Useful Tips

For Pure Latitude to work best, we rely on you treating the boats as your own. This includes applying good seamanship, reporting faults, taking responsibility for any damage and leaving the boat ready for the next member to get on board and enjoy the boat as you have. Please follow the practices below and contact the office if you need assistance.


  • Ensure throttle is in neutral before starting.
  • After starting, immediately check cooling water is coming out of the exhaust. If not, turn off the engine and get advice from Pure Latitude.
  • Please be aware of degree and direction of prop walk.
  • Run engine at @80% for optimum cruising, around 2000 – 2500 rpm.
  • Rest in neutral in between changing from forwards to reverse.
  • When sailing, put engine into gear to stop prop rotating.

Securing to a mooring buoy

  • Lasso the buoy first.
  • Then secure one of your dock lines to a forward cleat on the boat, pass it through the eye of the mooring buoy twice to reduce chafe and back onto the cleat on the opposite side.
  • If overnighting then do the same with a backup line.


  • Remove the anchor pin.
  • Free drop by manually loosening the gypsy clutch.
  • To raise the anchor, run boat engine and motor very gently towards the anchor before raising it, taking care not to overrun the anchor chain.
  • Avoid overloading the windlass which will trigger the trip switch. If any sign of slipping or jamming please do not run windlass and pull up by hand.
  • In the last stages of recovery take care to ensure that the anchor doesn’t knock the hull.
  • Clear the chain periodically from under the windlass as you raise it to prevent it piling and snagging.
  • Clean anchor before stowing, and always attach anchor pin.

Tender/outboard engine

  • The skipper takes full responsibility for using a tender and outboard.
  • The maximum capacity is clearly marked on the side of the tender and must not be exceeded.
  • The tender should be equipped with oars, portable VHF radio and a working torch if operating after dark.
  • When ashore you need to consider appropriate security for the tender and any contents.
  • The tender should be recovered onto the deck of the yacht overnight.
  • Be careful moving the outboard into and out of the dinghy and tie a safety line.
  • Ensure that you use the kill cord appropriately.
  • Be aware of fuel levels.

Additional sailboat care guidance

Head sail

Unfurl the headsail under control, especially the last 30cm, to ensure the furling line winds cleanly onto the drum. This helps prevent problems when furling away and reduces damage to the furler.

Furl with minimum pressure on the headsail i.e. downwind blanketed by the main. Furl by hand, not using winches. If tight, sweat furling line up at right angles to provide more purchase and feel. The UV protection strip should cover the sail – this requires adequate sheet tension when furling. Always lock both headsail sheets on winches with 1 turn wrapped around the forestay to keep the headsail furled. If they are loose, a strong wind can unfurl and damage the sails.

When reefing a furling headsail, always head downwind; slowly let out the headsail sheet to ease the load on it and simultaneously furl the sail the desired amount using the furling line. Typically there will be 3 dots along the foot of the headsail, marking reefs 1, 2 and 3.

Main sail

A smooth and swift hoist will minimise flogging and reduce wear. Locate and prepare the sheets and halyard. Open the reef clutches and release the vang. Communicate with your crew and look at the sail whilst hoisting.

If it is hard to raise the mainsail, stop hoisting and check for problems – are the sail sliders/runners jammed? Is the main halyard snagged? Have the sail batons caught in the lazy jacks? Are the reefing lines running freely?

Once hoisted and the correct tension is set, ease the topping lift.

When reefing some boats have only 2 reefing lines which are set for reef 1 and 2. If a 3rd reef is needed, use line 1 – untie the first reefing line, feed the reefing line up through the third reef attachment and back to the boom where you can secure it using a bowline at the proper position for the third reef (not the first reef position). The pull is therefore aft and down, exactly as it is with the other reefs. Remember to move it back to first reef position before leaving the boat.

When packing away attach the main halyard to back of boom when not sailing and ensure the topping lift is tight enough to avoid loading the lazy jacks. Flake main tidily avoiding creases and ensure the head of the sail is under the sail cover. Respect the sail battens when handling the sail and avoid bending them. After reefing, release the lines; and pull them back through to the clew. Similarly, don’t pull the excess at the clew through the clutches and into the cockpit as it the next hoist much harder; stow the excess in the main sail bag.

Spray hood

Don’t apply any excessive weight to the sprayhood as it can’t take it. When folding it down, ensure that no chafing can occur on the metal frame, especially the clear plastic panels, by tucking the cloth between the clear panels and the metal frame.

Using the autohelm

Avoid overloading the autohelm – trim the sails correctly and use appropriately for the conditions.
Still keep a lookout, and stay close in case of a sudden wind change.
Please read the individual instructions on the boat for operating details.
If the helm appears to lock up, it’s almost always the case that the autohelm has been inadvertently set by brushing a button.

Raise the Pure Latitude flag correctly

Please set the Pure Latitude flag or banner when you leave the boat or when you are visiting other marinas.
Use a spinnaker halyard and attach to a suitable point on the foredeck.
Ensure that it can fly cleanly without interfering with the forestay or mast.