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Dick DeBartolo, MAD's Maddest Writer, and co-host of The Giz Wiz at GizWiz.TV, The Giz Wiz on ABC's World News Now, Tech Guy Labs on TWiT and on Computer America. But wait, there's More »

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    As East Coast Editor, I was in every issue of Powerboat Magazine for 40 years. But Powerboat ceased publication with the Jan/Feb 2012 issue. My love of boats, and marine gadgets continues and you can find some interesting stuff here. Jason Johnson and Matt Trulio of Powerboat Magazine carry on with news for the go-fast set with their web based http://www.speedonthewater.com/.

    Wednesday
    Jun072017

    The Giz Wiz is an avid boater!

    Living right in mid-Manhattan, Dick's never owned a car in his life, but he has owned 26 boats! At one time he owned 5 boats, but that got a little expensive, so he whittled it down to three. These days he's happy with just one - a 23' Farallon shown above! It's powered with a four-stroke 250 HP Yamaha outboard.

    For 42 years Dick wrote a column for Powerboat Magazine reporting on new boats, new engines, and his favorite, new boating gadgets and gizmos. Powerboat ceased publication in February 2012, so Dick continued to write about marine gadgets online. 

    If you'd like to take a live look out onto the Hudson River from inside my boat, here's the view from my onboard live Dropcam! It's on 24/7, but with the rolling waves from passing tugs, sightseeing boats, etc. it does go off from time to time. The folks at Dropcam sent me an email during hurricane Katrina to tell me more than 55,000 people had watched the hurricane whipping up the Hudson River through my Dropcam! (They do the hosting, so they would know the numbers.)

    https://video.nest.com/live/6Zz8Qu 

    New! Aft Next Dropcam view: https://video.nest.com/live/tEAgkt

    My Farallon is powered by a 250 hp Yamaha four-stroke outboard. The best top speed when the boat was new and kind of gadget free was 44.2 mph. 

    Update: With my new 2017 Yamaha 4 stroke 4.2 Liter outboard, my Farallon once again has a top speed of 44.2 mph even everything we've put aboard for the past 15 years!

    http://www.farallonboats.com/

    http://yamahaoutboards.com/

    Wednesday
    Jun072017

    The Giz Wiz Is A Fan of this Fan. 

    The Caframo Sirocco II (II is new version) 7" 12 and 24 Volt fan features a unique gimbaled design that allows airflow to be directed in any direction of the cabin - 360°. I like that it can also be folded flat and out of the way against the bulkhead when not in use. It's a 3 speed fan with an extra features I really like. A 3, 6, 9, and 12 hour timer setting. I used to worry about leaving the cabin fan on when I left the battery which would mean coming back to a dead battery. But with the timer setting it will go off automatically after the number of hours you choose. It has manual on/off too if you want that. The is also very quiet and the blades shouldn't hurt your fingers if for some reason you (or maybe the kid's stick their fingers in.) I stuck my fingers in and they stopped the blades with doing any damage, as least to my fingers. This is a premium fan that should last for years. MSRP is $129.99, but it's available for under $100 online.

    It was $95.80 here as of 6/7/17 with free shipping, but not Amazon Prime.
     
    http://amzn.to/2r2889r 

    Company website: http://www.caframolifestylesolutions.com/product/marine/sirocco-ii-draft/

    Thursday
    Jan262017

    From the NY Boat Show, I posted this on Facebook.

    Wednesday
    Jan252017

    World Introduction of the new Sea Ray SLX 400 at the NY International Boat Show.

    Here's what Sea Ray says about their brand new SLX 400. (I'm added my comments in brackets, like this one.) The SLX 400 was conceived as the ideal entertaining vessel for socializing with large groups of family and friends. (It can sit 16 to 20 people, but keep safety in mind.) It's marketed as ‘the Entertainer,’ because boaters will be hard pressed to find anything this boat can’t do — or store. For those into stand-up paddle boarding, you’ll find enclosed storage for two full-sized boards. Additional storage throughout the boat holds large items, towels and other belongings safely out of the fray. For entertaining there's a well-appointed wet bar with refrigerator, sink and available dual grills. The transom entertainment zone — featuring a stereo, sprayer, and comfy aft-facing seating overlooking the integral extended swim platform. The most remarkable cockpit feature is the innovative new fold-down patio, a brilliantly designed wing of the hull that opens 90 degrees to expand the cockpit all the way to the water. (This is unique, I haven't seen it before in a boat this size. The SLX 400 include Axius® joystick control, for effortless docking and maneuvering in the tightest of spaces. (I've used Sea Ray joystick control on a different 40+ Sea Ray boat and it is amazingly easy to use, especially for leaving the dock and returning.) Raymarine® 14” glass displays let you create your dashboard instrument layout. Below deck there's a private head with shower, luxury sleeping for four, flat screen TV and more. Engine options to power this beauty between 40 and 50 mph. Depending on options it can range up to the $500,000 range.

     

    Giz Wiz Video: (Forgive the low volume in the video. This was not a trade show, and a salesman was with a customer, so I'm talking very softly.)  https://youtu.be/eAPOZuFS2Sc

     

    Company website: http://www.searay.com/

    Friday
    Nov252016

    Great Yamaha outboard news to my 'nautical' ears! 

    Here's news I've been waiting for: Yamaha Marine Group's mechanical control versions of its legendary 225- and 250-horsepower 4.2-liter V6 Offshore outboards are shipping. The model F250XB is available in both left and right-hand rotation if you're installing twin engines, and the F225XB is right-hand rotation only. “Boaters who need mechanical control can now enjoy all of the legendary 4.2-liter V6 offshore benefits,” said Ben Speciale, Yamaha Marine Group President. "These outboards are great repower solutions for boats that don’t need digital electronic control, yet can benefit from Yamaha’s light weight, high efficiency 4.2-liter offshore platform.” (Hey, that's me they're talking about! I want to repower, but I don't want to replace all the instruments and have to rewire the boat.) These new models have big-bore V6 displacement thanks to plasma-fused sleeveless cylinders. This technology results in an outboard with the largest displacement in its class. Electronic Fuel Injection make these outboards up to 17 percent more fuel efficient. This is good news too: V6 Offshore Mechanicals are more than 50 pounds lighter than the venerable Yamaha 3.3-liter V6s. When repowering with the Yamaha 4.2-liter V6 Mechanicals, there is typically no need to change over to a new control box, thus providing an economical solution for work boats or other craft where digital control is not needed or desired. (That's me again!) The new F250XB is is exactly what I want to repower my Farallon workboat with and I'll trade-in my 2003 model Yamaha outboard. I'll be checking these hard-working engines out in person at NY Boat Show, January 25-29, 2017. Here's more info on the new engines via Yamaha:

    http://www.yamahamarinemedia.com/products/outboards