The goal of SailBits is to tell a story about how technology and sailing work together, to share ideas about projects, and help others learn from the experience.

Getting to Princess Louisa Inlet from Seattle

By Steve Mitchell | September 22, 2018 | 4 Comments

This year I finally made it to a place I have always wanted to see – Princess Louisa Inlet. The trip was an epic one – over 450 NM in only 17 days, and all done solo!

Sailing towards power…

By Steve Mitchell | September 6, 2018 | 24 Comments

I have decided to move to a power boat after years of sailing. The decision was a hard one, but also an exciting one as it will enable more projects and testing on a bigger platform.

MikroTik Groove step-by-step setup guide

By Steve Mitchell | August 30, 2018 | 12 Comments

Setting up the MikroTik Groove to boost WiFi on your boat can be daunting. With a few quick steps you can get the Groove up and running quickly on your network.

Correcting the list – LiFePO4 power system design

By Steve Mitchell | August 15, 2018 | 31 Comments

Due to weight and features, I decided to convert my sailboat power system to LiFePO4. This article covers the design which settled on Victron components.

Conquer seasickness with a ReliefBand

By Steve Mitchell | June 28, 2018 | 0 Comments

Since as long as I can remember, I’ve gotten motion sick on airplanes, in cars, and on boats. I have tried many different solutions to help reduce how sick I get, and the one that has worked for 15+ years for me reliably and easily is the ReliefBand.

Improvements with a new propeller

By Steve Mitchell | June 8, 2018 | 8 Comments

Grace came with a factory prop when I purchased her – it was OK, but after 3 years of using that prop, I felt that I could get better speed and potentially other benefits.

Major mast work

By Steve Mitchell | June 4, 2018 | 12 Comments

In the last year I have had a number of issues with items in or on Grace’s mast. During a recent trip to Blake Island, the anchor light stopped working, and that was the last straw. It was time to dig deeper into fixing all of the issues.

Modular, cheaper boat internet solution via Netgear and MikroTik

By Steve Mitchell | May 28, 2018 | 74 Comments

I’ve written a lot about my boat network, and in particular, Peplink products that offer a ton of functionality and features. For the last 6 months, I have been playing with configurations and hardware that cost less, but still provide flexibility and features that more expensive solutions offer.

Using an Intel NUC as a powerful boat server

By Steve Mitchell | April 28, 2018 | 10 Comments

For years I have had a dedicated linux machine on my sailboats centered around remote monitoring and stats gathering. I have a fairly well developed set of tools from SignalK, Zabbix, Grafana and others that help keep an eye on the boat while I am on board, and away. I have been using a Raspberry Pi computer to enable this, but in the last few months it has proven to be too underpowered to keep up. My search began for a better solution…

A tale of two sails

By Steve Mitchell | April 18, 2018 | 14 Comments

This last week I took Grace out on the water twice after a ton of winter projects. The first time was a beautiful, warm day with wind and real sailing. The second time was the rainiest April day on record in 22 years in Seattle, and turned out quite a bit different.