesy of Vibram


Light Brigade
A good navigation table light or reading lamp is a must for every well-found cruising boat. And the white/red LED Flexi Chart Table Lamp, from Hella Marine, provides crisp, energy-efficient illumination for either application. Available in white, red, and white/red LED models, the sleek, adjustable lamps are ideal for nav stations, berths, or above settees. The dual white/red versions feature precise dimming via an integrated rotary switch in the lamp head. With a current draw of less than 2 watts (less than .2 amps at 12 volts), the units are cool to the touch, an important feature in close quarters. The flexible 316 stainless-steel arms are available in 6- and 16-inch lengths.
$180 (6-inch model), (770) 631-7500,
Courtesy of Hella Marine


Dry Harder
Keeping valuable electronics, cameras, and laptops dry and functional in the marine environment is always a challenge, but less so with the introduction of the Moisture Muncher drying packets and capsules from SeaLife Cameras. To use, simply place one of the 3- by 5-inch packets inside an airtight storage case, container, or reusable plastic bag along with the items you need to keep dry; the area inside the container will quickly become a moisture-free zone. The tinier capsules are for use inside underwater-camera housings and other small, sealed containers and dry boxes. The 1-ounce Moisture Muncher packets come in packages of three; the capsules, in packets of 10.
$10 (for three packets or 10 mini-capsules), (800) 257-7742,
Courtesy Sealife Cameras


Teak Treat
Especially ideal for classic-plastic cruising boats that need some TLC, AllGuard’s revamped TeakGuard wood restorer is a water-based polymer resin that contains no oil, urethane, silicon, varnish, shellac, or sealers of any kind, and it’s easy to use: Clean bleached or blackened wood with mild detergent, buff it lightly with bronze wool, and apply TeakGuard, which will soak into the wood and bring back the finish and color. Most applications require a single coat, and drying time takes only 10 to 20 minutes. TeakGuard allows moisture to escape while sealing in the wood’s natural oils, protecting it from oxidation. The product also contains a combination of UV absorbers and reflectors that protect wood from the sun’s ultraviolet rays, extending the life of the finish and the wood.
Starting at $16 (16-ounce bottle), (800) 448-8325,
Courtesy of AllGuard


Now Hear This
When docking, anchoring, or shortening sail, would you like to have the ability for the skipper and crew to issue commands and respond immediately, in conversational tones, without shouting, pressing buttons, or taking turns talking? The COMSTAR full duplex wireless intercoms, from Eartec, were developed for cruising and racing sailors who need to communicate effectively while involved in hands-on maneuvers. Unlike other systems, the COMSTAR units aren’t voice activated, there’s no delay in transmitting, and the network allows up to eight wireless users to talk simultaneously, as if they were on a regular telephone, within an 800-yard range. The three-users package comes complete with a trio of “belt-pack” transceivers and headsets, the dedicated “command center” black box, batteries, chargers, and a padded case.
$1,650, (800) 399-5994,
Courtesy of Eartec

More Gear