Installing a bilge pump

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Installing a bilge pump

Postby talbot » Wed Apr 19, 2017 3:29 pm

What kind of bilge pump are you installing? (I know, this probably needs to start a new thread.)
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Re: Installing a bilge pump

Postby GreenLake » Wed Apr 19, 2017 5:23 pm

Here's your new thread.
(Split off from DSII Mast support).
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Re: Installing a bilge pump

Postby Alan » Thu Apr 20, 2017 12:15 pm

I ended up with two. My shopping was done in a state of alarm after finding a foot of water in the bilge, which managed to get there in two hours on choppy water.

I bought an Attwood Sahara 500 gpm, then read the fine print that says how much the capacity drops off when the water has to be lifted. I think it would have been down to 200 gpm by the time the water made it up and out of the boat, so I bought a Whale Super Sub 1100 gpm model. The Attwood has a mechanical float and the Whale has an electronic water level sensor.

I bought a switch for each pump with off/on/auto settings. At this point, I've got everything I need to install them except the spare time.
bilge pumps.jpg
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Re: Installing a bilge pump

Postby GreenLake » Thu Apr 20, 2017 2:23 pm

I saw a positive review of the Whale in one of the magazines I read. It seems really suitable for something like a DS.

Now, for a DSII, are you supposed to have water in the bilge? I though the space between the hulls was intended to give flotation.

If you get a foot of water in there, that seems like something is seriously compromised and I wonder whether it shouldn't be looked at (not merely addressed by pumping out the water).
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Re: Installing a bilge pump

Postby Alan » Thu Apr 20, 2017 2:58 pm

You're right about the water. I think I finally traced it to the dread DSII uphaul line passage problem, where water splashing up into the centerboard trunk makes its way into the passage and runs down into the bilge. That's based on a couple of things:

the boat didn't take on water when it was parked in a slip overnight, just when it was out on the water;

it stopped taking on water when I made a temporary fix by stuffing pipe insulating foam into the uphaul line passage.

One of these days I'll install the permanent fix that's been described on some DSII threads.

As for the pump, I've read good stuff about the Whale as well. I've also read that float-type pumps like the Attwood can stick in the up position and keep running, so you come out to the mooring in the morning and find that your battery has run down.

What I know for a fact is that both pumps pump water, because I hooked them up to a battery and tested them.

As long as we're on the topic, I'd welcome opinions on where the bilge pump outlets should be. I've been thinking of attaching the pumps on each side of the mast at the keelson, then running the hoses alongside the mast, up across the inside top of the cuddy, and out through the cuddy sides. It looks like the discharge water would flow over the side rather than into the cockpit, and it would be visible from the cockpit so I'd know the pumps were in action.
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Re: Installing a bilge pump

Postby GreenLake » Thu Apr 20, 2017 6:37 pm

I suspected this much (about the water).

I like your suggestion for an outlet. It provides visual feedback and is in an otherwise non-critical location.

I would assume that the best location for the pump is near the pivot point on the CB. That seems to be about the lowest spot in my boat (mine is a DS1, but the outside hull should be the same). The problem I see is that the CB trunk may split the bilge there, however, once you heel the boat onto the side with the pump, you should be able to get most of it to flow around where it can be pumped out.

The Whale is supposed to be able to pump water down to a very shallow level.

If you position the pump that far aft, you could cut a small hole for the hose and route it up in the corner of the cuddy, where the bulkhead is. There's no need for a syphon, so you can just go directly to your outside opening.
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Re: Installing a bilge pump

Postby Shagbark » Sat Apr 22, 2017 4:45 pm

Even if the up haul passage is a problem, I still don't think it is the MAIN problem. I just can't imagine a foot of water making it through there in a 2 hour time. I would continue looking for another culprit.
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Re: Installing a bilge pump

Postby Alan » Sun Apr 23, 2017 12:39 pm

GreenLake: Thanks. It would be a lot easier to mount the pumps in the area you're talking about, since it would allow at least partial access through the existing inspection ports.

Shagbark: It was a surprising amount of water in a short period of time--hence my state of alarm--but the water was very choppy with a combination of wind and multiple powerboat wakes.

I should also note that when the boat has been parked on its trailer with a lot of rainwater in the bilge (which snuck in under the cover somehow and probably seeped through the inspection covers in the cockpit sole), the water has not run out through any leaks. It just stayed there until I drained, pumped, and shop-vacuumed it out.

Anyway, I'll next have a chance to test it in 2018. I just found out that the marina we sail from, Meeks Bay at Lake Tahoe, will be closed again this year while they try to find solutions to a water contamination problem. So this year it'll be the sail-equipped sit-on-top kayak, which can be launched from the beach.

When we take the Daysailer out again, it'll have both bilge pumps, a permanent solution to the uphaul line problem, a marine VHF radio, and boat towing insurance.
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Re: Installing a bilge pump

Postby GreenLake » Mon Apr 24, 2017 1:18 pm

The water in the CB trunk is at some high pressure when sailing (fast). Surprising effects can be seen from even small leaks.

@Alan: I thought the DS was trailerable... is there no boat launch you can access. May not be as convenient as having the DS sit at a dock, but many, perhaps most of us don't have that luxury...
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Re: Installing a bilge pump

Postby Alan » Mon Apr 24, 2017 4:35 pm

There are local reservoirs, but they've been closed to boating due to lack of water during the California drought. They're open for boating again this year and two of them are suitable for sailing, so I'll keep my hopes up.
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Re: Installing a bilge pump

Postby GreenLake » Mon Apr 24, 2017 10:34 pm

Do! (Good luck).
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Re: Installing a bilge pump

Postby cauclair » Thu Oct 04, 2018 1:44 pm

Hello,

I believe I have a leak by the CB. Until I identify and fix it, I would like to put a bilge pump. Any suggestions on where I would install a bilge pump?

Thank you.
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Re: Installing a bilge pump

Postby cauclair » Thu Oct 04, 2018 2:23 pm

I have found a Rule 360 gph in town. Would that work? I saw a comment from a sailer saying he put his by the mast in the cuddy. Would that work?
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Re: Installing a bilge pump

Postby GreenLake » Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:38 pm

You don't state which kind of DS you own. Do you have access to the bilge from the cuddy in your boat? (or is yours a single-hull DS1?)

For a DS that floats on the water, the point around the mast step can be the lowest point (things change when you add gear and crew).
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Re: Installing a bilge pump

Postby cauclair » Tue Oct 09, 2018 10:38 am

I believe it is a basic DS. The access to the bilge is through two twist off caps in the cockpit; no open access through the cuddy. Laying on my stomach in the cockpit with a flash light, I can see where I suspect the holes are, that is at the end of the CB housing. It appears that to attempt to repair them, I will need to open a space (make a latch) in the cuddy. I could then patch the holes, and if needed in the future put the pump(s) there as well. I do not see any other way. Any suggestions?
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