Question And Answer Forum (2023) (2023)

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Questions and Answers
Sunday, 04-Sep-2022 09:55:49 EDT

10Mar19 Message: Some readers may have noticed that this section hasn't been maintained. We have receive many questions since 8Aug18 and I have answered them by return email. Because of Hurricane Florence, the answers haven't published here. We have had our hands full geting back to normal after the hurriance.

24Feb19 Message: Question about the 1979-80 Clark Mills modified Suncat. I'm wondering if that is "Puff", my father's old boat he commissioned from Clark.

Answer: It looks like the same boat. I received the boat from a South Carolina owner that had diesel problems. The owner before him had purchased the boat from a person up north. That's when a trailer for the boat was purchased. I could tell the present engine was a replacement engine for the boat in about 1993. The boat was restored at about the some time with new paint on the deck and hull. Nice work by someone. We repaired the bowsprit (rot) and modified the sailing rig. The boat needed to be trailable. We also rebuilt the engine. She going to sail and motor again soon. I'm interested in her history if you can tell me more. I purchased Sun Cats from Clark while he was still alive. The boats that I purchased were not as nice as Puff. Thanks for the information.

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (2)
Question And Answer Forum (2023) (3)

8Aug18 Message: Hello, I am interested to have oarlocks installed on my CP16. Wondering if you have any additional pics of those you have installed. Or can give me advice on mounting oarlocks on a CP16. I am mainly wondering; where is the proper placement on the gunwale and how the bolts are secured. any info you could provide would be helpful. thanks

Answer: The correct placement for oarlocks on a CP-16 is 22 inches back from the cabin. That area doesn't have enough glass to bolt on oarlocks. We do an extension in stainless steel that's a little complicated for an email or pictures. We run our stainless tubing down to the bunks inside the boat. I have seen other installs in wood that cover a large area and seem to work. 8 foot oars work best. Rowing backwards from inside the cabin works well as well as sitting and standing in the cockpit.

Good luck with the project. Keith

30Jun18 Message: hi thanks for the email, my Kodiak has a yanmar diesel with 60 hours on it. and since it also has that motor well for a kicker motor, I have a 15 hp 4 stroke I can drop in there, now that will be very dependable ,if anything goes wrong with the diesel can always come back with the outboard.only thing is that the well is caped at bottom with a super thin layer of fiberglass, so will have to open that up. finishing my paint job and ready to launch in a week.

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (4)

Answer: Great looking boat. Adding color above the rub rail really looks good. It gives the boat more of a traditional look. The outboard idea is going to be lots of drag when using the diesel. Since the boat has a tabernacle and winches, maybe backup power should be sail? Boat US is also a cheap way to get home if you have power problems. You can learn to sail on my Web site.

Diesels are pretty simple and just about anyone can work on one. Learn to change the raw water impeller and you should do fine.

Keep up the good work. Keith

27Jun18 Message: hi, I been looking at your website, very nice work. I see you like pilothouse a lot, so do I. I would like to ask you a questions on a Kodiak.

I see you have one that was beeing used as a trawler but has the same keel as if it was a sailboat. what purpouse would the ballast keel of that size have if beeing used as trawler? I mean I am guessing that is a kodiak will be used only as trawler , the keel can be reduced in draft, or am I wroung? I have a kodiak, that only used as trawler and always wonder about that.

any comments?

BtW WHAT A NICE com pac 23 pilothouse you have design. oh man, its trully beatifull.


Answer: Thanks for the kind remarks.

The sailing version of the Kodiak has about 6 more inches of draft than the trawler version. I have had both types on my yard. I have to adjust my trailer uprights to make the trailer fit both types.

The Kodiak has lots of buoyancy in the hull. With less keel, I think the boat would be top heavy and much less stable in rough seas. I am currently making my trawler version into a sailing version. All of the hard chinned Nimble sailboats sail well in moderate conditions. In heavy conditions, they go into and out of what I call chine bounce. Jerry put extra ballast in his offshore boats (he call it a shoe) because he wanted them to stay out of that heeling area. When you modify boats, you really have to pick the conditions that they will operate in. I think the trawler version of Kodiak modified to sail will work just fine in coastal conditions. My boat should be done sometime this fall.

If your conditions are moderate, you might be able to reduce the trawler's draft. I think most of the ballast is at the bottom of the keel. Reducing the outside area might reduce the ballast too much. The old saying of measure twice and cut once might be appropriate. If you make a shoal draft keel and add ballast, that condition might work. The additional ballast will make the boat as stiff as it is now, and the reduced size of the keel will let you blow sideways instead of blowing over. It should be a good project.

Good luck with the project. Keith

18May18 Message: I hope you are well, designing, modifying and repairing some boats.

I have made one excursion to the ICW, sailing and motoring west for maybe a mile and then back. I learned the need for the motor because I could not point into the ssw wind well enough to keep away from the north side. The boat has tracks for jib blocks that can be adjusted to be fore or aft of the winch. Is there an optimal setting for pointing? My next excursion is to the inlet, maybe across it if no standing waves.

I am almost ready to take off the hatch slides and wondered what is the composition of the wood, and if spar varnish would be a good way to finish them.

Finally, I am now noticing that the starboard inner shroud may have been connected to the mast bracket by a clevis pin that is too long. It seems now to be pushed through, ie the head is maximally out and I can imagine that the cotter ring has alot of force on it. Next time there I will bring binoculars to inspect it better. So the question is whether I will have to take down the mast to fix this, or can it be done (somehow, miraculously) with the mast up.

Any advice is greatly appreciated.

Answer: The position of the blocks on the tracks depend on the sail being used. A jib is one location and a genoa is another. Point the boat and get the whole sail working. If the blocks are wrong, you will be luffing the top of the sail in most cases.

The hatch slides are teak. I like Cetol for a finish. Varnish is hard to replace when it needs to be refinished.

Putting the mast down is easy on a CP-19. It's a one man job. Disconnect the forestay and that's it. It will lay down across the cockpit.

Enjoy that boat. Keith

17May18 Message: Hello. I have 18ft. Sailboat. It weighs 650 kg. the keel weighs 200 kg. if I take the keel off, should I add 200 kg of weight to the bilge? I am from finland and I'm thinking about changing my boat alone motor travel. I also remove the mast.

Answer: I really like ballast. It can be in many different forms. An O'Day 19 came to our shop without ballast (no keel) and we added concrete to the inside to make a flat floor and give the boat some ballast. We normally try and keep the ballast and the ratio the same with our modifications. Like I said, I really like ballast.

Some modifications could perform well without their normal ballast. That type of boat might have hard chine's and be of heavy construction. Taking the mast off the boat makes the boat a little more tipsy. When the mast is up on most sailboats, the mast acts as a shock absorber as the top of the mast swings from side to side. We move sailboats from point to point with the mast down sometimes and we can tell the difference. If you only motor in flat water with modest winds, you don't need ballast or a mast.

Good luck with the modification. Keith

8May18 Message: 3 questions re my new Sunday Cat. 1. Is there really any advantage to a double ended mainsheet? Always requires adjustments of line length after going about – a real pain in the a…. 2. compared to small sloop with jib, tends to go about slowly What about a little jib? (I know, why did I buy a catboat) 3. what about installing oarlocks? Any specs (I have a Torqeedo, but you never know)

Answer: The only reason to have a double ended mainsheet is the convenience of control from either side. There are disadvantages.

Look at my DIY project link on my Archive Second Site. Click the link on my Home Page site. It has pictures of cat boats with jibs. Your slow tacking may be lack of sail area in light wind.

I have oars on a converted Sun Cat hull. Where to store the 8 foot oars on my boat is a problem, but shouldn't be a problem for a Sunday Cat.

Good luck with the new boat. Keith

3May18 Message: Good day, I took some sailing lessons in dinghies and graduated to keel boats back 1996. My first boat was a Hobie Wave, then a West Wight Potter 19 and now a Rhodes 22. Over the years I’ve come to the realization that I’m never going to sail across the ocean and mostly I’m just going to take my friends sailing for a few hours or sailing solo.

I’m moving from Toronto, Ontario to British Columbia in a years time and I’m planning to sell the Rhodes 22 (Stan the owner of General Boat had not been in good health and had ceased servicing customers …long story)and buy a small sail boat out in BC. I’m looking at may be a Suncat 17 or something similar to a West Wight Potter 19.

Several times I had my boat’s mast come crushing down on me and it really was a miracle no one was ever hurt. These accidents are mostly caused by the shackles coming off or the stay breaking. The Rhodes 22 has about 9 stays I think so it can withstand if 1 breaks. Any way I can strength other boats, whatever I buy, so it won’t dismast? And do you think positive floatation is important?

Thanks for your help. I enjoy visiting your web.

Answer: I have sailed across several oceans with the US Navy and never did like the experiences. In my opinion, coastal sailing with friends is as good as it gets. Maybe a short journey moving my boat to a new location is enough adventure for one year. The distances and the adventures have got smaller with age.

I made several trips to Beamsville, Ontario to pickup Halman Nordic sailboats. We liked that boat and the builder. The boat was a little small for a 20 foot boat and the price was similar to the Com-Pac 23 at that time. Pound for pound, the Com-Pac was a better deal.. We sold several Halmans and I still see one every now and then.

The Halman is a small in the water boat. The Com-Pac Sun Cat can be an in the water boat and also a trailable boat. The West Wight Potter 19 can do both, but raising the mast is not easy. The reason I mention the Halman is that it's a good example of a small non trailable boat.

Newer boats have come up with new ways of raising the mast. The Sun Cat is leading the way. It has single hand mast raising. Really works well.

Com-Pac uses foam for strength in some of their construction. It's not there to float the boat. Boats built with ballast can't float using foam. Most of the non-catboat boats have 40% of their displacement in ballast. The catboats get extra stiffness from their width.

Enjoy that next boat in British Columbia. Keith

1May18 Message: Quick question. Will the drum of a CDI furler clear the anchor on my 27 or will I need a link plate? Thanks in advance.

Answer: The anchor roller is off set to the one side. It depends on the anchor, but most slide in from the side. We have never installed a link plate to give anchor access. Enjoy that boat.

1May18 Message: Com-Pac 19, First it is leaking, at least from the top when it rains. The boat is in the water at pelitier creek. I went to examine it after the recent rainy weekend. There was a little water in the bilge, so maybe it had taken in more but pumped out as I left the auto bilge pump on. The fuzzy wall liner was wet about 1/2 inch all way around the cabin, but this substantially diminished after a few hours of breeze flow

One of the cushions had drip spots under the screws holding the hatch door tracks. But then I discovered some blackness on the riser wall at front edge of main cabin. Then later I noticed the grey flooring of the starboard bunk is bowed, not perfectly flat as on the port side. It seems to suggest starboard side took a blow of some sort, maybe the boat fell over with force on that side, or it was pushed against something rigid. The agent told me that one of the brass/bronze windows on the starboard side need reseating. So now I am wondering if any of the dampness is due to that incident, and possibly from a problem in the hull. But I will go again Wednesday to look and to sail it for first time. Will have to see how well I can keep it dry. I can manage day sailing if it just leaks a little.

The door tracks have not been reworked so I will undertake this. I intend to take them off, sand and apply spar varnish. What caulk should be used when re attaching them? Some silocone marine? Should screws be a size larger in diameter? The other main problem is something else you mentioned, namely the rudder bushing. The top one is very loose. Can replacement be managed from the boat while in water? Does it need to be pressed in? Or can you tap it in? I could rig up a little hoist to hold it while working on it.

Any advice would be much appreciated.

Answer: Congratulations on getting a Com-Pac. It appears the hull to deck joint needs to be caulked. You can find how to do that on my Web site. The bow is possibly from water sitting on the board.

You caulk the screws as you screw them in. That will seal the hatch rails. The old screws will work fine. I use 3M5200 for caulking.

You need to drill out the holes for the rudder. That may be difficult in the water. Doing the bearing are on my Archive site under the DIY link.

Good luck with the boat. It's a great sailing boat. Keith

17Apr18 Message: Just wondering about two items that hopefully you can answer:What FACTORY Anti fouling would be on a 2008 20 Horizon Cat. Second--has anybody installed An Autopilot system on 20 Cat with quadrant steering not tiller. TELEFLEX USE TO MAKE A SYSTEM THAT WENT ON THE WHEEL/SHAFT. I think it was called an EV 200 Sport Pilot# part # T70159. Cheers

Answer: Com-Pac has the bottom paint on their boats farmed out. I'm sure their requirements are a hard bottom paint and an epoxy paint. Just about all normal hard bottom paints today are epoxy and they are compatible with other brands of epoxy paints. I would pick a hard bottom paint (trailerable) that has the copper content for your area. Next to the Ocean needs max copper and up a fresh water creek needs minimum copper.

I have installed an autopilot on a Com-Pac 23 Pilothouse. Raymarine purchased Teleflex and uses the same part numbers. The one you mentioned is no longer available, but might be available on eBay or Raymarine might have a newer model? They were doing a change over when I installed the last unit.

17Apr18 Message: I am getting ready to buy a new mainsail for my 2014 Compac Legacy-I can't recall who you recommended for a new sail-also is this boat considered an Mk1,2,or 3? Thanks for your help.

Answer: The sail maker is Super Sailmakers in Fort Lauderdale, FL. They have a Web site and they will give you an estimate if you ask. The Legacy is just a Legacy. The original 16s have the Mark numbers. Keith

23Feb18 Message: Com-Pac 23, I have one of the round ports leaking – water is getting in between the glass and the bronze frame – not from the seal

What have you had success with fixing that type of issue?

Answer: The ports have gaskets between the glass and the frame. There is a ring that keeps the glass in place. Some retainer rings have little screws and some rings screw into place. Whatever the case, remove the ring and replace the gaskets. You can make your gaskets from gasket material purchased from a car parts store. Some people use caulking. Good luck

19Dec17 Message: Do you sell the mastraising system for the com pac 23 ,and if so what is your price? Thanks

Answer: We have several different models. The lowest priced model (parts only) is $500 with you supplying the generic parts to make it work. The most expensive is an electric model for $2000 (parts only). Com-Pac also makes a model that will pick the mast up from a horizontal position. It works well, requires some mechanical ability to install and the lead time from Com-Pac is long. Some models requires a halyard aft winch to function.

Our improved economy has slowed the availability of custom parts. Getting a system for the summer sailing season well be difficult.

Thanks, Keith

5Dec17 Message: Thought I would try you with a couple of CP 27 questions: 1. Where can I source port gaskets for my 88 CP-27 ?? 2. Any thoughts on how to do new screens on the port frames? Past owner glued them on and it looks bad. I am thinking some kind of plastic ring or something like that.


Answer; We have used several different materials to make gaskets for the oval ports. The best so far is cork gasket material made for automotive use. I purchased it at a car parts store in sheet form. If I remember correctly, I cut two gaskets for each port and stacked them. I have also used pieces of halyard or sheet line laid flat in the grove. The window when closed flattens the line into a pretty good gasket. Put the joint at the top of the window.

I think I would buy a new smaller screen from Com-Pac (call Matt at the factory) and attach a plastic ring that would fit both the screen and the frame.

Good luck with the project. Keith

16Nov17 Message: What about a peep hen to a trawler or a raised top,it is already deep and has a large cockpit..?

Answer: It should work. I'm thinking about doing a Hobi Cat 16. Keith

28Sep17 Message: Hi Keith… I have a 1987 Compac 16 that I write to you about occasionally. I have two items that I have questions… I have a Hutch trailer. The ramp where I launch is shallow…and have had every time I have launched had to physically push the boat off the trailer. I can’t get the boat out far enough to float off. Do you have any recommendations for a tongue extension for the trailer? Are there any configurations that work well?...telescoping, hinge style, etc.

The 2nd item has to do with the light that is on the mast…this season it would not light… I pulled the fuse…it seems to be intact… I looked at the base where the plug is located…not seeing any corrosion. It could just be a bad light bulb… I don’t do that much sailing when I need lights…so it is not a problem…but would like to fix it when I pull the boat for the season… Any thoughts…

Thanks in advance for your help…

Answer: I don't know of an easy way to fix the trailer problem. Making a custom extension would solve the problem, but finding a welding shop to do the work might be difficult. We normally find a better or different ramp when our favorite ramp is too shallow.

The light problem is always the connector on the deck. Take a knife and pull the parts of the pins apart to make them fit tighter in the deck plug. This should fix the problem until it happens again.

15Sep17 Message: I am looking to buy a used 1986 Com-Pac 16 which has a keel and no centerboard. I want to moor the boat in a sandy bay. When the tide goes out the boat will sit on the soft sand flats. Will the keel make the boat heel over if I do this and will it stress the hull? Another concern is if the incoming tide and wind is making waves, could it swamp the cockpit?

Answer: The keel will make the boat heel over. It will not stress the hull. I think the weather could sink the boat from wind and waves during severe conditions. I have a picture of a Com-Pac 16 aground at Cape Lookout. Click on "Sailing School, Weather" on my Web site. Keith

12Sep17 Message: I was referred to you by Hutchins Compac. I was fortunate enough to come by a 1981 Compac 16, in good condition. However, it didn't have stern rails or a mast crutch. I'm trying to locate a stern arch/mast crutch. Could you provide any assistance?

Answer: We just talked on the phone. If the boat can get up here when you go to Cherry Point, we can install a gallows for $850. It takes more than a day to finish an installation. The installation instructions are on my "Current Projects" link if you want to install one yourself. We sell the parts.

Since you have an 81 model, the boom will fold with the mast and we think that's the best way to carry a mast and boom.

Thanks, Keith

31Aug17 Message: The mainsail on my 2014 Legacy seems to be really loose and stretched out. I was wondering if you could point mein the right direction for a new sail for next season-possibly one with a 2 sets of reef points?This became reallly noticeable about a month ago and it is hard to maintain a decent sail shape. Any other suggestions would be appreciated/ Thanks.

Answer: I have been buying sails from for years. They are quality sails at a reasonable price. Being made in the USA is also a plus. Their Web site is .

31Aug17 Message: My boat is a 16XL. With four different jibs, I am looking for a quick way to secure the tack. One jib is a wire luff 105% with a furler. This is quite nice for lazy solo sailing. Not the best performance but easy to deploy and recover the sail. I use an eight inch tang to raise the foot of the sail, mostly for visibility. Looking for a simple way to attach the tang to the bow sprit without using a clevis with cotter or ring. Is a ball lock quick release pin safe for the pressures at the tack?

Answer: I use quick release pins all the time. I try to provide a line to the pulpit to backup the forestay if I can. A halyard or any line will normally provides this extra protection. I use the same line to hold the mast up when I'm connecting the forestay on the trailer. The line needs to connected to the forward part of the pulpit to prevent interference while sailing.

9Aug17 Message: Do you fabricate the standing rigging cables for sailboats or know someone who can? I am looking for someone that can cut and attach thimbles for 1/8" ss cable.

Also, do you know of any place that might have a mast mount end plate for an Ensenada 20?

Mine has a crack in it

Answer: We use Seco South for rigging. Their Web address is . Phone number (727) 536-1924.

If the mast mount end plate is stainless steel, I think I would have it welded by a local welder.

8Aug17 Message: I recently purchased a compac 16/2. It has mid-boom main sheeting which may have been added by a previous owner.

I would like to add a bimini. Your webpage said I could go directly to compac and I see their parts list for the 16 shows one. Is that still the recommended place to go? Will I have to convert back to original main sheeting setup?

I actually kind of prefer the old setup anyway and the main sail roller reefing that allowed. I don't have enough time on this boat yet to notice any improvement from the current setup.

Has compac created a mastendr mast for the 16 sloop? That would sure be handy. I saw a question about that on your webpage. I understood the answer to say you modified a 16's mast with a hinge and some sort of direct connection from lower mast section to the cabin top?

Answer: Some people buy a generic bimini and fit it to their boats. The canvas is cheap and doing a good looking job is difficult. I have seen a few that look pretty good. We can offer a 10% discount on Com-Pac parts that are over $500. We can drop ship a bimini to you for $531.90 (including shipping) in the color of your choice. Send a check for that amount to The Sailboat Company, PO Box 575, Richlands, NC 28574.

The bimini will work with you present main sheet system. You will not be able to move the bimini as far forward on its tracks.

The Sailboat Company created and has been building mastendr masts for Com-Pac 16s for years. We use a mast stub to replace the compression post on that modification. It goes through the deck like the Sun Cat models. The other major part that's needed is a boom gallows.

Thanks, Keith

8Aug17 Message: Could you price the parts or do direct order from Compac?

It's a 76 Compac 16

Answer: Call Matt at Com-Pac and he will price and send you the hinge. You will also need a mast stub and you can get that from They can ship a 6 feet length of mast UPS. You will also need a boom gallows and you can get that from me. The cost is $550 and the instructions for installation are on my "Current Projects" link.

Enjoy that boat. Keith

7Aug17 Message: Hi Keith,

2nd year newbie here, '81 C-16 with midboom sheeting based on PO's incomplete setup (and your advice last year). I wound up installing a padeye and block on the step in front of the cabin and hanging a fiddlehead cinch clamp block from the boom above and slightly further aft. Seems to work really well in general and I can still easily access the cabin when under sail. It pulls the boom almost to midline but it closer in acts more like a boom vang. Do you think there would be any advantage to installing a small traveler and car to replace the padeye, or any other options to consider? Also the boat came with a nice Genoa (130 to 150 I'm guessing) that reaches past the mast. For now I have just been running the jib sheets through the stern cleat and tying it off. This is decidedly awkward especially solo sailing. What's your favorite rigging? I could install reverse facing cinch clamps (on the coaming?). One respondent on CPYOA site said the sheet angle to the stern cleat is wrong and thinks a traveler (or barber hauler) to redirect the jib sheet angle lower would be better.

Your essays and advice here about the C-16 are inspirational and reassuring. I've been pushing my comfort zone, going out solo in gusty 15 knot winds, with your encouragement to trust the boat, and haven't yet had to swim. I keep thinking I've made every stupid mistake possible, but then I screw up in new ways Yesterday in high winds and chop, I motoring out solo with jib and main raised but sheets loose. The boat started sailing right off with no downhaul set, sheets let out, when I discovered that the jib had been blown/wrapped around the forestay. The boat wouldn't hold in irons and I didn't want to drop the main, so with the mainsail up and let out, under sail with the tiller tied off, I had to walk forward to free up the jib and sheets. I can't imaging doing that on any lighter boat (testament to the amazing C-16) and I never want to have to do that again!Best regards,

Answer: It sounds like you are enjoying your 16.

Most people never know how or why the wind moves because they can't see the wind. We can through our interpreter the 16. Maybe that's why the 16 is a great learning machine. Our environment is enhanced when we can see the wind and feel what it can do. Could be that's why we sail?

To make our interpreter efficient, it need to be rigged correctly. All things considered, I like the Mark II 16 rigging the best. I use the halyards aft to tension the halyards. The jib tracks work great and the mainsheet problem can be fixed with a vang if you are racing. Most sail controls work together to achieve sail shape. A boom vang works with the main sheet to get the correct shape and so on. A track positions a sheet to achieve the correct sail shape and so on. You would have had poor sail shape when you were using you stern cleat unless you were sailing a Mark I with a 200 percent genoa. Most sailor really don't use the jib track unless they are racing. Jib sail shape is different from being on the wind and a beam reach. The track car needs to be moved for perfect sail shape. Thinking about sail shape, which way does the jib sheet need to move when you go from on the wind to a beam reach? Answer that question correctly and you are on way to perfect sail shape. The track on the bridge deck behind the cabin does the same thing. The original rig at the transom is inefficient because when you change trim, the boom goes out and up at the same time. You would like it to go out, but not up because that changes the sail shape that you would like to maintain.

Rough sail shape is mostly getting all the sail area to work together. When you were cleating off at the stern cleat, the top part of the jib was doing nothing.

Keep sailing that 16 and you will be a great sailor. Keith

7Aug17 Message: I'm looking at Compac 16 sailboats and want to know if fitting a mast tender from Compac is feasible?

I would simply need the bracket and hardware and could certainly do the modification myself. I had a mast tender hinge on a PicnicCat and really loved it.

Semper Fi,

Answer: We do it all the time. Look at our Second Site under our Custom Com-Pac link. We have a Pilot House 16 that shows an installed hinge.

Semper Fi,

22Jul17 Message: I am a interested in learning to sail. I have no experience in this area. I have been viewing the Legacy, Horizon and Eclipse models. I believe the Eclipse comes with the Mastendr for raising the main sail? I am in my early 60s.

Are you aware of anyone that offers lessons and what they might charge?

Do you have boats on site? I saw were you have a sister store near Jacksonville, Florida. I live in Fayetteville, NC

I would love to hear from you with your suggestions and information.

I will be retiring this after this year.

Answer: I teach sailing on my Web site. I also taught sailing in the Raleigh area for 25 years. Learning to sail is a wonderful process that will continue for the rest of your life. The mechanics of sailing are easy; it's the environment around you that takes a while to understand. Driving a car is easy, but knowing what's happing outside the car is important. With sailing it's the wind and the terrain and with driving, it's avoiding all those crazy people on the road. Both sailing and driving requires a vehicle to use and sufficient time on the water or on the road. We have a variety of boats on the yard.

I'm 81 years old and sailing keeps me young. I don't think you are too young to start sailing.

We are located just down the road from you. Fayetteville if about 100 miles from Richlands. Come see us when you can. We have a map on our Web site that will show you how to locate us. We live in the house next to the business.

We have been selling Com-Pac boats since 1980 and everyone that purchased one became a sailor. When you come by here, I will give you a short course on sailing.

9Jul17 Message: I had my CP16 up in Michigan last week and a storm came up overnight (90 mph winds I’m told) and it came loose from the dock at the bow and got beat up pretty bad on the sea wall near the dock. I don’t know how it will play out with the insurance company but I have it at a reputable boat shop in Muskegon and they’ll let me know next week what the damages are. A couple of things I’m concerned about if it can be repaired is the fact that a laminated tiller is no longer available from Compac, do you know of one? I also had a LIKE NEW Johnson 4 hp Deluxe that is totaled, do you know it’s worth?

If it’s totaled out I may be interested in the the one you have for sale. What would it take to get it delivered to central Illinois?

I hope all is well with you.

Answer: I'm sorry to hear about your boat damage.

West Marine sells laminated tillers. Look on the Internet for a Tohatsu 4hp motor. The last time I purchased one, they cost about $1100. All small motors are very competitively priced and your Johnson should be worth 3/4 to 1/2 the price of a new motor according to it's age.

I use $2 per mile one way as a planning estimate for boat transporation.

Good luck with the repairs.

13Jun17 Message: I am feeling some vibration in the wheel of my 1988 CP27 at higher speeds under power or sail. The cables are tight. I assume it needs the rudder bearing replaced since there is some minor movement at the base of my rudder. What is involved in this repair?

Thank you for this service you provide

Answer: I think that's normal. The 27s with the stainless rudder post use the post as a bearing. The old boats used PVC and also had no bearings

6Jun17 Message: Can you provide additional info on the Compac 23 that is for sale? What engine is on the boat? 2 or 4 stroke? How is helm steering setup? I don't see a rudder forward of the motor. Does the wheel turn the motor? Without a rudder, how is it able to be sailed?The photos show a mast. Is a mainsail able to be used? Jib? We've owned many many boats, sail and power. Just sold our Albin 32.

Use our boats mainly in Florida.

Answer: The engine is a 2 stroke. The helm steers the motor with a manual cable. The inside wheel turns the motor. The boat has a rudder, but it's not installed. The boat is from an estate sale where the builder didn't finish the boat. The running rigging for the main sail isn't installed. The boat doesn't have a jib.

My opinion on this boat is that previous owner was an excellent craftsman (his inside work is excellent), but he used fiberglass over plywood for the house and that needs to be redone with COSA. I would curve the top and make the house longer. The windows are excellent. Maybe we should have called it a trawler with a sail.

16May17 Message: I am looking at a 1980 or 1990 Com-Pac. How much does it cost to put the hinge in the mast? I have a lot I can store it on but powerlines down to the ramp. Thanks

Answer: We use a boom gallows to do what you want to do. A boom gallows cost $800 installed.

30Mar17 Message: Hi - You have a great web site and are an excellent source of information for maintaining sailboats. I need your help to address some damage I recently sustained on my Horizon Cat.

Yesterday, my wife and I were sailing in the St Johns River in Jacksonville, FL and snagged two crab traps and floats. We were closed hauled beating windward in winds gusting 16 - 20 mph. The centerboard was fully extended when the tangle occurred. We noticed the centerboard pendant went tight and I could no longer raise the centerboard. We immediately felt the change in speed and finally came to a complete stop. I lowered the sail, anchored and went overboard to untangle us. I noticed the crab trap lines (1/4” braided cord) were wrapped around the fully extended centerboard and the floats twisted around the pendant. While cutting us free of the trap lines and floats, I accidentally cut the pendant for the centerboard. Fortunately, the rudder, prop and shaft did not get fouled in the trap lines and floats.

The boat is currently in a wet slip with the centerboard still fully extended. At low tide the centerboard is resting on a muddy bottom.


Could the fully extended centerboard that is now resting on a mud bottom at low tide cause additional damage to the hull or centerboard box?What should I check on the bottom and around the centerboard box to determine if there has been further damage from the trap lines or resting on the mud bottom?How do I get a new pendant and install it on my Horizon Cat? Do I need to do a haul-out for this procedure and position the boat on a cradle?Is the installation of the new pendant something I should attempt myself or get a professional rigger to install? As context, I do much of the preventive maintenance on the diesel engine, sail and rigging for this boat. However, I have never installed a centerboard pendant and am not really sure where to begin. Assuming a haul-out is necessary, I will likely use the opportunity to replace the two zincs located on the centerboard. What are the specification of these zincs and where can I procure?

I suggest a phone conversation is probably the best way for me to fully understand your recommendations. When would be a good time to schedule a call?


Answer: The centerboard is not heavy and a well positioned line under the boat should be able to pull the centerboard back and up to an almost closed position. Also, most centerboards will fold back as they are pulled on their trailers.

You can take a piece of the pendant to West Marine and duplicate the line for a new installation. You can also get the line from Matt at Com-Pac by calling him on the phone (727 443 4408). They also keep the zinces in stock. West Marine also carries the zinces.

The only way to accurately install a centerboard pendant is with the boat on a lift with the board down. You need to find a yard to pick up the boat. Doing it on the trailer doesn't work.

The centerboard that's buried in the mud could do some damage during a storm. It is unlikely that it currently has damage. A good inspection while it's on the lift is a good idea. If it is an older boat, look at the screws that hold the centerboard box in place. They corrode if the boat is left in the water for long periods of time.

We work normal business hours. You can call anytime. Good luck.

21Feb17 Message: I purchased my SunCat from you several years ago, and it has stayed on our small lakes. I am planning on a cruise along the north shore of Lake Huron this summer, in generally sheltered waters. I plan to replace the halyards this spring. Is there a way to replace the centerboard control line while the boat is on the trailer, or do I need to take it to a boatyard where they can lift it? Can I order replacement lines from Hutchins?

I have a Lehr propane outboard that needs a larger propane cylinder. Could I mount the tank alongside the supports for the boom gallows? There does not appear to be room in the fuel locker for even a smaller size propane tank. Are there any mounts for tanks that would be secured to those supports?

Thanks for any suggestions,

Answer: Your cruise sounds like an adventure that most sailors would enjoy.

I have never been able to change the centerboard control line on the trailer. You can call Matt at Com-Pac for a replacement. I think a propane cylinder at the boom gallows will work. West Marine sells a Pulpit Anchor (clamp), part number 114785 that will fit the one inch gallows stainless tubing uprights. Two of these clamps might be a starting point for securing a cylinder.

Good luck with the project.

15Jan17 Message: Greetings and Happy New Year!

By any chance, do you folks have any plans, or know of a source of plans, I could use to make a drifter (headsail) for my HC with the standard bowsprit to use in light air? Modifications to the standing and running rigging (blocks and tackle) and the mast would be appreciated.


Question And Answer Forum (2023) (5)

Answer: It is less complicated than most people think. A block at the top of the mast and a halyard will make it work. Many sailmakers use different names for sails that do the same thing. In your case, a sail made with light material in a triangle shape will work. The internal shape of the sail determines how close you can come to the wind. A full belly sail works downwind and a flatter sail will point a little higher. The sheets are tied off to anything at the cockpit. You change direction with these sails by jibing. Some sails have a tack line that will let the sail fly in front of the boat and this makes a jibe easier.

The DIY link on my Archive Site shows a Sun Cat with several headsail modifications. Most of us that add sails to catboats, install the sail (block and halyard) and then determine any additional controls required like fairleads and cleats. Any small drifter will work in light air. I have one for sale on my used parts page. If you plan on pointing with the sail, you need to make sure the luff can be tensioned. Just about anything else will work going downwind. I have heard of people sewing and using a cheap commercial blue tarp.

Good luck with the project.

31Dec16 Message: I have enjoyed looking at your work. I own a 1978 Bombay Pilothouse 31 which we much enjoy on the ICW and Charleston harbor. One upgrade I would like to do at some point is to replace the old anodized windows. They currently work well but the look really dates the boat. On your PH boats I notice what look like very nice windows. I wondered if you could point me to your supplier or do you somehow build them all custom? Thanks and hopefully someday soon as I near retirement and want a trailerable MSer I will make a run up to Richalnds…

Answer: We use Mark Plastics in Corona CA for our windows. Their phone number is 951 735 7705. We normally call and leave a message and they will call you back. We really like his windows. Come by and see us when you can. Happy New Year.

3Dec16 Reply: Thanks for the reply, I appreciate it. I'm retired and living in Panama (the place with the Canal, lol) but have gotten bored over the last couple of years. I thought it might be kind of fun to take a small boat down the Mississippi River from Minneapolis to Mobile, Alabama. I did the lower Mississippi back in '75 to NOLA. I set a Go Fund Me campaign and posted the idea in one of the two blogs I run. The very first day a guy in Vermont wrote and said,

"Yours sounds like an appropriately hare-brained adventure to support. I have an O’Day Mariner 2+2 that I’d be willing to donate to the cause. The hull’s in good shape, but the sails are pretty shot. Yes, the O’Day is a sailboat, with a keel, no less. However, the folks at have a fairly detailed explanation of how they’ve been turning the Mariner into a lovely little low-powered cruiser. The boat is on a trailer which doesn’t look like much, but it tows well and all the lights work."

Oddly enough, I'd been looking at your site quite a bit before this even happened. Serendipity, much?

He's keeping the boat, under wraps, at his 45 acre place in Vermont over the winter. I'll head up there towards the end of April and hope to get splashed in Lake Champlain in early May. I'll then head down the Champlain Canal to the Erie and head west to Buffalo. I made that journey back in '74 on my first captain's job taking a boat from Chicago to Ft. Lauderdale. Always said I wouldn't mind doing the Canal again. I'd then try and get someone to trailer me to Minneapolis from there.

In the winter I'd head to Fort Lauderdale where a friend and I would do the same sort of thing you're doing, and put a cabin on the thing. This isn't some sort of "Oh, I've got a buddy and we're going to....." sort of thing. We used to do stuff like this for a living. We had a marine repair business in Ft. Lauderdale for several years. I'm not planning to go into competition with you guys. I'll be 75 when I start to put a cabin together and have no desire to get back into the work-a-day world again.

3Dec16 Message: I was given a 2+2 as a gift. It has a broken mast and lousy sails and a bolted on keel. I want to convert it to a "terminal trawler." I find your pics of pouring the internal concrete ballast? It would sure be an inspiration. Thanks

Answer: The original sailboat ballast was about 400 pounds. You don't need that much for a trawler. The picture I'm sending is a flat floor covered with paper. We were painting the interior at the time. The concrete goes from the front to the start of the seats. We used a dam to level the concrete from front to back. The thickness was about 2 inches at the dam. I hope this helps.

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (6)

29Nov16 Message: Hello,Has anybody tried to install one of your pilothouses on a Columbia 26 MK2? It seems like replacing the "bubble" with one would be a good fit.

Answer: I don't think anyone has installed one on a Columbia 26 yet. Our standard pilot houses normally have vertical sides with a curved roof. Removing the Columbia's "bubble" and replacing it with a house would change the character of the boat. The boat as built is contemporary and would look more traditional with a house. That being said, I think our standard house for 16 though 19 foot boats would be too small. Our 23 foot house might work well. Measurements would be required. A custom wider house might be the best solution yet and still have good access on both sides.

25Nov16 Message: Hi, we have 2 Com-Pac Sailboats one a 19 MKII and a 23. We are looking to upgrade the 23 to a diesel auxiliary and pilot house. We are interested in information and pricing.

Answer: A diesel conversion for a Com-Pac 23 cost between $10K and $12K with a new engine. A used engine cost less if available.

A Com-Pac 23 Pilot House conversion cost $20K.

Some major differences between the factory boat and our boat are as follows: Our conversion only sleeps 2 people and uses the stock 23 head arrangement. Our model can be sailed from inside or outside and has two pedestal seats for forward viewing by the helm and a passenger. Our model has a canvas hatch cover and was designed to facilitate social dialog between the inside seats and the cockpit.

7Nov16 Message: Hello, what do you think about the Com-Pac Picnic cat? I would be sailing mostly on inland lakes. Once in awhile in the sounds near Topsail beach. I'm very new at sailing and looking for a boat that can be set up quickly by one person. Any information would be great.


Answer: Com-Pacs are designed for easy set up by one person. Fast and easy. I remember seeing a Picnic Cat and a small Hunter demonstrating at a St. Petersburg boat show. The Picnic Cat had people on both sides and was sailing almost level in some substantial winds. The Hunter had the crew on the high side and they were heeled over big time. I should have taken a picture.

7Nov16 Message: I am interested in setting up my compac 16 legacy with anchor and rode andeverything that I need for anchoring for next season. I usually sail on a with a gravel,silty bottem-would usually be anchoring in 10 to 40 ft of water for lunch stops ,short periods though maybe sometimes overnite. The boat has an anchor roller and chain pipe into cabin but that is all. Please let me know my best bet for what I need to purchase so that I can order. Thanks

Answer: I like a Bruce anchor that will hold in just about anything. That type of anchor is currently called a Claw anchor in the United States. Most boats never anchor in 40 feet of water. Always look for 10 feet or less to anchor. I don't like to add chain for small boat anchoring rode. I deploy more rode to compensate for the lack of chain. The rode needs a long horizontal pull to set and hold well. A 100 feet of 3/8 inch rode is common on small boats anchoring in 10 feet of water or less. A 10:1 scope is a good rode length to depth ratio. My backup anchor is a Danforth stored down below.

31Aug16 Message: Hi, Mike W. from the Com-pac Yacht Owners Association said I should contact you regarding the type of trailer I should get for a 1988 com-Pac 16-2. I’m up in Rhode Island and then dealers I’ve talked to can’t seem to help. Huchinson’s help was limited to telling me to make sure that the keel sits flat. A specific question that I have is, is there a brand name trailer that I could buy-that’s most popular and what size am I looking for? Any thing else helpful will be truly appreciated. Thank You

Answer: Most Trailer Manufactures will make a trailer for a Com-Pac 16. They keep boat specifications so they can make trailers. The most popular is the Magic Tilt brand of trailer. They have been making trailers for Com-Pac for years and years. Dealers sell magic Tilt trailers and their Web site indicates they have a distributor in the northeast. You might try calling them for help on finding a trailer.

The reason that you are having a problem is Magic Tilt trailers are made in Florida. Most people will not pay the price of shipping a single trailer to the northeast and dealers don't sell enough trailers to buy them in quantity. If you were going to Florida on vacation, you could pick one up at the Com-Pac factory. We sell them that way with a 10% discount.

18Aug16 Message: Keith, can you provide any guidance on rig tuning for the Com-Pac 27? Do you know if any values for tension on the rigging have ever been established? Will the forward lowers pull the mast forward helping with the forward lean you advise? I.e. More tension on the forward lowers than the aft lowers?

Answer: The mast needs to be leaning forward as much as adjustments will allow. Most 27s need a small extension under the furling gear to make the furling gear long enough to reach. The mast needs to be straight. It's too short to bend. Check the electrical wiring before you step the mast. The connection inside the mast is difficult to trouble shoot when the mast is up. Keith

Tension meters are designed to match rigging tension from side to side. I do best with an arm pull from side to side. The final tension on a mast is a straight mast groove (looking up from below) while sailing close hauled on both sides of the wind. I always try to pull the mast forward a little with the forward lowers, but I don't think it works that well on the 27. The final, final tuning test is the boat sailing on the wind with the wheel set. You should get 50 yards or more (maybe 100) of sailing on a tack with no helm input. The headsail will luff just a little and then the boat will fall back on its original course and do the same thing over again. The boat sails itself better than some people can sail. Keith

21Jun16 Message: Thanks Keith. Sailing upwind, when I manually held (or tied off) the boom a few inches off center line seemed ideal, it's definitely where the boom wants to be close hauled. I think you're saying that the best course is to revert to stern mounted traveler blocks, and maybe add a boom vang to better control the boom/mainsail. I can't really appreciate some of your advice re trim adjustment, as it's a little over my head, but I'm learning (where the camber is). Meanwhile we are having some great sails this early summer and feeling quite comfortable and trusting on our C-16.

I think your thinking of how the light, lake wind sailboats did drive many potential sailors away from the sport makes sense. Our only prior sailboat is a '71 Flying Fish, made by Alcor. It's a cat boat with muscle and a lot of fun, almost like a Laser. But you couldn't sail it and stay dry and she'd go over in a sudden big gust for sure. (and I'm 67)

Answer: While sailing on any point of sail, look at your mainsail. The sail cloth starting half way down the boom and then up to the top of the sail should be taut or tight. The taut distance should be about 12 inches from front to back. You can see it with your eyes. As the wind increases, the camber or taut area will move aft. That's the power in the sail and your weather helm will increase at the same time. Some people will have to put two hands on the tiller to keep the boat going in the right direction. Look at the rudder and it will be putting up a rooster tail. All that is drag and slow sailing. Using the halyard, we tension the luff more and move the camber back where it belongs to the 50% point. The boat will then be balanced and fast.

I hope this explanation helps.

21Jun16 Message: Hi I’m a new owner of a partially refurbed, ’81 Com-Pac 16. Great sailboat, perfect for my wife and I on Lake Champlain in Vermont, which we’ve sailed several times now. I really enjoyed your Sweet 16 story and anxious to try your light air tricks. This is the first real sailboat we’ve owned and many riggings/fiittings were yet to be installed when we got it. The CPYOA group has been very helpful, but not with this issue below, which I’m still trying to figure out.

The PO mounted the fixed traveler blocks well forward, either side of the cabin hatch. There was no boom attachment point so I wound up mounting a boom bale, about 12” aft of the cabin. I also tried a temporary attachment on the boom directly in line with the two fixed blocks. In both cases the mainsheet could only pull the boom to about 25-30 degrees, going upwind. I had to tie an accessory line on the boom to hold it close to midline. (Can you ‘barber haul’ a boom?). Close hauled the boat did great upwind (has the foiled rudder as well).

Some friends recommended mounting a track on the cabin. I’d rather not. So my question is; was the positioning of the fixed blocks so far forward a reasonable option or was this an error by the PO? (They’re where blocks for the main halyard might be placed.) If this is an acceptable option, (to keep the stern less cluttered I guess), what is the right way to rig it for close hauling? I’m ready to move the whole business back to the stern where it normally is but if there’s a way to avoid it……….

Thanks in advance for your advice and nice story.

Answer: I'm sure that you are going to enjoy that boat.

Where the hardware is mounted is based on the correct trim angles being achieved. I think a boom over the centerline of the boat will stall your sail. Normally, a close hauled trim position for the main would be off the centerline by a few inches.

I think I would work from the other direction. Sail the boat some and record the best sail positions for your boat using any method you can to hold your sail trim. Record where the camber is at different wind speeds. You should be able to move it to the 50% point in most wind speeds with the halyard. Slow wind means the slot needs to be smaller between the main the jib. After doing a sail trim plot, I think you are going to find that the original system is the best solution. You really need to use your hands and other makeshift methods for little trim changes as you sail. Less hardware in the middle of the boat helps this process. As you get better with your trim adjustments, a standard vang on a 16 keeps the boom down during trim adjustment on different points of sail. That maintains mainsail trim. That's the problem with the original mainsheet at the stern. The boom changes the mainsail's trim as you adjust the boom's angle. It goes up as you let it out.

Good luck with the project.

18Jun16 Message: I am starting to sail my new (for me) compac 16 Legacy and I thinkthat a roller furling system for the jib will be useful for me as I almostalways sail solo.What is the cost of this? does this entail buying a newjib sail with the roller furler or do I use my existing jib with the setup?I may not do it this season buy may order it during the off season andinstall for next season. Is the installation as a diy easy?

Answer: Is the boat trailered or is it in a slip? The best furling for a Com-Pac Legacy in a slip is the smallest CDI furler sold. They are available over the Internet. You will need to have your sail modified by a sail maker. They sew a new luff tape and a sailcover on the sail. The sail loft will need to know the distance from the forestay tack at the bottom to the connection point at the top of the mast and your brand of furling. DIY difficulty is medium. Call CDI and a sail maker for a quote.

The best for a trailered boat is a Harken Small Boat Furler. The part number is 149018 from West Marine. The sail maker will still have to modify the sail. They install a wire in the luff and you don't need a sailcover. The furling will live inside the boat when it is not being used. Furling gear with a sailcover is designed to be vertical so rain will drain. That's why the CDI doesn't work very well if you trailer. DIY difficulty is easy to do. This installation is less money than the CDI installation. West Marine and a sail loft will give you a quote.

I like for sail modifications. You can call them for a quote.

12Jun16 Message: What outboard do you recommend for the Suncat? I was planning on a 4 hp with a 20" shaft. It's been suggested that I get a 6 hp with a 25" shaft. Seems like overkill to me. What do you think? I sail on Lake Erie in Ohio. Thanks.

Answer: You are right. The recommended motor is a 4 or 5 hp with a 20 inch shaft.

29May16 Message: Keith

Hi. I am a frequent visitor to your website.

I will soon be retiring, and hope to resume sailing again when I do. Years ago I sailed regularly (weekly) on Lake Monroe in Indiana with a Hobie14 catamaran. Now I will be looking to purchase something very different, and am seeking suggestions. I will be day-sailing, not overnighting; but prefer at least a cuddy cabin, for porta-potty and storage. I will sometimes have a young grandchild with me. I expect to single-handle. I will often be alone, without crew. Must be a boat to sit in, not on. Also, prefer not to need to hike-out nor even sit on the gunwale. Other needs include:

Trailerable, slips here (Holland, MI) are far too expensive to rent, for me.

Boat and trailer together to not exceed 3500 lbs.

Because it will be frequently trailered:

Easily rigged and de-rigged

Easily launched from and recovered to trailer


Perhaps a ballasted keel, if draft not too large to prevent trailering.

Perhaps weighted centerboard?

Self-righting, should capsize ever happen.

Single-handling, perhaps:

Cat rigged?

Gaff rigged?

Sloop rigged, but with self-tending jib?

(Video) Question and Answer Forum with Nadine Strossen


Capable of small outboard motor

And, of course, sail well. The pleasure of sailing is the whole point.

(Video) FANS' FORUM 🗣 | Southampton panel answer your questions

Some of the boats which you represent appeal to me: Com-Pac Legacy, Com-Pac SunDayCat, Com-Pac SunCat, Com-Pac Eclipse, Com-Pac Horizon Day Cat, Com-Pac Horizon Cat

Yet, I don’t understand them well enough to compare them to my needs.

Your comments, suggestions, and recommendations are welcomed.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

Answer: I'm glad you like the Web site. We do our best to make it informative and useful..

I normally recommend a 16 foot Legacy as the ideal daysailor. I made one mistake in the last 36 years when I recommended a Com-Pac 16 to a sailor that weighted 350 pounds. He was just too big for the boat. I took his 16 on trade for a 19 and that was the right boat for him. The most popular boat that Com-Pac sells is the Sun Cat. The reason I believe is because the Sun Cat is larger than the Legacy and it's easier to raise the mast. It's also as easy to trailer and launch as the Legacy.

Getting good at sailing normally requires a sloop rig. Squeezing the air between the jib and the main is part of getting good at sailing. Cat boats are more laid back and require less work to sail. If you are going to teach your grandchildren how to sail, they will need to learn on a sloop. Most grandchildren sailing on a cat boat would say that they didn't learn how to sail.

New technology in small sailboats is a shoal draft ballasted keel. Most have centerboards that weight very little. All other configurations are dated and have problems. Water ballast comes to mind. Cranking a weighted centerboard up and down with a winch is another.

Com-Pacs with cabins are more popular than the open boat variety. Open boats are normally purchased with a special purpose in mind like a sailing school.

The Harken jib furling gear for small boats is a joy to use and easy to rig. It's recommended instead of a self-tending jib for the Legacy.

The larger Com-Pacs may be too much trouble to rig and launch. All the Com-Pacs sail like much larger boats because they are all ballasted. The larger boats are designed for spending the night or longer on the boat.

Com-Pacs are designed with all the other attributes you listed as standard or optional equipment They are great boats that keep their value well Enjoy those grandchildren.

25May16 Message: Just purchased my first sail boat an 84 com pac 16. Where do most people put the battery?

Gas tank?

Answer: Most people don't use a battery on a Com-Pac 16. The factory installed them in the bow on boats that were configured with batteries. Lights on a 16 are only needed at night and night sailing isn't recommended. The 16s use small motors with built-in gas tanks. A big motor for a 16 is a 3.5hp.

22May16 Message: I am finally preparing to launch my new 2014 Legacy and I coulduse some advice-I have no experience with this boat and I amprobably asking stupid questions but I notice that the pinon the mast hinge was very tight -preparing boat for transportand removing mast I actually had to tap the pin out-is thisnormal? Also I purchased an anchor but I notice that there is notmuch length between bow and opening for the rode-I don't thinkthere is enough room for chain-what is usually done? I have neverhad a boat with anchor before-for me this is a big boat.


Answer: I think you might be using the wrong pin. The long pin is the halyard organizer pin. What holds the mast to the hinge are two short pins, one on each side. I would check your manual to see if you are using the right pin.

The anchor uses a short piece of line between the anchor and the deck cleat. This holds the anchor in place. The chain (if used) lays on deck and the rode goes down the deck pipe. Some people use a hook on one end of the short line and then pull tightly towards the cleat and know how to do a good tight cleat hitch. The bitter end on the inside is secured so you can't lose your anchor

22May16 Message: I am in need of a Bimini top for my com pac 16. Is there one that is "out of the box" no modifications available?

Answer: A Com-Pac 16 bimini can't be shipped UPS unless it is disassembled. The builder does provide instructions on how to assemble the bimini. The frame has connecting links that need to be bolted together. You can buy one at our Company in Richlands, NC assembled and really to be installed on your boat.

22May16 Message: Hi Keith, Hope this finds you well

My memory is still good ,however very,very short. In the past did we move the rudder blade forward of vertical for better performance on the 23? A story is posted on the com pac owners classified website.

Also, do you have a seabrella for a 23?

you are the only person that knows what one is , and may have one


Answer: Moving the rudder forward is a Com-Pac idea and not a very good one. They wanted the boats to have less rudder pressure while steering so they put some of the blade in front of the turning axis. This makes the rudder a wild thing that will not follow the boat's direction. I like a trailing rudder like the old boats have. You can take you hands off the tiller and the rudder will follow the boat. The new rudders (that you may or may not have) require that you keep your hand on the tiller to keep the boat going straight. You can tell which one by looking at the blade.

I think I have several used seabrellas.

22May16 Message: Keith... Thank you. I removed the one end cap on the boat this morning...and saw that there are rivets holding the rub rail. If I remember had mentioned that I did not need to detach the end pieces...just stretch the rub rail in the middle where the streaks are on the inside... From what you are seeing...I won't need to clean out the seam between hull and deck...and re-caulk... Just look for holes and caulk? What type of caulking material would you recommend?

I really appreciate your advice. I am not real "handy"... and I didn't anticipate some of these problems. The weather is still pretty chilly in Ohio...but plan on putting the boat in the water this year...and it will get rained on...

Thanks again...

Answer: You remembered correctly. Just pull the rub rail off in the middle by hand. You don't do anything to the caulking in the seam. If you see a spot that's not caulked, add some caulking. We use 3M5200 to caulk holes and voids in the hull to deck joint. Wait 48 hours for the caulking to cure or use tape over the spots to keep the caulking off the rub rail. West Marine sells 3M5200 in small amounts.

21May16 Message: Hi Keith... I wrote you last year about a 1987 Compac 16, Mark II that I had purchased. It has some streaks on the portside interior. You shared with me that it may have a deck to hull leak. Your advice to me was to remove the rubber rail and look for a place where a screw that holds the interior teak strip...may have pierced the fiberglass. I removed the interior strip...did not see any screws piercing the fiberglass... I attached a couple photos of the interior. The 3rd is chain plate...looks just epoxy...could it be the culprit...

If I put it outside without doing anything...and it indeed leaks...what are the consequences? What potentially could go bad...will I ruin the interior wall carpet? Will I hurt the boat? Could chain plate be the problem? ,

Also...the boat came with lights but no battery? To just run the lights interior and running lights... What type of battery do I need? Regular auto battery, marine battery?

Answer what you can when you can... Thanks in advance for your help,

Answer: You repair the leak from the outside. On the outside, the hull to deck joint is covered with a rubber rub rail and tape. Remove the rubber rub rail by pulling it off with your hands. It helps to do that on a warm day. The rub rail pulls off and pushes on by hand. The tape is there to keep the caulking off the rub rail when the boat is being built. It has no purpose now. You can remove and discard the tape. After you clean the hull to deck joint on the outside, look for the holes that the screws made when the factory installed the teak stripe on the inside. Caulk those holes from the outside. You can clean the rug on the inside with a household cleaner that has some bleach in the product. The rug is very durable. You can reattach the teak with shorter screws. Check to see that the holes on the outside stay filled with caulking after you reattach the teak.

The chain plate should be fine. It appears that the leak in the pictures came from the screws.

A marine battery, size 24 is what we normally use on a Com-Pac 16.

7May16 Message: Keith I chatted with you back in December about sailing my compac 16 in a lake without wind. I would like to take you up on your offer maybe this month or next if your schedule permits.

Answer: Come by the shop in Richlands anytime. We are here through the week and also on Saturdays.

My no wind theory is based on how the weather works. The bottom line is we always have some wind. The earth revolves and the atmosphere is almost stationary and so on. We call flat water on a lake or anywhere else a no wind condition. Even in flat water, we will have some invisible wind to use for sailing if we can find it. A Com-Pac 16 can use its jib to find the wind direction by letting the jib fly. Once you find the general direction with the jib, mark that course using an object on a far shore. Move the boat to position 45 degrees from that course, set on the low side of boat with the jib inside the shrouds. It also helps to set aft in the cockpit because that will help point the keel higher into the wind. Long arms helps. The power will be in the main and the jib will act as a funnel to get the air to the main. A Com-Pac 16 has been the only boat moving on a no wind race day. In a no wind condition, you need to sail into the wind and use relative air. You really have to be good to beam reach or sail downwind with no wind.

15Mar16 Message: Keith - Many thanks for the tips on Sail repair and cleaning. I'm having a problem with my marine diesel engine overheating - Yanmar Model 1GM10. I get coolant discharge from my transom while operating the engine at 1800 rpm. However, the HI COOLING TEMP alarm sounds after about 7 minutes of operation. Per your tips in the Diesel Maintenance Primer, I have checked to make sure the water cock valve was fully open, the strainer basket was clean, the pump impeller was not worn and the thermostat was functioning. Everything checked out. The only doubt I have is the discharge volume seems lower than what I used to have at 1800 rpm. Perhaps there is some obstruction in the cooling system. That may explain why the coolant discharge temperature is just warm (~ 75 degrees F) at the time of the alarm. It is never hot

What do you think? Should I attempt to do a "flush" of the coolant system? If so, what type of flush do you recommend to dislodge the obstruction?

NOTE - I made the mistake of not storing the diesel with antifreeze over the winter. I may have picked up some corrosion in the cooling system over the winter

Thanks in advance

Answer: We have had that problem before. When on old impellor dies, its pieces try to go through the engine and can't. They block the flow and the engine gets hot. There is a short hose that feeds cooling water from the pump to the engine. The old impellor blades should be in that area.

If the impellor blades are not the problem and if you operate in salt water, salt buildup in the engine could be the problem. That same pipe going into the engine is pretty long inside the engine and salt settles in that area. You can feel an obstruction in the pipe with a long screwdriver if you have salt buildup. You can break it loose with the screwdriver and pumping acid through the engine will be required some time soon. All big inboard powerboat motors go through an acid flush when required. Your local powerboat marina should sell the acid.

Good luck with the problem.

1Mar16 Message: Hello - I am a big fan of your postings on diesel operations and sailboat maintenance. Many thanks for sharing your knowledge. I recently bought a Compaq Horizon Cat and discovered a small, ( 1 - 2 mm diameter) round, hole in the sail. The hole is located 6" above the boom and 48" from the mast. At first, I thought it was by design for reefing the sail but there is no grommet. What do you recommend for mending the hole to prevent further tearing? I am also interested in your advise on the proper way to clean the sail on a horizon cat. Suggestions for cleaning solution and method of application will be most helpful. Thanks.

Answer: West Marine sells a Dacron Sail Repair Tape, part number 254468. This tape is a great way to repair small holes in sails. They say it's temporary, but the tape seems to last forever. We wash sails in a bathtub using a small amount of Clorox and dish detergent. We let them soak overnight or until we need the bathtub for people. Changing the PH in the sails with soap isn't a problem because recreational sails don't spend that much time in the sun.

8Feb16 Message: Can you recommend where to get a trailer for a Compac 27' suitable for over the road travel. Can you provide transport for a CP 27' say from NC to SD? Thank you in Advance.

Answer: Most Com-Pac 27 owners in NC use a flat bed 10,000 pound gross weight trailer with a boat stand secured on top to trailer 27s. I moved a 27 from NC to FL using that technique. We don't currently move boats over long distances, but Paul Wells does. He is located in Oriental, NC and his Web address is, phone 252-249-2210.

29Jan16 Message: need some tips sailing for sailing Legacy-new owner especially handling centerboard,different points of sale,basic techniques for this boat

Answer: The Legacy and Com-Pac 16 really have the same performance. The centerboard in a late model 16 and a Legacy work about the same way. You should gain a little pointing ability upwind and sail a little slower (more drag) going downwind with a centerboard. The Legacy does have a smaller fixed keel (small amount) than the 16 and a little larger centerboard. That's why the Legacy has a little less ballast in its smaller fixed keel. If two sailors were equal in ability and one was in a Legacy and the other in a 16, the Legacy would win a light air race on a lake and the 16 should win a medium to heavy air race on the coast. The Legacy keel/centerboard was designed to improve cockpit access on a trailer. Pulling the centerboard up going downwind should help boat speed. The big difference between the two boats will be the people sailing the boats. Read and understand the 16 sailing techniques on this Web site and you should be able to out-sail most large boats in light winds

22Jan16 Message: Thank you for the feedback. Sounds like a plug is the way to go.

21Jan16 Message: Hello Keith, I really have appreciated reading the articles you post here. Thank you for helping a new guy learn some of the ropes.

I recently bought a 1987 CP16 MK11 from a fellow who was setting it up to do the Loop. He made some significant mods for the trip, the biggest of which was to cut a hole in the hull and glass in a transom, creating a motor well in the rear third of the cockpit footwell. He wanted the motor weight off the transom and set it up for a larger motor to get him through tides, currents, etc. The other significant mod was the installation of a stern pulpit, which creates a traveler of sorts, in a setup similar to the Legacy/Eclipse.

My wife and I are both new to sailing and have taken the boat out 6 or 7 times, always in light winds and we're having a blast on Lake Murray, the sailing grounds closest to us. I'm trying to apply your "Category 3" techniques (induced heel, close the slot), and the learning curve is great fun, but we're lake sailors, not Loopers, at least at this point, though some ICW and Charleston Harbour weekends are being planned.

Problem is, I'm honestly not sure what kind of performance to expect from the boat. We use a 55lb thrust trolling motor and I haven't felt a big difference with it out of the water, under sail. Water is back washing in the well, so there must be drag.

I've considered glassing the removed hull piece onto a shaped and glassed block of foam that I could drop in and latch in place in the well after removing the motor and hanging it on the stern pulpit once we're away from the dock. Or forgoing the motor, latching in the hull piece and using oars to get away, with the motor stowed aboard as a backup. Or, maybe the problem isn't as significant as I think and I should just sail on. I'm boondoggled and looking for help. You sure know your way around boats and these in particular. Your advice would be much appreciated.

Answer: I'm not a fan of motor wells in sailboats. We sold English Jaguar sailboats back in the 80s that came with motor wells. Sailboats need them in ocean sailing because outboards mounted on the transom will come out of the water in large swells. The downside to motor wells are drag, exhaust in the cockpit and vibration. Most of my Jaguar customers added a motor mount to their transom. The Jaguars came with a well plug for racing. This plug made the well smooth with the hull's bottom. Must of the Jaguar owners use the motor well for ice chest storage.

The way to determine performance is with a GPS. A GPS will give you boat speed. My article on diesels determined that the Com-Pac 23 with the old diesel was slow. Barnacles on the propeller were why it was slow. The barnacles slowed the boat down by about 1 knot. You need to make a plug and test your boat with and without the plug installed. You will then know how much the motor well costs you in poor performance. A Com-Pac 16 with a clean bottom should get close to 5 knots.

21Jan16 Message: Hi Keith, I called earlier today to ask about setting up oar sockets for a Compac 16. Thanks for steering me clear of using the top of the coaming for the sockets. Could you please direct me to the instructions on how to set up sockets in a way that will work best. Thanks

Answer: Our solution for oars on a 16 is a little complicated. We think the installation has to be substantial to propel an 1100-pound boat. The pictures below will show you how we do our installation. We position the locks 26 inches aft of the cabin. The locks themselves are West Marine bronze locks that we machine to fit our 1-inch stainless tubing. The soft metal is easy to cut. We used West 10-6 epoxy to secure them in place. The tubes are adjustable because a 7/8-inch tube fits inside a 1-inch tube. When we get the right length, we epoxy them together and then epoxy the tubes to the boat. Getting glass around the tube at the deck is hard to do, but it can be done.

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Question And Answer Forum (2023) (9)

4Jan16 Message: I'm very interested in down sizing to the Sun Cat but would love to get the little bugger across to Bimini at 10 knots under power. Is it possible or practical to do so? If so, what hp motor would be necessary? Thanks.

Answer: We have had Com-Pac 16s sail to the Bahamas. It all depends on the weather. A standard motor for the Sun Cat is a 5 to 6 hp long shaft. That size motor will move the boat at a hull speed of about 6 knots. A larger motor will not move the boat past hull speed.

28Dec15 Message: Summer 2016 will be doing some Ontario Canada sailing - Canadian law specifies pump out head only - need your opinion on what size holding tank and location along with Marine Head location.

Answer: A standard Porta-Potty qualifies as a pump-out head. A more complicated installation would be a bladder and plumbing in the bow of a Com-Pac 23. Some Marine heads (Porta-Potty like) are designed for pump-out. They can be installed in the standard location between the forward bunks. Most people consider that type of installation when pump-out is not available for long periods of time. Com-Pac sells bladders for this type of installation.

9Dec15 Message: Hi, I was interested in any information you would be willing to share on your pilot house conversions or updates you've done with the Catalina 22. I like the terminal trawler idea but wanted to continue to have a sail boat. Thank you!

Answer: I think the pilothouse and trawler conversions fall into two age categories. All sailors that are young enough want to sail and they are the largest group. As we get older, being on the water is still important, but sailing may not be as important as it was when we were younger. Ballast is the secret to both conversions. No one likes a tippy boat. The problem with the pilothouse conversion on small boats is that the boat becomes very busy. One of my solutions to this problem is reducing sail area or putting a mast in the cockpit. Making the motor the boat's primary power source and sail its secondary source of power. Most sailors’ daysail and sailing with less keel or less sail area is a challenge and more interesting to me.

My company responds to the public's interest in different models of sailboats. The most popular boat to convert so far is the Com-Pac 19 followed by the O'Day 19 and then the Catalina 22. Our Catalina conversion has been slowed for several reasons. In my opinion, it's very important to make a pretty boat. The Catalina has softer lines than the traditional Com-Pac boats. Redesigning the house isn't a big problem (more slope to the sides), but our windows are standard windows that will not work on a redesigned house. To cover the pop-top area, the conversion will need a large house. Making a house for a pilothouse has recently been improved. The pilothouse doesn't need a hatch in the top and that change has changed a big construction detail. The next Com-Pac 19 conversion isn't going to have a top hatch or a visor. That modification should make home construction possible. The molded top doesn't have to be shipped. Our resident Catalina is on our conversion schedule for this coming summer.

26Nov15 Message: what would be the appox. Cost of converting my boat to a trawler

Answer: The cost of converting Com-Pac 19 to a trawler is about $10K. The picture of the O'Day 19 on our Home Page will be similar. Will include opening windows, canvas entrance cover and overhead hatch.

21Nov15 Message: Keith, While the boat is on dock I'm replacing a couple split rubber keel rollers on the Hutch trailer. I noticed that they are slightly warped/deformed on one side. I deduce its from the weight of the keel sitting on them on one spot for long periods. There are three rollers and the two front ones are bearing the brunt of the keel weight. Maybe I should add one more channel steel frame between those two and have a 3rd roller spread the load?

Answer: I think the rollers were deformed from lack of use. Replace the rollers and the boat and trailer should work like a new one. Deformed rollers are not a common problem.

18Nov15 Message: I have sailed 8yrs with a Sunbird 16 and want a safe shoal keel boat. What is ideal heel angle of cp19? Thank you.

Answer: Keelboats with ballast sail well in a wide range of heel angles. Too much heel might be 35 degrees. Anymore heel and you will be sliding sideways. Not enough heel is 0 degrees in light wind. All the fat sailors need to go to the low side in those conditions. When the boat heels, the sails will have the correct shape. Most sailboats have a designed heel angle of 15 degrees.

9Nov15 Message: Keith, what's the story on the two foam floatation devises that are lodged under each cockpit seat area? In my 1987 boat they are loose and keep falling down. I have an idea on how to get them to stay put (involving caulking and a few cedar shingle shims) But would they be effective in the first place with a boat that's 1100 lbs?

Answer: The foam is designed to give the thin fiberglass in that area some body. They are suppose to be connected to the glass. The idea is the make the seat backs stiff without adding too much weight up high.

21Oct15 Message: I spoke with you yesterday about setting up my mast/boom etc. as well as the support line for the boom. AND, a gallows. My boat has two stainless tube hand rail brackets on each side of the stern. They are bolted to the deck and feel very strong. Why not incorporate these as a base support system for a gallows? There would be a variety of ways to do it clean looking and strong.

Answer: It might work if done correctly. A picture of that type of setup is below.

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20Oct15 Message: Keith, This boat is new to me and I'm getting it ready to launch soon. It has the original rudder and gudgeon system. There's play in the bearings. How does one fix that? By drilling out the gudgeon holes and insert bushings? I also need to make a new crutch or a gallows. I like the gallows you install. Do you offer plans/dimensions for the wood arch as well as instructions on your through-deck attachment system?

Answer: We are doing 2 Com-Pac 16s now and we are just down the road from you. Come on down and we will show you how to do the bearings and the gallows. The details of the bearing installation are on our secondary Web site under the FIY link. We have improved that installation over the years and it's not as hard to do as it was then. We sell the gallows as a kit with installation instruction.

18Oct15 Message: Good morning Keith. I need your guidance for a small mishap I had this past Thursday. While sailing my Com Pac 16 at a Greenboro lake, the retaining pin on the port sidestay came out and the mast toppled over into the water, pulling the 4 screws holding the mast plate out of the deck. My question- what can I fill these 4 deck holes with so I can put the screws back in? Thanks for your help.

Answer: There are several ways to repair the problem. It all depends on much damage was done by the mishap. The smallest amount of damage can be repaired with the next larger diameter screws. If the damage is more severe, an epoxy filler should be used to fill the holes and the holes re-drilled using the original screws. We use West System, Six10 Thickened Epoxy Adhesive as a filler. We don't use the static mixer that comes with the product. We mix small amounts of both parts together to fill the holes.

13Oct15 Message: I'd like to know approx cost for refurb on my Compac. Its in pretty good shape generally. Please call me to discuss.

Answer: A Com-Pac 19 refurbish can vary from $1,000 to $4,000. Higher expense items are bottom paint, trailer repairs, new canvas, new lifelines and fiberglass repairs. Standard items normally include rudder bearings, tiller varnish, teak refinish and a hull and deck buff and wax. Most customers have additional options installed like a rudder raising handle while the boat is on the yard.

11Oct15 Message: I would like to build a house on my '72 Catalina 22 swing keel. I like the looks of the C22 with your house.I would like to keep my boats living space more or less the same as now, keep sailing ability, and extend the cabin aft a couple of more feet. Are these changes fesible? Do you have plansor a kit for the house illustrated? Do you offer customized plans?

Answer: We haven't built the first boat yet. General plans without the templates are located on our secondary Web site. The address is Click on the "Trawler Study Guide" link. You can see from the plans that the dimensions for the aft part of the house are flexible. What isn't flexible is what we call the top/top. It's a fiberglass laminate that's fabricated from a mold. Shipping the top by truck is a consideration when doing a conversion. We have two top/top sizes.

Little boats get busy when you try to do too much. If you want to maintain your sailing ability, you need to consider a small house that gives you standing headroom in the main cabin and a tabernacle that folds the mast over the house and a gallows. The larger house would be a good choice for a trawler conversion. Paper templates are available for sale.

22Sep15 Message: My centerboard does not drop down all of the way when released. It drops approximately 2/3 of the way. I can push it the rest of the way down with slight pressure by hand when I can swim under the boat. The trunk looks clean when looking at it with a flashlight while on the trailer. Any ideas on what the problem may be? Thank-you

Answer: This isn't a common problem. I'm sure it's caused by drag somewhere in the system. It may be time to lift the boat with a crane and check the centerboard drop on dry land. I think I would replace the centerboard zincs at the same time.

17Sep15 Message: Hi from Central Illinois. Request information and cost of Bimini Top plus hardware for Com-Pac 16, 1982 Color tan bark. Thanks in Advance!

Answer: A Com-Pac 16 Bimini cost $495 plus $35 shipping to Illinois. Sunbrella fabric doesn't come in a tan bark color.

15Sep15 Message: please let me inform shipping cost cost to japan for Sailcover compac19.

Answer: I checked with the U. S. Post Office and they said $59.75 to Japan.

2Sep15 Message: I presently sail a Sun Cat. I love the gaff rig because of it's simplicity and particularly because it allows such fast and painless boat Launching. I sail all over Florida. I wanted to know if I was to buy a 23 would convert it using a horizon cat rig? If so About how much would that cost? I would guess the mast, booms, sails and rigging would all be new. I have seen pictures of your conversion but not the interior. What happens to the vee berth?

Answer: Custom conversions are hard to price beforehand. I can say that I have a 1986 Com-Pac 23 on my yard that's going to be converted to a gaff headed sloop next year. It should sell for about $15K including trailer and a motor. We have most of the conversion parts for that boat in stock.

The original mast and boom are used in the conversion, but the conversion does need a new sail and boom. The original boom is used as the gaff. The original standing rigging is also converted for use on the new boat. The 86 is going to have a Horizon Cat sail and a small jib. The small jib uses the existing running rigging hardware.

The interior is the same as a standard 23 with the exception of the mast going down to the keel between the cushions just forward of the head.

24Aug15 Message: seek advise for specification and installation of power windlass to hoist anchor on CP Horizon Cat. Boat comes equipped with dual battery pack for inboard diesel. Please advise on electrical hazards for safe operation. Thanks

Answer: The power windlass that you choose will have detailed installation instructions in the box. The wiring size will be large for the run between the windlass and your second battery (one battery for starting and one for the windlass). Operating the windlass needs to be done at the bow. You need to keep a close eye on its operation and the up/down switches need to be located there. The weight of the anchor, anchor rode and windlass needs to be considered. To much weight and the boat will sit bow down on its lines.

14Aug15 Message: Mods on the 1998 CP 16: Oars;Hinged mast;mast gallows with good looking wood and three positions;boom tender;life lines; bow line chocks; hand rails on hatch guides; bimini;beige non- skid. The bow chocks may just be a vision because I would like to have them. Probably a foiled rudder. Some things listed are options rather than mods. I am very interested in the method of securing the hand rails. Are the fasteners through the cabin top or simply fastened to the slides from the under sides? I think a single loop would be enough on the 16 but the double loop looks fine and the extra fastener would be good. Hope all is well with you. Looking for some cooler weather in NW Florida.

Answer: We also need some cooler weather in NC. I count 5 mods that I can see in the picture on my Home Page. 1. Gallows. 2. Mast Tender system. 3. Bimini mounted aft to rest on bimini. Give access to motor in stored position. 4. Oars. 5. Strap holding boom to mast, tensioning mainsheet secures mast to gallows in the down position.

The boat also has a quick connect Picnic/Sun Cat fore stay and a rudder-raising handle that can't be seen. A previous owner installed the handrails and they were through bolted to the cabin top.

6Aug15 Message: What Size Sail Slugs for a 23 - ?

Answer: Sail slug sizes and types change with the years. The way I do it is to order two of what I think might work from West Marine. They only sell three sizes. I compare the new slugs with the old and the mast groove and then order the number of slugs that I need of that size and type that fit the best. You course you could order new ones direct from Com-Pac

4Aug15 Message: Having problems with main sail slugs getting jammed in mast track when raising sail - tried the silicone lube and still seems to be difficult - any advice is appreciated

Answer: New slugs might help.

28Jul15 Message: does anyone have a mast raising system for sale. I want to start sailing my boat again after 10 years I am a 75 yr old woman with weak knees. Need help

Answer: We can make you a mast raising system. Bring your Com-Pac 16 to Richlands to get the work done.

24Jul15 Message: The mainsheet is always in the way when running down wind. A mid-boom attachment isn't an option with our bimini. If two "eyelets" were welded to the stern rail stanchions, and a split backstay was added, could a traveler then be added to the horizontal stern rail to increase the angle of the mainsheet and raise it up out of the way? Would the rail be strong enough, or would a solid S.S. rail need to be welded in place?

Answer: The stainless steel stern pulpits on Mark II 19s are very strong. I always do a temporary installation to see if everything works as I think it should. Using lines to tie the blocks in place would provide a good test. Idasailor made me a custom traveler for a Precision 23 several years ago.

18Jul15 Message: Keith, What's the great looking boat in the new picture on your homepage? A CP16 with the mastender?

Answer: That's a mastender with six more modifications that are visible in the picture. This boat has a few more that are not visible. It's a loaded 16 and it's going to have a rudder-raising handle soon.

16Jul15 Message: Trying to find a new or used mast. A branch from a pine tree at a local boat ramp I've used many times...directly over the ramp...Surprise...snapped the mast in half. Thanks for any info.

Answer: We buy our masts from Dwyer Mast Company. They are on the Web at

18Jun15 Message: Hi there, I want to make my P19 a little more trailerable, and I'm looking at the compac picnic cats and legacy's mastendr and boomtendr rigs. I'm wondering if it's possible to retrofit one of these systems hinges to my mast? I'm thinking the boomtendr hinge would be the simplest... What do you think? Is there some aftermarket solution for what I'm after? I've never seen either of these in person, but I've found a few posts on various discussion boards that say you guys are the experts.

Answer: The Dwyer Aluminum Mast Company has a good Web site with measurements (cross sections). Matt, the parts person at Com-Pac has the part number for the Com-Pac 16, Legacy and Picnic Cat mast. They all use the same size mast. Just give Matt a call. I use a Picnic Cat hinge when I put a mast tender system on a Com-Pac 16. I think I would compare your mast cross section to a Dwyer mast to get the best fit. The best part of both systems is the gallows. A gallows is all that's needed on some boats. A small extension between the boom and mast lets the boom fold and store with the mast.

It takes some work to make a system better than the original. Raising the mast is still raising the mast. The main purpose of a modified system is to store the sail on the boom when the boat is on the trailer.

1Jun15 Message: How would the 19 perform with a larger motor, between 10-15 HP, weighing anywhere from 85-105 lbs? I know she would sail slower, but would it increase speed/ power under motor and could she handle the larger motor? Thanks!!

Answer: I put a 15hp motor on a 19 several years ago. I wanted to motor faster than a friend in a 23 with a 8hp motor. It didn't go any faster than hull speed in its normal position. When I got to the boat's hull speed, I raised the motor on the bracket and I did go faster than hull speed. The stern of the boat was down in a hole trying to get up on a plane. I was fasster than the 23. It was too much work and I only did it a few times on 1 cruise. The 19 can handle big motors. You may need a new motor mount bracket and a backing plate inside the transom. You won’t go any faster than with a 5hp under normal conditions.

28May15 Message: My Picnic Cat has developed a 6 inch crack on the port side in the fiberglass just below the waterline This crack does not extend all the way thru the hull. There is only a pin hole in the interior, but that lets a small jet of seawater to enter the lazarette. I keep the boat in the water full time. In order to change the zincs, I do carreen it on its side on our sand beach. This is the second time this has happened. Any thoughts on how to deal with this ?

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Answer: This is only a guess. The current crack appears to be a poor repair of the first crack. The keel area of the Picnic Cat is rigid compared to the other parts of the bottom. This transition from rigid to flexible is where glass can crack if enough force is exerted at that point. That may have happened to cause the first crack. The first crack should have been repaired with glass and epoxy resin keeping the same thickness transition as the original boat. Have the boat repaired by a professional and it should stay repaired.

26May15 Message: My wife and I recently purchased a 1990 Com - Pac 27/2. At the bottom of the slot in the rear of the mast the slot widens to allow inserting and retrieving the "slugs." To the right of this opening is a threaded screw hole. Is it for the purpose of placing a cover over this opening? If so does the factory provide such a cover?

Answer: I think your mast builder is no longer in business. I would call Matt (the parts person) at Com-Pac and see if he has a solution.

I have fabricated a cover in the past. I made my cover from thin metal with a slot for the bolt. The cover moves up and down covering or opening the slug slot. A temporary fix is tying a knot in a line, putting the knot in the grove and then tying the line around the mast. The knot keeps the slugs where they belong.

1May15 Message: I have a 2001 Sun Cat. It has blocks of foam midships and some pour in foam under the forward part of the main cabin berths. Does this boat have enough foam for positive flotation? I have heard it does not. If it doesnot have positive flotation I want to cut an additional seat hatch in the main cabin in the front center of the vee berth remove some of that foam for additional storage and to install a sounder transducer.. Thanks

Answer: The factory foam provides stiffness to the laminates. Removing the foam and adding a frame for a storage hatch would result in the same amount of stiffness. The boat does not have positive foam flotation. We install transducers through one of the existing seat hatches. They work well from that location.

13Apr15 Message: Hi Keith, After you informed me about problems ,and what to look for in the '02 Sun cat, I bought the boat. So far ,so good, wax ,paint ect. The next step is bilge access,by enlarging the opening between the hull liner and the stainless centerboard trunk under the bridge deck. After making sure the bilge is clean and dry I plan to saturate the concrete around the center board and the bottom of the bilge with either penetrating epoxy or Gluvit. Any thoughts ? ..... The outside flange and screws are in good shape,the boat still had original barrier coat and paint. They were prepped again ,epoxy primed, and recoated.

When I bought the boat water was frozen in the bilge, the boat had been sitting for at least 2 years maybe 3. The water was fresh - I cut a drain hole in the cockpit seat over the fuel locker after drying the bilge. So far,no more accumulation of water.

I plan to dry sail the boat and keep it covered @ Blackbeard Sailing Club[ with an occasional week or two in the water].

Thank You -hope to see you on the river soon

Answer: Sealing concrete is really hard to do. Nothing sticks to concrete. The leak problem is at the stainless steel centerboard housing and it is caused by electrolyses. That's normally on boats that stay in the water. I think I would sail her and see what the problems are before doing any epoxy work. A good test will be that occasional week or two in the water. Gerry's solution to the last few stainless ones that he built was to cover the screws and sharp edges with epoxy and glass.

6Apr15 Message: Does the 25 year old crumbling Styrofoam that lives in the cockpit coaming of my boat any longer serve a purpose?? Should it be replaced if removed?

Answer: The foam in a 16's cockpit coaming is designed to make the coaming stiff and light. The idea was to keep as much heavy fiberglass as low as possible in the boat. Coaming fiberglass is very thin. Removing the foam now that the glass has cured shouldn't change its shape.

27Mar15 Message: Thank you for the genoa track info. Should I drill a small pilot hole to start each #8? If yes,what size bit to avoid cracking the glass without losing the holding strength of the screws? Thank you.

Answer: You don't need to drill a pilot hole. Practice with different drill sizes on a scrape of fiberglass before you start on the boat. Some people bevel their holes after they drill to prevent cracking. Only the screw's threads should cut the glass. Any more and the hole is too small and the glass will crack.

26Mar15 Message: Keith, Recently purchased a 150% genoa. Now looking for 5 ft.tracks to install on the combing. The track I am looking at is Ronstan 19 series. The supplier says the says the screw holes are 3 15/16" OC. Should I use all the screw holes? Is #8 3/4 inch stainless the correct screw? Is the SHARX thread better in fiberglass than normal thread? Thanks.

Answer: The Ronstan 19C series is the correct track for a Com-Pac 16. You will need to use all the holes. Start at one end and work towards the other end. The track will bend a little as you move from hole to hole. We use #8 3/4 inch stainless flat head tapping screws.

19Feb15 Message: Hi Keith, Just wanted to bring a little motorsailer to your attention, the Polish motorsailer Yacht HABER 660 Gaff Sloop. The lines of their PH are absolutely perfect and use the same hull for trawler. They have a lot of Youtube videos.

Answer: Thanks for the information. A pretty boat that looks a lot like our Trawler/Pilothouse models. The boat appears to be about 23 feet long. I looked for it on a search engine under "Yacht HABER 660 Gaff Sloop" and found several links. You can also find them on the Web at A major difference between their boat and ours will be the price. Ours is less expensive.

5Feb15 Keith: what is your opinion on a pilothouse mod for a Suncat motorsailer or a Suncat Trawler? The reason would be for more room to get out of the weather and a possible inside helm. Would the sailing version need ( clearance) mast hinge changes. Thanks.

Answer: We built the Coastal Packet on a Sun Cat hull and deck. We added extra hull length to meet Coast Guard powerboat requirements. Then we decided to keep a mast in the cockpit and the boat didn't have to be 20 feet long. Sometimes you have to do it the hard way to find out what works. To my way of thinking, the Coastal Packet has good looks, sleeps a man and his wife, has a diesel that I like and it is very portable. The Coastal Packet modification is expensive.

We also have 2 generic trawler houses that will fit almost any small sailboat. The secret to the generic house is the aft end of the house connects in the front of the cockpit and overhangs the bridge deck. With a canvas cover at the house entrance, the house will stay dry inside. The Sun Cat might take our large house. The house would be big and the cockpit would be smaller in that configuration. The reason I say a large house may work is because the Sun Cat is a wide boat. With the overhang, you can cut out most of the bridge deck and make the inside much larger. Of course, the small house will work. With that configuration, you would have less space inside and more cockpit.

If you keep the catboat sailing configuration, the mast stub would need to be taller. That type of rig would be a little complicated on a small boat and I like the mast in the cockpit option. .

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (12)

4Feb15 Message: intersted in the 89 com-PAC 16 per our discussion

Answer: I sent you a proposal and a picture via email today..

26Jan15 Message: Do you have more photos and info? Thanks

Answer: I will mail pictures of the Com-Pac Horizon Cat and the Menger Cat to your email address.

22Jan15: Message: Howdy! Where can I see pictures of the Menger 19 Catboat? Thanks!

Answer: I sent pictures to your email address yesterday.

22Jan15 Message: Can a 23' trailer be modified to pickup a 16' for transport only? Specifically what?

Answer: I have used a 23 trailer to transport 16s many times. The best 23 trailer to use is one with long wood bunks on both sides. If the change is permanent, I would lower the bunks to let the 16-keel rest on the rollers.

21Jan15 Message: Where can I see more pictures of the Menger 19 Cat advertised on this site? Thanks!

Answer: I'm sending pictures to your email address. Thanks.

20Jan15 Message: I understand you are taking canoes as trade-ins? We have a 2013 Merrimack Tennessean and a 2013 Grumman 17 with lug sailing rig, BOSS akas/amas and trailer. Both canoes have traveling covers. We would be very interested in working a possible trade plus cash for a clean CP16.

Answer: I need a price on your canoes so I can calculate a trade. We have several clean 16s.

19Jan15 Message: what is price of new and or a used trailer for a compact 19?

Answer: Used trailers are not available. A 19 will work well on a 23 trailer if you can find a used one. A new Eclipse trailer cost $2785 plus shipping from Com-Pac. It's the shipping from Clearwater, FL. that's a problem. If you have a Road King Trailer dealer in your area, you should be able to get a quote from them for a Com-Pac 19 trailer. Road King makes 19 trailers and your local dealer may have the transportation problem solved if they get lots of trailers at the same time.

16Jan15 Message: Can you please give me an idea of your price on a new Eclipse? I* have the retail pricing from the Manufacturer. I am thinking of ordering for the spring but am looking for the best pricing from a dealer.

Answer: We offer a 10% discount off the retail price. There is also a $600 transportation charge from Com-Pac to North Carolina. One of our best values is the service after the sale.

11Jan15 Message: interested in plans for large pilot house an materials for construction.

Answer: The prices for the parts you need are on our "Trawler Study Guide" (this Web site). Send a check for the parts to The Sailboat Company, PO Box 575, Richlands, NC 28574. We plan on building a Catalina 22 Trawler this summer. Maybe we need to build our boats at the same time? . Email help would be beneficial during the building process.

10Jan15 Message: To test the leaking port theory, I've done the unthinkable (sealed the ports from the outside with Duct Tape) Holy Tacky. I won't have a chance to check results for a month or so. I would like to point out that the leaking seems to be coming from behind the inner liner near the ports. I presume the ports go through the outer shell and pass through the inner liner with an airspace in between the two layers, thus if it is sealed from the outside with duct tape or perhaps some more elegent means, the leaking should be stopped.

Answer: The duct tape should work. I think (guessing) that if the area around the ports leak; it may be port design that's causing the problem. Most ports (inside and outside) are pulled together with bolts or screws after a sealing compound is applied to the joining surfaces. Your ports (Sun Cat 2010) use their position in the liner and deck to compress and seal the joint between the two. If the ports didn't leak in the summer months when the boat was hot and only leaked during the winter months when the boat was cold, the liner may be shrinking and causing leaks during the winter months. Another test I use is putting water in the low area next to the glass. If the water disappears quickly, it is going inside the boat. You can look at the joint from the outside next to the glass. If you see a gap at the joint, it's going to leak. I haven't done this before, but maybe some black caulking over the joint might stop the leaks.

5Jan15 Message: Happy New Year Keith, I purchased 2010 Suncat from you last year. You replaced the interior wood panels, since they were wet and moldy, presumably from the ports being left open. Well all the wood panels are again wet and moldy (same as before) and either extreme condensation or some sort of leak causes the headliner to be dripping water down the sides into dry storage bins. The boat is in the water at Smith Mountain Lake. It looks like I'll have to replace all the wood (again) with some sort of plastic/PVC liner to avoid further damage in future. Any ideas as to what is happening?

Answer: Happy New Year. I'm sorry to hear about the leaks. I assume the boat was dry during the summer months? I'm guessing the WET started during the fall and winter months? If this is true, condensation could be part or the entire problem. Remember the plastic bucket that you found in a storage area when you picked up the boat? I put desiccant in the boat during the winter months 2013/2014 to reduce condensation.

We also taped paper towels under the ports to check for leaks. After sealing some leaking screws, we tested the ports for leaks several times and found none.

I think I would check the ports again. Put several paper towels on the bulkheads under the ports. Check after a rain or use a hose to wet the ports. If the ports leak, I would consider replacing the ports with an improved port sold by Com-Pac. Lowe’s sells a plastic shower stall covering (4X8). It's beige in color and has a texture on one side. It would match the forward bulkhead and that wouldn't need to be replaced if it's not damaged.

30Dec14 Message: My 16/2 has 12-15 blisters on one side of the bottom half of the keel. Quarter size and smaller. History .. I purchased the boat 6 months ago from the elderly original owner, it had been kept under cover, had not been in the water for 2-3 years, had been sailed less than a dozen times in its life; other than needing waxed, appeared to be well kept and in great condition. Did not see any blistering at that time. (Apparently my inspection was not so good) as I now see a small 1/2"x1/2"square repaired spot on the flat part of the keel bottom. I also had a keel contact with a rock or ?? during a launch which shows a 3/8th inch deep wound to the keel. (not into the cement) Your advice, thoughts, concerns, etc. Keeping in mind it is a 25 year old boat ....Something a West System novice can handle or something I need to talk to you about repairing.

Answer: I assume the boat doesn't have bottom paint. The blisters and the 3/8-inch gouge should be repaired at the same time. Follow the instructions from West Systems for those repairs. The secret to maintaining the boat's value is finishing the repairs with gel-coat. A novice can handle the West System part of the repairs. Doing a perfect gel-coat repair requires experience, the right tools and a gel-coat with a good color match. The spot on the bottom of the keel is used in the manufacturing process. A hole in the mold is covered by tape during the lay up process and then air pressure is used to release the laminate from the mold. All Com-Pacs have this spot on the bottom of the keel. I would consider your damage minor.

16Dec14 Message: I stopped in and met you last week. Really like your ideas & boats. Going to try a conversion on mine. Original ballast 550 lbs, w/o mast & board, would 250 lbs be enough to steady boat?

Answer: I think so. I have been using a little more than half the original ballast weight on boats when I remove the original ballast. The O'Day Mariner that we converted last had a fixed keel that weighted a little more than 400 pounds. We remove the fixed keel and replaced it with 265 pounds of concrete. The concrete made a nice flat floor.

13Dec14 Message: I'm curious about your plan to equip your 23T with an inboard rudder and a center hung 9.9 outboard motor. Have you worked out the details yet? For instance: Do you have a source for the rudder and associated hardware; and would you steer both the rudder and the outboard or just mount the outboard in a fixed position? I've been considering the same approach with my own boat.

Answer: We build our rudders using a 1" stainless shaft and 1/4" stainless plate for the blade. See Coastal Packet picture below. A local welding shop does the fabrication for us. I asked Gerry at Com-Pac about using his rudder from the Com-Pac Launch. I try to use other builder's components when I can, but his rudder was designed as a powerboat rudder and it's too small for the 23T. We laid epoxy glass on the hull to get the right angle for the rudder port. A rudder port is similar to a stuffing box that seals the shaft. The outboard will be fixed. We are currently making the modifications needed for the 9.9. Picture below.

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (13)
Question And Answer Forum (2023) (14)

10Dec14 Message: Why wouldn't a genoa work as well as a jib on the 25's? Have a genoa on a furler.

Answer: The Com-Pac 25 has a big "J" dimension on a short mast. Most sails have 3 degrees of trim between luff and stall when they are on the wind. Because the 25's genoa is what it is, the trim points are much larger making it difficult to sail on the wind.

9Dec14 Message: Is the stock jib on a Mark I C16 a 110 or 135? Seems illogical that a 135 is cheaper than a 110, at least at sailmaker I checked.

Answer: A 135% genoa was a stock feature on later boats. Your 1983 Mark I should have a stock 100% jib. Fold the jib on the luff at a right angle. The fold should go from the luff to the clew. Measure that distance and compare it to the boat's "J". A Mark I "J" is 4.5 feet. If the fold's distance is 4.5 feet, you have a 100% jib.

8Dec14 Message: Recently purchased stock boat, no extras at all. What are your recommendations for improved performance? Jib tracks? Vang? Genoa to replace jib? Full batten main? Can an older 16 with no bowsprit compete in PHRF with a 318 rating?

Answer: All the things that you mentioned will help performance. PHRF ratings are developed over time. 16s have never raced enough to generate a good PHRF rating. Most Com-Pac racing is club racing. It is currently popular in Florida and was popular in North Carolina in the 1980s.

22Nov14 Message: Just found your site and I love what you have done to the little catalina. This rig will be just perfect for trolling for kings up here in Katchemak Bay. This is just a what if question, but what would happen if you bolted a fifty horse onto the transom of the catalina. It seems like it has a pretty flat and wide run aft. Would it plane in say the mid teens or are the lines just wrong for it. Just curious to see if its anything that's ever come up. thanks

Answer: We would have to do it to find out. The picture below is a Com-Pac 16 with a 40hp motor. We moved out with some speed, but didn't plane. The Catalina should be faster, but it might need more than a 50hp. The Cape Island 21 on my yard has a displacement of 2000 pounds and has a Honda 50 on the back. The boat has a flat bottom and the builder recommends a 75hp. At 2500 pounds displacement, the Catalina might need a 75hp as well.

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (15)

19Nov14 Message: How do you replace the line to the centerboard? Can it be done while on a trailer or ...?

Answer: We lift the boat with a crane for pendant replacement. Several years ago, we tried to replace a pendant on a Sun Cat while it was the trailer and it didn't work well enough to be happy with the job. .

12Nov14 Message: What is your opinion of converting a WW Potter 19 to a trawler ? I understand some issues may be deck coring, the daggerboard and hull thickness, standard or blue water. Your comments Keith ?

Answer: I think it would work well. I would remove the dagger board and replace it with a concrete floor or put ballast inside the storage areas. Traditional boats like the Potter are easy to work with were more contemporary boats can be difficult. I am currently converting a San Juan 23 that has lots of soft shapes on the deck. Blending the hard lines of our house to the San Juan deck may be too much work and it may not look that good. Adding a house makes a boat more rigid and trawlers in general require less construction strength than sailboats. Keels on our conversions help maneuvering and tracking. That may be a reason for keeping the dagger board or modifying the board.

6Nov14 Message: What do you charge to install the mast tender system on a CP 16?

Answer: A Mast Tender system for the Com-Pac 16 has a gallows, mast stub, hinge and a new boom tack fitting. The installed cost is $1570. We have found that a standard 16 (non pilothouse) works well with just a gallows and a new boom tack fitting. The installed cost is $800.

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (16)

5Nov14 Message: I am in the process of choosing a new genoa for my CP27. I have talked to sailmakers that advocate Miter cut and those that choose cross cut. What are you thoughts on those two types of construction for the 27. Both would be built of the same high quality Dacron. Thanks

Answer: I don't have any experience with sail construction. Sorry. We have sold 43 new Com-Pac 27s and most had 155% genoas that worked very well. Johnson Sails produced them when they were in business. The reason the 155% worked well is because the sail wraps around the shrouds and has a better pointing angle than a jib or a 135%. Most of our boats had 2 headsails, a jib and a genoa. In North Carolina, we used the genoa more than we used the jib. Almost all had furling, mostly Harken.

3Nov14 Message: Thinking of using the above shoal draft sailboat as a power boat. What modifications would be required? I'm thinking that a displacement hull would need a very small outboard engine and the weight of the shallow keel should keep it relatively stable. I'd appre4ciate any input. Thanks.

Answer: You can do as much or as little as you like. Your O'Day 20 will perform like our O'Day 19. Our 19 is featured in the "Trawler Study Guide" on this Web site. That boat uses a 6 hp outboard motor mounted in the center of the transom. We like sailboats for conversions because they are very stable. The Com-Pac factory is currently using one of their sailboat designs as a power boat Launch. Some inside modifications/ideas for sailboat modifications are shown in our Study Guide. We design and build custom sailboat modifications for customers.

27Oct14 Message: Does your 98 Compac 16 have a teak interior and ceiling trim like the III modles? Im not exactly sure what the 98's came with...Thanks!

Answer: Our 98 Model is a Mark III and it has the gel-coat interior. Later models Mark IIIs can be identified by the jib/genoa track on the cabin top and the non-teak interior.

21Oct14 Message: Could a 1985 C-23 handle / be lifted out of the water with a forklift from a dry stack marina? I assume the blades would be tight against the keel? Been in the water since May and if she is clean I would leave her in all winter (Little River, SC).

Answer: I have done it before. No problems.

9Oct14 Message: is it possible to convert to trawler removing mast and adding more height to cabin which already has convertible top. will it be too tippy? Love your boat designs great look. thanks

Answer: The Sirius 22 with a pop-top is similar to a Catalina 22 with a pop-top. We plan on converting a Catalina 22 with an iron centerboard next year. The centerboard will stay in place and in a fixed up position. We measured our large house dimensions and it fits just outside the pop-top. That means the house can be added without cutting a hole in the boat. Just remove the pop-top and add the house. Our house is built light and it doesn't hurt a boat's balance. We add lead or concrete to stiffen boats that are too tipsy. Thanks for the kind words.

4Oct14 Message: what would the appox. Cost be to convert a CP 19 to a trawler type.

Answer: A house with matching outside gel-coat, windows, handles and a canvas entrance cover cost $6750. Inside furniture, remote controls and other accessories are extra.

26Sep14 Message: Hello Keith, thanks for getting back to me regarding the ballast. If I want to maintain the sailing ability of the boat after a pilot house conversion, would you agree that the CP16 is a better choice than the mariner 19 CB ? I'm looking at both boats and am on the fence of which one to buy.But the one thing I'm sure of is that the Mariner will not be sailed since its missing so much gear. Thank you.

Answer: The Study Guide will help you with that decision. We should publish by the first of October.

25Sep14 Message: After reading your website, I was inspired to convert an old Mariner to a power boat. the boat I'm looking at has a CB but all the lead ballast was taken out at some point. I plan on removing the CB trunk and add ballast, My question is how much ballast do I need to stabilize the boat and if I should try to get lead bricks or use concrete. Thank you

Answer: We used 240 pounds of concrete on our last Mariner. The concrete started between the bunks forward and ran to the start of the cockpit seats aft. The placement produced good boat balance. We also added wire to the lay-up to reduce cracks.

Our Study Guide for building Trawlers/Motor Sailors is just about finished. We should publish in about a week. It will help you with your project

23Sep14 Message: Don't own a M-20. Wondering if it would be good enough for coastal cruising and maybe crossing the Gulf stream.

Answer: I almost purchased a Montego 20 in the early 80s. I liked the boat then and I like it now. A boat in good condition would be a great coastal cruiser.

16Sep14 Message: Keith, I have been following your trawler mods since the beginning and look forward to ordering your book in Oct. I had some ideas for the Compac trawler or motorsailer. How about an epoxy /plywood steering console mounted to the starboard cabin bulkhead in the cockpit. This would enclose a Teleflex steering unit and wheel of which the cable could be clamped off the cockpit side to the tiller where a quick release pin would allow remote steering. The top of the steering box could also be a mounting area for a depth sounder, vhf portable,or GPS. The box could be attached with brackets/angle allowing a minimum of large holes to be drilled. Another idea would be to build a ply/epoxy or Coosa " house" with windows that could be set down on top of the cabin and screwed down with a minimum of holes. This house would be better than a soft dodger, shelter the crew, and solar panels could be mounted on top. Both mods could help turn a sailboat into a motor sailer/trawler but! still be reversible, not marring the deck or cabin with large holes for the next owner. Your opinion Keith ? Thanks

Answer: The Study Plans are going to be on this Web site and free. I still plan on publishing in October. I like your ideas. Both will work. I have noticed that new Sailboat Company workers hate to make holes in boats. That's a good thing. When you drill holes or cut fiberglass, I like to measure twice and think about the results before I do the job. After about 6 months of experience, those new workers are drilling and cutting holes like old timers. If you can make holes disappear like they were never there, making new holes in boats are less important.

As time goes on, old sailboats from the 70s and 80s are going to be free for the taking. Hulls, decks and ballast normally wear well over the years. I would like to see some of those boats come back to life. Doing your first modification may be the experience you need to do more. Good luck.

17Aug14 Message: I'm repeating my previous question,instead of pilothouse I'd like to raise my cabin ht. 12-16" ,hope to see answer soon ,I send my regards.

Answer: I send some answers back by email. I answered your question on the 13th by return email. What I said was: "A secret in the conversion business is to make the boat look good along with making it work better. Raising the roof needs to be looked at on a computer art program. Cut and paste on a graphics program can raise the roof and then you can see what it will look like. I think adding pieces to slanted surfaces will be difficult to do." I have looked at the lack of vertical room in the forward part of the Slipper 17 before. I think the original designer wanted a large horizontal surface for sleeping. I concluded back then that dropping the interior liner would work to enlarge the interior space. Sorry you didn’t get the email.

11Aug14 Message: Can I make pilot house on my boat , I know its big project but it will give me lots of extra room ?????

Answer: The short answer is YES. The long answer is a Slipper 17 would make a good-looking pilothouse or trawler. To my eye, the Slipper 17 is a traditional looking sailboat that would make an excellent candidate for this type of modification. The Com-Pac 16PH modification would work well and looks really good. Making and adding the house isn't a big job. The detail work on the outside and the inside takes the most time. The Slipper has that deep space inside the cabin, but it doesn't go very far forward. Designing the inside to work with more space will be lots of fun.

21May14 Message: Dear Gerry & Keith,

Hope you’re doing well & business is good! Sorry to be a pain but some more advice/thoughts please...

We’ve settled in here, Basel, very smoothly but I will be spending most of the Summer in North Carolina (both our children are in College at UNC Chapel Hill) and I have and will be be sailing my Catboat on Jordan Lake…

I’m certainly packing in my sailing Experience given this “Free Year” - just back from 3 days on the Hamble, England doing the RYA “Sea Survival” training, off on a 5 day cruise of the Irish Sea next week on a charter Sparkman & Stevens 47footer with some experienced sailing friends from Wales - to prepare for my trip as crew in the 2014 Arc from Las Palmas to St Lucia…it’s a great break from learning German!

It costs me about $100 for return flights to the UK direct from Basel with a superb British Airline called “EasyJet" - cheaper than going by bus!!!

However that will all be good experience but I have always enjoyed single-handing on smaller boats and want to undertake a trip,made up of a series of daysails, sailing from North Wales to South Wales then up the East Coast of Ireland and across over to Scotland at the Mull of Kyntire and then up to Oban on the West Coast of Scotland in the Spring of 2015. Having thought a lot about this I am thinking that I will get my Catboat shipped over to Wales simply because I believe the quality of design and construction of the boat is SUPERB!!! I still have access to mooring in my old “Home Port”in Porthmadog, Wales. My only concern is management of the large mainsail on the catboat - the Irish Sea is notorious for changeable weather - just like the Pamlico Sound but with the significant additional complication of strong tidal currents…but I’ve sailed the West coast of Wales and England for 30 years…in relatively small boats and regularly going up to 30miles offshore albeit always with a “bolt hole” safe harbour as a contingency if I am at all concerned about the weather.

Most people I have spoken to in the UK have suggested that I should ideally have either a bilge keel boat (very common in Wales) or a boat with a fully retracting keel (Cornish Shrimper 19 or Cape Cutter 19) for use around North Wales - many tidal estuaries and drying harbours so the boats sometimes have to dry out on sand/mud. Any thoughts on that - not good for the Catboat hull with the stub keel, the inboard Yanmar?

Finally, for my proposed trip next year the cutter rig on the Cape Cutter, would give a solo sailor a helluva lot of options for sail management - your thoughts on that?

As I said above, the Horizon Catboat (and I am certain all other Com-Pac boats) really is such a well designed and constructed boat and I know will attract a lot of attention if I took her to the UK - and I still get an enormous amount of pleasure every time I sail her.

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Answer: Mike - I gather from your email that there are two questions. How would the Horizon Cat handle the drying out harbors and the possibility of cutter rigging the boat?

The Horizon will handle laying her side quite well. It is strong and the keel is not that deep (as long as the centerboard is up) so I do not believe there are any consequences to the boat lying over. However, I would be concerned about the fluids in the engine. Now, perhaps the angle would not be any more than you experience while sailing and that certainly would not be a problem. I would want to see just how much of an angle the boat would lay at. That is also determined by the consistency of the bottom. If the keel sinks in somewhat the angle will be less. If the bottom is very soft the keel would sink way in and perhaps the boat would not lean over at all. Of coarse, then you would have to be concerned with sludge packing into the centerboard trunk and not allowing the board to come down.

A cutter rig would require a longer bowsprit and another stay at the end of the new sprite. Then two new sails and sheeting equipment for both. It could be done but is a big job and potentially very expensive. You could just put a jib on the existing headstay (some Sun Cat owners have done that, see attached photo). That would give you a little more flexibility in the sailplan.

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Your trip sounds exciting. Be prepared and be safe.


Answer: Hello Mike,

I'm glad you are enjoying your year off. It sounds interesting.

I think making major changes to your sail plan would be too expensive and the boat might be too difficult to sail with more lines, wires and sails. I once tried a cutter rig on a CP-23 and I found it too busy for smooth sailing. I think the solution for heavy wind might be a second reef in the Horizon Cat sail. No one knows for sure until you sail your boat or a similar boat in say 50 knots of wind. I had to sail a CP-27 upwind one time in 50 knots of wind. The main had two reef points and I found the second reef wasn't enough sail power and the first reef was just right. My point is that you have to have the wind to tell what is going to work well. It's hard to find 50 knots of wind when you need 50 knots of wind.

I don't think drying out is going to be a problem. You could take a stern picture of the boat. Draw a line from the keel to the hull in a graphic's program. Move the line up where a parallel line is in the cockpit. This is where rainwater will collect in the cockpit. To fix the seat locker leakage problem, the seat locker holes will need to be sealed. A waterproof access panel could be installed in the covers. Any other cockpit holes will also need to be sealed.

I hope you have time to keep us informed. I'm sure our Com-Pac owners will like to follow your adventures. I plan on putting your good questions on my Q&A.

Take care.

28Apr14 Message: Hi Keith, Of course I have noticed the picture change on your main page. Prior was a Horizon Cat D. Current? I will take a guess; Horizon Day Sailor Diesel converted to a...????

Answer: It's a launch and that's it name. Gerry at Com-Pac put an electric motor in the boat in the picture and did sea trials on that boat. He had good speed and used a little Honda generator running at 1000 rpms to keep the batteries charged. The generator was almost silent. I'm planning on doing the same type of installation up here in other types of Com-Pacs. A standard Launch is going to have a diesel and lots of canvas.

26Apr14 Message: Thank you for your very helpful website. Several thin cracks in the gel coat (extending into the fiberglass) have arisen recently around our port side jib sheet cam cleat on our CP-16. These cleats are factory-installed and only one shows signs of cracks. I know of no impact damage to the cleat, so presume the cracks are due to the cam cleat moving the hull. Each crack radiates out from the cleat center and continues down the surface of the supporting structure, one as long as 6 inches. 1) What is recommended repair procedure? 2) If removal of cleat(s) is necessary, I understand (from one of your earlier posts) that replacing the factory-installed cam cleats means switching to screws instead of bolts for connection. Does this sound like the right thing to do in this instance, or should I just attempt surface level repair of the fiberglass? Thank You!

Answer: Cracks like yours are normally caused by an installer using a drill bit that's too small. A 1983 Com-Pac 16 has jib cam-cleats installed with screws. You can't use nuts and bolts because the space below the cleat is full of foam. Remove the cleat with a screwdriver, repair the cracks and use the same screws to reinstall if the screw holes are undamaged. A surface gel-coat repair will normally fix the problem. Use caulk to seal the screws.

24Apr14 Message: Good afternoon, I was reading an article that Keith Scott wrote " Thoughts on a Com-pac 27". Keith was talking about re-powering a Com-pac 27 with a 10-hp to an 18-hp diesel engine. What is the cost of re-powering to and 18 or 20 hp motor? I am talking ball-park not hard and fast prices! Thanks

Answer: A new Yanmar 15 will cost about $10K installed. The old engine is worth between $1500 or $2K according to condition. A larger engine would cost a little more.

28Mar14 Message: Keith, Seeking your advice. Trying to adjust the standing rig on my CP-16. The shrouds are quite taught with the turn buckles 90% extended. The bob stay is very taught, pulling the bow sprit below the shear line of the hull. Not much adjustment available to lengthen the bobstay. The forestay is slack compared to the shrouds, even with the toggles fully housed in the turnbuckle. Seems like the bobstay is too short and the forestay is too long I can effectively lengthen the shrouds by changing the connection point at the mast. Seems to me this would put more slack in the forestay. The stays look good to my amateur eye. Some surface corrosion. No fish hooks or obvious damage. I don't see any sag around the tabernacle that would cause slack in the fore stay. The mast is straight when stepped and eyeballed from the deck.


1) Do 5/32 stays stretch over time?
2) Can a rigger cut 1 to 1.5 inches from the the fore stay and attach a new fitting? Good idea??
3)Would a different hound assembly or a new connection point at the mast hound fix the issue?
4) Is there a longer turnbuckle that would ease the bob stay?
5) Should I shim the mast hinge to increase the effective fore stay length? The shim would be tapered toward the hinge. I think the shim would increase the fore stay distance, but would also lean the mast aft.

Thanks for your web site. Hope all is well with you.

Answer: Let talk about what should be. The bowsprit should be straight with the deck and the bobstay should hold it in that position. The mast should lean forward when the boat is level on the trailer or in the water. A big man that sails by himself or with several other people needs to move the top of mast forward as much as possible. With a load of people in the cockpit, the mast should be straight up and down. That adjustment will help weather helm and improve light wind speed. The 16 uses a tripod system for its standing rigging. When you are on the wind, what is holding up the mast is the forestay, mast and one shroud. You will have what we call, one lazy shroud. When you are sailing downwind, what holds up the mast up are 2 shrouds and the mast. With a tripod system, the tripod is the mast and 2 wires. The tension on the shrouds will change from one point of sail to another. My point is that we don't have to have taught tension on the shrouds in a static condition. I remember 16 owners trying to connect forestays that were adjusted too short. It's hard to trailer sail when your forestay is too short and hard to connect. The correct tension on a 16 rig is easy to connect the forestay. That tension will work on all points of sail. The tension on the halyards determine sail shape

To answer each question: (1) Not normally (2) Yes, West Marine sells "Norseman Terminals" with instruction for installation. We do it all the time and you can too. (3) It appears from what you said that a lower hole for the hound (takes care of the shrouds), a new fitting for the forestay (makes it shorter) and a piece of stainless with 2 holes for the bobstay might work. I think 3 answers 4 and 5.

27Mar14 Message: Thank you for the website and the knowledge you share. I have a Compac 16 I and am considering moving the hound up the mast to balance the rig better. I have already put on a bowsprit. I would like to move it as high as the legacy which seems to be 15'9". I'm guessing it is a 7/8 rig, if not please let me know. From pictures it looks like the legacy has no spreaders. I would like to know if you think it would be fine to raise the hound on my Compac 16 I to 15'9" the same as the legacy? That is if the mast and stays are just as strong as on the 16 I and if there is nothing else that is not equal. I am concerned about the possibility of the mast bowing. I realize I will have to get all new stays. Thank you for any and all information you can give.

Answer: I think I would raise only the forestay. Leave the hound were it is and install a mast bail for the forestay. That would keep the cost down and do the same thing. The Mark II 16 and the Legacy are 7/8th rigs. The spreaders on the Mark II 16 were for looks. They really didn't do anything. I know that sounds strange, but the Mark II and newer 16s work well without spreaders installed. The mast on your boat and the other 16s are big in diameter and short in length for their boat size. That makes them strong and unlikely to bend while sailing. A few people have bent them after running into trees or dropping something on them while they were horizontal. If you use your Mark I jib or genoa, your sheet cleats will work if you put an extension at the bottom of jib tack. Fold the sail while it’s off the boat on the luff (90 degrees) and where the fold goes through the clew. This is the called the "LP" or long perpendicular. I put a piece of tape on the fold line and when the sail is on the forestay, I sight a line down the tapeline to the jib cleat. You can then measure the length of the tack extension to achieve proper sail trim.

25Mar14 Message: Keith, Thanks for the quick reply about mast raising system for a 23. Do you sell these systems? What are we talking about $$$ for the each? I am not sure how often I would be using the system, it would depend on the ease to raise and lower and the time required. I am looking at using the system for trailering and not for bridges so on the water use is not a requirement, but most of the time I will be alone.

Thanks again !

Answer: The trailer mast rasiing system for the 23 cost $850 for the stainless "A" frame that lays flat on the deck when not being used; $1,100 for the stainless mast gallows; $750 for the mast hinge and $750 for the mast stub. All parts installed. The picture below shows a simliar system.

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (17)

23Mar14 Message: Hi, What is your recommendation for a mast raising system for a CP23? I have a 1996 CP23D and I am planning on trailer it some this year. Do you have ideas and or suggestions for a system that works well?


Answer: The cheapest modification is a mast gallows, stainless mast hinge and a stainless tube "A" frame. That system uses the trailer winch to raise the mast including furling gear. The most expensive is converting the 23 mast and rigging to a Horizon Cat sail plan with a jib. Pictures of that modification are on this Web site. There are several in-between modifications that do the same thing. They all have limitations of cost and the way you use your boat. I have one "A" frame modification that's used twice a year by a man his wife for winter storage. I have another more expensive modification where the 23 lives behind a bridge and the mast has to be raised after the boat reaches a lake.

19Mar14 Message: Kieth, - I blasphemed and took ad vantage of you to get a 16 sailor to go to your site. Here's waht I said "WR, Here's the link: If you haven't perused the Sailboat Company's website, do it now. Great info for you 16 & 23 owners. I think Kieth doesn't care for the Island Packet design of the 19's, but sure does like the 27's. He never mentions the 25, Watkins I say? I hope to meet him soon, to give him a piece of my 19 mind. Tongue-in-cheekedly, TG"

Hope you don't mind, but what say you about the 19's?

Answer: I sold lots of 19s and everyone liked them. I may have talked about the first North Carolina 19 in one of my short stories. It was a big hit at a Club Outing and the members took turns sailing the boat. Then there was the time that I took one on a summer cruise. My wife and I lived on the boat for 7 days. I used a 15hp motor and I keep up with all the 23s. We put a 23 mast and sails on a 19 to see what they would do and they were great in light winds. Not so good when the wind got big. I may have talked about the time that I gave a young couple their first ride on a 19 and we didn't have a motor. I was sailing back to the slip and the boom made contact with a piling and we were close hauled and accelerating in the slip. The new owner saved the day by putting himself between the boat and the concrete bulkhead.

We recently sold a reconditioned 19 to a German customer. He said he couldn't understand why the previous owner would sell such a fine boat. The reason is we all get old. I think the 19 is the best boat Com-Pac built that goes on a trailer. The 16 is too small and the 23 too big and the 19 is just right. I think the three bears had a similar story. Getting the mast up was easy and that's important. Most of my customer purchased a 16 to learn how to sail and the 16 did a fine job doing that. North Carolina in the 80s and 90s was a place were sailors would go from 16s to 23s because slips were cheap and we had some great places to go, see and explore with a sailboat. The 19 is more popular today than it was back then. Times have changed.

I owned 2 CP-25s that I called my own and I helped design part of the deck. The early boats had a few minor flaws that I didn't like. They all got fixed with time. What didn't get fixed was the cost of building a 25 was almost as much as a 27. The cost spread had to be greater to sell both boats. The 25 is the smallest big boat that Com-Pac sold. Diesel, separate head and standing headroom. Cost is what killed it. I didn't like the big headsail configuration. The boat had a big "J" dimension. Gerry told me not to order a genoa and I ordered one anyway and he was right and I was wrong. The 25s only works with a jib.

6Mar14 Message: Hi. I read with interest your answers regarding the reconfiguration of the shrouds and elimination of the backstay on a CP19.The 19 will most likely be my next boat-and I would be interested to know if you use specific dimensions for the relocation of the shrouds?

Answer: I had a similar question back on 6Jun11. A picture of the shrouds is part of that answer. I just put the picture back on the Q&A. It was removed in error back when I was cleaning my server files. Sorry about that. I put the mast up on the first boat and disconnected the uppers from the boat and the spreaders. The mast will stay up with just the lowers, forestay and the backstay connected. Swing the uppers back and mark the best location for the chain plates. Notice the installed angle in the picture.

22Feb14 Message: Hi Keith: Enjoy your comments. I a recent possting you mentioned that the Suncat has a loose footed main. My 2001 Suncat has a main with a bolt rope which I have aways threded to the boom. Would sailing loose footed give better performance?

Answer: Now and then I make mistakes. The sail on the Sun Cat isn't loose footed like I said. Sorry about that, I was wrong. I remembered the last Sun Cat I sailed and it had a loose footed sail. We were in big winds and I was trying to get the sail up. One of my problems was the boom would bend in the middle where the mainsheet was connected because the sail was loose footed. When the boom pulls down, you get a big belly in the sail and that doesn't work in big winds. I thought at the time that a loose-footed sail might help light wind performance, but the mainsheet would have to be at the end of the boom, not in the middle.

12Feb14 Message: What is the vessel in the background in the first photo in the DIY Projects section, behind the blue/green and white boat? It has a steeper/flatter windshield and a couple portholes in the cabin. Looks good. Is it a trawler?

Answer: Your right, it's a trawler. It's a 26 foot Nimble Trawler with a diesel and inside and outside steering. We sold that boat last spring.

6Feb14 Message: One of the aluminum lifeline stanchions corroded and broke off just above the base. What is the best way to repair? How is the stanchion attached to the base? The aluminum bow and stern rails appear to have pop rivets, but the stanchions appear to be connected with pins? Do you drive them out or drill them? I bought the boat from The Sailboat Company about 1990 or 91 and have really enjoyed sailing her over the years. Thanks in advance for your technical advice.

Answer: We have lots of used stanchions (no corrosion) for $10 plus shipping. Let me know if you want one and we will put it in the mail. Remove the nuts from the inside and then use a large common screwdriver with a wrench at the bottom of the screwdriver to remove the bolts. The bolts can be used again.

5Feb14 Message: what is the difference in sailing a cat boat as apposed to other boats same size.Do you like sail cat boats on inland lakes?

Answer: I always tell the same story when someone asks your second question. A Sun Cat owner that I know became a very popular sailor on a local lake. All the other sailors in the area wanted to go sailing with him. He had lots of cockpit room and he launched and was sailing in 10 minutes. I concluded that he was popular because the other sailors had boats that took forever to rig and launch. I think they didn't want to do all that work to go sailing. Of course the Sun Cat owner was a nice person and a good sailor and that could have been the reason for his popularity.

To answer your first question; most other boats are sloops with 2 sails. There are lots of sailing conditions where 2 sails work really well. You burn more calories sailing a sloop. A Sun Cat has one sail and a gaff and that's the big difference between sloops and catboats. The gaff makes a catboat self reefing and the Sun Cat's loose footed main and gaff produce a perfect sail shape for those light wind days. We had an owner add a jib to his Sun Cat in FL because he sailed in lots of light wind. Picture on my DIY link on the left. Both sloops and catboats sail about the same with a good sailor at the helm on the coast or on a lake.

16Jan14 Message: The rigging that holds down the bowsprit on my 16/2 has broken. Can I get a replacement?

Answer: Call Matt at the Com-Pac Factory. He is the parts person at Com-Pac. The phone number is 727-443-4408.

6Jan14 Message: Looking at an older model Compac 16' in DE - owner advises the hull ID # Ba0456 - I can't match that up with a Compac - you seen any ID number like this? Appears from pictures to be an older model- thanks

Answer: It's not a Com-Pac number. The Coast Guard has an Hull ID Web site with boat builder identification codes. Com-Pac's code is ABV.

27Dec13 Message: Hi Keith! Interested in hearing your take on the possibility of: (1) installing an inboard diesel in a Sun Cat or (2) building an outboard well in and below the existing gas tank locker. I really would like this beautiful little boat to not have an outboard hanging off of her stern. Appreciate your thoughts, even if your thoughts are, trade up to a Horizon Cat Diesel. Thanks

Answer: We installed a diesel in our Coastal Packet, that's really a modified Sun Cat (no centerboard). The new model Sun Cats with the new improved centerboard configuration should work with a centerboard and a diesel installed. A small 1GM10 may be required that's no longer imported to this country (EPA requirements). Of course rebuilt and used engines are still available.

We imported English sailboats in the 80s they had outboard wells. The English needed them because their boats sail in the ocean with ocean swells. The outboard on the transom would be out of the water most of the time. The problem with the outboard well is the outboard's exhaust is in the cockpit and vibration is high when the engine is clamped to the boat's structure. The newer 4 stroke motors should improve both of those problems. A well would reduce the cost of installation. Most of our English boat owners had us install outboard bracket on the transom.

1Dec13 Message: Hi Keith. I stumbled on a recent custom Suncat mainsail built by Squeteague Sailmakers. They increased the sail area 25 sq.ft. by increasing the roach and using standard battens and 2 sets of reef points. At 175 sq.ft., SA/D increases from 18.32 to 21.37, and no need to modify spars! Interested in your views on this sail modification and how it would possibly impact sailing the Suncat. Thanks.

Answer: The devil is in the details. The idea is to give the Sun Cat more sail power in areas with little wind. That should work if the sail is well built and it doesn't blow very much. I have put Com-Pac 23 sails on 19s and Horizon Cat sails on Com-Pac 23s. People have been making sail plan modifications forever. Changing the Sun Cat sails back and forth between the little and the big sail could be a problem. A Sun Cat sail is more difficult to change on the fly.

16Nov13 Message: i have a 1990 com-pac 19II and would like to convert it to a three point rig. i saw on your site that you have been successful doing this. i would like to do the work myself and wonder if you could kind of walk me through it. i think i read that you move the chainplates aft but it doesnt say how far. i think that it also said that you dont change the inner stays. anyway i appreciate any help you could give me as i want to make my boat more trailer sailor friendly

Answer: We have 2 pictures of 19s below with the modified rig. One is a green boat and the other is a blue boat. You can remove the backstay and the spreaders. The 19 has 2 chain plates for a lower and an upper at the same place on each side of the hull. You will move the upper chain plates to a new location shown in the pictures. You will need to buy 2 extra backing plates from Com-Pac for this modification. You can use something else like the backing plate that Com-Pac uses for their installation. Put the mast up using a halyard for a backstay. The mast is being held up with the forestay, halyard backstay and the lowers at this time. Take the uppers on each side and bring them back to a point on the hull that allows the turnbuckles to have about 50% adjustment and mark the chain plate angle on the hull. Drill new holes for the chain plates and install the new backing plate for the uppers.

In my opinion, the old rig had too much rigging (too many wires). Also, the chain plates were behind the mast by a small amount. Tensioning the lowers pulled or bowed the mast back at the middle causing a problem in high winds. Bowing the mast back at the middle increased the bag effect in the sail. In the 3 wire rig, we use the lowers to help raise the mast. Don't pull the mast back with the lowers.

11Nov13 Message: Looking for pilothouse kit for my cp16 ? Thank You

Answer: We sell the parts. The fiberglass top is $1200, side panels (COOSA) are $300, windows are $1200, and the panel patterns are $75. Total $2775 plus shipping by truck is extra.

11Nov13 Message: I just bought a '78 model. I'm interested in the Legacy anchor roller/bowsprit upgrade idea. How much to ship to MD? Thanks.

Answer: Talk to Com-Pac (phone or email) and ask for Matt. He is the parts manager and he can quote a price for the parts and the shipping.

11Nov13 Message: i have a com-pac 16-1 that i have sailed for about 6 years. i am looking to move to a faster boat with a 7 foot beam and am considering a precision 165. with the increased sail area and lighter displacement i think it would be both faster and would point much higher, my boat has an ida rudder and new sails so i think she wont point any higher. my concern is stability, as i am used to the rock solid feel of the com-pac. i have considered both the cp 19 and the eclipse (have sailed both) but weight and size are a concern as i dont think either boat will fit through my 8 foot high garage door. apparently the p165 sits lower on the trailer. i just want an educated opinion. thanks

Answer: Most people want to change boats after about 5 years. They want to try something else and I think that's normal. It is part of our learning experience.

I put small sailboats into three categories. We have lake boat, coastal boats and boats that are in-between. Good examples are a lake boat like the Catalina 22 with a 19% ballast to displacement ratio and a coastal boat like the Com-Pac with a 40% ratio. An in-between boat has 33% like the Precision boats. I really don't consider sail area as much as ballast because sail area can be changed with different sails.

Pointing ability is mostly sailing ability. Never overpower the keel and rudder and all small boats point to about 45 degrees. It's easy to overpower a shoal draft boat and the Precision 16.5 is a shoal draft boat. The standard sail area for that boat may be a better size for your area. The difference between deep draft boats and shoal draft boats is how long they can keep their keel working without adjusting sail power. Shoal draft boats are more difficult to sail well.

4Nov13 Message: First, I would like to say that I appreciate all the time you put into this great website. I have a question about your diy #9 project. I like the idea of using stainless steel as splices for the aluminum bow pulpit so the wall of splice can be thinner than using an aluminum splice. My question is won't the aluminum in contact with the stainless steel splice carrode the aluminum causing it to rust and eventually fail because of it?

Answer: I'm glad the Web site is helpful. Project #9 is about 10 years old and the pulpit is standing up well to its environment. The boat is currently on my yard and I'm looking at it from my window. The pulpit is behind the flash reflection in the picture. I think dissimilar metals corrosion may not be a problem with objects like pulpits. Something that's in the water all the time would not fair as well.

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (18)

27Oct13 Message: do you buy used boats or sell on consignment off your lot?

Answer: Yes.

20Oct13 Message: I read in your Q/A saction about adding pilot houses to Com-Pac 16s. Is this the case? Could you email me some pictures of a completed one. Soon I may be in the marked for a small trailerable sailboat for use here in MD and this seems like a very interesting design to consider.

Answer: We do both sail and power and either can be converted to the other. Pictures below.

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (19)
Question And Answer Forum (2023) (20)

22Sep13 Message: Keith I hope all is well. I have two questions. 1. Has anyone ever added a Barney Post to a 23? 2. Has anyone added a self tacking jib, like a Hoyt Jib Boom? These are two things I am considering doing, what is your thoughts?

Answer: We have moved the mainsheet to the bridge deck by installing a traveller in the past. I haven't seen a Barney Post on a 23 yet. I did a cutter rig one time with a small sail installed between the bow and the mast on the foredeck. Tacking was a problem with too much going on in a very small space. The self-tacking jib should work well. There may be some conflict between the jib boom and the lifelines, but nothing you can't handle. The 23 likes a large headsail for balance and that has to be considered when you reduce headsail size. The convenience of a self-tacking jib may be more important than perfect sail balance.

We are currently building a 23D Mark I likes yours. We put the engine a little more forward in the cabin to make maintenance easy. We plan on doing stainless pulpits and stanchions. The engine is an old Yanmar YSM8 that runs well. Lazy sailing with a 23 normally means pulling out the furling genoa and leaving the main under the sailcover. I think this boat will have a furling headsail. You can't point as high with only a headsail, but the boat speed is about the same with a wind speed of 10 knots or more.

19Sep13 Message: On a Com-Pac Sun Cat, how can I replace the old, worn line for lifting the centerboard while the boat is on trailer?

I love your website... I treat it like a seminar for sailboat "how-to's."

Answer: Thanks for the kind words. To my knowledge, it can't be done. Maybe I should change that to it can't be done well. It's a job that should be done perfectly with no chance of failure. Trying to replace the pennant on the trailer would be very difficult.

15Sep13 Message: Hi Keith. While Sailing my Suncat in 12 knot winds lasts week on a broad reach, the hinge at the mast folded and the stub mast was pulled out of the tabernacle. I think the shrouds may have been a bit loose.We have pulled the hinge back into shape and welded the holes at the bottom of the mast.

I don't want this to happen again...any suggestions?

Answer: I think I know what happen. Can you think of breaking a 2X2 stick with your knee? You grab both ends of the stick with your hands and put your knee in the middle and pull the ends back until the stick breaks. I think your boom slide was located at or above the hinge. I think the failure might not have happen if the boom was located below the hinge. The shrouds also played a part in this failure because they didn't keep the mast and the hinge in column. Changing the boom's location on the mast and tensioning the shrouds should fix the problem.

12Sep13 Message: Hi- I was wondering what a Yanmar 1gm (or other small diesel)conversion on a CP23 would cost at your facility. Also, do you sell a conversion "kit" ie- motor beds, shaft log,jigs, etc. for a skilled person to do the conversion on his own? Thanks

Answer: We are doing one now. We are installing a 1977 Yanmar YSM8 engine in a 1982 Com-Pac 23 that we sold new in 1982 with an outboard motor. Parts are available from different sources to complete an installation. New Yanmar 1GM10 engines are no longer available in this country. Our EPA has banned them as dirty engines. Other new larger engines are available at a higher cost. Used engines are available if you can find one.

We don't sell a kit as such because parts change from installation to installation. Parts needed are: Engine, Rail Mounts, Muffler, Drive Shaft, Stuffing Box, Cutlass Bearing, Remote Control, Control Cables, Fuel Filter, Shaft Log, Water Strainer, Hull Connections Exhaust Water, Fuel Tank, Exhaust and Fuel Hoses. I think a skilled person could install an engine with a little help. A short trip from VA to NC could solve many installation questions. Come on down and see our installation when you can. Our labor fee to install a disel is about $4K.

1Sep13 Message: Hi,I have noticed tiny pinholes in my new sail.There seems to be a dust like material around the hole that can be brushed away. Do I have an insect problem and what can be done to correct it. Thanks.

Answer: If you have enough holes in the sail and it's less than 1 year old, it should be corrected under warranty with a new sail. Call Gerry at the Factory for a solution.

21Aug13 Message: How does topping lift attach to "butterfly" and how can boom still be rotated for roller reefing.Manual does not explain well. Thanks

Answer: The Com-Pac 16 almost never needs to be reefed. That's good because roller reefing on our early models didn't work very well. The sail bunched up at the tack and the sail didn't roll evenly. The topping lift line runs through one of the holes at the end of the boom. From there it goes to the outhaul cleat on the side of the boom. That cleat does two jobs. I like to put a loop in the topping lift line at the cleat end of the outhaul and with that loop on the cleat, the boom is at the correct level for working in the cockpit. When you raise the sail, the sail holds the boom up, you don't need a topping lift and that line needs to be free. I remove the loop from the cleat and let it go. It loop can't go through the hole at the end of the boom and it's ready to be used again when you bring the sail down. If you do reef the main, the topping lift will roll with the sail.

17Aug13 Message: I was looking over the DIY projects and liked the DIY#30. Placing the anchor roller on the Compac16 mark I. Do you usually have to replace the forstay due to it needing to be a longer length? Also, if using hank-on job, does the difference in the angle of forstay have any effect on the jib as to the foot being lower?

Answer: We normally tune the Mark I forestay with the turnbuckle closed. That rakes the mast forward balancing the boat with the crew in the cockpit. The existing forestay will work with the Legacy anchor roller if you add a small extension at the bottom like the one in the DIY#30 picture. You also have to add an anchor roller strut that's not shown in our picture. Com-Pac sells both items and they are reasonable. A short pigtail at the jib tack will lead the sheets to the same position on the boat. The difference is so small it may not be necessary.

30Jul13 Message: What type / size wire is required for replacing mast wire? Is the wire required to be tinned? I have anchor lite, steaming light so I am guessing a 3 wire is required. Don't see a 3-wire option for mast wire. Thanks!

Answer: Electrical wire for mast lights is in the #22 to #18 size range. We order what's available from vendors like West Marine considering price and construction. The wire needs to be 2 wires that are covered. Wire ends that are tinned are a good installation practice. You use 2 separate runs for different lights with different connectors at the bottom.

25Jul13 Message: Hey Keith, Hope you are doing well. I'm thinking about roller furling my jib. What's the best way to accomplish this these days? My boat stays in the water all summer so it might be a good idea. Do I need a new sail for furling? Also does a furling system allow you to adjust the size of your jib as you sail? Thanks!

Answer: Most people are buying CDI furling and they will sell direct off the Web. Supersailmakers (also on the Web) can modify your existing jib or genoa. They will tell how to measure your sail on the phone or by email. A furling system normally does not reef a sail. Some fancy systems will, but they cost too much for little boats and I don't think they work that well anyway.

24Jul13 Message: wondering what is the cost (if i do the work) of changing the mast on my 19 to a mast tender system like what is on the eclipse. can the spreader be removed along with the backstay? should a spreader like the eclipse be installed? can the masthead jib be retained or would it have to be a 7/8s rig?

Answer: We did a Mastender on a 19 and it was complicated and expensive. I think we have a better solution for the CP-19. The boat below doesn't have a backstay or spreaders. We moved the upper chain plates to a new location behind the mast. We also added a mast gallows to the stern pulpit and a boom toggle from the Boomtender system on a Legacy (available from Com-Pac). It makes the boom fold on late model boats. Our modification makes the 19 more trailable. We found the shoe on the bottom of the mast in this picture isn't needed.

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (21)

18Jul13 Message: Dear Sir, I have just read your information on tell tails in your article , I am so happy with your explanation, the fog has lifted “finally” Thank you so much. Kindest Regards. Colin Vauvert, Kanahooka Model Sailing Club, Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia

Answer: The same thing happened to me many years ago. Knowledge is a powerful tool. Thanks

14Jul13 Message: Hi Keith, I spoke with you a few weeks ago regarding a problem, due to age and height, raising the mast on my Suncat. You referred me to Gerry at COM Pac. ( I was looking for a gin pole or MacGregor like system to raise the mast. I found a simple solution the works, at least on my boat, in case anyone contacts you with the same question. I have a small ( approx. 18"x36") painters scaffold you can buy at Home Depot. I put it on the deck between the port and starboard seats. It gave me enough leverage to walk the mast right up - no problem. Just thought I'd pass this along to you. Nice of you to take the time answer so many questions for us. Semper fi.

Answer: Sounds like a good solution. Sailing may be the best way to live a very long healthy life.

11Jul13 Message: I thought I read that Compact built a pilothouse version of it sailboats. If that is true can you forward me information regarding it.

Answer: All the information on the Pilothouse is on Com-Pac's Web site. Click the link at the bottom on the left. We also have a used Pilothouse on our yard. We are about 40 miles from New Bern.

29Jun13 Message: I am curious to hear your suggestion for draining fuel from 2-stroke motors. I boat on Lake Erie. On Erie and in the great lakes region in general 2-stroke motors are very common. I imagine this is due fresh water and short seasons.

Answer: 4-stroke motors need to stay vertical because the oil in the crankcase can move pass the rings and cause starting problems. If a 2-stroke motor isn't too heavy, I lay them down on their side while I get my mast down and my boat ready for the road. While the motor is on its side, fuel in the carburetor drains out the breather hole at the top of the carburetor. I have left my motor on the grass and had to go back and get the motor after remembering it down the road. I think my face was red. A carburetor principle is that fuel in the carburetor float bowl is at atmospheric pressure. The air being sucked into the cylinders drops the pressure and that moves the fuel from the float bowl through the run jet into the air stream going to the engine. Heavy 2-stroke engines really need to be drained by unscrewing the bolt at the bottom of the float bowl. That bolt holds the float bowl in place. Keeping track of how old the fuel is another way, but I could never make that system work. Maybe that's how I learned how to clean carburetors. .

29Jun13 Message: There seem to be three schools of thought about removing fuel from 4-stroke outboards between uses. One recommends unplugging the fuel line and letting the engine run until it dies from lack of fuel. Two recommends killing the engine and draining the fuel from the carburator bowl. Three recommends adding either Stabil or Sea Foam to the fuel tank with each fill up and not worrying about removing fuel from the engine. What approach would you advise?

Answer: I think you have to separate the 4-stroke advice from the 2-stroke advice. Since 2-stroke engines are few and far between, I think 4-stroke advice is the most important. I don't do anything if my 4-stroke engine is going to be run again in the next 30-days. I think that's what most people do with their cars or trucks. Most of us never know when we will use our outboard motor again and that's the problem. It you leave gas in the carburetor over the winter, you will have to clean the carburetor or pay someone to do it. A nice feature about modern 4-stroke motors is they have a drain screw at the bottom of the carburetor. Pop the engine cover, drain the gas and you have a dry clean carburetor for the next use whenever it might be. .

15Jun13 Message: How do I replace the centerboard cable - can it be done while boat is on trailer?

Answer: I don't know the answer to your MacGregor S26 question. Sorry. A specific MacGregor Web site or forum should be able to answer your question.

6Jun13 Message: Hi, Keith. What do you think about putting a battened "fat head" (squared top) mainsail on a CP16? I'm still mulling over the pilot house modification. Less sail at the foot offset by more sail aloft where it counts? Would it work? Thanks.

Answer: If the mainsail area stayed the same, the boat would heal more and it might have more power on a beam and board reach (more wind higher). When the boat is close hauled, it would have less power because the jib/genoa supplies wind (slot effect) to the main and that combination would be mismatched and smaller.

If you are sailing in a low wind environment, I think I would consider making your 16 into a gaff headed sloop. It would be similar to the squared top mainsail above, but the gaff gives you more control with the gaff halyard. You may have more weather helm with this type of rig, but on a lake or in a low wind area, weather helm can be helpful sometimes.

Changing the hull attitude with your body weight is a great way to point high in a 16. I sit on the low side and towards the stern in no air and point the keel high and upwind as high as possible. Being able to see the wind in a no wind condition is difficult. Of course you can make your own wind by squeezing what there is between the jib and the main if you can get the right tack angle.

5Jun13 Message: Keith, Do you have a recommended method to install a jib downhaul on a 16 with a hanked-on jib?

Answer: It doesn't seem like a neat way to do a downhaul, but it works well. Tie a small line like the topping lift line to the jib halyard at the head. Run the line direct to a small block at the bow and then back to the cockpit. A problem with downhauls is the line drag between the head and the cockpit. Keep the drag to a minimum and it's going to work.

2Jun13 Message: Had some issues with the battery (not major - all sorted I think) but it would dnot start th engine so I took the opportunity to try and hand crank it. It was really difficult to turn and I could not get the engine to fire up. Any immediate thoughts on that? JUst trying to be prepared if that should happen on the Pamlico sound…

Answer: The engine has a compression release lever on the valve cover. You hold the compression release lever open and crank the engine by hand. When you get the engine going fast enough, you release the lever and the engine starts. It's best done with 2 people, one on the lever and one on the crank. Be careful with the hand crank because the engine can fire backwards and hurt your hand.

A better solar panel (15 watts) may solve the battery problem if you have long periods of time between normal uses.

29May13 Message: I recently found your site and I am excited to see that you are so close to me. . . I have just completed my second sail with my "new" boat.

I have sailed out of the Washington Marina next to Ragan airport on the Potomac River. Ron Hessler, the manager, has a CP16/1 (78?)that he really wants to move. He's asking $500 but I think he will take MUCH less There are usually 3 or more CP16's dying on trailers if someone wants to contact the owners.

I am very interested in the conversions that you have done with the CPs.

Anyway, I glad to have found you. Best regards

Answer: Welcome to our site. I have launched boats from the Washington Marina. It's a cool place to sail.

28May13 Message: Using Interlux perfection to refinish the hull - do you flatten the gloss for the cockpit or leave it shine?

Answer: I like it to shine, but that's a personal preference. I use sunglasses when I sail.

21May13 Message: I have a leak coming into the cabin, I don't think it's the window but I think it is coming from the screws that hold the jib track in place . I am trying to find a replacement track and or whatever casket is under the track to hopefully solve my problem or any other solution someone may recommend

Answer: The gasket is used as a fast way to seal the track when the factory installs a new track. Don't worry about the gasket when you do a repair. You need to make a positive leak identification by putting a pan under the track or spending some time in the boat during a rainstorm. Fix the leak by sealing the individual screw and nut with 3M5200.

13May13 Message: the reason i am wanting to try this isthe price. older sailboat are cheap and i just want to fish on rivers and lakes. and want to stay over nite sometimes. the sailboats are already set up without doing lots of work. a small motor would be fine. i don't think i weould have any trouble with a small boat and slow speed with mast off. i know you can tell i don't know much about sailing, but would'nt this work just fine?

Answer: We think so. The O'Day that we are working on in "Current Project" on the left will be used for that purpose.

5May13 Message: Keith, What do you think of changing to a loose footed main for the CP-16?Full or partial battens? What changes to outhaul hardware? Any difficuties stowing a full battened main on top of the boom? Thanks.

Answer: I like full battens when they work. If the batten is too stiff, sail shape is bad and if it's not stiff enough, the sail has the extra weight of construction without shaping the sail. Big boats with big sails work best with full battens. Little boats and sails are more difficult to make full battens work well. It's a physical problem. No hardware changes are needed and full batten sails are easy to fold on top of the boom. I don't think a loose-footed main would change performance. You can try it with the sail you have now to see if it helps. A good sailmaker can make major improvements to most standard sails.

28Apr13 Message: Do you have photos on the gaff rig 23? I have a home also in Oriental, I would like to be able to dry sail my boat since I am not in Oriental year around. You have worked on the boat before, when you installed a M-12 engine in it. Also, I would like to join the N.C. Compac Club.

Answer: You are now a member of the CPYANC. Membership details will be sent to you by separate email. Our Sun Cat rigged 23 is the first picture and the Horizon Cat rigged 23 is the second picture. Sail area difference is based on your preference.

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (22)
Question And Answer Forum (2023) (23)

8Apr13 Message: Hi Keith, I just spent the better part of the afternoon trying to tune the rig on my 16. I had a 50' tape hung from the top of the mast for symmetry and a Loos tension gauge but all I ended up with was a sore finger. Too tight, too loose and the gauge was no help. Any pointers?

Answer: The 16 has a tri-pod mast. The bottom line is that while we are sailing, 2 shrouds are working and the other one is taking a time out. If we are on the wind, the forestay, one shroud and the mast are tensioned. The lazy stay is doing nothing. If we are going downwind, the 2 shrouds and the mast are tensioned. The forestay is doing nothing and so on. I adjust the static settings my 16 with the forestay adjusted to tilt the mast forward. People in the cockpit bring the stern down and the bow up some. This forward tilt to the mast really puts it in a straight up and down position. I also adjust the forestay tension so it can be installed without saying bad words. Good luck.

16Mar13 Message: I am planning to replace my 2-stroke 6 horse outboard for my Suncat with a 4-stroke and have read a lot about the new Lehr propane outboards now available in 2 1/2 or 5 horse, and with short or long shafts. The 2 1/2 is quite a bit lighter. Would that be too small for the Suncat, and do you have any experience with the propane outboards? Any idea whether the 10 gallon Lehr propane tank would fit into the Suncat's fuel locker? Thanks for any ideas.

Answer: We haven't purchased a Lehr Outboard yet and we don't have any experience with propane outboards. Sorry. The concept sounds interesting and maintenance requirements should be less than with gasoline. No more old gasoline in the carburetor from year to year and getting rid of alcohol in the gas has to be an improvement. EPA requirements for new gasoline outboards have arrived and they are not going to improve outboard reliability and performance. If you decide on a Lehr motor, let us know what you find out about the fuel locker. Thanks.

9Mar13 Message: what year com-pac started to use centerboards on their 16's yachts,regards

Answer: I'm not sure what year the first centerboard 16 was built, but we recently sold a 97 model with a centerboard. Com-Pac 16 owners that read this Q&A might want to let us know if they have an older 16 with a centerboard. Thanks.

17Feb13 Message: Hi, I have (2) questions please: 1. Do you carry sails that would fit this boat and also2. I'm looking for a bimini that I could install without modifications.I look forward to your answer.

Answer: I use Super Sailmakers for Com-Pac 16 sails. You can order sails from them using a credit card. Their Web address is I normally talk to Bob. The factory sells biminis for the Com-Pac 16. Talk to Matt in the Parts Department at Com-Pac. His phone number is 727-443-4408.

6Feb13 Message: I have taken off the mass and put a new motor on(9.9). I have a swing keel would it be safe to use without the keel?

Answer: Your boat has a 500-pound swing keel. The stability of the boat will be reduced. Removing the keel is not recommended unless you replace it with some other type of ballast. A bare mast is also good for stability. That pole sticking up in the air moves from side to side in a waterway. The energy required stopping the mast going one way and starting back the other way works like a shock absorber in a car.

26Jan13 Message: What is the sealing material used on the SunCat port lights?

Answer: 3M5200.

24Jan13 Message: My little 1gm10 has given up the ghost and needs a rebuild. I cannot afford the rebuild, so I'm looking to go to an outboard. What would you consider to be the maximum hp for my boat? And is there any market for my little diesel, as is? Thanks for any answers

Answer: I like a 5 or 6 hp motor on a 23. Larger 4 stroke motors are heavy and that's a problem raising and lowering the motor. When the motor gets to be 100 pounds or more, the transom needs to be reinforced. I have found that most 1GM10s that are broken need to be repaired, not rebuilt. They never get enough hours on them to wear out the rings and bearings.

If you can get the boat up here, we will remove the engine and the other diesel parts for the parts. We will also close and glass the shaft exit hole in the hull and the instrument hole in the deck. The problem with selling the engine when it's outside the boat is shipping cost.

23Jan13 Message: I am in the process of buying a 1981 Compac 16. The seller added a bowsprit (of sorts) to the boat last year but was not a great woodworker and things are going to need some repair. As I have been looking at the newer 16's that come with sprits from the factory, I see a sprit stay to counteract the headstay, but what prevents the sprit from sagging when the boat is on the trailer or if you happen to step on the sprit while you are stepping the mast and connecting the forestay?

Answer: The bowsprit installed on Mark II and newer 16s have a stainless steel structure with a teak insert. The stainless is bolted to the bow and they are strong. They are still made as an option, but they are expensive to buy. The current bowsprit installed on the Legacy cost less money and uses a stainless steel bobstay. I have a picture of a Legacy bowsprit installed on a 16 on the DIY page of this Web site. It doesn't show the bobstay, but one is required. Call or email Matt at the Com-Pac Parts Department and he will price the Legacy bowsprit (anchor roller) for you.

17Jan13 Message: On the matter of claw/plow anchors for Compacs to carry on their bowsprits, what weight would you recommend for a Compac 16 and the aforementioned 23?

Answer: A long time ago, the company that sold the Bruce anchors provided dealers with a plastic box and a very small Bruce anchor for demonstrations. The little anchor was about 4 inches long and had a string for a rode. The idea was to fill the plastic box with sand, throw the anchor in the sand and pull on the rode. A person could not pull the anchor through the sand. The price of a Bruce was high because it was imported from Europe. The Claw anchor is a Bruce copy made in this country. The price of a Claw is much lower. That being said, a small Claw anchor holds a lot of boat in most weather condition. Bowsprits on all Com-Pac boats are about 12 inches long. The bowsprit will accommodate West Marine's recommended 4.4-pound Claw for the 16 and the 11-pound Claw for the 23. Keeping the anchor as small as possible works and looks better on the bow of most boats. From my experience, most owners like big anchors. The big anchor can be the anchor that’s in the seat locker.

16Jan13 Message: i am curious about the best way to secure an anchor on the bow.. the previous owner had it lashed to the bow pulpit where it chaffed the headsail. is there a bow roller available that would be an easy fit? ( or another system that you would advise) i will probably be traveling with two anchors. i imagine having one stored below with the primary anchor on the bow, ready to go. thanks!

Answer: Com-Pac sells a bow anchor roller with a strut for about $100. They use this rig on the Eclipse and it will work on early Com-Pac 23s. It's a bolt on device. You can order one by calling Com-Pac.

Most cruising 23s carry their anchors the way you describe. We like the Bruce or Claw type anchor on the bow and a Danforth stored in a seat locker. The primary anchor carried on the bow will work on most bottoms and it doesn’t have any moving parts. The flat Danforth is easy to store in a cardboard box and it will be needed from time to time.

9Jan13 Message: Keith - You must be on vacation - Haven't seen an update on your sight in over TWO WEEKS. I need a fix, Ya KNOW?

Answer: We have been working in Richlands. The 23T has paint on the deck and the inside is looking good. The O'Day with the house is also in work. We called River Dunes and the cruise in May is looking good. The cruise is going to be on a Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Boats will be able to join or leave the cruise at 3 different locations or go all the way by water. The last day should be a 35-mile run from River Dunes to New Bern. The short stories published on this Web site may be published in the Small Craft Advisor Magazine. We plan on writing 2 more stories about a cruise to Key West in a 27 and Com-Pac 16s in North Carolina. Have you tried raising your rudder 45 degrees and sculling the rudder for power? No wind, no help and no motor make sculling look and work well. I haven't tried it on a 19 or a 23.

Lots of our customers have been on vacation. The picture below is the English Channel made from the Cliffs of Dover. No Spitfires or ME-109s in this picture. We heard from Horst Siekerski from Germany. He needed some parts and he was going on vacation. We also heard from Bruce Milne in Alaska. He said he can only sail his 23 for 1 month per year and he sails it every day during that month. He keeps his boat on Purdhoe Bay where the Exxcon Valdez went aground. Our Web site should improve with warm weather.

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (24)

19Dec12 Message: The interor of my 16 is in poor shape. I would like to paint it ,what it the best paint to use? Thanks

Answer: We use latex pool paint from Lowes. It has some grit in the paint that gives the interior a textured look. The factory painted the interior soon after building the boat and the original paint reacted to the fiberglass resin by falling off in spots. The new paint will stick to the interior because the fiberglass has aged.

11Dec12 Message: How would a sculling oar work on a Suncat....anybody have experience.Many Thanks

Answer: We haven't done one or seen one, but it should work well in the right set of circumstances. Small Boat Journal has a good article on the Web: A couple used sculling for auxiliary power on a 24-foot wood sailboat all over the world and they did pretty well with that boat. Their next larger boat had an engine.

4Dec12 Message: What has been your experience with the factory installed through-hulls on Com-Pac boats. Are they fairly reliable or have you had to replace some. I just bought a boat that has several and was wondering what to expect this spring.

Answer: We have never replaced a factory-installed through-hull. We have seen other brands of older boats with corrosion failures.

14Nov12 Message: Hi Keith, In your descriptions of converting sailboats to powerboats, you mention controls for a small outboard (say 4hp), that can be managed in front of the cockpit. I can't find any details in your DYI section on how to rig this up. Can you describe what you guys do and/or use? Thanks

Answer: Some outboard builders sell remote control outboards starting at 15 hp. This makes installation easy because the motors will handle the steering control cable and the two cables that control the transmission and the throttle. The remote control for the transmission and the throttle comes with the motor. The cables do not. The steering control is always a separate purchase and installation. Working down in size, some motors will work with remote controls. The controls have to be created from available parts and pieces. Honda has a kit for their 5hp motor that can be purchased from Honda. Other motors have a hole in the carrying handle for a steering cable. Most little motors have the holes needed to attach standard fittings to the gearshift and throttle levers. Some do not. You can find the hardware on the Internet with lots of searching. Good luck.

14Nov12 Message: Keith, What is the date for your outing next spring?

Answer: It looks like the 18th of May will be the date. I will publish the details after the first of the year.

23Oct12 Message: i once saw something on your site about removing the spreader and backstay on a cp19 and making it a three point rig like a cp 16. is this safe have you converted many 19s in this way?

Answer: We have converted 5 boats. Many more owners have converted their own boats. If you trailer a 19, the modification is worthwhile. Look at the picture of the 19 we sold to Germany. A picture is on our "What's New" link on this Web site.

20Oct12 Message: Recent answer concerning the number of 23 built to date. I pretty sure my hull number is 377 and it is a 1986 model. ???

Answer: When energy was cheap, we sold lots of sailboats. We had 7 sailboat dealers in Raleigh in the 80s and today we have none. Times change. Most people see the price of gasoline as what energy cost. Everything that we own and produce today requires energy and always did. The big cost increase in fiberglass boats comes from the price of resin. Resin is made from oil. We have enjoyed our used boat market for years. Great boats made in the 80s at cheap prices. My recent German customer asked why the previous owner would sell such a fine boat (1994 Com-Pac 19). The rest of the World sees our used boat market as a great resource and they are buying our used boats (and cars) even with the high transportation cost. Our used boat resource is getting smaller.

Another problem is financing new sailboats. Most young people can't afford to pay cash for a sailboat and they have to finance the purchase. Financing a sailboat today is difficult even with a job and good credit. The banks and credit unions have changed their rules. The big question is where will the used sailboats come from in the future? All used boats have to begin life as a new boat.

Hull number 377 for a 1986 model sounds about right.

17Oct12 Message: Would you please describe the process of converting to a trawler. I have come across an opportunity for a shoal draft MacGregor Venture 24 and am interested in converting this into a pleasure fishing boat. Any information on how to convert from sail to power or what to look for would be appreciated.

Answer: Any sailboat will make a trawler. Some sailboats better than others. I think I would replace the Venture 24 centerboard with internal ballast. Place a motor in the middle of the transom and add remote controls. The house and the internal furniture are best designed on a computer. The house components can be epoxy-covered plywood. You can use our Com-Pac 16 trawler build procedure as a reference. It's described in my DIY section on this Web site.

3Oct12 Message: I would like to know how many cp 23's have been built to date. I have a 2003 and its hull number 637. Thanks for all the help you give to us compac owners.

Answer: We have a new 23 coming in November. It is hull number 655. Most builders start at 100 and work forward.

28Sep12 Message: Hello again. Thanks for your comments on my Suncat search. In your DIY section you've complimented Don Nemetz's work on a jib for the Suncat. In an Answer a while back, you mentioned you can install a bowsprit, jib and running rigging for about $4,000. Can you elaborate more on the details? How is the bowsprit designed? Is the anchor still mounted on the bow? What type/size do you envision the jib? Is it hanked-on or on a roller-furler? How and where are you mounting the running rigging? It's very interesting. Thanks.

Answer: Custom work is always a work in progress. Details are not available. Com-Pac has an anchor roller that will work as a short bowsprit. You may be able to mount an anchor and a jib at the same time. Furling or a hanked-on sail would work the same way. Don Nemetz's made a good example to follow if you need more Sun Cat sail power. Changing your boat to make it sail better is what sailors do. Adding sail power in front of the CLR is the best place to add power on most sailboats.

28Sep12 Message: I recently purchased a CP27/2 that I am considering replacing the sails on. Today I sail on a lake and will be sailing in the Gulf in a couple years. What type of sails and weight would you recommend? Thank you for your information on ComPac sailboats.

Answer: I let sail makers figure the correct weight for individual sails. In the old days, the 27 came with a jib and a main with one reef. Most of us purchased a 155% genoa and had one additional reef added to the main. This really worked well for summer and winter. I have sailed on the wind in 50 knots with the main alone using the first reef. The first reef is the reef that I added between the foot and the factory reef. I tried the second reef and didn't have enough power to point in that wind. I really like and buy most of my sails from them. They know Com-Pac sails.

27Sep12 Message: Please explain the forward mast rake for the ComPac 16. I have read that the rake should be 3 to 5 degrees forward of vertical. When I do the math using a mast length of 17.5 feet, 3 degrres comes to 10.9 inches and 5 degrees comes to 18.3 inches. In other words a plumb line from the masthead to the the base of the mast would settle 18 inches forward for 5 degrees. This seems unreasonable, so I request an explanation of the correct distance forward and how to get it without too much pressure on the tabernacle and standing rigging.If you have answered this before, just give an approximate date and I will look it up.Thanks for your web site.

Answer: Mast rake needs to be adjustable and it can be. Lets start at one end and move to the other end. I'm sailing with a large friend (and I'm a large person) and I notice that we have weather helm. I'm forcing the boat to sail in a straight line with the tiller. Weather helm can be measured as follows: one finger on the tiller, one hand on the tiller, two hands on the tiller and a bend in the tiller when using both hands. The first two will work well and the last two are stopping the boat with tiller drag. If I move the mast static rake forward, I will reduce the weather helm with two large people in the cockpit. Looking at the boat on the trailer, the mast needs to be raked forward. That's because when we put two people in the cockpit, the boat will be lower at the stern and then the mast will be straight up and down. Sometimes when I want a little less helm (weather helm), I move my rearend forward in the cockpit and that moves the center of effort forward and I will have less helm. The bottom line is to adjust mast rake on the trailer and check it on the water to see if it's correct.

24Sep12 Message: I have removed the stanchions,bowrail and sternrail to solve a few leak issues. Upon removing the stanchions I noticed washers being used on the outer two holes. Should I do this again when I re-bed the equipment. Thanks for your assistance

Answer: The washers are there to make the stanchions stand vertical. Leave them out and the stanchions will lean a little to the outside.

17Sep12 Message: Starting a search for a used Suncat. There seem to be quite a few available via Internet listings. I am sure the Suncat has evolved over the years it has been built. Are they all about the same? Should I be looking for a boat built after 20XX? Asking prices seem to be relatively high compared to other used trailerables. I see Suncats that have been listed for a year or two and are still for sale. Any thoughts on what's reasonable to pay? And one completely unrelated question: What's the story on the 1998 Com-Pac 16 you have listed in used boats? It's the only one without a link to more info :-( Thanks!!

Answer: I can't remember when the Sun Cats were modified, but a newer boat is better than an older boat. It has had centerboard, deck gel-coat color, interior and mast modifications over the years. A boat that's been for sale on the Web for 2 years may not really be there. People sometimes don't remove their boats from the Web when the boat is sold or no longer available. The price of used boats change with the times. We are currently working our way into fewer used boats and their prices will be higher. A good time to buy a used boat was 2008/2009. The owner of the 1998 Com-Pac 16 has changed his mind several times about selling his boat. It going to be on the market until October and then he plans on going sailing.

12Sep12 Message: Hello Keith, Thanks for this wonderful site. The other day you answered my question about mooring chocks on a Compac 19xl. You said "We normally do a mooring line between the standard anchor roller and stainless steel bail." I assume that means that you pull the mooring line through the anchor roller and then tie off to the cleat. Have I got that right? I'd like to keep an anchor on the bow so using bow chocks would be preferable for me as long as everything is strong enough to do that.

I intend to order a boarding ladder for my boat which is set up with catbird seats & a 2 piece pushpit. I assume that 1 ladder fits all. Is this something I can order through you?

Is there anywhere I can look on-line to see parts and accessories available for these boats? Lastly, I'd like to join CPANC. Can you send me info for establishing my password. Thanks Again.

Answer: Yes, you understand what I said correctly. I don't think the bow chocks will work for a mooring line. You can try and see if it works. The term "strong enough" can mean many things when it comes to mooring a boat.

You can order parts directly from Com-Pac. Matt at Com-Pac will send you the part and charge you for the part and transportation with a credit card. Ask Matt for a parts list when you talk to him.

We need your phone number for CPYANC membership. Send me your phone number and I will sign you up.

11Sep12 Message: I have a 1979 CP 16 updated to a mark 3 ,How does this compare to a Suncat Iam looking for something with a little more room. The Suncat I looked at has alot of water in the bilge and everthing inside is damp and mustie .Are the cabin side panels removeable along with the cabin head liner for cleaning?What about the plywood below deck? You have a great site and thank you for the time you put into it .

Answer: The Sun Cat has more room on the inside with more beam than a Com-Pac 16. Both boats sail about the same. The Sun Cat may be a little faster in most wind conditions. The Sun Cat side panels can be removed, but the headliner cannot. The only plywood inside a Sun Cat is the step and forward teak bulkhead. Both are not structural and can be replaced. A few early boats had plywood gas storage lockers.

10Sep12 Message: Hi, I just purchased a Compac 19xl. I want to keep the boat on a mooring but it does not have any bow chocks. Can I mount chocks on the edge of the anchor platform? Is the anchor platform strong enough to withstand the constant strain from this setup? Thanks for your help.

Answer: We normally do a mooring line between the standard anchor roller and stainless steel bail. Your 19 has/had standard chocks on the bowsprit used for mooring lines at a slip. Some people attach a second safety line to the bow trailer eye if they have long arms. The bowsprit is very strong and a little flexible. The bowsprits damage that we see is from contact with docks during storms.

29Aug12 Message: Hello, I stumbled across your article about how you converted a Compac 16 into a lobster boat. I see that you sell a complete boat but do you offer the kit, if I already have a Compac 16 hull? Namely the pilothouse and windows?

Answer: We sell the parts. UPS can ship the house panels and the windows. The molded fiberglass top has to be shipped by truck. The windows cost $1200 and the fiberglass top cost $1200 plus shipping.

29Aug12 Message: Repairing spider cracks and other fiberglass damage / cracks / holes - is bondo or epoxy the preferred material for the repair? Surface will be sanded smooth and then finished with a 2 part product to be determined - your thoughts are appreciated.

Answer: Everything below the waterline should be epoxy. Everything above the waterline that's cosmetic can use a filler material like Bondo. West Marine sells a good filler called Formula 27 Filler. We use that filler to fill cracks and holes and then finish the job using their Polyester Glazing Putty. That putty sands like gel-coat for a no visible line repair.

9Aug12 Message: First off, I love what you're doing for all the Com-Pac sailors out there! My boat, CP16-334, has the only starboard engine mount I've ever seen, P/O installed I'm sure, but noticed that's what Com-Pac offers now on the Legacy and Eclipse..Go figure..Anyway, love the Pilot-House 16! Would you consider selling plans for us handy types with tools and skills? Thanks

Answer: Thanks for the kind words. We will trace an outline of the house parts on paper for $200 plus shipping. The roof can be made from a piece of luan and glassed or we also have a molded glass top that we sell for $1200 plus shipping. Once the house sides are put together, you can put the house on the boat to mark the cut line for the hole in the boat. The stock windows for the house cost $1200 plus shipping or fixed windows can be made from Lexan. Email can be used to answer most building questions. Com-Pac still sells the Mark II teak interior in a kit form.

29Jul12 Message: The "cavity [in the rudder head] into which the [rudder] blade slides is way too wide for the tension handle to be of any use on my Sun Cat. If inserting a shim on either side of the blade is a viable solution, what would you recommend as a shim?

Answer: This is not a common problem and fixing the problem with a shim will be difficult. The friction between the parts is what keeps the rudder down. Adding a shim would reduce the overall friction that's possible. You could replace the worn or bad part or you could add a rudder-lifting handle made by Com-Pac. The handle secures the rudder in the up and down position. If you hit something with the rudder in the down position, the handle releases the rudder. Order the handle from the parts department at Com-Pac.

17Jul12 Message: I just bought a used Sun Cat. The peak halyard is not connected to the end of the gaff. How does this connect? Perhpas I am missing a part because there is just the end cap on the gaff? The mast stub track is worn at the top (boom gets hung up here on the way down) and the boom bracket (piece that slides in the mast) is very worn. Where can I purchase the boom bracket? Can I flip the mast stub or do I need to purchase a new stub? Thanks.

Answer: A good diagram of Sun Cat rigging is the picture that's on the front of the brochure. You can download the brochure off the Com-Pac Web site. The gaff end cap should have holes cast into that fitting. The one on the bottom is for the sail outhaul and the one on top is for the end of the gaff halyard. Boom parts can be purchased from Com-Pac by calling their part's department with a credit card. Their phone number is 727-443-4408. Reinstalling the hinge can be tricky if you flip the stub or get a new one. We use a piece of plywood in the grove connecting both pieces when we drill the holes for a new installation. The grove has to fit and the joint needs to be straight front to back and side to side. Not easy.

15Jun12 Message: where do i buy a bimini for my boat that fits

Answer: Call Com-Pac direct with a credit card. They will UPS a bimini that's cut in half with instructions on how to pop rivet it back together and how install it.

12Jun12 Message: The hook welded on to the mast slide to raise the throat broke at the weld when I tried to raise sale on the water. Do I need a replacement from Compac, or is there a "standard" replacement? I have seen a suggested suncat modification that uses a short loop of heavier line looped under the gaff end at the throat to attach a block an obtain a 2-1 leverage with the main halyard, like the peak halyard. Is that a potential problem? Otherwise my suncat is pretty reliable. Unfortunately there was no warning sign before the hook weld broke from the mast slide. Thanks for your help.

Answer: I think the problem was a welding problem and an easy way to get the right part is to get it from Com-Pac. Getting the sail up on a gaff rig can be a problem. I have found that it helps to keep the gaff pointed up (same position as it is in when sailing) during the raising process. If there is wind pressure on the sail, the drag at the slide can increase to a point where it stops sliding. I keep a short length of small line on my boats to temporarily replace broken connections between sails and spars.

11Jun12 Message: I'm changing the interior of our 19 and while at it, I've been contemplating removing the concrete from the keel and replacing it with lead shot and epoxy. This will free up space for a waste holding tank and other storage. I figure I'll have to add some glass to the keel. What are your thoughts/recommendations? Thanks in advance.

Answer: We had one 16 owner remove his concrete to provide battery storage. It didn't work because the keel needs the concrete support to get on and off the trailer. He had a glass failure. Your solution using lead and epoxy should work well if additional glass is added in the right area. I'm thinking the area would be between the new ballast and where the top the old ballast ended. The curved joint area between the keel and the hull is extra heavy. Good luck with the project.

7Jun12 Message: How involved/expensive is it to install a small diesel in a CP25 that came out of the factory with an outboard. Would I be better off shopping around for a boat thats been manufactured with a diesel.

Answer: I believe in modifying boats to meet the needs and location of their owners. We have had an owner install a diesel in his Com-Pac 25. Com-Pac has a mold for the engine bed and they also sell all the other parts and pieces that you will need for an installation. I think the reason Com-Pac stopped building the 25 is that the boat cost too much build. The difference in building cost between a 25 and a 27 wasn't that much. Finding another quality boat with standing headroom that goes on a trailer may be difficult. The little Beta Marine engine would be my choice of engines and my guess on current cost would be about $8K.

1Jun12 Message: Found huge amount of water under the setees; ended up drilling hole in stern and tilting up the trailer tongue about 4 feet to drain. Please advise another method to remove the water while I try to find the source of ingress. Thanks.

Answer: We tilt the bow up when we have water in a 16. We don't drill a hole in the stern, but dip the water out with a towel or sponge at the stern. The water under the bunk that doesn't drain well will come out as you trailer the boat over time. Elevate the bow now and then to make sure all the water is gone. The big leak on most 16s is the hatch slide screws. Remove one screw at a time, caulk the screw and replace.

31May12 Message: Rumor has it that you do pilothouse conversions on older CP 23's. Is this true and how do I go about discussing this with someone at your shop. Thanks

Answer: The rumor is correct. We are building our first 1985 CP-23T in the shop now. The T stands for trawler. So far we think the conversion is going to be cost effective and very useful for most couples that want to cruise. One feature is an outboard motor for power. This reduces the cost and works for most people doing short cruises in areas like the ICW. It also keeps the engine noise and heat outside the boat. The first boat is going to have a black hull and maybe air conditioning and heat. So much for keeping the cost down.

Email, phone or come by and see the boat in the shop. We like to talk boats. Something that we have noted building conversions over the years is that a sailing rig on a small boat conflicts with some of the comfort components of a trawler. We may do a pilothouse at some time, but maybe not. I think a pilothouse would need an inboard rudder to keep the outboard for power. That would be more cost.

You have an 85 CP-23 that was built by Dan Springer a long time ago. The boat is built like a tank and is really well made. We see the quality when we cut the deck.

30May12 Message: The ring on the top of my Barlow Austrailia 15 winch broke off and went overboard. I have looked on several consignment sites to no avail for that size Barlow. Any suggestions?

Answer: There isn't a good way to repair the Barlow winches. The man made material at the top fails from being in the sun too long. A good reason to use winch covers. We have been replacing the Barlow’s with Forespar Marelon Winches. They are inexpensive and West Marine sells them. Getting the old winch off is the hard part. They are installed with nuts and bolts and we normally have to cut the bolts. We install the new winches the easy way with 1/4-inch stainless screws.

9May12 Message: Will you be offering kits or plans for a pilot house 23? I think this will be a very popular conversion.

Answer: Maybe. The first conversion should be completed this fall. So far, the work on our first Com-Pac has been easy. Mostly removing sailboat parts that are not appropriate for a trawler. The deck has been cut (big hole) and we were surprised at the thickness and quality of construction. We have identified that we have room for 2 large seats and 1 jump seat in the main cabin that has 6 feet of standing headroom. I think this conversion may also be popular on other brands of sailboats. We are documenting our conversion in pictures.

We think a 23 pilothouse (sails) conversion would need a diesel for power. The trawler conversion can get by with an outboard motor installation at less cost.

5May12 Message: My recently purchased suncat has a water situation. After sailing 2 weeks ago, put back on the trailer, put under a shed. There is water accumlinating in the cavity where the centerboard bolt is located at a rate of about 1 cup every few hours. My boat is a 2001 model where the bolt is visible. I thought that water might be trapped within the centerboard jacket and leaking through the bolt hole. I loosened the bolt to view and it is not coming from there. Water is still gradually seeping into the cavity from between the metal jacket and the concrete. How do I fix it?

Answer: Water normally moves from the bilge to the area around the centerboard bolt on early Sun Cats. They are normally bow down on a trailer. Finding the source of the leak is the problem. It can be at the centerboard pennant. We put toilet paper around the pipe on the inside under the deck and see if gets wet after we go sailing. Another leak source is the gas hatch on the first 10 boats built. The hatch was made out of wood and the joints can leak. The water goes from the gas hatch to the bilge. The last place to look is the bottom of the centerboard. If the stainless centerboard box has been in the water for a long period of time without protection, it may need replacement. Look for missing screw heads and broken welds. Com-Pac can replace the centerboard box at the factory. After finding the source of the leak, we may be able to help you with a solution.

2May12 Message: Your web site is a great source of information. Do you have web links to DIY Projects and Questions and Answers from past years? Thanks very much.

Answer: We edit our Web site from time to time to reduce the space we use on our server. This limitation reduces the amount of published information available. Sorry.

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2May12 Message: a question concerning the bulkhead - the teak partition between the sleeping area and the sitting area in the cabin - is this wall load bearing - can I remove and replace - thank you.

Answer: The Com-Pac 23 bulkhead between the cabins support the mast. It can be removed and replaced, but with great care.

1May12 Message: Can you retro a 1991 Compac II 16 with a new mastender system? If so, what would it cost?

Answer: We don't normally do Mastenders on 16s anymore. The boom tender system works better and cost less money to build. Every restoration for the last 2 years has had a stainless steel mast gallows. A very popular option that makes the boom tender system work well. Cost of restoration depends on the boat's condition. Round figures are about $3K including a painted hull.

We are currently building a Com-Pac 23 Trawler. The time it takes to restore a 16 isn't going to be available until next year.

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18Apr12 Message: Keith - you have commented frequently on the ComPac 16 and 19, occasionally on the 23, but rarely on the 27. For those who may be in the market for a larger boat and don't need it to be trailerable, would you comment on the strengths/weaknesses of the 27?

Answer: It's just a matter of cost. Back in the 80s, a new 27 cost $36K and we sold 41 new boats. We even stocked one for several years. The cost is the reason why we don't sell many new 27s today. Bob Johnson of Island Packet designed the 27 and Art Marooney, a master carpenter made the plug for the 27. It took Art 1 year to make a perfect hull and deck plug for the 27. I called hull numbers 4, 50 and 100 my boat for a while. They are great boats and we sailed them everywhere in all kinds of weather. Richard Summers took his to the end of the ICW in Texas and I sailed with him to Key West. They are large boats for the length and they make great coastal boats. We can sail them off shore, but I wouldn't want to sail one across an ocean. A boat with less buoyancy in the ends would be my choice. The Kubota engines were wonderful and we didn't have any problems in any of our boats. Great boat.

14Apr12 Message: i have decided to add a port to the front of the cabin area to my com.pac - i would like to do in bronze to match my other 6 ports - do you think an old com.pac 16 or 19 round port would work? - i am leaning toward the smaller 16 - if you recommend this do you have a used 16 port i could purchase? thank you so much

Answer: Any of the round ports will work on a 23. 16 ports are cheap, but they don't open. We have used 16 ports in stock and we also have used 23 ports in stock that do open. Call us for a price.

13Apr12 Message: Keith, I am planning on attending the sailing event May 11/12. I would like a slip for Sat night. Do I need to contact the marina in advance or are slips on first come basis? Thanks

Answer: The marina will be expecting us. I plan on giving them a boat count about a week before the event. See you there.

9Apr12 Message: I recently bought a 1973 Luger Leeward Sailboat. Do you know where I could find a manual for this boat?

Answer: The Luger was a kit boat sold in the 70s. Maybe someone that reads this site may have a copy. Send me an email if you have an old manual.

6Apr12 Message: I would like to be able to get my Suncat in the garage. By lowering the tongue it goes in good except for the boom support in the stern. I read on your web site how to cut the vertical tubing on the support and place two smaller pipes inside to make a sleeve configuration that can be removed. Can you send me these two small pipes. If so let me know the cost and I will send a check to you. thanks very much.

Answer: Com-Pac uses a brand of stainless steel tubing that has a ridge on the inside. The ridge is part of the tube building process. The 7/8-inch tube that you put inside your boom gallows needs to have this ridge removed. We use a special tool to remove this ridge on their tubing. You can use a 7/8-inch drill bit and a file to do the same thing. West Marine sells stainless steel tubing. Buying it at your local store may be less expensive than having it shipped.

2Apr12 Message: interested in the outing on May 11th, how do you join the CPYANC and what marina is it at.

Answer: You have to be a Com-Pac Yacht owner and then email me your name, address with zip code and your phone number. We use phone numbers as passwords. The Outing will be at Fair Feild Harbor that's just outside New Bern, NC on the Neuse River.

29Mar12 Message: We are interested in purchasing a Com-Pac 25 to trailer to different lakes that we like. I have heard that you may have a mast raising system for the CP25, but I can't seem to locate it on the website. Can you let me know if it exists and provide more information if it does? Thanks!

Answer: We never did a CP 25, but we talked about doing one. The current tabernacle is strong and will work as a pivot. A mast gallows will need to be attached to the stern pulpit to get the mast up as high as possible. A stainless "A" frame is required to raise the forestay higher than the mast. Attach the forestay to the "A" frame and use the trailer winch to raise the mast. We did this with a CP 23 that had furling. The owner's wife could raise the mast with the trailer winch by herself.

20Mar12 Message: I would like to join the Com Pac Club shown on your website. How do I go about doing so? Our 2008 Suncat has been a joy to sail and I have thoroughly enjoyed the information you share on your website. Also, I have several questions:
1. When do you anticipate beginning work on your Pilothouse 23. I love the new design but won't ever be able to afford $70,000 for one from the factory.
2. I bought a small storm jib from the used boat supply shop in Oriental and tested it on our Suncat and it seems to really improve the performance. Now I need to mount a halyard pulley on the mast. How would you recommend attaching it?
3. Do you have a cockpit grate on hand for the Suncat and , if so, what is the cost?
Thanks for the tremendous service you are providing for all of us who seek to continually inprove our boats and the sport of sailing .

Answer: We have ordered the first set of windows for our CP 23 Trawler. That boat is spoken for and should be finished in the fall. I think I would connect a block to a bail on the mast. The bail that we use the most is an RF 180 that can be purchased from West Marine. A Sun Cat grate cost $572 plus shipping from Com-Pac. You can order direct by calling Gerry with a credit card. We will send you an email with your Club information. Thanks for the kind words.

15Mar12 Message: Been looking for a used Sun Cat. Wondering about the Hermann. Can you provide pictures of the Hermann and specs? Do you know of any used white on white Sun Cats in the SC/NC area? (Maybe one of your customers who might be on the fence regarding selling theirs.) In central SC I need white hull and decks due to solar effects. Also what would your price be for a new Sun Cat with Trailer + modified to cockpit traveler and mid-book sheeting like the originals?

Answer: I'm sending a picture of our Hermann to you via email. I will also include a Sun Cat price list. We offer all new boats and accessories at a 10% discount. The factory will move the mainsheet for you at a small or no cost. The Hermann has a displacement of 2500 pounds and is 17 feet long. It's has a light centerboard with ballast in the keel. This boat will have a Horizon Cat mast, sail and mast gallows. It has 2 bunks, sink, stove and an ice chest.

Used Sun Cats are hard to find. An off white deck are late model boats. The darker tan gel-coat was on the early boats.

6Mar12 Message: dont have anywhere to sailaround here was woundering about converting boat to a small gas motor and if i do so will i still have to use the keel or an it come off

Answer: A Venture 21 will work both ways. The keels 400 pounds will make the boat more stable even in the up position.

5Mar12 Message: 1. Looking to start using a whisker pole again with my 150 Gen ( dropped last one overboard & sunk before being able to turnaround & retrieve). Was wondering for Pro's & Con's of sail-end fitting being either a spike to go into clew or the clasp type to go over the sheet??

2. Gelcoat area around the mast step has severely cracked over the years. Have popped some of it out. No apparent structural damage / deterioration underneath gelcoat popped area. What is best way to repair this several square inch area. Thanks

Answer: Both types of fittings will work. I like the spike configuration the best.

Some Mark I Com-Pac 19s have deck voids around the mast that need to be filled. Before I repaired the gel-coat, I would fill the soft spots in that area. Put your foot on the area and press down. If it moves, it needs to be filled. There is a gap between the deck and the inside liner. Flexing in that area causes the gel-coat problem. A compression post under the mast supports the mast and that area is not a problem. After you make the deck hard, I would repair the gel-coat.

5Mar12 Message: I've been looking at the photos and videos of the horizon cat and have several questions. I noticed that their are two lines on the starboard side and two lines on the port side going back to the cockpit. The starboard side lines are the halyards for the gaff and the throat, but I'm unsure what the lines do on the port side. This raises the questions on how do you reef the sail or for that matter how do you douse the sail? It would seem like you need a topping lift to prevent the boom from coming down on you and also a reef line should be available and rigged to preclude having to go to the mast to put the reef tack in the gooseneck. Thanks for any clarification. Also are there sail slugs in the gaff sail to aid in raising and lowering sail or is it a bolt rope? Is the foot of that sail loose footed and is there a outhaul on a gaff sail?

Answer: The port sidelines are a downhaul line and a mast raising line. You use a pole with the mast raising line to raise the mast from the cockpit. You can raise the mast by hand by standing next to the mast at the hinge. The sail uses jiffy reefing with a tack hook and an aft reefing line. A topping lift is fixed to the top of the mast and the end of the boom and then to a cleat. There are slugs on the sail for the main mast slot (between the tack and the throat). The sail uses a boltrope on the gaff and the boom. The Horizon Cat does not use a loose-footed sail. The sail has outhauls for both the gaff and the main boom.

3Mar12 Message: I read the story in the Small Craft Advisory. Fascinating! But it gave no dimensions for the boat, size of Diesel installed, tankage, or cost of the boat following the mods. Any info on that would be helpful. You have a couple boats now "in process" on your listings page with no data other than expected availability and estimated cost. These are:

1962 O'Day Mariner, Trailer, Diesel, Trawler Conversion, Available 6/2012 Est $12K

1983 Sea Ray 25, Trailer, Diesel, Trawler Conversion, Available 6/2012 Est $12K

Any additional details, specs, photos would be very helpful.

I'm looking for something similar to your conversion in the article, 28-33 in length (as is or modified as per article), at least semi-trailerable. More motor than sailer.

Answer: I really like ballast in my boats. Most of our conversions are built on a sailboat chassis because most sailboats have ballast. The boat in the SCA article started off life as a new Com-Pac Sun Cat sailboat that's 17 feet long and 1500 pounds. She is currently 20 feet long and has a 1GM10 Yanmar engine. I have added a modest sailing rig in the cockpit. The mast tender rig folds and the rig has a gaff sail. My plan was to have a ballasted boat that I could sail when I wanted to sail, yet travel on the road or on the water when I wanted that capability. I think our 20-foot boat is a minimum boat for what I wanted. At the other end of the trailerable range is the Com-Pac 23 Pilothouse. It is a new boat with a new boat price. A custom Com-Pac 23 Pilothouse built on a used 23 should cost about half the price of a new boat. We hope to build a Com-Pac 23 Trawler with a cockpit sailing rig sometime soon. I think the used boat that's going to be converted should be here next week.

The boats that are waiting to be restored and converted are available to customers that want to pay a deposit and wait to have their boats built. We may put a priority on the O'Day this summer if we have time. The O'Day is currently going to have a used diesel engine, remote steering and its hull converted to self-bailing. The ballast is going to be concrete. We may paint that boat red and with a trawler top, it's going to have standing headroom. No sailing rig for the O'Day.

When you are building custom boats, anything is possible within the limits of money and time.

2Mar12 Message: Hi Sir. Mailed you before. Thanks in advance. My Slipper seems like it could plane if I fitted a 50ish HP motor on the back turning her into a motorsailer. If a guy engineered the transom properly, think the boat would plane and be stable enough to be safe. Bottom seems flat. 19" Bilge Keel. Centre board encapsulated inside and dormant. Here's an easy motormount but maybe a floatation type mount (with deck) would work and a large space for stock rudder to remain? Cheers & Thanks

Answer: I have been talking to several Seaward owners about a pilothouse conversion. The Fox and Slipper should be great boats for a conversion. They are wide and they need more interior room. I put a 40hp on a Com-Pac 16 and it didn't plane. The keel may kill that possibility on the Slipper unless the engine is really big and that's not very efficient.

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (25)

27Feb12 Message: Cost to convert to pilothouse 16 with steering to rt as shown.

Answer: A pilothouse on a CP16 cost $6500. Remote steering with a wheel and console cost $2400. Mast and sail modifications with a stainless mast gallows cost another $1600. This basic conversion cost $10,500. Several other options are available for the pilothouse at additional cost.

26Feb12 Message: Keith, how did you rig the mainsheet control on your Pilot House CP16? If we end up with a PH M15 this would certainly get the mainsheet out of the way. I would like to have this system on our boat now, is there a way to order one from you? Also, do you shorten the mast and cut the sails down in order to lower the mast for trailering? Or do you leave the sailplan alone, and disconnect the mastender hinge and run the mast forward for trailering?

Answer: The mainsheet on the CP16 Pilothouse goes from the end of the boom to the transom. This type of sheeting or the mid boom type of sheeting uses the same general hardware and they do the same thing on small boats. When you change the attachment points, the connection between those points may also change. When we change the mainsheet configuration for a customer, we use as much of the old system as possible and then determine what additional parts are needed . Some consideration for transom sheeting is does the mainsheet slope between the transom and the boom take-up too much room in the cockpit (hits your back)? If the mainsheet has to work with a bimini, can they work together? Any additional hardware needed for this modifications can be ordered from West Marine.

The mast tender system hardware is custom built by Com-Pac. They use Dwyer masts and Com-Pac makes a hinge that will fit most of those masts and some other mast. When we do a custom installation on a different brand of sailboat, we cut the stock mast and install a hinge. We also make the bottom part of the mast (the stub) rigid below the hinge. The mast will then fold back into a mast gallows. The length of the mast determines whether the mast is discounted and moved for transport or not. The CP16 Pilothouse stock mast length is short enough that we do not have to disconnect it for trailing. Cutting the mast and installing the hinge is best done by an experienced shop.

The only time we shorten a sail is when we install a pilothouse on a sailboat. We like to use stock items on a boat to reduce cost. Com-Pac did that with their Pilothouse 23 and we also did that with our Pilothouse 16.

24Feb12 Message: we got ourselves a small 16 foot sail boat. and have used it last season on lakes. And are thiking of trying it on the Long Island sound this comming season . what kind of gps and marine rado would you recomand. We do not have one now.

Answer: Cell phones have replaced the marine VHF radio for most coastal sailing purposes. Make sure you have a list of appropriate phone numbers for your area. I like the small handheld Garmin GPS with a marine map. West Marine can help you pick out a GPS that has a marine map of your area.

22Feb12 Message: I thinking about the performance difference in 20 ft gaff rigged cat boat vs a typical sloop rig. Having never sailed a cat how does it compare to the sloop in various points of sail and ease of reefing singlehanded? Thanks. Any polar diagrams?

Answer: Catboats sail about as well as sloops if everything else is equal. A catboat doesn't have the slot between the jib and main, but they normally have a little more sail area that does about the same thing for pointing and power. The gaff is an automatic reefing device. The gaff falls off in big winds and dumps the wind in the top of the sail. Reducing power at the top of a sail reduces heel. Sorry, no polar diagrams.

20Feb12 Message: Considering the pilot house for our Montgomery 15, how is the mainsheet arranged? I am assuming since there would be boom gallows, a similar maisheet like found on the Legacy would work? Or using a Barney Post arrangement in order to relocate the mainsheet aft of the pilot house, yet still retain mid-boom sheeting? Would the jib sheets c be relocated to the side decks with the clutch cleats installed on the cockpit coaming? Early thanks for your time

Answer: Making a pilothouse work on a small sailboat takes lots of measurements. Our Com-Pac 16 Pilothouse is a good example. The running rigging stayed the same for this design, but might change to something like the running rigging on the 16 with other brands of sailboats. We added a mast tender hinge to the mast and an aft facing stainless steel handle on the house to keep the boom off the house. Com-Pac did something similar with their Pilothouse 23. The 16 will live on a trailer and most 23s will stay in the water most of the time. These considerations and cost determine rigging design.

19Feb12 Message: I have a 2004 Horizon Cat that I mostly sail on Lake Norman but looking forward to some trips to the coast and florida keys. My sail only has one set of reef points and I have noted on some of the videos that the sails have 2 reef points. Would like your opinion on having 2 reef points and if so do you have a reference for somewher I could send the sails to have a second reef point added. Enjoy your great website and check it daily. Appreciate all your help.

Answer: You may never need the second reef point, but it’s nice to have one if you travel with your boat. I remember one time when my Com-Pac 27 diesel stopped after putting the boat on her side. Diesels don't run well with air in the system. I had to sail upwind in 50 knots of wind so I used the second reef in the main without a headsail. The second reef didn't have enough power to tack the boat. I then tried the first reef and it was just the right amount. I like a second reef point that's available and maybe even more so on a Horizon Cat.

We use Super Sail makers for sails. They are OLD Com-Pac sail makers that have good prices and do good work. Their Web site is Talk to them and get a quote before you ship your sail.

17Feb12 Message: Following your CP16 Pilot House conversion, if we did the same to our M15, it would essentially entail installing a pilot house, installing a tabernacle for the mast, installing boom gallows to hold the mast, installing a bench seat over the bridge deck and installing a canvas enclosure(maybe with noseeum)to secure the pilot house. I would imagine you would need to remove the centerboard and fill it in with a plug. This is where the cockpit drain is located, so something would need to be done to accomodate the drain(possibly leave an opening at the rear of the keel/centerboard cavity, or installing a PVC pipe with the drain coming out of the rear of the keel). This might facilitate the cockpit drain and eliminate water coming up through the drain as it now can if there is too much weight in the stern. I'm thinking we could replace the Honda 2hp long shaft motor with a 4hp, like the Tohatsu. These motors have external fuel tanks and can be fitted with a charging system, and have F-N-R gearing. The extra power would be good for weathering head winds/seas, but other wise would not be run much over 1/2 throttle to attain hull speed of approximately 5 to 6 mph. I'm curious what this conversion would cost. We would pay separately for a different motor, or possibly work a deal to trade it in for a motor from you. I seriously believe converting our M15 to a trawler is an option that would best work for us. The pilot house would provide standing headroom in the cabin, better protection and room for another couple to join us. We could still cruise and sleep aboard as we now do, but I think it would be much more comfortable. By keeping the tiller/rudder configuration as it is, upping the engine hp and leaving the boarding ladder in place makes sense. We might add a bimini top extension for the cockpit also. I'm also curious what we could expect to get for the mast and sails. Early thanks for your time, and finding you! I think you're providing a fantastic option for folks who like their boats, but other wise would have to sell them and look for something suitable.

Answer: A basic trawler house cost $6500.00 installed. The conversion includes canvas, windows, a bridge deck cushion and an overhead hatch. Removing the centerboard would cost more, but it would be reasonable. I'm sure you would have more cabin space without the centerboard. Keeping the sailing rig would also cost more. A mast modification with a gallows might cost $2000.00 and you would have to keep your centerboard. Between the trawler and the pilothouse configurations, the pilothouse cost more and has less usable room. A used mast, boom and sails are worth about $200. They would be worth more if you sell them yourself through Craigslist or EBay.

16Feb12 Message: The Photos i am looking for is Photos of the inside of the compass 14 if that is not possible let me know...

Answer: I emailed an inside picture to you on the 12th. I noticed that you do not appear to receive my emails. I talked to you last year about a mast gallows for one of your boats. You may not have received that email because I didn't get an answer. My emails may be going to SPAM?

15Feb12 Message: Reading SCA about your Sun Cat trawler is a great idea. I would be interested to know if we could do the same with our M15? There would be no need to extend the hull. Cutting the cabin top off just below the edge to include the existing sliding hatch, widening the companionway opening to coincide with the cabin sidewalls, using the exisitng forward cabin angle as a reference and moving the cut-off section aft from the mast partner, then installing sides and front walls to raise the top section. The rear of the pilot house could be solid with an offset door(so it could be opened to one side and held in place when desired or closed and locked. Forward windows(solid), sliding windows on each side, and a window in the door. Raising this part of the cabin approximately 16 inches, adding a traveler on the top, running the remaining halyards to the cockpit, possibly fitting a tabernacle for the mast might work? We would still use the existing tiller for steering and a small outboard for power(might go from our 2hp Honda to 4hp). This would provide more headroom and protection, but leave everything else basically the same. Of course, if we eliminated the sail completely and rasied the entire cabin top, this might be our only option without lengthening the hull. I'd like to get your thoughts on this idea. Being retired, I'm thinking we could certainly make this modification to our M15 for less money than buying a larger cabin cruiser. Early thanks for your time...

Answer: I think I would use the Com-Pac 16 pilothouse configuration. It is less complicated and it will look great on the M15. Making the existing top look good would be more difficult. As the cut-off top goes up in height, the house sides get more vertical. I would modify a computer line drawing of the M15 and see what the boat's going to look like using both modifications. When I do a modification, I keep in mind that if it looks good and works well, the boat is going to be worth more money when it time to sell.

I really like the canvas cover over the aft house wall. It can't be locked, but the view through the boat and the forward windows makes sailing or motoring from the cockpit workable. The Com-Pac 23 PH house has solid aft walls and they steer from a helm position inside the boat. A tiller requires the helm’s person stand up or use catbird seats. You need to be in the cockpit if you are docking a PH by yourself. I think we need all the inside air we can get when we live in the south. Gerry at Com-Pac was concerned about locking the house and I'm more concerned about visibility and ventilation.

The Com-Pac mast hinge should work on your mast. Add a hinge and raising the mast will be easy. You also need a mast gallows to carry the mast in the down position. If you make a trawler, you can put the motor in the middle of the transom and remote the steering and motor controls inside the house.

11Feb12 Message: Still looking for the photos can you direct me to them the ones ofthe compass 14Thanks again

Answer: Click the name of the boat on my Web site's Used Boats list. That will give you a picture and a description of the boat.

10Feb12 Message: I know its cold out side but do you have any photos of the Compas 14 you have listed, is the trailer ready to travel,what color is the sail and how much stain is on it,is the boat glass or wood, what work needs to be done on it. i am very intrested what is the bottom line price. thanks

Answer: I just posted a picture on the Web site. The trailer is a late model in good condition. I think the bunks need some adjustment to fit the boat better. The sail is white and I think the stains may be dirt. The bad spot is on the clew that may not have been covered by the sail cover. The boat is glass with wood trim. The only work on the boat that needs to be done is new varnish on some wood components. The bottom price on this boat is $3500.

8Feb12 Message: I have a sanibel 17 that I am seriously considering converting to a mini trawler. I wanted to get some idea of the conversion cost estimates. I might consider a diesel but I was think of hanging a Honda 9 on her stern. I love this boat but I am getting up in the yrs and jerking sails is getting to be work. Any info you could give me would be appreciated and dI would consider having you do the work.

Answer: The approximate price of our economy mini trawler conversion is $10K. This conversion has a house, windows, top hatch, canvas, seats, an inside wheel and outboard motor controls.

7Feb12 Message: I wrote to ComPac with a few specific questions as well as asking for the name of a good dealer to buy a 27 from. Mr Hutchins answered my questions and he gave me your name as a dealer. However, I do not see any used 27's available on your lists. Do you have a relatively late model ComPac 27 available? My max budget is around $35,000-40,000. Thank you.

Answer: We sold 41 new 27s through the years and some used ones become available now and then. The last time we had a use boat on our yard was 2 years ago. The best way to find a used 27 is to search the Web using Google.

1Feb12 Message: Greetings, how much for the remaining compac sixteen pilothouse conversion kit ? Thanks

Answer: The Pilothouse conversion kit has 3 major components. They are the fiberglass top, cost $1200. Precut house panels, cost $600, and windows cost $1500. Shipping is extra. The top and house panels need to be shipped by truck. UPS can ship the windows. We have a top and house panels in stock. Windows take 4 to 6 weeks to obtain from CA.

30Jan12 Message: How would the compact legacy perform on the Chesapeake bay's short waves? Is she self righting? Is there performance improvements on the legacy over the old compac16?

Answer: The short waves on the Chesapeake are similar to the coastal conditions in FL and other east coast states. All little boats have a short wave problem if the waves are high enough. They can't get their speed up between the waves to get through the next wave. I think a heavy little boat will do better than a light little boat. I remember not being able to get my CP-16 through 3-foot short waves that were on the nose in the Neuse River. I had all the speed I needed going down the trough between the waves.

The Legacy is self-righting.

The Legacy has the same sailing performance as the old CP 16, but an experienced sailor can get lots of performance from a 16. A light centerboard boat will out sail a 16 in light air. If you never have whitecaps on your water, the light boat will work just fine. The CP 16 is a happy boat in 18 knots of wind and the wind was blowing 35 knots when I had those 3-foot waves above.

27Jan12 Message: We have a racing sailboat that was given to us by a grieving father. It belonged to his son. All he knows is that it is a racing sailboat and very expensive. The only thing we have on the boat are some #'s: TSP25155M83G & NC3484AY. How do we get info on this boat?

Answer: The boat was made by TPI Composites, Inc., Warren, RI. Coast Guard Hull Identification numbers are posted on the Internet. The builder's hull code is TSP and it was built in 1983. Call North Carolina Wifelife for registration data and the current owner's name. They have it recorded with the NC number.

18Jan12 Message: can i buy a pattern on paper that would show me how to convert a 16 to a trawler only need the top conversion, I would like to build one out of Ply wood as a test mockup first. Thanks

Answer: We don't have a way to a make paper patterns (cost and time). We have had sailors come by our shop and make their own patterns on rolls of paper. We do have a resident trawler that can be used for that purpose. Sorry.

16Jan12 Message: Hi, A really impressive site/work/knowledge and I'll probably become a customer of your business as I will move to coastal eastern NC this year. Question: What's your opinion on the Compac Sun Cat vs. the Horizon Cat in your coastal waters?

Answer: Thanks for the kind words. Com-Pacs are built in Clearwater, FL and their coastal areas are similar to NC waters. Most sailboats are territorial and designed for the areas where they are produced. Both catboats work well here and are priced lower than catboats built in other parts of this country. The Sun Cat is more portable (trailers well) and the Horizon Cat may be a better boat for a slip. Both boats can do both.

15Jan12 Message: Do you think performance on your CP-16 Pilothouse would be improved: 1) if the boat had the 11" bowsprit that was added to the CP-16/2 to reduce the weather helm of the CP-16/1; and 2) if a Sun Cat mast was used for the additional height to avoid removing 12" of the mainsail foot in an already under-canvassed boat? I realize this is all hypothetical, but I'm very interested in your opinion. Thanks.

Answer: I published a DIY Project yesterday on this Web site where I talked about sailing performance and a Sun Cat's sail plan. If we had modified a CP-16/2, it would have had a bowsprit. Adding mast height would have been easy. We used a 16 mast from Dwyer as a mast stub because they can ship a 6 foot length UPS. The standard mast would have been 2 feet higher had we not cut the mast to make it into a standard length. Had we used a taller mast, it would have extended some distance behind the boat in the folded position. I tried to avoid the Eclipse mast tender method where you disconnect the mast from the hinge for trailering.

Had the boat been built for lake sailing, a taller mast would have been desirable. The CP-16/1 that we just raced on the New River (click CP-16 race on the left) pointed well and had good speed in light wind. Like everything else, getting good with a 16 takes time. I think the amount of power you get from the bottom 12 inches of a mainsail is small. Changing the size of the jib or genoa can change the total amount of sail area. We hope to race the Pilothouse against a standard boat in the spring. We have a new race course that starts at our slip in Jacksonville. It going to be fun.

If I remember correctly, the only boat that needed the bowsprit for weather helm purposes was the CP-23. The other boats in the line got the bowsprit as a cosmetic upgrade.

15Jan12 Message: hello and sorry for my very bad englisch. Can you send me more pictures and more informationes about this compac 19. Has this boat some troubles?

Answer: Your English works about as good as mine. You did good. I will send you more pictures by return email. Our used Com-Pac 19 has never had any troubles. The boat could be sold and shipped without the trailer. The trailer may not be legal in Germany.

9Jan12 Message: Where can I find an elastration or description of the handy splice system, that I can use to raze my mast gallows? Thank-you for your consideration.

Answer: I use Com-Pac brochures to identify hardware capabilities. You can download brochures from their Web site. You live close to the factory and I think I would stop by and see them. They enjoy talking to owners.

6Jan12 Message: Hi! Does it possible visit you company? I won see & discuss diesel modification. Thanks

Answer: Come anytime. We live next door to the business. A map is on our Web site. Give us a call at 910 324 4005 before you come.

6Jan12 Message: Is there a price list available for the Pilothouse 23 with options, etc. Thank you.

Answer: We will send you a price list by return email. We offer a 10% discount off new boats with options.

29Dec11 Message: Cockpit drain(s) leaking. How to repair/replace? How are they installed? Attached?

Answer: The cockpit drains are PVC pipes on the Com-Pac 23, Mark III. When the deck is upside down at the factory, the drains are glassed to sockets in the cockpit floor. As the deck is attached to the hull, the pipes project through precut holes in the transom. This transom connection point has changed through the years. Access to this point is difficult to reach when the deck is attached. If your boat has drain covers on the transom, the covers seal this connection point. Most leaks can be identified by water tracks on the inside of the transom. We have installed an access port on the vertical surface of the gas tank space to access this area. You need to identify the leak source and only repair that problem. An access port makes working on the drains possible from the cockpit and new drain covers can be installed on boats with or without the original drain cover installation.

26Dec11 Message: I have recently purchased a new Picnic Cat and find myself in a difficult situation.My wife age 72 is physically fit but is showing symptoms of dementia and she is afraid of sailing. I do sail alone and with my son at times. My wife is O.K. with motor boating.Can the BoomTendrâ"¢ Quick-Rig system be situated 2 feet higher on the mast so that there is more head room in the cockpit when launching and getting quickly under way, like a small motor sailor with the mast down on the gallows? Thank-you for your consideration.

Answer: I think I would make it 18 inches taller and add another higher hinge to the mast. Have the sail reduced at the foot by the above amount and raise the mast gallows with our handy splice system. I think adding a hinge will be cheaper than changing the mast stub. Either solution will work. Leave the original hinge in the closed position during mast raising and lowering.

21Dec11 Message: Saw your "answers" posting this morning concerning your trawler house instructions being available by email. Could I possibly get a look at the instructions and some prices for the parts? Also do you have the dimensions of the house for your CP16?

Answer: Example of Building Instructions For Trawler Construction:The house sides are made from a 4X8 sheet of COOSA (fiberglass and foam). Glassed 1/2-inch plywood could be an acceptable alternate material. Paper patterns are used to layout the sides (sides are pre-cut if purchased as a kit). Cut the sides out and stand them up on the boat's deck. Attach them together using tape. Check for a good position on the deck. The aft edge of the house needs to be behind the aft edge of the current cabin. Some non-Com-Pac 16s may have handles or other obstructions on the deck. Conduct email conversation with The Sailboat Company at this time. Mark the deck on the inside edge of the house with a magic marker. Cut the deck hole for the house with a saw. Install the house over the boat's deck using tape. When the house is in position, glass the inside edges of the house using fiberglass tape and resin. When the inside edges are glassed, the panels will be rigid. The next step is to glass the house to the boat using the same fiberglass tape. Mount the top to the house sides and check for a good fit. Conduct email conversation with The Sailboat Company at this time.

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (26)

End Example.

The house top is a fiberglass laminate made in a mold. The Com-Pac 16 house base dimensions are 55 inches wide by 49 inches front to back. Most installations will finish the house and the top using gel-coat to match the boat. Spraying gel-coat is easy, but getting it to shine after spraying is the hard part. Most older boats have a dull gel-coat finish and this can be matched without to much work. There are several ways to do windows. Some very nice and others, not so nice. Less money for the not so nice. The inside can be painted or have panels installed. The steering and remote controls for the motor are standard installations. A motor installation has been designed for the Com-Pac 16 and will work with most sailboats. A long shaft, electric start motor that can use remote controls is desirable. Price examples for parts are a white gel-coated top cost $1200 plus shipping. Precut house panels cost $700 plus shipping and a set of 4 windows with 2 sliding cost $1500 plus shipping.

20Dec11 Message: Would like to convert my cp16 into your CP 16 Trawler. Is there a kit?....plans?...a finished kit. and all one has to do is install via instructions? Thank you for any info you can forward....

Answer: We sell the finished boat and also the parts for home construction. A trawler modification has 3 major groups. Group 1 is the house top including a hatch. It can be shipped by truck. Group 2 is the house sides and windows. The sides are made from foam and fiberglass panels. Group 3 is accessories. The accessories are the motor mount, inside steering system, canvas and the stainless steel handles. Groups 2 and 3 can be shipped by UPS. The finishing materials can be purchased anywhere. They include glass, resin, fillers and paint.

The instructions for home construction are done via email. We help you build your boat step by step. One of the most inexpensive options is to have us install a house on your boat and you do your own finish work.

We also take Com-Pac 16s as trade-ins on finished boats.

15Dec11 Message: Where Have you been? I look forward to your Updates!

Answer: I haven't had many questions during the holidays and we have been busy with sales for the last few months. 2011 was a big year for restored Com-Pac 16s and business looks good through early 2012. We are going to help the New Bern NROTC sailing program and we will report our progress when they start sailing in March. I think you are going to see 3 boats sailing at the same time on your computer. Our modified Com-Pac Sun Cat Trawler should be in the next Small Craft Advisor. The magazine pictures don't show the current cockpit sail configuration. We will report on its sailing capabilities when we have more time and wind. The Yamaha 25 with the short keel is in the water and we will do performance checks in the spring. The boat feels good in the slip and I think it's going to sail well. We shall see. I hope everyone has a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

15Nov11 Message: hi there! my boat is tucked away for the winter, but i brought the rudder/tiller home to work on. I would like to put a new coat of paint on the portion of the rudder which attaches to the transom.. any suggestions as to what type of paint to use? i also need to put some anti fouling paint on the rudder itself. it is a foil rudder, made of some type of plastic. any ideas about what to use on that portion of the rudder? thanks!

Answer: We tape around the rudder part that's on the boat. A flat black paint will work and the type of paint isn't too important. We normally don't paint the rudder. We make it work as designed. The rudder should be raised and turned to one side when it's not being used for steering. In that position, the rudder will be out of the water. Com-Pac sells a rudder-raising device for your boat that makes moving the rudder up and down easy.

12Nov11 Message: Was just looking at your Com-Pac 16 Pilothouse for the first time. A nice looking mod. I have a few questions. What year is the original boat, and with or without centerboard? Is this a Mastendr like the Suncat that stays attached to the stub when trailering? How is it raised/lowered? (Looks like you have some sort of standing rigging attached to the bow pulpit in the first photo.) What sail area did you end up with? What does the boat weigh with the addition of the pilothouse? Do you anticipate any issues with the higher center-of-gravity and/or the increased windage resulting from the pilothouse? Has anyone actually put the boat in the water and sailed it yet? I like it. You guys have a real eye for this sort of thing and the skills to pull it off. (Applause in the background.)

Answer: Our Pilothouse is a 1977 model without a centerboard. It has a mast tender system like the Picnic Cat. The mast size for the Com-Pac 16 and the Picnic Cat are the same. The mast is easy to raise with a mast-raising pole attached to the trailer. One person can raise and lower the mast from a position on the ground at the bow of the boat. The line at the pulpit is part of the mast raising system. We had our sail maker remove 12 inches of sail from the foot of a standard Mark I main sail. We estimate the house, windows and hatch at 150 pounds with a total boat displacement of 1250 pounds. The house is built on a foam fiberglass core that is very strong and light. We think the boat will sail like a standard 16. The 450 pounds of ballast and shoal draft makes this design possible. All 16s go sideways at 35 degrees of heel. Getting 2 boats together for a photo shoot has been difficult. We will do that as soon as we can. Thanks for the kind words.

7Nov11 Message: Hi, I'd like to clean the interior cushions on my 19/2 and I realize the covers unzip. Once the covers are off, should I launder them or dry clean? They're in excellent condition, just need cleaning. Thanks

Answer: Never remove the foam from the covers. You can't get it back in after the covers have been cleaned. We cleaned them like you would a rug. Use a foam rug cleaner and follow the instructions on the can. Put them outside on the cushion's edge to dry. When they look and smell good, put them back in the boat.

26Oct11 Message: Hi Keith,I have pulled my boat from the slip at Steele Creek where it has been since 2004. This CP-23 was in excellent condition when acquired from George Hare. The interior remains in very good condition and really needs no attention. The hull is showing some wear and needs some restoration. The deck is probably ok, with usual chalking. Bottom was painted in 2004 with two coats of red interlux micron, and I cannot tell if sanding and repainting is needed, but I'm guessig it does. The hull above the water line is in good shape, with only one 2-in gouge in the gel coat where bow struck the dock. The navy boot and cove stripes are showing a good bit of wear and peeling. I would be interested in a quote for painting the hull, and probably the bottom. Is that something you would be interested in doing? Before I haul her down to your shop, what do you suggest as a means for evalualtion and estimate of needed work? I have read your Answers page from begging to end numerous times!, so I sort of know what your approach is on most repairs. Of course, I am also considering sale and or upsizing to a boat with more head room, but more likely want to get this boat back in good shape and in the water. I am also seeing what I think is some minor blistering in the area along the port side water line between the bottom paint and the stripe. I can call you to talk about options if you will give me number and best time to call. Thanks

Answer: Boats need bottom paint to protect the hull from blisters in warm lake water. Your bottom paint may be OK if it's clean and smooth. We only do estimates on boats that are on our yard. Wintertime is a poor time to paint because we need 50 degrees of outside temperature to paint. It's hard to find 50 degrees except for short period of time in the afternoons. The bottom is best done in your local area. We do the cosmetic work best and we call it restoration. Bring the boat down and we can do a restoration cost estimate. The next available date for new work is next year.

We do lots of custom work on Com-Pac Yachts. A pilothouse for your boat would cost about $15K. A new pilothouse 23 cost about $72K. Both have standing headroom and are trail-able. Our phone number is 910 324 4005 and our working hours are M-F 8-4.

26Oct11 Message: Am interested inmaking a whisker pole for downwind use with a genoa. I'm thinking of using aluminum tubing with fittings at both ens, one to attach to the clew, the other attached to a bail attached to a track installed onthe mast. It would not telescope out but would be fixed length. Your thoughts on tube diameter, length, and opinion of the approach. I have yet to find a satisfactory pole in of the boating supply catalogues. Appreciate your insight.

Answer: We think the Forespar ADJ 4-8 is the best whisker pole for a Com-Pac 16. The pole diameter is 1 inch and West Marine sells the pole.

13Oct11 Message: Well, hubby and I are disagreeing about the condition of our mainsail. The luff edge is "puckered" along the encased rope, we get a lot of comments that the sail doesn't look right, he thinks it is made that way for speed (it "bowls", catching more wind?) Is this right? I just want it to look nice!

Answer: A sailboat needs all the power it can get from its sails on a lake. A lake is normally considered a low wind area because most lakes are in a hole or low area or it wouldn't be a lake. The luff of the a main sail is the acceleratorpedal for all sailboats. You stretch the luff to bring the main sail camber forward as the wind increases to balance the boat. If you have little wind, you don't stretch the luff and if you have lots of wind, you stretch the luff to reduce weather helm and balance the boat. A "puckered" sail looks good to me in light wind conditions.

5Oct11 Message: what size trailer do i need for my compac 23?

Answer: You can sellect the right trailer on the Web. You have a 3000 pound boat. Check trailer speifications on They sell trailers in your area.

4Oct11 Added Answer: The owner reduced the price $500 to $6,000. He reminded me to mention that the 4-stroke motor only has 12 to 15 hours running time.

3Oct11 Message: What is the bottom price on the 97 cp 16 you have, Another QUestion is it possible for someone to do the converson on the 16 by using one of you converson cabins.

Answer: I will check with the owner on the bottom price and let you know. We offer the Pilothouse/Trawler cabin in various stages of completion. The most popular option is doing a rough in for $4,500. We put the house on the boat with a top. No finish work or parts are included in that price.

3Oct11 Message: I want to know if it is okay to remove interior screws on round fixed portlight to clean interior of lexan port. Thanks.

Answer: Com-Pac may (maybe not) use a sealant to hold the plastic lens when they install the inside port. The inside ring and lens are designed to present a finish look and can be removed.

28Sep11 Message: Keith,
I really like your 23 conversion with the Horizon Cat Rig shown in the custom section. Is the mast deck stepped or keel stepped? If deck stepped how do you reinforce the deck to support the mast? I saw my first Compac 23 Mk III the other day and thought the standard rig was not well supported. In fact, the boat I saw was bowed down inside from the weight of the mast and showed water intrusion (mast step had been thru bolted). It would seem that a keel stepped mast for this modification would be a good improvement (taking into account that the head would have to be relocated) over the standard rig. Do you agree?

Having done both the Sun Cat (mast in standard position) and Horizon Cat (mast in forward position) sail conversions for the 23, which do you think sails better and offers the best overall performance across all wind conditions? I must admit the Horizon Cat Mod looks much "saltier".

I have really enjoyed your site and appreciate the work that goes into maintaining it - Great Work!

Answer: The green 23 project boat with the Horizon Cat rig has a keel stepped mast. It's built like a Horizon or Sun Cat. The mast stub works well on this installation. The only time we had a mast bridge problem on 23s was back in 1982 and it only affected about 10 boats. It was from a construction problem, not a design problem. The through bolted boat may have had other external problems like contact with a low bridge. The only downside to the Horizon Cat rig was folding the large main sail in windy conditions.

The next modification on that same boat was moving the mast back to its original position (smaller main and larger headsail). We had to use a deck stepped mast for this modification because we didn't want to change the inside configuration. We had Com-Pac make us a stainless steel tabernacle that would hold the mast stub of a mast tender system and we used a Sun Cat sail for a main. We haven't had time to sail this configuration yet, but will soon and take pictures.

The purpose of both modifications was to make the 23 more trailerable. We like the short (gaff) mast. Anyone can raise the mast without help. The mast systems on the catboats have been very successful and making it work on a 23 is even better because you have a larger boat when you get to that distance location down the road. Both boats will balance well and they will both sail well. The Horizon as we designed it will have a little more sail area than the Sun Cat rig. We did have the Horizon Cat rig deck stepped in the original position for a while. The boom extended about 2 feet aft of the stern. Old English sailboats did this type of sail configurations for light wind conditions. I had a hard time securing the end of the sailcover. This boat wasn't more trailerable, but I would consider it for sailing on a lake.

28Sep11 Message: I have multiple leaks between the cabin top and the hull; both sides around the chain plates and forward. Can this be sealed without splitting the hull / cabin top apart? Suggestions?

Answer: Pull the rub rail off the hull to deck joint on your CP-23. This is best done during the summer time on a hot day. You don't have to disconnect the rub rail at the bow and stern. Lay the rub-rail on the deck or let it hang. Remove the tape from the joint. The tape is there to prevent the 3M5200 from getting on the rub rail while it was still wet during the build process. Clean the joint or grove between the hull and the deck from the outside and apply a new bead of 3M5200 to the grove. Let it cure for about 24 hours and replace the rub rail. Com-Pac used the hull to deck joint to secure some of the inside trim on Mark II and newer boats. You may find a screw coming through the joint. Use a shorter screw and seal the hole with 3M5200.

27Sep11 Message: I would like to keep a plow anchor on the bow roller of my 16 to make it more handy than keeping it in the forward compartment with the battery (yikes). Do you have any input regarding this setup? I see a similar arrangement on the cover of the owner's manual that came with the boat.

Answer: The bowsprit on your Mark III is designed to hold an anchor. A little Bruce anchor (no longer sold in this country) looks really good and fits well. A Bruce replacement anchor is a Claw anchor sold by West Marine. Your boat should have a deck pipe giving your anchor rode storage access. I use a plastic bucket inside the boat to hold the rode. Tie the bitter end to something inside the boat. Flake a wet rode on the deck to dry before putting it in the boat. Tie a short line between the anchor and the bow cleat for going down the road.

20Sep11 Message: I am also considering buying a CP 16. I have extensive sailing experience. I notice that my friend's 16 does not sail too well into the wind in light air. Partly because the sails are old and have lost draft, but also because the spreaders and stays interfere with genoa trim. Where can I see the DIY section to see how tough it would be to add a bow sprit? His boat is a CP one, obviously. Any other thoughts to help upwind pointing in light air would be appreciated. Thanks

Answer: Mark I CP-16s didn’t have spreaders. The spreaders installed on the Mark II and after didn't really work and they can be removed. The rig works without them. In really light wind, sail surface drag is important. I like to use a jib and bring it inside the stays to squeeze the air between the jib and the main. Use your hand to control the clew. This powers-up the main and you point higher. Always heel the boat with the crew being on the low side in light wind. This points the boat up by at least 5 degrees or more. At a wind speed still in the light wind category, sail surface drag disappears and the genoa works better than a jib. You still need to squeeze the air by using your hand on the genoa clew. Tell-tails tell the story in all cases. Avoid stalling the keel and finding the correct wind direction in light air is another secret to light wind performance. Our DIY section will be on this site in a few weeks. The Legacy anchor device is the new bowsprit for the older boats. You will also need to extend the bow pulpit on a Mark I boat. Both easy modifications.

9Sep11 Message: Any suggestions on where to get a new or used trailer to accomodate a Horizoncat?

Answer: We needed a trailer to sell a Horizon Cat that didn't have a trailer. Getting one from FL was too expensive because transportation for one trailer to NC was too high. We purchased a Road King trailer that worked well. Any Road King trailer dealer can sell you a Horizon Cat trailer. I don't think there are any used trailers for sailboats.

5Sep11 Message: How far aft should a boom bail be mounted to accomodate a vang?Can the vang be attached to the mast step through the holes on either side of the step plate? Thanks for yor help.

Answer: A Com-Pac 16 should have the bail mounted as far back as possible without having the vang interfere with cabin access. We use another RF-180 bail on the mast. We think the holes in the tabernacle would be too weak.

4Sep11 Message: i have a 155 - can this sail be converted to use roller-furling - and which of the systems do you recommend. thank you.

Answer: A 155% genoa on a 23 is the best sail in most conditions. The sail bends around the shrouds to let the boat point higher. The sail can be converted to furling with a luff strip and a UV sail cover by a sail maker. I like Harken furling best, but any of the other cheaper systems will work.

3Sep11 Message: Please advise your thoughts on using a traditional, or asymmetrical spinnaker. What are the suggested deimensions? Secondly, what is appropriately sized pole...for use with spinnaker? or, a pole to pole out a genoa. Appreciate your advice.

Answer: There are 2 general types of spinnakers. One is used for racing and requires crew and lots of extra equipment. This type of sail is not recommended for a Com-Pac 16. The cruising spinnaker made by most sail makers can be a fun sail if well designed. I like them made flat without too much belly. This type of sail should work like a large genoa in light air. You should be able to point within 70 or 80 degrees of the wind. Running a halyard from the top of mast means the sail will need to jibe to change directions. We normally use a Forespar Adj 4-8 whisker poles on Com-Pac 16s. I think lake sailors will use a spinnaker more than most coastal sailors will.

1Sep11 Message: i read the following: My Sun Cat sail is installed on a Com-Pac 23 with a Horizon Cat boom. Sailboats should also be fine tuned for the age of their owners. I don't like folding the Horizon Cat sail because it is a large sail. Of course, lake sailors need all the sail area they can get. my question is: is there an advantage for me to do this on my 23/3 - i sail on "no wind lake norman" - thanks

Answer: I think I would like to have a standard sail-plan and a 155% genoa with furling gear on Lake Norman. The Sun Cat sail on my boat is for coastal sailing where we have more wind.

30Aug11 Message: With the current up and down with our stock market, I would not like to take money out question. Do you have any one who is willing to Finance a 16 trawler. Also I love the finished 16 with the sail nice colors could you post some more photos of the inside. Glad you made it through the Storm.

Answer: You helped us develop the generic Sun Cat boom gallows. Thanks. I can't think of anyone with finance money for custom boats. I will put some more inside pictures on the Web soon. We will be glad when this hurricane season is over.

26Aug11 Message: I check this site everyday, and I really appreciate the time you spend answering our questions. It is very helpful. 2 questions. I read earlier a statement you made about using a Suncat Sail on a Horizon Cat especially if sailing coastal North Carolina. What modifications would I need to do and can I purchase sail from you. Second, I have a 2004 Performance trailer that came with the boat (bought her used last year) and instead of rollers have a carpeted keel board. Is there an advantage to this board over rollers. Thanks

Answer: I think all sailboats should be fine tuned for their area. The Sun Cat sail can be used on a Horizon Cat without modification. The gaff and boom will be a little longer than needed. I cut my Horizon Cat boom to get rid of the extra length and put it back together again with pop rivets. My Sun Cat sail is installed on a Com-Pac 23 with a Horizon Cat boom. Sailboats should also be fine tuned for the age of their owners. I don't like folding the Horizon Cat sail because it is a large sail. In lots of wind, it can be a tiger by the tail. We sell Sun Cat sails. Of course, lake sailors need all the sail area they can get.

Rollers are better than a board. Rollers are made by a company that makes rollers. The trailer company makes the board and the rollers are no longer included in the cost of making a trailer. The board reduces the cost of building a trailer.

23Aug11 Message: Finally pushed myself forward to view the chain locker, found water stains on bottom of sole. Since the dorade is directly above (but lacks a dorade boxs to keep water out) I'm wondering if the rot in the bunk boards and the bulkhead forward of the compression post is due to this location of rainwater egress?Secondly, when closed and reopened the amount of heat and humidity suggests poor ventilation. Should I install a niko vent int the dorade space? should I cut a screened porthole in the stern to the port or starboard of the lazarette, increasing ventilation flow? I recently cut out a new hatchboard and drilled 3/4 inch holes, covered it with aluminum screen to improve the ventilation. What are your thoughts?

Answer: Water stains normally indicate a leak. Old Com-Pac 16 vents leaked at the base. We point our vents toward the stern and this helps with big rainstorms. Normal ventilation is not normally a problem because the boat vents at the sliding hatch, the deck vent and we do get some venting at the rear hatch. We replace old vents with new models that don't leak. Com-Pac has them in stock and we buy ours vents from them. The brand is Sea Dog.

14Aug11 Message: Least costly way to transport a ComPac 16 to San Bernardino? Tow on its trailer? On trailer on car carrier? Other? Are you a new compac dealer ie Legacy. Thank you.

Answer: Towing the boat and trailer to CA would be best if you had some other reason to come east. We do sell new Com-Pac Yachts, but we do have a CA dealer. I have asked the Factory to send you contact information on that dealer.

7Aug11 Message: I am looking for a bronze port like the ones on my com.pac - Where should i begin the search?thanks

Answer: We have 2 new ports in stock that we will sell for $600. They have to be sold as a set. The oval ports in a 1991 Com-Pac 23 can be repaired. New glass (Lexan), gaskets and a soak in a vinegar and salt solution will make them look like new.

3Aug11 Message: I would like to purchase 2 matching bronze cleats for spring line contacts for our 23' 1985 compac - is that a Compac factory part or do you have used available?

Answer: Matching a cleat to an older boat will be difficult. Com-Pac cleats change from time to time and we don't have any used bronze cleats. The Web may be a good place to start looking.

2Aug11 Message: There is a reference to DIY files and their removal (due to limits of memory?). Where does one find these DIY files? are they listed by categories? (exm. hull maintenance; rig painting)

Answer: They are no longer on the Web. Unfortunately, the space on our server is limited. We rotate data from time to time and the DIY section will be published again this winter.

2Aug11 Message: I would like to add stern rail/pulpit; I have access to a boat at a marina being cut up and would like to extract the stern pulpit and modify it (cut to width) and instll it. Does it require backing plates? Is access possible through the quarterberths? through the cockpit lzarette? Your thoughts? Thanks.

Answer: Backing plates are normally not required for pulpits. They have lots of contact points and washers will work well as backing plates. Access for installation is possible, but difficult. Com-Pac still makes their old stern pulpit for the CP-16. It may be cheaper to buy their pulpit that comes in 2 pieces and is easy on transportation cost. Com-Pac has a stainless steel shop and they make their own stainless steel components.

29Jul11 Message: I recently purchased a compac 23/3. I would like to know how long is the forestay. My plan is to to add a furling. Also your advice on make/model of furlings.

Answer: I bet Kansas City has changed a little since I grew up there. The sail maker will need the pin-to-pin measurement for your boat. Put the mast up and run a tape up the forestay. Measure from the top of the mast toggle to the forestay hole in the bowsprit. The sail makers will modify your sail in length if needed and install a luff strip. They also install sailcovers in your choice of colors. I like Harken furling the best (best sail shape). CDI is also popular because the cost is low (poor sail adjustment). The sail maker will need to know the brand of furling because luff strips change by brand. We are currently doing business with Super Sailmakers in FL. They know what they are doing when it comes to Com-Pac boats and they are on the Web.

8Jul11 Message: There is a "port" opening forward of the compression post, on the shelf forward of the bunk/setees. Can you identify for what purpose this was intended to satisfy. How should one go about insuring the space is clean, mold and dampness free? Thanks.

Answer: This port gives you access to the bolt that secures the bottom of the compression post. The hull area under the port should be free of mold and dampness if you don't have a leak. The wood in your 16 does an excellent job of reducing moisture content in the cabin. Other brands of boats with only fiberglass in the cabin have moisture problems.

7Jul11 Message: Keith, Are you still doing Suncat/trawler conversions? If so, what is the cost? Do you allow owners to help with the conversion to keep costs down similar to what Norseboat does with their boats? Thanks for the info.

Answer: Yes. The cost for a Sun Cat to Trawler conversion with diesel power is about $30K. Keeping your outboard power reduces the price to $20K. Some outboards can't be controlled remotely and that may be a problem with your current motor.

We can always use help building boats. Most of the conversion cost is in materials. I think some of the inside detail work could be done by you at your location with our help. That would reduce cost.

29Jun11 Message: Have you ever increased the coaming height on a C-16? If so do you have any images? Suggestions? It would be nice to have more of a backrest similar to a Nordica 16.

Answer: We have not added coaming height, but we have removed the coamings for access and good looks. Making a mold from the existing coamings and then adjusting the molds for the correct shape should work as a height extension tool.

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (27)

25Jun11 Message: Forward of the companionway, in the cabin, looking aft, is a square of flotation foam with the remains of "black" adhesive. Can you identify what this adhesive held in place? What is your recommended for covering this foam space? Thanks

Answer: A 1981 Com-Pac 16 uses block foam to support the cockpit (deck). Some people think the foam is for floation. It is not. Older boats use a wood brace for the same purpose. The Factory used a black indoor/outdoor rug to cover the white foam. It appears that part of your foam may be missing. Make sure your cockpit floor doesn't flex when you put people in the cockpit.

16Jun11 Message: Have cut out portions of the rotted bunkboards, both sides. The supporting 3/8-1/2 supports running along the sole are wet and rotting as well. Can the wood be dried, if so, how? alternatively can it be treated with 2-part epoxy? thanks for help.

Answer: Stop the leak and the wood will dry. Get all the water out of the boat and let the hot summer sun and as much air as possible dry the boat out. The only way to do a good job of replacing 16 bunks is to remove the deck. When we do a bunk replacement, we glass in new wood in the original position after removing the old wood. If you only have a small area of damage, I think I would cut a piece of wood to fit and glass it in place. When water is in a 16, we lift the bow as high as we can. Normally we use a 2X6 under the trailer tongue with the stern sitting on the ground. All the water drains to the stern and we can remove it through the stern hatch. Make sure the boat is secured to the trailer.

9Jun11 Message: The CP-16 spent the sinter on the trailer, somewhat elevated. Was late in roving my winter tarp; the cover ran from stern to over the hatch. When I opened the aft lazarette hatch there was about 2inches of water on the ballast area. I pumped it out. The cabin showed no evidence of any water intrusion. Can you offer an explanation as to where the water found access to the "bilge" area? What should I do to prevent it from happening again? Thanks for you help.

Answer: The boat's angle on the trailer is important. If the bow is up, the rear lazarette gutter will drain water into the boat. If the bow is still up when you find the water, getting it out the rear storage area is easy. If you use the boat without seeing the water, the water will run to the cabin floor. The cabin floor is the lowest part of the boat. You have to do an Indian dance with a towel to remove the water from that area. I don't like tarps on boats. They have to be well designed to do a good job without problems in rain storms.

7Jun11 Message: OK I have a Compac 16 and I know I have ask in the past but. HOW much to make it in to a pilot house so I can cruse the rivers in tennessee and what do I get for the pice you are going to give me. How do you need your money and how long will it take.I have a small camper and will tow it behind me, I also would like to sail the boat and wonder about the stearing from the pilot house.Thank you for the answer you are going to give me.I am 61 and have three sailboats and two kayaks its time to slow down.

Answer: The basic CP-16 Pilot House conversion price is $8,000. This price includes the pilot house with sliding side windows and an overhead hatch. The house has a painted interior with a bench seat for 2 people. The cabin retains the standard bunks, head location and the forward shelf around the compression post. The aft standard ports on each side are removed and that area is refinished. The general house finish is matching gel-coat. The house exterior has 2 handrails on top and 2 handrails at the entrance. The entrance has a removeable canvas cover in a choice of colors.

Additional included items are a mast tender system, a teak mast gallows and a jib furling system. Available optional items include a teak interior and a modification for fuel tank storage.

The CP-16 Pilot House has steering at the tiller only. This arrangement opens up the house as a great place for gear and crew. Sitting on the bench seat and looking out the windows is the best seat on this boat. A canvas extension off the house could make this into the best camper ever made. The house should extend our sailing season on both ends.

Our next available build date is 1Oct11 and we would like to take 3 months for completion. We need a 50% deposit to start work, the rest at completion.

7Jun11 Message: Keith, your website just keeps getting better. Thanks. Question:What brand of bottom paint have you found to do the best in NC brackish waters. Is the Abulative or hard surface type the best? The boat is in water during the summer months, but on the trailer much of the year.Also, on your beautiful Com-Pac 16 Trawler, what color bottom paint did you select (grey, lt blue). A good looking boat for sure.

Answer: We are currently using Blue Water Marine paint. We haven't been using it for very long, but we think it is going to be a good paint. We do have lots of experience with Pettit (Trinidad) and we think it's a great paint for our area. We needed to change for business reasons. An ablative hard surface paint is best for our use. Light sanding between seasons works well for us. The gray paint on the Trawler is a barrier coat. It currently has black bottom paint. We think black wears better than other colors.

6Jun11 Message: Hi, thanks for all the information that you post. This has to take a good amount of time to maintain this website, but getting good information on these boats from someone with experience is valuable and I do appreciate your efforts. I have a Com-Pac 19 that I use as a trailer launched daysailer and I am always looking for ways to shorten and simplify rigging and launching the boat. I'm considering removing the backstay and moving the upper chain plates back on the hull to speed and lighten raising the mast. I have several questions. How far back from the original position have you been placing the upper chain plates? Are you using just washers to back the bolts that have been added to the aft located chainplates? Finally will I need to reinforce the compression post inside the hull. The bolts on the post have already bent and I am wondering if the lack of a backstay will increase the compression forces on the post. Thanks again.

Answer: See picture below for chain plate locations. We use extra inside chain plates for backing plates. Get them direct from Com-Pac. They are cheap. The compression post load will not change. If you replace the damaged bolts, make sure you support the deck at the compression post before you remove and replace the bolts. The deck is loaded in its static condition. It will drop at the hull to deck joint if you are not careful.

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (28)

25May11 Message: Your thoughts on the cp 25 with westerbeke, reliability, general upkeep, with use on inland waters.

Answer: I have own several 25s that I called "my boat". I like the size and the Com-Pac quality. I have one owner that uses his CP-25 on a lake in Ohio. He has had the boat for a long time and likes his boat. I have several owners around here (coastal North Carolina) and they all like their boats.

24May11 Message: I sail my Suncat a lot in light air(under 10 mph) and am wondering whether a slightly lighter weight loose footed dacron sail would be helpful. I recognize that the range of wind speeds would be narrowed at the top end. Also do you think full battens would be any advantage in such a sail? Really enjoy your site and have learned a lot here!

Answer: I think making a sailboat sail in light wind is what sailing is all about. You don't need as much sailing talent to sail in big winds. Customizing a sailboat to sail well in a local area is what an experience sailor would do. I like your lighter weight sail idea, but I don't think full battens would help (more drag in light air). We just talked to a Sun Cat sailor about using a CP-16 cruising spinnaker on a Sun Cat in light wind. The wind off the headsail (jib or cruising spinnaker) is directed through the slot to the mainsail. When the mainsail gets some wind, the boat moves out in air that you can't see on the water. You could borrow or buy a used CP-16 jib for a test. A low cost jib from any daysailor will work. You will have to add a halyard, but the sheets can go anywhere for light air sailing. Good luck.

20May11 Message: What do you recommend for a motor mount backing that is installed inside the hull? Am fixing a bad installation on my used boat and am interested in what you might suggest. I'm thinking oak.

Answer: We use 1/2 inch plywood for most backing plates inside boats. Plywood will not crack like solid wood panels.

15May11 Message: I was reading the Mast Raising section and I saw that I would benefit from a Boom Tender System off the Sun Cat. Do you carry that? What's the price? Do you carry a Mast Gallows for my boat? I was also wondering if you carried a bowsprit that would work on the 1982 com-pac 19 making like the newer ones? Thanks.

Answer: A mast gallows for a 19 cost $450 plus shipping. You really need a stainless steel stern pulpit to make that option work well. A better solution may be our Generic Sun Cat gallows sold under the Hardware Section on our New and Used Parts link. With a mast gallows installed on a Mark I 19, you don't need a mast tender or a boom tender system. Your boom will fold by pulling the boom aft and rotating it 90 degrees. We strap the boom to the mast and pull the main sheet tight. See the 16 picture below.

You can buy a bowsprit direct from Com-Pac. You will need to modify your bow pulpit like the one we did on our DIY link. I like the anchor roller option for a Legacy better. It will extend your sail plan by 12 inches just like a bowsprit, but it will cost alot less money. See the 16 picture below.

The rigging on your 19 could remain the same, but we like to remove the backstay and move the uppers aft. You don't have to do this modification, but raising the mast is better without a backstay. If you install a bowsprit, you may need to install a small extension. We have a picture of the rigging changes on our Mast Raising link.

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (29)

15May11 Message: For lite air sailing areas, would it be possible to install the Mastender System on a Com-Pac 23D with the Horizon Cat Boom, Gaff and Sail? This should provide a gain of about 30 sqft of sail area over the Sun Cat Gaff Mod with the modified jib. The idea being that you can always reef the Main without depending on a big Genoa for lite air performance.

Answer: We did the Horizon Cat rig on the 23 before we did the Sun Cat rig. The boom was a little long but manageable and everything else worked as designed. We went to the Sun Cat sail for ease of use and because we normally have more wind in our coastal area. Had this been a low wind (lake or West Coast) project, I would have stayed with the Horizon Cat sail. I remember seeing pictures of old English boats with mains that extend pass the transom. A little more weather helm isn't all that bad. You use the 23 mast (make it shorter), the 23 boom as a gaff and buy a new boom for the new sail. What makes a mast tender work for the 23 is the tabernacle. The first tabernacle we made was made from carbon fiber as a sock and proved to be too much work. Com-Pac made us a tabernacle from stainless steel that worked better. You can order one from Com-Pac and use our specifications.

One benefit to the Sun Cat sail is that the boom can go higher on the Horizon Cat mast. This gives us standing headroom under the bimini. I really like this part of the modification.

Another benefit for Horizon Cat sailors is a Sun Cat sail if they have too much wind. I'm sure many Horizon Cat sailors that live on the East Coast fall into this category. It's an easy modification. The picture below shows the Horizon Cat boom and sail on the 23.

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (30)

13May11 Message: Can I purchase already made teak foot pads for my factory installed ladder on my 2002 Sun Cat? I'm sure the round rungs will not be easy on bare feet.

Answer: Com-Pac sells teak and "Starboard" foot pads for your ladder. They may be difficult to install because they require drilling and tapping holes in the ladder rungs for attachment. West Marine sells "Sole Mate Ladder Treads" that may work for you. They are designed for 1-inch rungs and I'm sure our ladder is 7/8 inch. You should be able to come up with a spacer that will make them work on the smaller rung. The West Marine part number is 490136 and the price is reasonable.

3May11 Message: I love my Sun Cat but I'd sail more if I could sail better in light air. Do you have any suggestions or ideas about adding a drifter. I've "Googled" this and folks who have bought rip stop nylon at Jo-Ann Fabrics. I could buy some nylon, but I'd have no clue what to do with it!

Answer: I think I would buy a Com-Pac 23 cruising spinnaker offered for sale on this Web site. The $100 price tag is a big bargain and you can make it work with some adjustments. We currently have 2 in stock.

If I had a Sun Cat in a light wind area, I think I would add more sail area. We have modified a Com-Pac 19 with a Com-Pac 23 mast and sail. It worked well in light wind and wasn't that bad in heavy wind. We talked about adding a bowsprit to a Sun Cat and adding a jib, but didn't get it done. I have purchased Sun Cats from Clark Mills when he was building the Sun Cat. That was many years ago and before Com-Pac started building them. His boats had more sail area and a different rig. The Com-Pac Sun Cat has room on the deck for a mast behind the hatch. The Sun Cat could be a sloop without too much trouble.


Answer: With the keel going downwind, we want less drag and the keel is shaped for this condition. When we are on the wind, the sails produce power at an angle other than our true course. The difference between sail power and keel direction produce a keel pressure difference from side to side (side-slip). This keel pressure difference is called lift. The keel foil shape should help maintain smooth water flow at certain speeds. An old flat Com-Pac rudder blade produces good lift at high speeds. You can see some drag being generated at the trailing edge (rooster-tail). The new foiled rudder blade may have less drag. I think the answer to your question is "maybe".

27Apr11 Message: I would like to repaint the bottom of my 23. I've told by others that you can put a piece of 2 x 8 between two of the trailer keel rollers and use jacks on solid base to raise it a couple of inches to roll under the keel where it would normally contact those rollers. In your opinion, is the keel strong enough to do that? Movable wedges at the bunks for lateral support.

Answer: The keel is strong enough to support the boat. I don't think I would lift the boat with jacks. I think I would paint the area between the rollers and let it dry (about 2 days). Back off the trailer winch strap 4 inches and connect the boat's 2 aft mooring cleats with 1/2 line to a tree. Pull the trailer forward until the boat moves aft. Paint the area between the rollers and then pull the boat back with the trailer winch. Some owners have removed and replaced their boats on their trailers using the tree method. Blocking the keel as the boat comes off the trailer with additional lines or supports on both sides works well. You have to be careful when you move 3000 pounds.

24Apr11 Message: Hello! I have taken the rub rail off of my '79 CP-16 to temporarily seal the deck to hull joint. In the late Fall, I hope to disassemble things to completely renovate my dear little "Puff". What can I use to temporarily hold the rub rail on tightly enough to sail this season, but to be able to remove it easily enough come winter? The joint's few leaking spots have been sealed using a removable marine caulk. Would that do to help snug up the rub rail? Thank you so very much! I live in NC and hope to visit you sometime this summer! I appreciate your forum! thanks again!

Answer: The rub rail on a Com-Pac 16 is a snap-on fit. Your rub rail may be too long. The way we install new rub rail is to attach one end. We then run the middle part the shortest distance over the deck, stretching it an much as we can and attach the other end. We then pull the rub rail down over the joint for a tight fit. It is best to do rub rail work on a hot sunny day. Old rub rail can be hard to fit. It doesn't stretch as much as the new stuff. Come by and see us anytime.

21Apr11 Message: We've owned our 1984 Com-Pac for two years. We sail it primarily in the Albemarle Sound. The boom that came with it is not original. The main is, I think, original. It has a rope in the foot that appears to be for a slotted boom and and because our boom has no slot, we've been sailing her loose-footed. I'm curious if a slotted OEM boom might be a worthwhile investment performance-wise. Do you have OEM booms for this boat for sale? How much would one cost? While we're at it, would a vang be something we should consider as well?

(Happy Birthday Mom)
Answer: Your current boom should be OK if it is long enough to fit an outhaul tension device. When the wind is up, the foot will be too loose and that will keep you from making the sail as flat as it should be. A loose-footed sail may help performance in light air. A vang is normally used for sailing downwind. I don't like sailing downwind unless I'm racing. You may not use a vang that much. Most people don't. I may have a used boom for sale and the price would be reasonable.

19Apr11 Message: I recently purchased a 2004 Horizon Cat and have found that the ports are leaking. After a rain the carpet under the port and starboard "shelves" is wet and water has leaked onto the cabin cushions. Could you give some advice on best way to handle this problem. Thanks, and I really appreciate your site and the time you spend helping out Compac Owners.

Answer: We have had some success by removing the inside frame and caulking from the inside. Plastic windows do not remove well after being sealed with 3M5200 and I would try to avoid that solution. Also check to see if the glass to window gasket is damaged. Com-Pac can provide new gaskets. Water should puddle on the outside next to the window after a rain. All the windows should have the same puddle. If the leaking window doesn't have a puddle, it's the gasket. Good luck.

18Apr11 Message: Depth sounder - my readout is a Standard Communications Model DS45 - The transducer is a Airmar - the base is not a thru hull, but epoxied to the fiberglass bottom under a berth - the base is loose, not a tight fit where base is attached to hull - I am not getting any depth displayed on the read-out -does the loose base play into this? How do I troubleshoot this unit?

Answer: The transducer has to make contact with the hull. The loose transducer may be the problem. The boat has to be in the water for testing. Make sure the transducer's face is "wet" by putting it in a plastic bag of water. If it still doesn't work, your next test procedure is to replace the transducer. Your transducer installation was designed to be permanent. Most people use caulking without bubbles to make the "wet" connection between the transducer and the hull. The test bag of water will freeze during the wintertime.

15Apr11 Message: Love your site. You would have my businessif is lived near NC. Have you had any requests to repower using an electric motor? I saw a Thoosa Electric inboard at the New England Boat Show and am seriously considering this to replace my outboard. Any thoughts? Also, any recommendations for a yard in my area (NH, ME)?

Answer: We haven't had a request for an electric motor installation yet. We are in a coastal area where they may not be that popular. We can travel long distances with a Com-Pac 23 in our area. I can remember a 14-hour trip between Ocracoke and New Bern, NC.

Com-Pac makes engine mounts for their diesel models. That mount should work for an electric installation. Com-Pac is currently converting from the old angle iron mount to a new fiberglass mount used in the Pilot House model. Getting the outboard off the transom and putting the motor amidships makes the boat sail and feel better. I really like a diesel 23.

One of Com-Pac's largest dealers was located on the Parker River. I think their name is Fernal, but I thiink I would check with Com-Pac for a recommended dealer in your area.

13Apr11 Message: Am planning the replacement of rotted and broken saloon settee boards. They are broken from the compression post area back about 30-40 inches. My plan is to: 1. establish the pattern for the area to repaired; 2. remove the damaged plywood; cut out new plywood to the pattern. My questions are as follows:how does one cut the plywood to match the inside curve of the hull liner? how does one "tab" the plywood, both to the hull liner and the forward bulkhead? Lastly, I saw pics where teak/holly sole was installed in the space between the saloon settee boards. Can one install wood on this space and, if so, is it installed with new stringers and the flooring epoxied and screwed? Your advice and recommendations appreciated.

Answer: The damage was caused by the boat's leaking hatch slides. Make sure you pull the screws, caulk the screws and then replace the screws. A dry boat is a happy boat.

We use cardboard or heavy paper to make a pattern. Place the cardboard on the curve and use anything including your hand to make a crease in the cardboard. You can cut the cardboard with scissors to make your curved pattern. I would use the old glass as a connector if it is still there. If it isn't, lay the wood down next to the hull and lay glass and resin at the joint. Epoxy will stick to wood better than polyester resin. The wood parts that we have been talking about are part of the boat's structure. They are designed as bucks, but they also make the boat strong for trailer use. Teak and holly or anything else that's fancy is a veneer. We put it on top of the structure.

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12Apr11 Message: Hello Again, I Recently acquired a 155 Genoa and would like to use it on a drum and swivel sys- tem while retaining the factory jib ,similarly equipped. The boat has a Hutchins bow sprit. In effect Iwould have two options, each on a separate "forestay"Does this make sense? If so where would the upper and lower mountings go?Even if the two headsail idea is a no go ,I would like to install a foestay for safety's sake as the cable in the luff arrangement is only as strong as the upper swivel. Please give me your advice on both questions. You have been most helpful in the past and I appreciate your wise counsel.

Answer: I don't like the 2 forestay arrangement. It may work if the boat is in the water all the time. We install a safety line (another halyard) for a wire furling system. It lives on the mast when the mast is down and we connect it to the pulpit when the mast is up. This arrangement gives you a safe system.


Answer: Clark Mills designed the Com-Pac 16, 23 and the Optimus Pram. He also designed the Sun Cat and the bow of the Sun Cat and the 23 are almost the same. The 23 bowsprit fits the Sun Cat like a glove. I think all traditional sailboat designers borrow features from each other over time. The answer to your question is "maybe".

6Apr11 Message: Is it possible to use the trailer that comes with the Compac 16 (Magic Tilt) with 8 inch tires to haul a Compac 19. Or does it take a completely different configuration?

Answer: The 16 trailer holds 1100 pounds and the 19 trailer can hold 2000 pounds. A 19 can't be used with a 16 trailer.

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2Apr11 Message: I have heard that there has been situations where the genoa/jib track on the Compacs equipped with them can come off of the top of the coaming because it is not through bolted. Is this a cause for concern and if so what is the best fix?

Answer: That's a new problem for me and we haven't seen it on the Com-Pac 16s. The larger boats with larger loads are through bolted.

1Apr11 Message: Ever try using the stern pushpit as the mainsheet horse or round bar traveler with the CP23?

Answer: We haven't done that yet. Most of our mainsheet traveler modifications move the mainsheet from mid boom to the bridge deck.

31Mar11 Message: I wish to sand and varnish the wood on the deck. Initially,I wish to remove the wood supports surrounding the companionway hatch and the hatchboard. Are the screws removed from the inerior or accessible by removing "bungs" then remove the screws by unscrewing them? Wht would be the recommendation for removing "bungs"?

Thanks again for all your support and advice.

Answer: You can remove the wood on a CP-16 by removing the screws accessed from inside the boat. No bungs involved.

26Mar11 Message: About the Compac 16 pilot house. IF I furnish the boat what would be the cost and Can I still use it as a sail boat or buy the one 16 you have and have you turn it into a pilot house..Suggestions and Price.

Answer: The Com-Pac 16 Pilot House is currently a $10K modification to a 16 if you furnish the boat. The Pilot House will have a cut down mainsail and the jib or genoa that's on the boat. The only change to the sailing rig is a hinged mast, a boom gallows and about 18 inches of sail removed from the mainsail foot. The boat will sail about the same as a standard 16. The halyards will be lead back to the cockpit. The hatch in the house will be larger than the Trawler's hatch and will allow most people to standup in the house. The side windows in the house slide open and a canvas covers the aft end of the house. The old bridge deck will have a standard seat cushion designed for "out of the sun" sailing. The bunk and toilet locations will remain the same.

We currently have 2 used Com-Pac 16s for sale. Both are suitable for conversion. We are currently offering the sailing rig modifications as a discount. Prices will be subject to change.

21Mar11 Message: I really appreciate your web site. New owner of 2004 Horizon Cat. The rudder on my boat is foiled and has several "dings" in it with glass exposed. I need some suggestions on repair. Also would like to paint the rudder but unsure if to paint or compound/wax if it is gelcoat. Thanks for your time and consideration.

Answer: Your rudder started life with a gel-coat finish on the outside. Most Horizon Cats that have bottom paint also have their rudder painted with the same paint. If the boat is going to be trailered, I think I would repair the original gel-coat. The rudder should be bottom painted if the boat is going to live in the water.

18Mar11 Message: 1981 CP-16. At the top of the Rudder head are two screws/rivets. I assume these held the jam cleat in place. Where do I get a replacement for the jam cleat? Also, are these screws or rivets (the head is stripped).

Answer: West Marine sells jam cleats. Get one that fits the rudder raising line. Use one of the existing holes in the rudder and drill another hole if the other cleat hole doesn't fit the other rudder hole. Cover the spare hole with the cleat if possible. Most new cleats will not have the same hole pattern as the old cleat. You can use screws or rivets to attach. Com-Pac has used both in the past.

15Mar11 Message: In your DIY section...glad to see it back Thanks. The picture associated with DIY Project 15 gives me an indication of placement of a new motor mount. It appears to be lower on the Transom than the original mount. My question is can the motor mount be placed at the same level of original mount. For consideration: extra long shafted motor Thanks

Answer: I would put it at the same level. The new mounts are (up and down) adjustable and a little longer front to back. They make 3 different outboard lengths. Standard is 15 inch, long is 20 inch and extra long is longer. The 19 really likes the long length. The extra long is too much in my opinion.

7Mar11 Message: Replacing damaged cabin berth plywood tops - what do you suggest as a replacement grade plywood? What type of sealer, epoxy or paint on this replacement?

Answer: The solution to the problem is to stop the leaks and make the inside dry. "CD" grade exterior plywood from the lumber store will work just fine. The factory currently uses an oil base paint for the inside, but they have uses latex paint from time to time. You need to match the existing paint color. Com-Pac has changed from gray (your boat) to white for the inside color.

4Mar11 Message: Great web site - I love the "answers". You guys are incredibly knowledgable. I am cleaning up my recently purchased 1988 CP 19/3 and would appreciate some advice on how to properly clean the aluminum mast and boom without damaging the finish. Thanks.

Answer: We use Marine Penetrol for masts and booms. It's a product made by the Flood Corporation and comes in quart cans. West Marine should sell Penetrol. A Flood Corporation phone number is 800 321 3444.

26Feb11 Message: I just recently discovered your website and I was really enjoying looking at pictures of your trawlers and reading thru the DIY section. Do you have any plans to put some of that content back up on the site? I'd really like to see some project boats and how-to's if you have any stuff like that.

Answer: My Web site has a size limit and pictures take up lots of space. The War Stories and Cruising links will end in early April and the DIY section will return. We have a Com-Pac 16 Trawler that's just about finished and it will be featured in our "What's New" link soon. Small Boat Advisor magazine has all the building pictures for our Coastal Packet Trawler and they may be in one of their up-coming publications.

25Feb11 Message: Hello,I'm looking to set my new Picnic Cat up for camp/cruising. Any ideas on creating a sleeping area on a Picnic Cat. I was thinking of suspending a camping hammock between the mast and boom gallows but wasn't sure of the strenth of the gallows.Any cool ideas would be appreciated.Thanks

Answer: We have a picture of a Picnic Cat with 2 biminies installed on our Member's site. I think that's a good idea for camping. You could add supports to the boom gallows uprights. The tubes are 1 inch stainless and a clamp-on fitting with small stainless extensions to the deck would work. They sell all the parts and pieces at West Marine.

23Feb11 Message: Current (original?) mainsail has no slugs but bolt rope(s). Do you suggest sugs be installed? if so, what size slugs? One person suggested not using the bolt rope on the boom, instead using it as "loose-footed"; what is your thoughts?

Thanks again for your advice and assistance.

Answer: Slugs are better if you fold your sail under a sail cover. If you don't use a sail cover, your boltrope sail may sail a little better than a sail with slugs. Many innovations in sailing do not apply to everyone. When we raced 16s on a regular basis, we didn't see any difference between loose footed, boltrope and slugs on sails. We also didn't see a big difference between centerboard and non-centerboard boats. The centerboard boats would point higher (5 degrees), but they were slower downwind. The biggest difference in 16 sailing is the sailor .

23Feb11 Message: I noticed in a previous answer that you stated you took the hull apart when redoing the interior wood in a Com-Pac 16. 1.) What do you guys use to bond the two halves back together? 2.) Do you have templates available for the interior wood pieces?

Answer: I'm sure that I meant to say that we removed the deck from the hull. The hull to deck joint is sealed with 3M5200 and reconnected with rivets or screws. We do not take the hull apart. The old wood interior was connected to the hull with resin and glass. You can look at another 16 for the other dimensions that you will need to build an interior. We don't have templates for that application. .

16Feb11 Message: Hi Keith; We have been the proud owners of out Com-Pac 23/II for 8 years.The boat is still in great shape and gets many compliments. The only problem I have is that the forward most starboard portlight has developed a leak around where the portlight penitrates the cabin side. I have caulked around it twice using 3M 4200, I have cleaned the area with acetone . I have been trying to keep the size of the bead to a minimum. I would rather not remove the portlight but if I must I must.What is the best way to proceed and what is the best caulk to use. Thank you for your help.Keep up the great work on your site.

Answer: I use 3M 5200 and it works well on port leaks without removing the port. Most caulking jobs require compression between 2 objects to work. That's a true statement for all underwater caulking. 3M 5200 is so good it will work without this requirement above the waterline. Those Com-Pac 23s keep getting better and better.

10Feb11 Message: The photo albumn displays a new CP-16 with boom gallows and lifelines. Can a 1981 be fittted with lifelines if a boom gallows is purchased?

Answer: A lifeline option for the Com-Pac 16 had a stainless steel pulpit with lifeline attachment points, 2 stanchions, and a stern pulpit. I'm sure the factory still sells this option. A custom system can be made for an 81 model using a boom gallows, 2 stanchions with the lifelines secured to the deck at the bow. Lifelines parts can be purchased from West Marine including the swaging tool. They also sell a stainless steel connector that will fit our 1 inch stainless generic boom gallows.

8Feb11 Message: Hey Keith, How's it going? Fine I hope. Trying to figure out where to mount a depth finder. I'll use a puck transducer that will shoot through the hull so no hole necessary hopefully. Don't know where to put the gauge. Any ideas? Thanks!

Answer: We put the transducer in the storage locker under the forward cushions on a Com-Pac 19. The indicator goes on the cabin bulkhead facing the helmsman. You can test the transducer in a plastic bag of water. If that works and I'm sure it will, we use a glob of silicone caulk for a semi permanent installation.

7Feb11 Message: I've heard pros and cons on different methods of removing old bottom paint. What do you feel is the best and easiest way to do this job?

Answer: The value of a boat with a smooth bottom is much greater than one that has a rough (not smooth) bottom. Once it has a rough bottom, making it smooth is difficult. West Marine sells several different paint removers that work well. If the old paint is heavy, several coats of paint remover are required. The final process is sanding to make the bottom smooth again. It hard work and takes a long time for good results.

I have heard that sandblasting also works for large bad bottoms. I think I would try this method if my boat was larger than 25 feet.

7Feb11 Message: I need to replace my motor mount...currently have a 7.5 Johnson Sea Horse 2 stroke 1983 model but thinking about upgrading to a 6 hp 4 stroke. Do you have any recommendations for a motor mount. Thanks

Answer: The Com-Pac factory uses a stainless steel bracket like the one sold by West Marine (it may be the same bracket). The part number is 315119. Most 6 hp 4 stroke motors are about 60 pounds and this bracket will work well. West says don't use this bracket for 4 stroke motors, but they appear to be wrong. I would add stainless steel fender washers to the installation bolts as added backing plates.

31Jan11 Message: Your forum is excellent and has helped me greatly already. I own a 1981 CP-16 which was well cared for above the waterline, but had poor attention paid to bottom paint although it was kept in salt water. When I bought it last fall, it was covered with barnacles. I removed most of the hulls, but a lot of residue and the base disks are still present. I was planning on having the hull from waterline down sanded and painted and wondered what was the right product(s) procedure(s) to use. I will be keeping her dry on a trailer and using in fresh water only.

Answer: I would complete the sanding by making the bottom smooth. We would paint the bottom with a barrier coat and then paint with Pettit Vivid that has a white color. We barrier coat all boats that haven't been bottom painted before. The barrier coat will also help protect the glass after the heavy gel-coat sanding. We like Vivid white because it makes the boat look original and that's good for a boat that's going to be used from a trailer.

26Jan11 Message: I intend to repair the "spider cracks" just above/around the port and starboard rails. I will use a a triangular sanding pit or a triangular cutter is preferred?

After I drill out the damaged areas, forming a triangular cavity, I will clean out with soap+ water, then initially fill with "putty"(per Don Casey's book on Sailboat finishing). Then I will fill with either paste gel coat or gel coat resin and finally, sand to finish.

Question 1- what type of putty is recommended? Does it need to be color matched? Question 2- should I use both paste and resin? Will paste alone suffice? Question 3- do you have any suggestions as a starting point for tinting the gel coat of a 1981 CP-16? Question 4- Any steps I missed or do you have some thoughts to improve the process i outlined?

Answer: We use a dremel and it works well. We don't use soap and water for cleaning. We do use Acetone for gel-coat and alcohol for painted surfaces. We use Formula 27 (Evercoat) as a filler. The filler color is white and that's important. Gel-coat is transparent and less gel-coat will be required if the filler is as close to the same color as the gel-coat. We also use a Polyester Glazing Compound (Evercoat) as a final filler. You will get a better blend between the old and new surfaces with a glazing compound. The glazing compound and the old gel-coat have the same amount of hardness. We use paste for color match purposes. We mix a little of this and a little of that for the right color. Starting with a basic white gel-coat requires lots of mixing. Mixing a paste with resin wouldn't work very well. Com-Pac boats are for the most part an off white color. We buy gel-coat from Com-Pac and they will sell it to you in small quantities. A pint should do it and they call the color that you want "Dusty White". You might add a little paste for a better color for your boat. Most old boats have lots of chalking. This makes the surface dull and your gel-coat repair will cure dull. Your gel-coat will cure dull because it contains wax. Wax is required to seal the gel-coat and make it hard. Gel-coat inside a mold doesn't require wax because the mold seals the gel-coat. They come out with a shine. If you shine the new gel-coat, it will stand out against the old boat. No match. We spray gel-coat using a Preval touch-up spray bottle. It works like a can of spray paint and it's cheap. You mix a little gel-coat and add 20% styrene as a thinner. Remove the little filter on the end of the pickup tube. Prevals should cost you less than $5 each and you should be able to buy them from a car parts store that stocks car painting supplies. Car people use them for car paint touch-up. It's a great tool. You can use a brush, but making the surface smooth after the cure will require more work. Don't forget to mix the harder with the gel-coat. Gel-coat requires two times as much as resin.


Answer: Most owners don't use the lifeline gate. Using it might help getting on and off the boat. I hang fenders, wet towels and wet rodes on the lifelines. I kind of like the lifelines. We sold lots of boats back in the 80s and early 90s and these boats are getting more valuable as they get older. When I value a boat, I look for a standard boat first and then any popular modification that will increase its value. In the old days, lifelines were an option that everyone ordered.

23Jan11 Message: On our Com-Pac 19, I would like to remove the spreaders and move the uppers aft as you have discribed. At times we get into some very gusty conditions. Are there any caluclations that show the limits of the mast in this configuration?

Answer: No. The benefit of the modification is using the boat from a trailer and getting the mast up and down. Everything is a compromise in sailing and this is one of them. If you sail with the rail in the water most of the time, I wouldn't remove the backstay. However, if the tension is correct on the uppers and lowers on a standard boat, the mast will bow back in the middle. This isn't good for sail shape. Look at the mast (bottom to top) from the base of the mast while sailing. It should be straight or have a little curve forward at the middle for good sail shape. The standard boat doesn't do this.

23Jan11 Message: I plan to install midship cleats on my Sun Cat. The best way to do so is not clear to me. Would appreciate your advice.

Answer: We normally do midship cleats on large boats. They have limited value on small boats. The deck is cored and using a stainless fender washer under a nut will work as a backing plate. The liner inside the Sun Cat is going to get in the way. I would consider going through the deck and the liner if the liner is touching the deck on the inside. Acorn nuts on the inside would give a finished look and the liner could be the backing plate. If the gap is too large between the liner and the deck, you need to reconsider midship cleats.

19Jan11 Message: Hi,What's your opinion on the Compac Picnic Cat.

It's a low performance daysailor and that's my kind of daysailor. You can sail it in pretty good winds and enjoy the experience. I have a boat owned by an older person on the coast of North Carolina. They keep it on a boat lift and sail it on a large bay without a motor. You get good at sailing when you sail without a motor.

16Jan11 Message: How do you replace rotted bunkboards in the cabin?

Answer: We remove the deck to replace the bunk boards on a Com-Pac 16. Remove the rub-rail and the screws that hold the deck to hull. The drains need to cut and the big screw under the mast tabernacle removed. Two men can lift and remove the deck. PVC splices are used to replace the drains. Repairing the interior plywood is easy with the deck removed.

6Jan11 Message: How do I fit my Suncat to a Boat lift? Can the bunkers of the lift, set just outside the keel, provide enough support without having to figure out some support under the keel? Stating it another way is: Is the structure of the Suncat solid enough to sit on the bunkers placed on each side of the keel and sit there with no support under keel and do so without the boat bottom springing up, cracking the fiberglass and warping the boat. Thanks in advance for your input.

Answer: We do it all the time. Use 2X6s for the bunks on the lift and put them close to the keel. Spread the load over an area as large as possible. We haven't seen any damage caused by boat lifts.

14Dec10 Message: Hi Keith, Am thinking about getting a genoa for this boat since I sail on a river where winds are often light. Would intend using it with drum and swivel furling system currently used on the stock jib. Do you have any advice as to size, installation or any other matter related to this project? Thanks. Have a merry Christmas and all the best for you and your business in 2011.

Answer: The stock Mark I genoa never worked very well. It was a 200 percent sail that used the stern cleat for a sheet fairlead. A better sail would be a 150 percent that had an adjustable fairlead track like the Mark II. If you don't want to do a track, place a fairlead where the sail's "long perpendicular" hits the deck. (an extension of a right angle off the luff that goes through the clew to the deck). This will give you the correct sail trim for sailing on the wind or pointing. The other points of sail can be jury rigged with cheater lines. Three tell-tales on each side of the sail 6 inches back from the luff will tell you what you need to know about sail trim.

9Dec10 Message: as ocean and coastline sailor in Brasil, now living in Long Island, I read your web side with great interest and liked very much your entrepeneur spirit in experimenting new ship performance...congratulations...actually I'm looking for a nice used CC 16' (downgrading because of age) Fair winds

Answer: Thanks for the kind words. We have that great looking 87 model on our yard. Check out our Used Boat listing on the left. Our project Com-Pac 16 will be available sometime during the spring. The price will be about the same as the 87 model. It has a centerboard, internal ballast, mast gallows, yellow AWL-Craft hull and new sails. The CEO of Com-Pac Yachts has two sons and one of them is restoring 16s. You may want to get on his list for a used boat. Email the factory for contact information and ask for Tyler.

27Nov10 Message: Do you have winter hours at Richlands --- would like to visit late February if the shop is open.

Answer: We will be open. Our hours are 8 to 4, Monday through Saturday.

21Nov10 Message: I recently looked at a 1998 Com Pac 16 with the reqular stub keel, but it had a center Board in it. Is that a factory configuration or has it been modified by other than the factory?

Answer: It was the standard configuration for that year.



Answer: We don't have a "Pop Top" available for the CP-23. We do have boats with dodgers that give standing headroom in the cabin hatch area. The green project boat on this Web site has standing headroom in the cockpit under its bimini. It requires a rig change. The new Pilot House CP-23 will have standing headroom in the cabin and we hope to build an aftermarket house for older models next year.

9Nov10 Message: Hello, My boat has standard main and jib,the latter on a drum and swivel furler. It also has a bow sprit, the full use of which is constrained by the short bow pulpit.To date I have not had the guts to cut it and extend it to allow me to fasten the jib further forward. Your recent DYI entry on this subject gives me the incentive to try.Thank you. I have 2 fifteen inch long tracks on which I want to put moveable cleats in order to better adjust the jib. Where shall I put the tracks in relation to the stock cleats Do they go on the combing or the gunwhale,Flat or on edge? Are screws enough to hold them in place and if not how do I deal with the thick floatation material under the combing? Finally is the installation of the tracks even worthwhile? Sorry to be so long winded.

Answer: They go on the combing flat. Tracks are standard on the CP-16 Mark II and the forward position on the track is used for the jib and the rest is used for a genoa. A Mark I uses the stern cleat for a genoa fairlead. Screws are used for track installation and they work well. I think I would use tell tails and a small extension line on the jib tack. Vary the line length for a perfect upwind sail shape. Sail shape on a beam reach will be more difficult to adjust, but it can be done with a cheater line. You should be able to do this fix with your furling gear.

29Oct10 Message: Please let me know your opinion of the CP-16 with centerboard compared to the fixed keel models. Is there a way to search your answer board by topic? Thanks for all your great info.

Answer: I like the fixed keel version unless I need a boat that points 5 degree higher. If you have a need to tack up a cheek on a regular basis, the centerboard boat would be a good choice. There is extra maintenance required for that type of boat. I like to think that I can out point a centerboard boat with a boat that doesn't have a centerboard. Some people call that experience and other people call it cheating. My Answer board can't be indexed. Sorry.

27Oct10 Message: Would you be able to convert my 1998 P16.5 into a trawler? I have been sailing for many years and would like to have a small trawler I could sleep on.

Answer: I think it's possible. We had a P16.5 in the same shop when we were building the tooling for the CP-16 Trawler. A house on the P16.5 should look pretty good. A pedestal helm seat in the middle of the floor with the controls in the forward bunk area would work well. That would leave sleeping bunks on both sides.

20Oct10 Message: Hello ordered brass bushing for rudder bushing would not fit over existing bolts. WHAT IS THE SIZE OF THE ORIGINAL BOLTS. THANK YOU

Answer: The rudder bolts for the CP-23 are 5/16 inch.

15Oct10 Message: I want to flush my Yanmar while on the trailer. I was told to ask about the "fake a lake" you have. Can you provide some info? Thanks

Answer: We disconnect the intake water hose at the seacock. That's the same place that you should be using to anti-freeze your engine. Put the hose in a bucket of water and start the engine. Maintain the water level in the bucket while the engine is running. We use a water hose to maintain the water level in the bucket. You can't put your engine in gear while the engine is running. The cutless bearing requires water for lubrication. You will destroy the bearing if you run it dry. You should use about 1/2 gallon of anti-freeze to protect your engine and the engine systems for the winter. When you see green coming out the exhaust pipe, stop the engine.

3Oct10 Message: Do you know when/if Com-Pac stopped using wood-core in the top of the deckhouse in the CP19 and CP16 boats?

Answer: They stopped using wood-cored decks in 1980.

29Sep10 Message: I am looking to buy a 1987 compac 16/2. It has about 8 inches of blistering on both sides right below the water line. there are also quite a few spider web cracks on the keel - almost looks like concrete leaching through. Are these difficult to repair and should this scare me away from the boat?

Answer: The keel on a 16 is fiberglass with concrete inside for ballast. Small blisters are easy to fix and large blisters are more difficult. Large blisters may continue to leak indicating a wet hull laminate. If the blisters stop leaking, the hull is normally dry. Cracks are the result of impact damage to the keel. Repairs may be expensive.


Answer: The Com-Pac 23D has teak cap boards around the cockpit as standard. I'm sure they are currently available from Com-Pac. I don't think shipping will be a problem.

22Sep10 Message: Can the 1983 reconditioned 16' foot you have for sale for 4000 be painted to look like the green 16 you show and I click on to see the 19'. Dark green hull and dark brown bottom paint. What year is the 2.5 hp motor.

Answer: We normally restore "Mark II" 16s, 19s and 23s. We think they are the best value for our customers. We are looking for a Mark I 23 for our new pilothouse project. It normally takes us 6 to 8 months to restore a 23 and maybe 4 months to restore a 16. We like to think our restored boats are worth half the price of a new Com-Pac boat. All boats that are over 20 years old are candidates for restoration. We normally buy a used boat and restore it for a specific customer. The other restorations are normally sold before they ever get to our "For Sale" list. We don't currently have any restored 16s or 23s on the yard. We may have a pretty Mark II 16 coming soon with a new blue hull, black bottom paint, boom tender system and lots of options. We will put it on the Web site when it arrives. The old motor for the 83 model runs well, but it's an 80s model.

22Sep10 Message: I am getting older and it is becoming more difficult to get into and out of my boat and into a dinghy. Would you suggest a stern-mounted ladder or are there portable ones which would work. What kind is best.


Answer: I like the stern-mounted ladder made by Com-Pac. I just ordered one for my boat with teak pads on the stainless steel rungs. I have been in the water twice during my boating career. You can pull the ladder down from the water if required. The pads are easy on your feet and the ladder looks good on the boat. It can save your life.

19Sep10 Message: Do you have a price list for restoration of a 23'. Presently on a scale of 1-10, 1 being the worst, I'd give this boat about an 8. I would like a complete restoration less rigging. I have all the wood eye brows, tiller etc. Id like the old bottom paint removed and hull painted green with the black bottom like your pics show. Please advise.

Answer: We like to exchange boats or take a trade on a restored Com-Pac 23. The selling price for a restored 23 is about $18K. That includes hull paint, bottom paint, cushions and all the detail work that needs to be done. A restored 23 with modified rigging (Mast Tender or gaff) for trailing cost more. You can expect to get the market price for your boat.

We plan on building a restored 23 with standing headroom soon. Our boat will be similar to the factory Pilot House 23. We will post a working picture on "What's New" today.

18Sep10 Message: Ref. the last persons question, would the same apply to a CP23. And does it harm the boat any by sailing with just a genoa. Thanks

Answer: Reefing on a 23 is the same. Sailing with only a headsail works well on all Com-Pacs. The 23 does best with a genoa because the center of effort is a little more towards the stern with a genoa. A 155% genoa curves around the shrouds making the angle to the wind better than with a jib. A headsail only boat will sail as fast as a boat with 2 sails when the wind is above 12 knots. It will not point as high as a boat with 2 sails. I use a headsail only when I sail a standard 23 with furling gear because I'm lazy. If I need to point high, I add the main. The difference between a 19 and 23 is the 23 needs to reduce power in 18 or more knots of wind. The 19 can go higher because it's a stiffer boat. The 19 has the same ballast ratio, but less sail area for its size and harder chines.

15Sep10 Message: Hey Keith, Hope you are doing well. Can you tell me the best way to reef the main on a 19? Mine has the reef points in the sail but that is all. Don't want to damage anything doing it wrong. What do I need? Thanks!

Answer: You need a hook at the tack with a block, eye strap and cleat at the other end of the boom. The first thing you do when you reef is connect you’re topping lift and adjust the mainsail sheet to control the boom over the cockpit. Then slack the mainsail halyard to connect the reef grommet to the hook at the tack. Retention the halyard next. The next step is to pull a reef line from the eye strap on one side of the boom up through the aft grommet in the sail to the block on the other side. Secure the line at the cleat on the same side.

A good thing about 19s is that you almost never need to reef. Changing from the genoa to the jib is about all the reefing a 19 ever needs.

11Sep10 Message: Any experience/thoughts on performance with a three blade propeller for a Com Pac 27 with a Universal 12? Would there be a benefit in areas as Beaufort Inlet?

Answer: A three bladed propeller is smoother than a two bladed propeller. It isn't any faster and I doubt if it would be better in the Beaufort Inlet area.

22Aug10 Message: I have owned this boat (21' Windjammer) since 1961. Have always toyed with the Idea of a small stand-up cuddy. The problem, is the cabin or cuddy design MUST fit the Design!

Answer: I do a computer picture to see what a boat looks like before I build anything. I just did one on an old Hermann catboat. My Hermann could be a restored and modified catboat or it could be a small trawler. I think I have decided on a catboat restoration after doing a computer picture. We have tooling for 2 cabins (houses) for sailboats. One is small and fits the Com-Pac 16 and the other is larger and fits the Com-Pac Sun Cat. I didn't like our Sun Cat house on the Hermann after doing a computer picture. We also have lots of Horizon Cat parts in stock. A mast tender mast, oval ports and a boom gallows will look good on this old catboat

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (31)

14Aug10 Message: Keith, I just read a question from Nov. 3, 2009, asking about the Torqeedo Electric Motor. I would advise NOT buying this product. I purchased the most powerful Torqeedo engine to move my Sun Cat around mainly on an inland lake. It was worthless in any wind over 3 mph! Because of the motor's lack of power, I drifted into weeds and got caught in all sorts of uncomfortable situations. It was a disaster. Exasperated, I took it back to West Marine for a full refund. I then learned that my Torqeedo was the 3rd one returned in 2 weeks! Torqeedo claims this engine is equivalent to a 6hp gas motor. No way! 1hp was more like it.

I am now a happy camper with a 4hp Mercury that moves my Sun Cat with ease through wind and chop, and starts up easily.

Answer: Thanks for the report.

27Jul10 Message: is raising the mast on the 23' a 2 person job? Expected time required?

Answer: It takes 2 people to raise the mast. To get a 23 rigged on the trailer takes about an hour.

20Jul10 Message: i want to remove the spreader and backstay on my 19 and install the masttender system. can i do this myself?

Answer: You can, but it's a big job. We have found that the Mast Tender on the 19 isn't needed. We think the short mast is easy to raise without a backstay and with the mast resting in our mast stand. We use the 16 boom tender system (boom hardware only) on the 19s if you want to carry the sail in a sailcover under the mast. The 19 boom can move in the sail slide groove and that's why you don't need the boom tender deck hardware. The picture below has the deck hardware. We moved the upper chain plates back on the hull (you won't need new parts). The lowers stay are in there original position. We can ship a mast stand for a 19 via UPS. You have to have a stern pulpit to make it work.

Question And Answer Forum (2023) (32)

6Jul10 Message: I have the Compac factory's blue hull. It was in pristine condition when I took delievery of this used boat, but I've gotten a few scratches that go all the way through the gelcoat to the white. Is there some touch-up product and procedure to fix these cosmetic problems when they occur? Thanks, as always, for your sage advice.

Answer: Buff the gel-coat and they may disappear. If they don't disappear, fill the scratches with a coloring agent and buff again. The coloring agent can be paint if it matches. We talked about using a colored wax in our DIY section on colored hulls. That article may help. Any dark colored wax will work for small scratches. The amount of work depends on the size of the scratch.

6Jul10 Message: I want to put a boom vang on my 1968 built Clark Mills Suncat 16'. Can you explain what this takes? Thanks.

Answer: West Marine sells a vang kit. The small kit should work, but you may want to buy the next size up. The vang connects to the boom and the base of the mast. Most people that race sailboats have to have a vang to race downwind. Most people that cruise and day-sail do not use them very often.

1Jul10 Message: Stumbled into your site tonight quite by accident. Can't wait to explore it all. The trawler conversion on the 23 has been a "day dream" thing for several months, and I had no idea such a project was in the works. Are more photos available, or do you have one on your yard (in the shop)? Haven't seen ya'll in years. Hope to visit Richlands soon.

Answer: We do have a Sun Cat conversion on the yard that's not in production. We also have a Com-Pac 16 conversion that is in production and we have one on the yard. The factory's plan for the 23 is a new 23 motor sailor. A motor sailor house transplant on an older 23 will make a great trawler conversion. I think the economy has to get better before we see any major changes at Com-Pac. Come see us when you can.

29Jun10 Message: I need to tighten the packing gland a little on my prop shaft. The fitting seems to be some knurled/notched pattern and I have no clue to what type of tool to use that will fit properly. Thanks.

Answer: We have a Project on our DIY link that explains the procedure. The tools used are pipe wrenches or special tools that can be purchased at West Marine.

29Jun10 Message: Keith. Thanks for your help with past questions. Your guidance has been very helpful. I have another. The factory installed Jib line cam cleats have lost their (what appear to be white plastic bearings). So, Each cam cleat nees to be replaced. The problem is the back sides of these units and the nuts that hold them in place must be under several layers of fiberglass. When I go in the cabin and look to the area where the back side of each unit (One on left and right) should be seen, there is only fiberglass. It appears to be a pretty substantial and supportive part of the construction of the boat. Should I just leave these old ones in place and locate new ones a little more forward on the deck (where it would be easy to access screw and nut)? Or is there a way to take action on the existing cams and replace using the old location. IT is the encasement by the fiberglass construction that has me stumped. Any suggestions on how you guys replace old jib cleats?

Answer: The nuts are hidden by foam and glass sheets. The easy way to replace the cleats is to cut the original bolts. Make the bolt area smooth and install new cam cleats over the old area. Use screws to install the new cam cleats. Com-Pac used nuts and bolts because that works for them during the build process. Screws will work fine for the jib sheet loads the second time around.

24Jun10 Message: Keith, How about another dumb question from an amature? Transitioning from a sloop to a catboat I am not sure how high the boom should be on the mast. With a sloop you made sure the main was all the way to the masthead. I have not seen anything that covers this very elementary point. Thanks.

Answer: There could be several reasons for taking the sloop's main all the way to the masthead. The big reason in most cases is to have enough room on the mast to tension the luff and get some room under the boom for your head. The main's position on a Picnic Cat mast isn't important. The tension between the throat and the tack is important (more wind, more tension and less wind, less tension). The halyard positions the throat (same as the head on a sloop) and the downhaul tensions the tack. The boom should be located (about) at the mast hinge after you tension the sail.

22Jun10 Message: My questions today are about cleaning up and making look good, the rudder and rudder housing. What is the best way to transform the rudder assembly to its vibrant black "new look". Special Paint? Suggestions. Also, what is the best way to get the rudder looking like a new one. Is fine steel wool the answer, or special polishing compounds. Your renovations and restorations always look great. Just trying to get my 16 to look as good once again. Thanks.

Answer: We take the rudder apart leaving the part that's attached to the boat on the boat. Tape around that part for painting. We hang the rudder housing from a line and spray paint with a flat black paint. A spray paint made for outdoor use is desirable. The rudder blade is cleaned and etched with an electric sander. Use a sandpaper grit that will cut the surface and leave a good appearance.

22Jun10 Message: Keith, Thanks again for the great website and your willingness to share your knowledge. I was wondering if you knew of a good alternative to the Hutchins ladder for the PC?

Answer: Sorry. The Hutchins ladder is the only one that fits the boat and looks good to my eye.

14Jun10 Message: I just bought this 1965 built Suncat. The mast end looks like a small round piece of metal which fits into the mast step on the forepeak. The fibreglass around the mast step has been repaired with epoxy and screws. With just the stays, is this sufficient to secure the mast and was this the way it was designed?

Answer: I think your Sun Cat was built by Clark Mills. We did have one other person in TN building Sun Cats during the 60s and 70s. The mast base has to be supported by something other than the deck. Most boats have a metal pole support under the mast on the inside. This support would go from the deck to the keel or to some other load-bearing surface. A 2/4 stud on the inside will work.

11Jun10 Message: I am very impressed on the Trawler conversion of the CP16. As the CP19 is difficult to rig and launch single handed for an older sailor, I am considering selling my CP19 in favor of a Downeast/Trawler type of boat. But this may be a better alternative for the CP19. Is this feasible and what would be the turn time on a project like this? Ball park cost + repower? Also what about the ballast, is it retained, reduced or removed? Thanks.

Answer: The easy way to change boats is to trade-in the 19. We take Com-Pac trades on Trawler conversions. The Com-Pac 16 Trawler conversion cost $18,000 including a new trailer and a new 9.9 Yamaha motor with remote controls. The ballast is retained. Build time from start to finish is about 4 months. We are building trawlers all the time and if you select one that's in work, the build time will be less.

Building a trawler conversion on a 19 hull would be too expensive. The first boat built cost 3 or 4 times more than subsequent boats. Design, building templates and obtaining parts for a new boat takes time. We normally spend more than a year creating our first boat.

3Jun10 Message: My Cam Cleat for the main sheet is not springing back and locking well. Want to replace, but getting to the nut and backing plate is nearly impossible for an adult. Any trick? Or do you cut off the stainless screw heads and just drill new holes and forget the backing plate. Seem like they must have installed the cams prior to assembing the top section. Got any easy ways to replace the Cam Cleat. Also, is there a West Marine Part number you would recommend.

We miss having your annex in Garner.

Answer: I also miss having the shop in Raleigh and Garner. The easy way to replace the main sheet cam cleat is to install an access port. West Marine sells them and they come with instructions. Cut the hole with a jig saw and make sure you tape around the pencil mark on the outside. The tape saves any damage to the gel-coat from the saw. The port is centered in the space between the cockpit's upper edge and the aft hatch. This will give you access to all of the parts that are connected to the transom. Any cam cleat will work that handles 1/4 inch line.

28May10 Message: The Spinlock cam cleats on my Suncat don't seem to work well. The one on the portside for the downhaul doesn't grip at all. On some forum I read complaints from others about these cleats and I thought there were alternatives suggested, but I can't find the forum exchange on this subject. I'd like to replace with something that works better and (if possible) would fit the existing holes in the cabin roof where the Spinlocks are attached. Any suggestions?

Answer: You are right, they don't work very well. A more expensive jam cleat would work better, but I think it would be too large for the boat. I have considered a standard cleat. I like to pull a halyard next to a cleat and take a turn when needed. You may find a good-looking standard cleat with the same hole pattern. If you find another jam cleat that works (not too big), filling the hole under the new cleat works well. If you use a white filler, the hole inside the boat will almost disappear.

20May10 Message: I have a spiderweb like surface cracks on the starboard side of my boat. I tried to fill them in with crack sealer to keep water out. What is a good fix for this situation?

Answer: Most spiderweb cracks are cosmetic. We call these cracks grazing. The fiberglass flexed or bent with an impact and the gel-coat didn't. Water is not normally a problem with grazing. You repair the damage by making the cracks larger, filling the cracks with filler and finish the job with new gel-coat. Most people let professionals do this type of repair.

6May10 Message: Keith, I have followed your website for a number of years and greatly appreciate all that you do not only for the Compac family, but for sailing enthusists in general. I am considering two options for my boat, as I am getting older and am not as agile (health issues) as I once was. The boat has not been used for over 11 years, being tarped over with the boat/trailer on blocks. The ramps here in the Tidewater region are not as steep as back in Pennsylvania (Lake Nockamixon) and trying to get the boat launched here was impossible for me (3 ft. tongue extension and all. Option 1 is to clean/wax the boat, take some pictures, then email them to you for your price/brokerage estimate and whatever arrangements need to be made. Option 2 is to keep the boat, have your yard remove some of the concrete ballast, lower the trailer axle, shorten the mast and sail and then motor/sail her. This would be a middle-ground between the designed configuration and your trawler design. I would much appreciate your feeling on both options. Thanks,again, for your servic,advice and enthusiasm to the sailing fraternity!

Answer: Thanks for your kind words. What makes the 16 a great boat is the ballast. It's the only small sailboat available with 40% of its total weight in ballast. That said, my solution to the difficult problem of sailors getting old is the trawler. Getting old happens to everyone if you’re lucky. If you decided many years ago that you are a water person, then keeping a boat (used or unused) is important. I think I own 5 boats that I call my boat. I work on them and I think about them, but I use them very little. Thinking about your next adventure is almost as good and doing it. I think I'm going to the St. Johns in the fall.

Option 1 is exchanging your boat for money. I don't like that solution. Option 2 would cost too much. I think we are back to money again. The solution to launching the boat from the trailer is bottom painting and a slip. Many landowners have shallow slips that are available at small cost. Finding the ideal small slip for your boat is hard to do, but worth while. Most slips that can accommodate a boat with 4 feet of draft are hard to find. A slip for a 16 should be easy to find. Most marinas have several slips that they can't rent because they are too shallow. A 16 can touch the bottom in a slip and that's OK. Some boats have made their own hole for the keel with time. I like the routine of in the water in the summer and on the trailer during the winter. Boats in the water can have furling gear and that solves the reduced sail problem. Sailing with only the jib works for me.

I think I'm going to let my children handle my boat problems at the appropriate time.

25Apr10 Message: We just purchased an '85 Compac 19/2 yesterday and I have several questions. 1-What is the "u bolt" at the head of the mast for? 2-I've seen VHF radios installed in the headliner. How thick is the cabin roof and bulkheads? 3-The anchor locker doesn't drain anywhere. Doesn't this make for a smelly cabin? 4-A stern rail with an opening would make reboarding from the ladder easier. Have you done any modifications like this? 5-Were is the best area to install a "shoot thru the hull" transducer?

Answer: 1-The "u bolt" is not standard. If it's located about 3 feet above the deck, it may be a whisker pole connection point. 2-They vary. Remove an installed bolt and measure or if you use a 1/2 inchcrew, it should work fine. 3-Don't put the anchor rode away wet. Flake the rode on deck to dry. 4-Climbing over the stern rail works pretty well. The problem with the ladder is it's hard on the feet. The rumble seat works well on the 19, but makes using the ladder more difficult. 5-The small storage area under the forward cushion.

This is a good place to do an add-on answer. All shoal draft sailboats have short keels. Sailors that own these boats need to reduce keel contact with the trailer when they recover their boats. All Com-Pac boats should float off the trailer when they are launched. The water level on the trailer should be noted at this time. When you pick up your boat, the trailer should be "less deep" to take advantage of the keel guides. The keel should hit the first roller between the keel guides. Using the winch, the boat will come up and over the rollers. You can feel the keel location without seeing the keel. Some people put straps between the bunks and the keel guides. The straps will help keep your keel off the metal parts of the trailer.

24Apr10 Message: Hi. I've always wanted to learn to sail, so I bought a used Com-pac 16. But turns out I haven't a clue how to rig it or put it in the water, and no how to sail it. No foolin'! Any idea where I might get some info on this? I've got several learn to sail books. thank you.

Answer: Many Com-Pac 16 owners have worried about the same thing. Keep in mind that most of them have become lifelong sailors. You read your books and really look at all those sailing pictures. That's the path to becoming a sailor. Becoming a sailor comes slowly. You can get to be an old person and still have something to learn. That's what makes sailing so interesting. Join our club and see if we have a member that's close to your location. Learning comes faster if you sail with a friend.

22Apr10 Messge: Looking for the Capacity Plate info on the ComPac 19 (1990) - HP, # of Persons, Total Weight Capacity and Person Weight Capacity. Thanks.

Answer: Power boats require capacity plates. Sailboats are excluded from that requirment.

14Apr10 Message: Where can I find a replacement mast for a 1983 Com-Pac Yacht 16 and about how much would it cost?

Answer: Dwyer Aluminum Mast Co. makes the mast. A dealer for Dwyer in your area or the Com-Pac Factory will drop ship a mast. A mast coming from Dwyer to North Carolina cost about $700.

11Apr10 Message: I'd like to purchase a tarp that fits my Suncat (cabin model) when the mast is down. Do you know of any source that has tailor-made such a tarp? Thanks, as always, for your helpful site.

Answer: We think a Sun Cat cover has to be a custom cover that's fitted to the boat. We build them out of sailcover material with reinforcements along the centerline. They connect to boat with common sense fastens at the rub rail. A blue tarp from the hardware store is the most inexpensive cover.

8Apr10 Message: Hi, I've really enjoyed you're site. Great information. I'm hoping you can help with a compac 19 I'm starting to restore. It has sat with water in the bilge for quite some time but I have it fairly dry now. However, when I ripped up the carpet on the floor infront of the bilge I found that the surface under the carpet seems loose and delaminated. I'm wondering whats under this layer. It seems that I should rip up the entire loose figerglass "skin" but don't want to get in over my head. Can you tell me what the structure is under the floor. Similarly I'm wondering what is inside/ under the wood covering the v-berth? I've looked for sectional drawings for the boat online but no luck. It looks like there is a large styrofoam block under the cockpit floor. Are these other areas also filled with foam, or some other material that I should assume is now water saturated? Any help is much appreciated. Thanks for your great site!

Answer: The surface under the rug is suppose to be loose. The factory puts a layer of glass over the concrete ballast. They need to glue the carpet down and glass doesn't stick to the concrete. About the only thing that will is epoxy resin. Sticking epoxy to cement is still only a maybe. I would put a new rug down with contact cement and stop there. Inside the bunks have foam installed. You can see the little square wood covers where the factory injected the foam. The injected foam will not hold water. It's the type of foam that's made for marine use. It will give some flotation capabilities, but it is used in the 19 for structural purposes. The foam blocks support the cockpit floor.

8Apr10 Message: Hi Kieth. I want to install a radio with the antenna on top of the mast. My question is where to put the antenna cable through the cabin top of my Com-Pac 19. The electrical connection seems to occupy the only reasonable space. Apparently it is necessary to run the cable through the top and through a cable mount, then connect the mast cable and the one that has passed through the cabin top with a barrel connector to connect male fittings on the ends of the two cables. There seems to be no fitting that works like the electrical connector. Thanks for your help!

Answer: You’re right, you don't use a connector like the electrical connector. You use a through deck fitting that's made for a VHF cable. As you screw the fitting together, it will squeeze the fitting gasket and the cable together for a waterproof connection. West Marine sells the fitting. Some people with older 19s pass their cables through the forward hatch. I think the first solution is the best.

22Mar10 Message: I recenty purchased this boat and it's my first (except a sailing dingy I had as a kid). Problem is the trailer is WAY too much for this boat. I can make it work but before putting in too much $$ and work I wanted to know if you have a trailer for the Com-Pac 16 and what you would sell it for?


Answer: The best price for a Com-Pac 16 trailer is a Magic Tilt trailer made for your boat. It's the same trailer that the Com-Pac sells for their new Legacy sailboat. Since you live in FL, the best way to buy one is to order it from any Marine Dealer that sells Magic Tilt trailers. Have them order a Com-Pac 16 trailer.

20Mar10 Message: Has anyone ever installed an electric anchor windlass on a Compac Horizon Cat or know of anyone who has. I know an anchor windlass on a 20' boat seems like overkill. However I single hand a lot and at my age I don't always relish going on the foredeck in strong winds or choppy seas when I am by myself.

Thanks for any information on this subject.

Answer: We have installed a windlass on a Com-Pac 27. Most windlass installations are operated from a position close to the windlass. Foot switches installed in the deck. You need to keep an eye on the operation while it's working. If you can keep an eye on the windlass from the cockpit, a Horizon Cat installation should work. A small rope (line) windlass would be my choice. A chain windlass would work better, but 150 feet of chain would be too heavy for the bow of the boat.

18Mar10 Message: You have stated a couple of times that the pre-1979 ComPac sails were made from too light weight sailcloth. What weight should be used in the sails? Is the standard 2.9 oz cloth used by SuperSailmakers what I should get?

Answer: Super Sailmakers knows the correct weight for your 16. They use same weight cloth for all Com-Pac 16s. Back in the old days, the textile people didn't make the right cloth for the 16. Times have changed. I think you will be happy with Super Sailmakers sails and their prices.

18Mar10 Message: I plan to separate the deck from my hull on my 1979 CP-16 in order to rebuild the bunks, etc. I realize I have to drill out the rivets. Can you tell me how to separate the hulls after I do this? I assume they have been glued together with 3M 5200 (or something) and that I will have to cut through this with a sawzall or Dremel Multi-Max. Thanks for the advice and your super web site.

Answer: We use a large knife to run down the hull to deck joint. It's only caulking and easy to cut. Cut the drains with a hacksaw and use a PVC splice when you replace the deck. Try not to damage the drain connections when you do your saw cut. Remove the one big screw under the mast tabernacle that screws into the compression post. Lift off with 2 men, one on each side. The 79 has a wood cockpit support under the cockpit. It shouldn't be a problem because it's not connected to the deck.

15Mar10 Message: i am looking for a decent com-pac 16 or 19 as my first boat since joining the local sail club. i just think they seem more like a sailboat than the hunters and catalinas out there. they do seem hard to find. any ideas on where to find one? thanks.

Answer: We have 2 16s for sale. Check out the used boats on our Web site. The 19s are few and far between. If you want something new, the Legacy is a new 16 and the Eclipse is a new 19.

15Mar10 Message: Hi again, Keith. Thanks so much for your terrific website. QUESTION: Can I successfully use a short shaft outboard on my CP 16/1?? Or should I go with a long shaft. The top of my motor mount, when in the down position, is abouptrpt 14" above the water line stripe. FYI, 90% of my sailing will be in lakes here in the south and the rest will be in the Chesapeake Bay and Great Lakes. Thanks for the reply. Regards.

Answer: The recommended motor for a 16 is a short shaft (15 inch). A long shaft will work, but it will drag in the up position when sailing. The recommended power is 4 hp or less. If you use a larger motor, the boat at idle will be going too fast.

15Mar10 Message: I have a Horizon Cat. I am attempting to install a Hawkeye Depth Sounder with an In Hull Transducer. My question is, Is the Horizon Cats Hull solid fiberglass with no core? If so where is the best place in the hull to install the transducer? Has your comapny ever installed In Hull Transducers on a Horizon Cat? I am beginning to think the hull may be to thick for the in hull transducer to work properly. Thanks for your reply.

Answer: The Horizon Cat hull is solid fiberglass. We have installed transducers in the hull under the floor in the forward cabin. The rug on the floor covers a removable panel for installation purposes. Ease the edge of the rug up for access. A transducer works well in that position.

15Mar10 Message: I am adding spreaders to a ComPac16/1. Do you know the correct location on the mast for these?

Answer: The 16 Mark II has spreaders located half way up the mast. I think the half way point will work with a Mark I.

14Mar10 Message: Hi,Keith. I just bought a 1979 Com-Pac 16. Love the boat. It is in great shape, with gelcoat only lightly oxidized. The interior is another story. The coffin berths are rotted and the previous owner had ripped out the forward two feet on each side and started a sloppy repair. I plan to fix things properly but want to know what most owners do. Do most rebuild things to the original design or do something different, like rip it all out and just put cushions in? Any advise you can give would be greatly appreciated. Lastly, have you had any thoughts of a national Com-Pac outing this summer? Thanks.

Answer: The 79 was the last 16 with a wood core in the deck. The hatch slides leaked on those boats and the core in the da underneath suffered. We fix both problems by removing the deck and doing repairs to the deck and the bunks. Two men can pick up the deck after the rivets have been removed. The drains also need to be cut and a screw under the tabernacle has to be removed. The deck can stay outside during the repairs, but the hull needs dry storage during the repairs. We don't use cushions on the inside anymore. Com-Pac designed the Legacy with an indoor/outdoor carpet on the bunks. That carpet works better than cushions if you add a sleeping bag when needed.

A national Com-Pac outing would need an individual or individuals that have the time to organize an event. Years ago we had 2 clubs in FL and our local club in NC. Jean and Gary Sigvaldsen organized the NC club and had events on the second weekend of every month. They ran the club for 20 years. The Com-Pac factory and The Sailboat Company supported the NC club and their activities. I'm sure it was the same way in FL. I remember attending Com-Pac races in FL that was supported by the Clearwater Club and the Factory. The Factory provided all the hot dogs that we could eat. I didn't win any races in FL. Those FL sailors were really good.

12Mar10 Message: Looking into getting a bimini for my PC, do you know the dimensions? Thanks! I love the double Bimini! But will be doing just one for now.

Answer: We don't have the dimensions. We buy our Com-Pac biminis from a company in FL. Sorry.

11Mar10 Message: The concrete in my keel is wet, very wet. I have noticed in heavy seas (4 foot waves) I take in more water. But I ALWAYS have water. There are no visible cracks or damage to the keel. This was also a problem to the previous owner because the glass above the keel had holes drilled in it and then seeled with 5200. Is this a common problem? Do you have suggedtions?

Answer: I think you have a leak. The concrete is the lowest point inn n in a 16 and that's were the water goes when you have a leak. I would look at the trailer eye and your cockpit drains. The concrete makes some water on its own because it gets cold and warm with the weather changes during the day. I would use dehumidifier crystals to reduce moisture content in the boat during the spring and fall in North Carolina.

7Mar10 Message: I'm a new owner of this boat. What upgrades are consider to be the best for the cost? It has the newe IDA (?) rudder and jib tracks.

Answer: For a 1980 16 I would consider rudder bearings, Tiller Tamer and maybe a new motor mount. Most older 16s need a new hatch board and the leaks repaired from the overhead hatch slides screws. Com-Pac didn't caulk the screws. If the cushions are shot, I would replace the cushions with indoor/outdoor rug material like the new Legacy. The paint should be falling off on the inside and this can be repaired by removing the loose paint and painting with a good latex paint. Other more expensive options like a genoa, bimini and a mast raising system are user specific.

25Feb10 Message: Just paid too much for '75 ComPac 16.' Is putting a centerboard in and changing to Gaff rig putting more money after bad? Is the centerboard worth it pointing up? Do you have complete Gaff rig available and if so what would the cost be? Thank you so much!

Answer: Installing a centerboard and changing to a gaff rig would cost lots of money. The centerboard will give you an additional 5 degrees of upwind pointing ability. It also will slow you down on other points of sail from the additional drag. The 16 and the Picnic Cat use the same size mast. You can mix and match spars and sails to make a different boat. The negatives with the centerboard are the installation cost and the added maintenance if the boat stays in the water. The positives with the gaff rig are the short mast and storing the sail on the boat if you trailer. The gaff is a more complex rig (one more spar), but it is self-reefing when the wind increases. The original 1975 16 sails were bad sails. They were too thin and couldn't hold a shape. All early (before 79) 16s need new sails.

15Feb10 Message: I'm looking for Compac 16 cockpit tent design ideas for living and cooking area. I plan to make it but could be open to a pre made one. Thanks for any help on this

Answer: We sell a Com-Pac 16 Bimini for $575 plus shipping. This bimini can be shipped where it can be assembled and installed by the user. Other powerboat bimini sold by discount houses may cost less. Look for a size that will fit your boat. You can also adjust the height by cutting the leg tubes.

A tent can be made by using a cloth over the boom. I would use common sense faster on the edge. Cut the cloth, sew the edges, adjust your topping lift, main sheet and a slug stop in the mast to position the boom, connect the edges and you are done. Sailcover cloth or a light canvas will work best.

5Feb10 Message: I do not like the way my sink drains into the bilge on my 23. I am considering installing a thru-hull either on the side above the water line or in the stern. I would appreciate your input on this. I appreciate your website and all the information you provide.

Answer: I have a 23 on my yard that has the sink drain installed in the hull. The through hull is located at the boot stripe and the installation also has a seacock. All early 23s had drains in the boot stripe until a child pulled the drain hose off the through hull and the boat leaked when it healed. That's when Com-Pac moved the sink drain to the bilge.

24Jan10 Message: I need to replace the boom gallows and two metal support tubes that a tree took out last summer. I assume that I can order the parts from Compac, but how difficult is it to remove the existing vertical tubes from the hull? Will I need special tools or solvents to unseal the tubes from the deck? Put another way, am I better off hiring the local Hutchins dealer to do the physical work for the repair? I want to avoid cracking the deck. I was very lucky that the tree didn't hurt the hull, and don't want to cause a problem by doing the repair without the right tools. Wish you were in Wisconsin so I could have you folks do this repair, but it's a long haul to North Carolina.

Answer: No special tools are required. The problem with a repair is the tiller horn must be removed to access the right spot and that's hard to do. Most people can't go through seat hatch to hold the nuts on the boom gallows. We have been using a Sun Cat boom gallows on older 16s. The way we get the tube foot to fit the deck is we cut the tubes in half. We rotate the bottom half until it fit's the deck and has a vertical position. The problem with this trick is that the 1 inch vertical tube has a seam inside and that seam has to be removed for the 7/8 inch splice tube to fit. You only have to remove about 1 and 1/2 inch of seam. We use a 7/8 inch drill bit to remove the seam. Com-Pac uses a real rimmer tool to do the same thing. You might be able to use the old tube bottoms and the new tube tops and not remove the nuts and bolts that go through the deck.

If the posts are not bent, the horizontal attachment points can be bent back into shape. They are easy to bend. Good luck with the repair.

19Jan10 Message: I have heavy condensation collecting on the hull that is eventually working to the liner and wood. This is on the north side of the boat only (sitting east-west in slip). Suggestions?

Answer: It's the North Carolina weather. In the winter time we go from cold at night to hot during the day and your cabin becomes a still. West Marine sells dehumidifier crystals and I have heard that they also sell them at Wal-Mart. The crystals will bring down the moisture content during the winter months.

22Dec09 Message: what parts are needed to convert 16 to boomtender system? thanks. love the website.

Answer: The most important part of the boomtender system is the mast gallows. It carri the mast in the down position. The boom folds next to the mast on standard Mark I boats, but you don't have enough room for a sail and a sail cover between the two. If you don't need that feature, you stop there. The other part needed to get the room for a sail and sailcover is a modified tabernacle. It also provides the fold feature on Mark II and newer boats.

25Nov09 Message: I'm restoring a Com-Pac 16 MK I for maiden launch Spring 2010. At the head of the mainsail that came with the boat is a pair of triangular aluminum support plates, 6"x5"x4", marked "Howe & Bainbridge". The plates have been eaten by metal worms & the rivets are falling out. Do you stock these plates or know where I can find them? Also looking to buy a set of good used or new main & jib sails, plus other items for this boat. Thanks for your help. Best regards.

Answer: We buy our Com-Pac sails from Super Sailmakers. They have a Web site at They have lots of experience with Com-Pac sails. They will also help you with a headboard for your existing sail. Com-Pac sells parts direct to Com-Pac owners. Call them or send them an email for a quote on anything else you may need. Keep in mind that 1979 or older Com-Pac 16 sails were made too thin. We consider them junk.

21Nov09 Message: Hi, Keith. What is your take on the Com-Pac Sunday Cat and the Mastendr "Plus" rigging system? Have you seen one? I assume that all three versions of the Sun Cat sail the same because they have identical hulls and sails. Occasionally sleeping in the cockpit with a span across the footwell and under a "summer cabin" seems like it would be much more spacious than the cabin model Sun Cat. Interested in reading your opinion. Thanks for your great writing here.

Answer: I haven't sold a Sunday Cat yet. I think you are right, the different Sun Cats will sail about the same. I really like the master tender system on any boat. We installed one on an O'Day. The Sunday Cat is the right boat for you if you want a boat that can carry lots of people on a day sail. I put 6 adults on a standard Sun Cat with 5 in the cockpit. The boat was down in the stern, but it still sailed well. The Sunday Cat would have balanced the load better. When we sleep in a Sun Cat, someone normally sleeps in the cockpit. Our trawler based on the Sun Cat hull and deck will use the cockpit for the additional room that's needed at night. All the Sun Cats will sleep 2 people in relative comfort. The market for used open boats is smaller than it is for cabin boats. I think the re-sale value for a cabin boat will be better.

16Nov09 Message: Im looking at purchasing a compac 25, 2000. Its an outboard with tiller. How do you like the 25 in general. Is the electric motor lift a good product. How would general maintenance compare to say a compac 23 outboard.

Answer: I owned 2 Com-Pac 25s as personal boats and liked them both. Maintenance on the 25 will be greater than a 23 because of size. The motor mount on the 25 can be a problem and I have had some people convert to diesel. I think the other differences between the two boats are more important. The 25 is less portable than a 23. It is big enough to be considered a slip boat. I would take a 25 on a week cruise to Ocracoke Island and the standing headroom in the cockpit and cabin wals outstanding during the week. The same trip using a 23 was not that good. There is no standing headroom under the bimini when it rains. The 23 is a better day boat and cheaper to own. Both boats sail about the same, but a 23 would more likely win a race. The 25 has a big J measurement (distance from the mast to the bow) that I don't like. Pointing is a little more difficult with the 25.

7Nov09 Message: I have two questions. 1) What size are the Zincs on the centerboard on my Horizion Cat. I need to purchase new ones I think. I keep my boat in a slip (salt Water) and I heard I would need to replace them often. I just don't know what size to ask for when I buy new ones. 2) What is the easiest way to replace them. If I put the boat on the trailer I can't drop the board to get to the Zincs. What method do you suggest to remove and replace the Zincs?

Answer: We stock the smallest RUDDER zinc that West Marine sells. That's the replacement zinc for 16s and the Sun Cats that we replace most often. The Horizon Cat should be the same. The only way to replace centerboard zincs is the pick up the boat with a lift and drop the centerboard. Most people have their zincs replaced when they have their bottom painted. A zinc is designed to prevent the galvanic corrosion of your centerboard from other electrical systems in your area.

3Nov09 Message: Just purchased a used Sun Cat in excellent condition but will probably need to replace the outboard engine soon. I'm interested in the Torqueedo 810 electic motor in lieu of an outboard gasoline engine because its very light and we only need to motor when docking or launching the boat. Based on your highly informative website, I figure you're the best person to ask for an opinion regarding this alternative source for powering a sailboat. Thanks.

Answer: Most of our experience is with gasoline outboards. We have installed a few electric motors on 16s when they were located on lakes that didn't allow gasoline outboards. Small Craft Advisor had a good article on the Torqueedo motor some months ago. I would check with them for an old issue. Our electric’s worked well in light wind conditions.

2Nov09 Message: I own a Compac Horizion Cat. Do you know of any reason why a "HawkEye" D10D Depth Sounder with in Hull Glue in Transducer would not work in my boat? I understand that if a hull has a wood or foam core the in Hull Transducer may not work. I believe the Horizion does not have a wood or foam core in the hull. Please give me your opinion.

Answer: The Horizon Cat hull is all glass. We normally install "in hull transducers" with a silicone sealant unless the depth sounder instructions say you can't use silicone.

25Oct09 Message: I am looking to buy a 1980 compac 16. You state in one of your articles, "This boat has been a dry boat and the inside is excellent. It had the standard deck core problems associated with those early years,.." What should I be looking for when I view this boat. I am totally new to sailing. Thank you.

Answer: The 1980 Model didn't have a wood core. That was the year that Com-Pac changed to a resin and glass bead core. The same material used as a core in bowling balls. Most problems with that year boat will be the result of misuse. You will be able to identify those problems with a good visual inspection.

21Oct09 Message: Can you convert my Compac 16 to a trawler with an outboard motor? If so, approximate cost and delivery requested.

Answer: We can convert your 16 to a trawler. The approximate cost for a Mark II conversion is $10K. That price includes new paint, motor, wheel, controls, sliding side windows and an overhead hatch. We need approximately 6 months from start to finish.

6Oct09 Message: Hi, I just picked up an 87 and am interested in a mast gallows. There is a bimini installed and when not in use is in the way whether you stow if aft or fwd. What is the price of the gallows and is that something that can be shipped. thanks

Answer: The Com-Pac 16 gallows cost $450 plus shipping. The gallows can be shipped via UPS.

3Oct09 Message: I am interested in putting the masttender hinge on my 16,but Hutchens does not think it's a good idea. I don't see any problem with it. I have a friend with a picknick cat that has the system and think it would work just fine. What has been your experience with this if any? Thanks

Answer: The picture of the 16 on my Home Page has a Mast Tender system and it works fine. I think that boat currently lives in CA. We have modified several 16s with the Mast Tender system. The problem with the system is cost. The Boom Tender system for the 16 cost less and does about the same thing. They both leave the sail covered on the boom with the mast down. The teak and stainless boom gallows used with the Mast Tender looks good, but it's expensive.

30Sep09 Message: I have completed my "Trawler" after 3 years and $11,000, including the donor boat and motor. I installed an Evinrude 9.9 electric start with remote controls. It was launched last Sunday and rides perfectly on her water line. I also re-installed the modified sail rig, but have not yet sailed her. It is based on a design I worked on for the past several years, but did not have the time to build until recently. I wrote to you for advice about 2 years ago and it was really helpful. Thanks. I can send a photo, but couldn't attach to this form. Plans are to develop a web site and describe what I did. The Com-Pac is a great donor hull for such a project. One last question, how do I join the Com-Pac owners Club?

Answer: All I need for the club is your phone number and area code. I have the other information I need. I also need the picture you mentioned because I'm sure everyone would like to see your Trawler. My email address is I'm looking forward to seeing the picture.

17Sep09 Message: I think that the tube with the pendant for the centerboard on my Suncat it allowing the water that spurts out to go outside the tube and down into the bilge. How can I stop this? Thanx Keith.

Answer: The tube is rigid and the cockpit floor has some give when we move around in the cockpit. That combination can cause a joint leak. The best way to test for a leak is to rap some tissue paper around the tube inside the seat hatch next to the floor. Wet paper will tell you if the floor/tube connection is leaking. You repair the connection by removing the teak block on the cockpit floor. Clean the old caulking at the connection and re-seal with 3M5200. Stop the drains from draining with rags or whatever and put some water in the cockpit with a hose. Check for leaks again using tissue paper.

5Sep09 Message: Thanks for the response on the proper rate of drip for my stuffing box. However I am still puzzled. I measured my rate of drip while the boat was under way at about 3/4's throttle. I observed the drip then at a drip every ten seconds. I still need to know what rate or amount of water is exceptable. The reason I need to know is I seem to be getting an unusal amount of water in the bilge below the stuffing nut. I have an automatic bilge pump but it has to run all the time to keep up. It even runs long after I have docked the boat and turned the engine off. Please give some guidance as to how much water should be coming in. Thank you very much!

Answer: I think you have a leak and it's not at the stuffing box. If you take a container and put it in a sink and adjust a faucet to drip one drop every ten seconds, it would take a long time to get a full container. Your bilge water appears to be more than a stuffing box drip. A drop of water every 30 to 60 seconds on the second day is acceptable for most stuffing boxes. The most likely source of your bilge water is the connection between the shaft log and the hull. Com-Pac uses a fiberglass log and they glass the log to the hull. The way to trouble shoot this problem is put the boat on a trailer and move the cutless bearing clamp aft. Caulk the joint between the log and the hull and then move the bearing clamp back into position to help seal the joint. After the 3M5200 cures, test the boat for leaks. This may not be a permanent fix, but it will identify the problem.

4Sep09 Message: I have a question about how much water should be dripping from my shaft log. I have a 9 HP Diesel Yanmar. The current drip rate is about 1 drop every 10 seconds. Is this too much or too little?

Answer: Good question. Everyone has that same question with a new diesel sailboat. Lubricating water is at the stuffing box when the boat is moving and the drip is atomized into a mist. You normally can't see the mist. When the boat stops moving, the water that was pulled into the stuffing box by the rotating shaft starts dripping. You measure the amount of drip the FOLLOWING DAY after the water in the stuffing box and the shaft log has had a chance to drain. Most shallow draft sailboats have their stuffing box located at the same level as the oide water level and they don't have a stuffing box problem. Some people measure their drip rate at the wrong time and screw up their stuffing box with too much adjustment.

29Aug09 Message: What a great websight. I haven't owned a Compac 16 for six years since I went wood but I visit your sight almost every day in anticipation of new pearls of wisdom from a serious sailor. Two questions: What is the Compac 16 on Ebay (50 miles from my house in IL) worth and what is the status of the enterboard 16? You have given alot of valuable information to alot of sailors. Thanks from at least one of them.

(Video) question and answer forum

Answer: Another sailor asked the same EBay question on the phone and we said we though the price was good. The value of a used 16 is based on condition and some older 16s may need work. I plan on sailing the yelllow centerboard 16 for awhile. My plan is the sail two 16s on our New River race course and publish the dynamic results on our Web site. Comparing apples to apples should be interesting.

11Aug09 Message: I bought my Compac 19 from you about 15 years ago when I was living in Holly Springs, NC. I have to replace mast due to a boat ramp parking lot low hanging branch accident. Is it possible to order a new mast with the Mastendr hinge and use it with the existing setup on the standard Compac 19? I have seen photos of 19s that you have converted to the Mastendr setup.

Answer: We have evolved into something better. The Mast Tender was expensive and the Boom Tender works better for the 19. The first change for the Boom Tender 19 is the mast gallows. It bolts to the stern pulpit. That puts enough space under the mast for the boom and sail. What makes the Boom Tender work is a small universal joint between the boom and the mast. The mast folds and the boom folds with enough space for the sail and the sailcover. The third optional change is getting rid of the backstay. We move the chainplates for uppers aft and that makes the rigging into a tri-pod system like the 16. You don't need the backstay and raising the mast is better. The 19 was overbuilt and doesn't need all that wire. Sorry about the accident.

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Which website gives answers to questions? ›

  • User-powered question and answer platform. ...
  • Ask a Librarian. Online reference desk service from the Library of Congress. ...
  • Brainly. Post questions to a community of millions of students and teachers. ...
  • Chegg Study. ...
  • Dummies. ...
  • eHow. ...
  • PolitiFact. ...
  • Quora.

How do you get all the answers to questions? ›

To find an accurate, peer-reviewed answer to your question, the best place to look is academic websites. Search the website for articles, lectures, and videos relevant to your question to gather research towards the answer. Some popular academic websites include Academia, JSTOR, and Bartleby.

What questions Cannot be answered with yes or no? ›

Open-ended questions are questions that cannot be answered with a simple 'yes' or 'no', and instead require the respondent to elaborate on their points.

What questions Cannot be answered? ›

Fundamental questions science cannot yet answer
  • What is the nature of dark matter? ...
  • What is the nature of dark energy? ...
  • What happened before the Big Bang? ...
  • Are we alone in the Universe? ...
  • The puzzle of the human brain and consciousness.
Feb 17, 2022

Which app is best for finding answers? ›

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  • MathPapa - Algebra Calculator. Education.
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  • Kadama - Find a Tutor. Education.
  • Bartleby: Math Homework Helper. Education.
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Which app is best for Ask questions and get answers? ›

Answer is a simple Q&A Platform. It is a simple and best Questions and Answers app. It was specially designed for learners and students, who can ask their doubts and solve the doubts of others. So, you can help others in their homework.

How can I get answers easily? ›

  1. Read the whole answer only to understand.
  2. Don't think of memorizing in one go.
  3. Break the question in parts( as many u wish.. ...
  4. Now go through one part and learn it loudly.
  5. Now check whether u have learned by hiding the answer.
  6. If yes: repeat processes 4 and 5 till u complete the answer.

How do I find answers? ›

5 Steps to Finding the Answers Within
  1. Take some time out to connect with yourself. Turn off your phone, computer and TV, and allow yourself time to just be. ...
  2. Take some deep breaths and quiet your mind. ...
  3. Connect with your deeper self. ...
  4. Ask questions and allow the answers to come into your awareness. ...
  5. Trust and practice.

How do you get all multiple choice questions right? ›

How to ace multiple choice tests
  1. Read very carefully. Take the time to carefully read each question and answer choice. ...
  2. Come up with your own answer. ...
  3. Look for common types of wrong answers. ...
  4. Eliminate answers in two rounds. ...
  5. Do not obsess over your choices. ...
  6. Manage your time. ...
  7. Answer every question.
Nov 15, 2022

What do you call a question no one can answer? ›

rhetorical question Add to list Share.

What is always in front of you but can't be seen? ›

Expert-Verified Answer

The correct answer is The future. Explanation: This question is based on Riddle.

What can go up and down without moving? ›

The answer is: Stairs.

What is the most unanswered question? ›

Science's Greatest Unanswered Questions Revealed
  • Are we alone in the universe? - ...
  • Will there ever be a cure for cancer? - ...
  • Does God exist? - ...
  • How big is space? -

What are 3 questions that Cannot be answered? ›

The Feud Between Science and Religion
  • Why is there an exception to every rule? ...
  • Why do logic and reason fail to explain that which is true? ...
  • Is the universe finite or infinite? ...
  • Why does anything exist? ...
  • Why does time exist? ...
  • Why do humans matter? ...
  • Why are humans so fallible? ...
  • Do human accomplishments have long-term meaning?
Mar 22, 2013

What app lets you take a picture of a question and get the answer? ›

Photo input

Open the Socratic app. Tap Photo Camera . Take a picture of the question or explanation with your device's camera. Crop the image to only include the section you want to ask about.

What is the secret questions app? ›

AskMe is the best app to get anonymous and honest answers to your questions. It's extremely simple to create a new question and share it to Instagram. You'll receive anonymous messages and you'll be able to reply it back on IG. AskMe is intended to be used safely.

How do I get answers to multiple choice questions? ›

  1. Read the entire question. ...
  2. Answer it in your mind first. ...
  3. Use the process of elimination. ...
  4. True or false test. ...
  5. Look for answers hidden in questions. ...
  6. Select the best answer. ...
  7. Answer the questions you know first.
Mar 22, 2022

How do you get answers from people? ›

How to Get Someone to Confess or Divulge Information
  1. Truth Fills Silence.
  2. Nod Your Head.
  3. Get Intimate.
  4. Minimize the Significance.
  5. Share Something.
  6. Play Good Cop.
  7. Build Rapport.
  8. Center Them.

What is a answer key? ›

answer key (plural answer keys) An assorted list of solutions to problems or exercises in a test, textbook, etc.

How can I see my answers without logging in? ›

Read Quora Without Logging In Using Incognito Mode

You can use Chrome's Incognito Mode to read Quora answers without logging in, and it is pretty simple to do so. First, copy the URL of the question you want to read. Then, open an Incognito tab, paste the URL, and press Enter. That's it!

Is C the most common answer? ›

In other words? There is no most common answer on the SAT. Ultimately, guessing C (or any letter!) will give you the correct answer only a statistical 25% of the time.

Why is C always the answer? ›

The idea that C is the best answer to choose when guess-answering a question on a multiple choice test rests on the premise that ACT answer choices are not truly randomized. In other words, the implication is that answer choice C is correct more often than any other answer choice.

What is the most common multiple choice question answer? ›

The “True” or “False” questions are some of the most commonly used multiple-choice questions. It includes the stem (question or statement) and two answer options – True and False. These questions are used to test critical thinking and evaluate the respondent's knowledge by challenging them to choose the correct option.

What is it called when someone doesn t give you a straight answer? ›

e.g. She gave an evasive answer Merriam-Webster. To be evasive is to avoid something, whether it's a touchy subject or the person who's "it". If you're dodging the truth and not giving straight answers, then you're being evasive, which is probably not the best strategy when the police are asking the questions.

What can run but can't walk? ›

Answer: A River! findings to teach Year 2 students about rivers. Highlights in today's Stories!

What gets wet when drying? ›

The answer to the riddle is “a towel”.

It is a bath towel because the more it dries, the wetter it becomes. When the towel is used to dry other things or people, it keeps on getting wetter as it keeps absorbing the water.

What has branches but no fruit? ›

I have branches, but no fruit, trunk or leaves. What am I? A bank!

What is at end of a rainbow? ›

What is at the end of the rainbow? At the end of the rainbow is a pot of gold.

What has 5 fingers but can't move? ›

Therefore, the right answer of this riddle is a glove which is not alive but have five fingers.

What has legs but doesn't walk? ›

What has four legs and one back but can't walk? Chair.

What are the 5 big questions? ›

Clearly some questions are more crucial than others. These are the big five!
  • Origin – Where did I come from? ...
  • Identity – Who am I? ...
  • Purpose – Why am I here? ...
  • Morality – How should we live? ...
  • Destiny – Where are we going?
Nov 8, 2018

What is the most random question ever? ›

And now...for the most random questions ever!
  • If You Had Three Wishes, What Would You Wish For?
  • What Would You Rather Throw Away: Love Or Money?
  • What's The Most Beautiful Place You've Ever Seen?
  • What Was Your Fondest Memory Of High School?
  • What's Your Favorite TV Show?
  • What's The Strangest Thing In Your Refrigerator?
Jul 31, 2020

What is the hardest question ever? ›

So, what is truth? Philosophers have struggled with this question since the dawn of time, perhaps because it's the hardest question ever asked. The field of epistemology is the subdiscipline of philosophy that grapples it, along with the nature of knowledge itself.

What is a super deep question? ›

Deep Questions to Ask Friends

If you could magically change one thing in your life, what would it be? What do you think of mindfulness? Do you think we'd be better off without social media? What do you think it means to be healthy?

What questions do thinkers want to answer? ›

Answer: The questions that Upnishadic thinkers wanted to answer were about life and death, reason for sacrifices and the permanent substance in the universe.

What is the powerful question? ›

Powerful questions are open ended and empower the person responding to choose the direction they take. They create possibilities and encourage discovery, deeper understanding, and new insights. They are curious and non-judgmental as they seek to further learning and connection.

What are the big 3 questions? ›

The Three Big Questions strategy challenges readers to annotate in the margins by marking passages that answer the questions: "What surprised me?", "What did the author think I already knew?", and "What challenged, changed, or confirmed what I already knew?".

What are the four 4 types of questions? ›

  • General or Yes/No Questions.
  • Special or Wh-Questions.
  • Choice Questions.
  • Disjunctive or Tag Questions.

What are the three important questions? ›

A simple reminder to work on the things that really matter to you. Let 'The 3 most important questions' help you to get clarity on your End Goals.
The 3 most important questions
  • What do I want to experience?
  • How do I want to grow?
  • What do I want to contribute?

How do I get Google answers to questions? ›

  1. On your Android phone or tablet, open Google.
  2. Search for a place or city.
  3. Scroll down to the "Questions & answers" section.
  4. Tap See questions.
  5. Under the question, tap Answer.

Does answers com still exist? ›

The domain name was purchased by entrepreneurs Bill Gross and Henrik Jones at idealab in 1996. The domain name was acquired by NetShepard and subsequently sold to GuruNet and then AFCV Holdings. The website is now the primary product of the Answers Corporation.

What is a website * Your answer? ›

A website (also written as a web site) is a collection of web pages and related content that is identified by a common domain name and published on at least one web server.

Does Google have answers to all questions? ›

Google's system tracks all the information contained in the search index. In this step, duplicate content is canceled. All this information is stored in the Google Index and a large database is created. Serving Result: Whenever we type on Google to do some search, we get many answers related to our question as well.

What is the answer box? ›

What is Google's answer box? On the search engine results page, the answer box lists what Google deems is the best answer to the query. It's positioned below the search query and above the organic results. (Note: Not every search includes an answer box.)

Why won't my Google answer my questions? ›

If your Google Assistant doesn't work or respond to “Hey Google” on your Android device, make sure Google Assistant, Hey Google and Voice Match are turned on: On your Android phone or tablet, go to Assistant settings, or open the Google Assistant app. and say, “Assistant settings.”

What is the most searched question on Google? ›

What are the Most Asked Questions on Google in 2023? Have you ever thought about what are the most asked questions on Google? You may be surprised to know that the most frequently asked question on Google was “What to Watch?”. This search query generated 7.5 million online search queries every month.

Is it cheating if you find the answers online? ›

Is it considered cheating if you look up the answers after you submitted your test? Cheating is using dishonesty to gain unfair advantage. If you've already submitted your test (and are unable to get it back to alter it) then you cannot get any advantage therefore it is not cheating.

Is finding answers online cheating? ›

Research is not cheating. If you ask someone online to do the work for you (as when you post your arithmetic homework question on Quora) this is cheating just like if you asked your friend to do the work for you. If you ask someone else to write an essay for you, whether online or in person, that is cheating.

What is the most trusted website? ›

We've gathered here several news websites with a good reputation.
  • BBC News. BBC News is one of the most trusted sources you can ever find. ...
  • The Economist. ...
  • The Wall Street Journal. ...
  • Google News. ...
  • The Guardian. ...
  • CNN.
Jan 29, 2023

What is the most searched website? ›

Leading websites worldwide 2022, by monthly visits

Between September and November 2022, held the leading position as the most popular website worldwide with 88.4 billion average monthly visits.


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