B

backing down
Maneuvering in reverse when offshore fishing while attempting to land a fish.

backstay
A support for the mast to keep it from falling forward.

bail
To remove water with a bucket or pump. Also, a component that controls fishing line on a spinning reel.

bait station
Area on a fishing boat for preparing bait.

baitwell
Compartment on a fishing boat for holding live bait, usually with a pump to circulate the water and an aerator to provide oxygen.

ballast
Weight added to the bottom of a boat to improve stability.

bass boat
Low-profile, outboard-powered boat, generally no more than 22 feet long and typically equipped with rod lockers, casting decks with pedestal seats and livewells.

bay boat
Low-profile, inshore fishing boat intended for use in protected coastal waters, and frequently made with rolled-edge construction.

beach catamaran
Small, lightweight sailboat less than 25 feet long that can be easily launched and retrieved from a beach.

beam
Measurement of a boat at its widest point. Also, a transmitted radio, sonar or radar signal.

bearing
Direction to an object.

bear off
To turn away from the wind.

beating
Sailing upwind.

berth
A place to sleep aboard a boat. Also, a boat slip.

bilge
Lowest section inside a boat's hull where water collects.

bimini top
A canvas cover over the helm or cockpit area.

bitt
Vertical post extending above the deck to secure docking lines.

bluewater fishing boat
Mid-size to large deep-V boats suitable for offshore fishing. They are typically fitted with outriggers, fish boxes, aluminum towers, a host of electronics and large fuel tanks.

boom
A spar attached to a sail at its foot.

bow
Forward portion of a boat.

bow eye
A stainless steel U-bolt on a boat's bow stem used to secure tow lines or trailer winch hooks.

bowrider
A runabout boat with open-bow seating.

bowsprit
A spar extending forward of the bow on a sailboat.

bow stop
Rubber blocks on a boat trailer into which the boat's stem rests.

breakaway lanyard
Emergency safety cable on a boat trailer that activates trailer brakes in the event the trailer comes detached from the tow vehicle while underway.

bridge clearance
Distance from waterline to a boat's highest point.

bulkhead
Transverse wall in a boat that usually bears weight and supplies hull support.

buoy
An anchored floating object that serves as a navigation aid. Also used to mark a mooring spot.

bunks
Long carpeted sections of a boat trailer that support the boat's weight.

burgee
Small flag that bears a yacht club's symbol.