SKIP NOVAK
Yachting World|November 2020
SKIP NOVAK
WHEN DOES BEING PREPARED BECOME HOARDING? SKIPPERS SHOULD AVOID THE TEMPTATION OF ‘ JUST IN CASE’
How many times have you heard, or said: “You never know when you might need…?” It’s true that when cruising on the far side of the world, with few or no marine services to hand, self-sufficiency is key. You need spare parts galore, a full range of tools, and basic materials to make things for the unpredictable gear failures.

However, this philosophy can be taken to extremes. I always had an annual routine purging the contents of the original Pelagic back in the 1990s. This was a time when we were based from Ushuaia in Tierra del Fuego, there were no spare parts available whatsoever, hardly any useful tools on offer and materials like stainless steel and aluminium were rare earth metals. We carried lengths of spare standing rigging of every size as well as the terminals; timber, cut to length to fit odd spaces in the bilges, and we always had plenty of wooden wedges on board; too much rope always; metres of plumbing hose; boxes of bolts and screws; and a huge selection of stainless steel and galvanised shackles with no purpose or justification other than “Might come in handy...”

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November 2020