Making a Traditional Leadline

Start with a length of 3/4 inch braided cotton twine. Attach a cast lead weight of 7 or 14 pounds. It's common for the weight to have a hollow at the bottom end. This hollow can be "armed" with tallow (Crisco makes an acceptable substitute) for picking up a sample of the sea bottom.

Mark the line as follows:
22 strips of leather
33 strips of leather
5white cotton calico
7red woolen bunting
10leather with a round hole in it
133 strips of leather
or blue woolen serge
15white calico
17red bunting
20light line with 2 knots
or leather with two round holes

The marks are designed to be read by feel at night. They should be inserted through the line and sewn into place. The line should be wet when measured for the marks.

This Old Boat book cover This Old Boat by Don Casey

Subtitled "turn a rundown fiberglass boat into a first-class yacht on a shoestring budget," this book is the best introduction I know boat maintenance for the new or prospective owner of a "modern classic" sailboat. Starting with guidelines for selecting a boat, Casey proceeds to fiberglass repairs, cabin and deckwork, spars and rigging, boat equipment, woodwork, electrical, plumbing, refrigeration, painting, canvas work and sails. All of this is described in clear, simple terms perfect for the inexperienced. This is the book that taught me fiberglass work. But don't let it fool you; this book is appropriate for experienced boatowners, too. I still refer to it.

Other books by Don Casey

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