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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Thank you Steve Beck..........

Wow! Do I have a great crew. While I was goofing off in Bahia de Los Angeles on the Sea of Cortez in Baja, Steve Beck took charge of the Captain's Cabin (our nautical gift and decor department) and totally re-decorated and organized the area. He then went over to our nautical rental department and organized that area. Steve, if you happen to read this little note, please know your hard work and creativity is appreciated. For the rest of you, please keep us in mind if you are looking for a nautical gift, or gift certificate. Also, if you are doing a photo shoot, making a movie, having a ship wreck party, doing a high school or college play or want a nautical window display for your store--check out our rental department. We've got great authentic items at very modest rental rates........

Saturday, November 26, 2011

32' GRAND BANKS $3000.00

Good project boat for someone that knows what wooden boats are all about. Pictures look much better than the boat actually is. The teak hull appears quite sound, lots of rot damage in cabin and superstructure. A used engine that has been tested is in the process of being installed. Boat was hauled about a year ago. Some new thru hulls were installed and some bottom work done. Owner is a friend of mine and I told him I would run it in our BLOG. Price is $3000.00 CASH. Boat is being sold AS IS WHERE IS WITH NO WARRANTY OF ANY TYPE. See at Vikings Port in Newport Beach. Cross streets are Pacific Coast Highway and Tustin Ave. Owner is Larry Babor. His phone number is 949-645-6109

Thursday, November 24, 2011


Happy Thanksgiving from the crew at Minneys.... Have a great day....... Ernie......Josh.......Patrick.......Steve.......Sherry.......Tiffiny...Troy & Dave......

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Bahia de Los Angeles.......

Bay Of The Angels...... Having had a little "casita" in Bay of L.A. for the past 25 years I thought I'd devote this BLOG to giving the cruisers that are lucky enough to be visiting Mexico this winter a little insider info. It's a 500 mile drive from Newport Beach to L.A. bay. The roads are good but narrow, lots of big truck traffic and a cross on practically every curve. L.A. Bay makes a good place for crew changes and if you hitch hike out the 40 miles to Hwy #1 you can grab a bus back to San Diego. Two main families pretty much run the place and if you are a boater, these are are the people you want to know. The Diaz family and Gillermo's. Sammy Diaz has been my landlord for 25 years, speaks english, has a fleet of sport fishing pangas and is a JEWEL of a person. His son is a mechanic and recently opened an attractive auto parts store. I was going to put some boat gear in his store for you guys but Mexican red tape has pretty much discouraged me from doing it. Gillermo's compound is where most of you guys will spend your time. He recently built a Tahitian style palapa overlooking the bay, his food is great and margaritas even greater. He has a fleet of "super pangas", usually monitors VHF 16 and will be the closest thing to the U.S. Coast Guard you will find in the L.A. Bay area. He's the guy that salvaged the 40 footer pictured in my earlier BLOG. According to him that salvage effort almost cost him his life. He borrowed a big landing barge that had been doing construction work in the area. Some how got the sailboat aboard the barge athwart ships and headed for home. A heavy north wind came up, the big barge was down in the bow with the ten ton sailboat aboard, he was taking on water and the only thing that saved him from sinking was the "Angels of The Bay". Gillermo's a great guy, if you have a problem, he can help you. While having a drink in his patio take a few minutes and visit his sister Lucy's new store. In my mind, she the real angel of Bahia de Los Angeles. She's an artist, and will give you a personal tour of her store if you ask. There's 2 new Pemex gas stations in the village that also carry diesel. Lots of grocery stores, and a great produce store up by the traffic circle with the big white steel sail in the middle of it. A good internet store across the street from the bright yellow market thats name starts with an X. You guys will love this place but not the weather in the winter. Heavy north winds can blow for days sometimes. You can also get heavy westerlies. I watched 60 k winds blow all the furniture off Gillermo's patio and a 26' panga on the beach roll over in the heavy winds. Don Juan bay is the only all weather anchorage in our area, it's about 8 miles east of Gillermo's cantina. Mexican billionaires are buying up the area so enjoy Bahia de Los Angeles while it's still unspoiled. Pictured above is a lovely seƱorita sipping a margarita in Gillermo's patio and the view from my little casita at an area we call Ricon that is in the south end of L.A. bay. This picture is looking north from the south end of the bay. Happy Thanksgiving. Any questions about L.A. bay drop me an e-mail at

Monday, November 21, 2011

Mexico report........

I just spent 2 weeks in Bahia de Los Angels. The roads were great, lots of new highway where they have been widening the highway. There's still a ten mile detour before you climb the hill before Santo Thomas valley. The military check point is still on the mesa before you head down the hill into El Rosario. Almost no gringos on the road except for the pre-runners of the Baja 1000 off road race which started last friday the 18th. I watched the start. Bikes and quads started about 0630 and trophy trucks etc. 4 hours later. An unusual thing took place after about 15 of the trophy trucks started. About 4 miles out of Ensenada a trash truck got stuck in the mud crossing the race course road. The racers couldn't get around the truck so the race stopped as the cars backed up. There was about a one hour delay as the police escorted the other 15 trophy trucks down the river bed and out to the traffic jam. The trash truck was finally removed and the trophy trucks got a new start 30 seconds apart. Things were pretty quiet at Gillermo's in L.A. Bay. He salvaged that 40' sloop I wrote about in my (Your Auto Pilot Can Kill Y0u) Blog a couple of weeks ago. She's all chopped up and on it's side in his compound. The Mexican locals are all hurting because almost no Americans are coming to Mexico. Over the past year we've had break ins of our little homes. Two neighbors lost over $20,000.00 in goods from their Baja hide-a-ways. I've been lucky and haven't been broken in to. We solved the problem by fencing off entry to our little area called Rincon which is on the opposite side of the bay from the village. We have a 24-7 guard and a cool raise-lower gate. I only say 2 yachts anchored off the village. The local Mexicans all monitor and talk on channel 16 VHF. We gringos all monitor channel 68 and shift to other channels when talking. We've got some serious boaters living in quite a few of the houses lining our little bay. Ex mayor of San Francisco, ex #1 man at the Monterey Bay aquarium, several circumnavigators, boat builders and other nautical types just chilling out in Baja. We've done quite a few rescues through the years. Cruisers don't seem to know how hard the wind can blow in our area in the winter time. Don Juan bay is the only all weather harbor in our area. All the other anchorages are exposed to the wind from some point on the compass. This is getting a bit long. I'm in writing this little note from a little log cabin in the Rocky mountains. I'm wearing my ski boots to break them in a bit before I hit the slopes at Snow Mass tomorrow. Happy almost Thanksgiving.......

Friday, November 18, 2011

Saturday Bagels

As if you needed another reason to come by the shop on Saturdays... Free bagels and coffee.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

The Captain's Cabin

Black Friday is almost here... the official start to the holiday shopping season. Minney's has got you covered though so you can breathe a sigh of relief. Come in and head over to our "Captain's Cabin" where we've got nautical antiques new and old that'll answer the question of what to get the man who's got everything.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Bimini Tops; we've got em.

I never realized just how many ways there are to say the word Bimini. Customers will come in looking for "bi-meenys," "bi-mi-nays," "bibi tops," and one guy was even calling them "bikini's" but I think he might have been looking for the bar a few doors down. Anyway it might be hard to imagine blocking the sun as we near Thanksgiving, but installing a new bimini or dodger would make a nice winter project with a good payoff in the spring. New tops can cost an arm and a leg but our modest prices on stainless and aluminum frames with or without the fabric will have you made in the shade.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Control Freak

Most of you may not know that the location we're in used to be the San Antonio Winery. Chandleries and restaurants have different needs architecturally but we think we've done a pretty good job of making the most with what we've got. For instance if you were to walk into the old kitchen and make a sharp right turn you'd find yourself standing in the old walk-in freezer of the restaurant. What better place to store all of our morse throttle controls, dripless shaft seals, and wet exhaust manifolds? Come in and get lost!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Electrifying Deals

Does your radar dome work but your monitor is shot? Transducer's good but the fishfinder won't show any fish? We've got tons of used electronics at great prices so you can save money and the pain or rewiring a new system. We know used electronics are a gamble and we can't bench test everything so if it doesn't work, bring it back for a full refund.

Friday, November 11, 2011

The Deals Roll On....

Sometimes we find the deals, and other times the deal finds us. Today a certain boat manufacturer in Costa Mesa decided to clean house and helped us fill a trailer with titanium stanchions, a roller furler, hoses, pumps, hardware, spreaders, steering equipment, a beautiful aluminum boom and a whole lot more. Come in and see what we've got.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

A Proper Deal

We've got too many outboard and outdrive props and we're tired of looking at them. Right now if you buy 1 prop we'll knock off 15%, buy a pair and save 25%, and if you buy 3 or more you can take off 35%. They're not catalogued or sorted, you've got to bring your prop in and match it up, but you can't beat the price. Johnson, Mercury, Evinrude, Stiletto, etc...

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Tall Ships, Low Prices

What do you get the man who has everything? A ship model of course. We've got about half a dozen different ship models in the store at give away prices. They're nice to look at and a lot easier to maintain than a full size boat.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Running Lights

Every boat needs them, and everybody else charges an arm and a leg for them. We've got a great selection of new and used nav-lights, along with a couple of crates full of some more exotic lights and housings that just might be the mate to the one your kid sent into the drink because he forgot to run your bow line through the chock.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Vintage Newport

As we near the holiday season we decided to dig into the Minney's archive once again and pull out some incredible photographs of Newport Beach in its earlier days along with some of the more interesting characters that called Newport their home. At $24.95 these framed photos make great gifts. Stop by our Captain's Cabin and have a look.

Friday, November 4, 2011


We are attempting to help the Newport Beach Nautical Museum find a home for this nice looking 40 foot cutter. I took these pictures yesterday. I remembered this boat from years past, raced against it and noted that it sailed well and was extremely fast. What surprised me was that it hadn't been stripped of all its gear. The Universal diesel engine was reported to run, the batteries looked clean and in good condition. The teak decks need re-conditioning, and the hull looked as if it might need re-fastening in places. The boat is sitting at a dock at the Balboa Fun Zone and may be seen by contacting Glenn Baaten at Explore Ocean. Phone number 949-675-8915 ex-108 or 949-675-8864 or e-mail him @ This boat has been donated to the Nautical Museum, they have no use for it, they need the dock space and and set the price extremely low for a QUICK SALE! $5000.00

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Heavy Metal.....

Through the years as boat building in Southern California ceased, we went to the plant closings and purchased a large amount of stainless steel custom fittings. Chain plates, bow plates, tangs, mast heads, chain plate finish plates, hawse pipes, and dozens of other strange items that only the maker knows what they were supposed to do. Many of the items we priced ten and fifteen years ago (the word turn-over is not in our vocabulary) and they still have the same prices. Through the years I've found that these items really come in handy. I mounted a chain plate to a bulkhead in my chain locker and shackled the dead end of my anchor chain to it. When I mounted my new Lofrans windlass instead of using fender washers on the four large bolts under the deck I drilled holes at the proper locations on two chain plates, polished them up and used them instead of big washers to really spread the windlass load around a large area. Yes, our "heavy metal" can be a godsend for certain applications aboard your boat...

Wednesday, November 2, 2011


It took awhile but we finally got our friends in China to come up with a bell that has a separate mounting bracket. Pictured is a nice little bell with the mounting bracket attached to it. It has a nice ring with about a 5" diameter at the widest point. These are great Christmas gifts that are priced at $42.95. I'm sure you all know that the USCG requires a bell to be aboard ALL boats. If they board you and one is not on board they will give you a citation. Why must you have a bell? No, not to call your crew at mealtime. When you are at anchor in thick fog you ring your bell to warn other boaters of your location.

Lots of blocks. Pictured is one of about ten bins full of various types and sizes of blocks. Many are new. Merriman, Ronstan, Harken, Lewmar, Nico Fico, Mariner, all the popular brands pass through our little store....

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Engine Pumps & Sailboat Hardware.. Great Values!!!

One picture is several raw water pumps for various marine engines. Most boaters carry extra impellers and a lot of yachtsman carry complete spare pumps. We've noticed that when a boat owner is getting ready to sell his boat he pulls a lot of his engine spares off and sells them to us. He knows he won't be getting any extra money for his spares.

Also pictured is one showcase full of sailboat hardware. We have a great selection. Spinnaker pole mast fittings, genoa cars, fair leads with cars, main sheet cars, turning blocks etc. Quite a bit of gear off Kialoa, Whitbread race boats, Alaska Eagle and other local ocean racers. We know our prices are fair and reasonable.... Come check it out. We've one very special customer named Dave. He's a 747 pilot for Cathay Pacific airlines. Three or four times a year he parks his plane in L.A., rents a car (usually has a gorgeous Philippine airline stewardess with him) and bee-lines it to Minneys. He's purchased Ken De Muese's 70' Bill Tripp designed aluminum race boat "Blackfin" on the beach after a hurricane and is restoring her in the Philippines. He's always good for $1000.00 in big boat gear. I think his "air freight" shipping bill is quite reasonable too.... Free left over "Trick or Treat" candy at Minney's today.....