SimplySailingOnline.com shows by example how easily you can eliminate stress, become more independent, raise your children in a safer environment (while spending more time with them, instilling values not based on the mighty dollar) and avoid the traps of commercialism. Because we live and sail simply, we have been wandering for 11 years with no intention of stopping. This is not a trip for us; it is our life, and I hope to share our success with stories of laughter and tears, as well as how-to tips and DIY projects for preparing, sailing and making a boat a home, so that others can join us.

Free Croakie Substitute

June 27, 2016

Walking with Dave is like one long treasure hunt. He picks up anything bright and shiny (it may be money, or stainless, or useful in some other as-of-yet-undetermined way), anything that is odd shaped (out of curiosity and in the event that he may need that someday), and, of course, all trash. And there are some items that we actually celebrate when we find on the beach or in the water, such as koozies. We have never purchased a koozie, but we have dozens of them onboard. Twenty years ago they were made of some sort of closed cell foam that made great crab trap buoys in the Chesapeake. But in the past few years, the predominate material has switched to a thin neoprene. And aren't we glad!


Cut and sew

Anyone who has ever worn "the original Neoprene Eyewear Retainer" for very long knows these several things about them:
1. They are expensive.
2. They disintegrate into a smelly, icky mess after several years of nonstop wearing them.
3. They are completely awesome and a real glasses saver.

So, when Dave's latest pair of Croakies got too worn out to be comfortable and became nearly unfunctional, he put his lack of Croakies together with the many koozies we have and came up with his own, free, Croakie substitute.


The ends are the important parts.

He started by laying out the koozie next to the decrepit old Croakies. He decided to sew two halves together, though he could have spiraled around the koozie and made it from one piece. He made it slightly wider than the originals AND (this is the important part) flared out the ends.

After the two pieces were cut out and sewn together, he wrapped the WIDER ends around the tips of the arms of his sunglasses. He sewed the ends together around the arms. If you want a snug fit, which is best for keeping them on even when you accidently get your glasses caught on something, the neoprene should be TOO SMALL for the glasses. You should have to pull the ends together with the thread when you sew them on. If not, cut some off and try again. If the ends are not pulled tightly enough around the sunglasses, the arms will slip right out of them, defeating the purpose of Croakies. However, depending on how wide you choose to make the strap, you may need to make the ends wider for them to even fit around your glasses. A dry fit and cut too big and trim later are your best bet.

After several months of wearing his do-it-yourself, not-so-original neoprene eyewear retainer, Dave has noticed the following:
1. They disintegrate into a smelly, icky mess after several months of nonstop wearing them.
2. They are completely awesome and a real glasses saver.
3. They are completely free and available on a beach or in the water near you. All you have to do it pick them up when you see them.

MONDAY we'll talk about the occasional need to sail north to go south.

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Connie McBride's work has been published in Good Old Boat, Sail Magazine, Small Craft Advisor, Cruising World, All at Sea, and Blue Water Sailing. As a full-time liveaboard cruiser for over 15 years, she has written several books and in her spare time, well, who has spare time?

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