Boat Tips Blog

Crack Seal

 As I check off one birthday after another, my “annoying list” continues to grow. High on my list are the leaks that arrive in Sails Call’s cabin when it rains. I had a drip below my newly installed main cabin windows … right over my bunk. Another formed a puddle on a shelf forward.

Trying to find the source of a leak can be a lesson in frustration. Anything could be the culprit! There are rails, cleats, winches, hatches everywhere on the cabin top. Plus minute checks, voids, and spider cracks all over the gel coat. Regular silicone sealants are messy and next to impossible to squeeze into such hairline fissures.

Then I heard of Captain Tolley’s Creeping Crack Cure. My first attempt was to tackle the drip over my bunk. In spite of using copious amounts of the prescribed sealant when I installed the windows two years before, there was a minute gap at the top edge of the window.

I cut Captain Tolley’s applicator tip, touched it to the gap, and squeezed the bottle gently. I was amazed to watch the milky white fluid get sucked into the gap and, through the acrylic, I could see it run all the way to the bottom of the window frame. Inside the cabin I found a tiny drip of Captain Tolley’s oozing out.

Waiting the prescribed 30 minutes, I reapplied and this time it ran about halfway down the window. The third application sealed it completely! Captain Tolley’s cures in about 30 minutes, dries clear, and is easy to wipe up with a paper towel. I used it to fill a large void around a forward hatch hinge that was the cause of another leak. That took about eight or ten applications … but it cured a leak that came with the boat in 2003!

Do you have a Boat Tip to share?

– Joe Kelliher


Learn Boating Basics

AMERICA’S BOATING COURSE has taught the ABCs of enjoyable boating to millions. Earn a Massachusetts boating certificate. Sessions begin in February & April. INFO  

Advanced Boating Skills

BUILD  CONTINUED CONFIDENCE in boat handling and navigation. Coastal and offshore. Paddling, power and sail. One-evening skills seminars and advanced courses. INFO

Meet Boating Friends

GATHER WITH BOATING ENTHUSIASTS for cruises, informal get-togethers, educational activities, dinner talks and events. Welcome to our next Boat Talk.

America’s Boating Club

THE UNITED STATES POWER SQUADRONS® is America’s Boating Club®, the world’s largest recreational boating organization. For Boaters, By BoatersTM.

who we are  

Great Blue Hill Sail & Power Squadron is a unit of the United States Power Squadrons®America’s Boating Club®GBH launched in 1969 as a non-profit, educational organization. We are dedicated to making boating more enjoyable by teaching classes in seamanship, navigation, vessel handling and other boating subjects.

Our motto is “Come for the boating education … Stay for the friends.” We gather on cruises, at Boat Talks and for other special events where we can share our love of being on the water with fellow boaters.

Our members live primarily in Boston and the south and southwestern suburbs. However, our boats are harbored all across eastern New England: Boston harbor, Buzzards Bay, Narragansett Bay, Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard and Maine.

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Piloting • Marine Navigation

THURSDAYS,  Jan 31 – Apr 4 • The basics of coastal and inland navigation. The focus is on recreational boat navigation using GPS as a primary tool while covering traditional techniques. In-class exercises develop skills through hands-on practice. Details & Registration


The ABCs • America’s Boating Course

CLASSES START February 25 & April 3 • New boat? Just dreaming? Or looking for a refresher before the boating season? USPS has taught safe boating to millions. Sessions in Westwood (February) and Walpole (April). Details & Registration

BOAT HANDLING • Learn Seamanship

MONDAYS,  Apr 1 – May 6 • NEW for 2019 Deepen your boating knowledge and seamanship skills in six essential topics. Fully updated and revised. May be taken as full course or as individual seminars. Details & Registration


Register Now for Winter/Spring 2019

America’s Boating Course (the ABCs)

Have a new Boat? This winter or spring is the best time to bone up on basic boating skills. America’s Boating Course has taught the essentials of safe and enjoyable boating to millions. Classes begin in February (Westwood) and April (Walpole). For full schedule, more information and registration:

boat safety 

VESSEL SAFETY CHECK – Learn how to schedule a courtesy VSC, at no charge, with a qualified USCGA or United States Power Squadrons Vessel Safety Examiner. Also learn how a VSC will improve your understanding of safety equipment and regulations. 

NEW! View from the Blue

Keep up with Great Blue Hill happenings. The current issue of our newsletter, View from the Blue, is now online. Feature articles, event flyers, the Commander’s message and more. January’s issue shares an amazing cruise by members and friends to the fabled Greek island of Corfu.

Resources for boaters

Check out these new websites from the United States Power Squadrons®America’s Boating Club®. They are full of tips and ideas to make your boating safer and more enjoyable.

AMERICA’S BOATING CHANNEL is loaded with safe boating videos and boater education digital media created especially For Boaters, By BoatersTM . You’ll find how-to videos on basic skills, boating safety, life jackets, navigation rules, jet ski operation and more. Created with a grant from the US Coast Guard. America’s Boating Channel

 BOAT LIVE 365 BOATING IS SERIOUS FUN  Boat Live 365 empowers recreational boating groups to create a safe boating culture 365 days a year. At the Resource Library you can download materials and ideas to help spread the message. And the Come Aboard Webinar shares best practices that have worked for others. Boat Live 365

SAILANGLE is the ultimate boating community. Use this social media website to connect with boaters across America. Log in with your USPS member ID to access blogs, discussions and forums that help you use, maintain and enjoy your boat. SailAngle


The Kidde company has recalled some 40 million fire extinguishers manufactured since 1973. Recalled models have plastic handles that are difficult to press or may fail to function during a fire emergency. Some have broken apart in use and pose an impact danger. One death has been reported. To learn if your boat (or your home) extinguishers are being recalled and to request free replacement(s), click below.

Live Wind Speed


Engine Maintenance Course • Session 2 @ Westwood Senior Center
Jan 22 @ 7:00 pm – 9:30 pm

Learn the basics of boat engines, inboard and outboard. Be prepared to diagnose and fix problems on the water!

Instructor: Rusty Whitaker, AP

Engine Maintenance Course • Session 3 @ Westwood Senior Center
Jan 29 @ 7:00 pm – 9:30 pm

Learn the basics of boat engines, inboard and outboard. Be prepared to diagnose and fix problems on the water!

Instructor: Rusty Whitaker, AP

Piloting/Marine Navigation • Session 1 @ Westwood Senior Center
Jan 31 @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Piloting/Marine Navigation covers the basics of coastal and inland navigation by GPS and traditional techniques.

Instructors: Jim Andersen, N, Mike Hanlon, JN, and Ridge White, SN

Engine Maintenance Course • Session 4 @ Westwood Senior Center
Feb 5 @ 7:00 pm – 9:30 pm

Learn the basics of boat engines, inboard and outboard. Be prepared to diagnose and fix problems on the water!

Instructor: Rusty Whitaker, AP

— Website updated January 16, 2019 —