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A Hidden Nautical Gem in Honolulu – The USS Bowfin Submarine Museum

The bombing of Pearl Harbor remains one of the most traumatic events in recent United States history and there are a number of museums that commemorate it. However, few museums are like the The USS Bowfin Submarine Museum & Park, a museum dedicated to the submarine known as the “Pearl Harbor Avenger.” On December 7, 1942, exactly one year after Japan attacked Pearl Harbor, the Bowfin was launched into war. It was named after the bowfin, a predatory fish known for its voraciousness and it lived up to its name. It would go on to sink 44 enemy ships during nine separate and highly successful war patrols. The Bowfin was awarded a Presidential Unit Citation and a Navy Unit Commendation. It was also one of the only 15 ships saved from becoming scrap metal for the army when it was acquired by the Pacific Fleet Memorial Association in 1979. Subsequently, […]

Gas Saving Products: Fact or Fiction?

The price of gas fluctuates for many reasons, and although prices have dropped tremendously in comparison to previous years, the price of gas is on the rise again. People who want to save on gas turn to gas saving products, along with other methods, to help them avoid having to make adjustments to their driving habits. As a result, companies have many opportunities to take advantage of consumers with various kinds of products that claim to improve gas efficiency. One gas saving product on the market is the Fitch Fuel Catalyst. This product is designed to go in-line with the vehicle’s fuel system to bolster fuel quality, providing drivers with more power and increased efficiency. The system costs around $200 and does not have any proof to support that it does anything to improve the vehicle’s gas mileage, so it is not a wise or common investment. Liquid Injections appear […]

State by State RV and Towing Laws

If you’re traveling between states, make sure you learn the towing laws of both states as laws can be quite different from one state to another. However, most states have very fluid towing laws and the laws are not enforced too stringently. There are a few general rules pertaining to trailers that carry higher weights that require breakaway switches that automatically engage in case the trailer disengages from the car. Other than that, there aren’t many laws absolutely set in stone because most laws are aimed only at truckers who drive large big rigs. Brakebuddy: Brakebuddy offers an interactive map with a good guide to general towing laws, broken down by state. Department of Transport: Has a list of general rules and regulations. AA1Car: Has very good information on trailer brakes, which are very important for trailer safety. Trailer Towing Laws: Provides a list of things you should focus on […]

Boat Donation: Behind the Scenes by Michael Vatalaro

Donating your boat to charity certainly is a generous thing to do, but it could be financially smart, too, if you haven’t been able to sell it in this market. Here’s how it works. Let’s say that you’re like I am, an owner of a good-sized older boat that runs well, but the interior is dated. In my case, it’s a 32-foot fly bridge sedan from 1979. Fully refurbished and in the right local market, according to comparables, it might go for as much as $18,000. But in its present condition and location, the best offer I’ve received in more than a year on the market is $10,500. After my broker’s commission (and a few items to address after a survey and sea trial), I’ll be lucky to walk away with around $8,000. Fred Kettinger from Norristown, PA, took this beautiful sunset shot on the Sassafras River, in Maryland for […]

Maritime History Resources

Maritime history is an interesting subject that many people ignore every day. These people are usually unaware of the fact that colleges around the world offer programs and coursework on this very topic, and that maritime programs often make boat donations and participate in community events as well. Students interested in the marine industry study everything from specific types of ships to nautical archaeology, which focuses on the artifacts left behind. The following resources provide a better understanding of the topic. Researching Ships Ship and Passenger Lists: gives steps on searching for specific vessels and passengers on those vessels. Researching Ships and Seafarers: discusses how someone would research a specific ship based on name. Ships & Passenger Lists: offers resources on researching ships. Have Ship, Need Information: provides ways for people to research ships from World War II. Maritime Information Exchange: U.S. Coast Guard database of ships. Libraries and Databases […]