Bilge Procedures on a Cat 27 - SailNet Community
 
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post #1 of 10 Old 05-23-2016 Thread Starter
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Bilge Procedures on a Cat 27

So I've been searching all over for how often folks run their bilge pump and how much water it pumps and I've gotten some good info but I wanted to get specifics from other folks in the 27 range and specifically on Cats.

If you don't have an auto pump how often do you flip the switch? And how much water comes out when you do?

I was out of town for a week after bringing my new ('79) Catalina home last weekend and it pumped for about 15 seconds. Just wanted to see if this is within reasonable margins.

Also does anyone know the bilge capacity of the ~79 Cats?

Last edited by clifgray; 05-23-2016 at 11:00 PM.
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post #2 of 10 Old 05-24-2016
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Re: Bilge Procedures on a Cat 27

This is fresh water, not sea water, right? This is going to be dependent on how much rain you get and the pumping capacity of the bilge pump. 15 seconds would generally tell me you are shipping more than a normal amount of water or your pump is undersized.

A tarp or cover might help.


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post #3 of 10 Old 05-24-2016
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Re: Bilge Procedures on a Cat 27

LOL how long is a piece of string?
Took me 2 years of tracking and fixing leaks but I now have a dry bilge.
Doesn't mean it will stay that way.......
Each leak I fixed meant less water to pump out.....
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post #4 of 10 Old 05-24-2016
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Re: Bilge Procedures on a Cat 27

Auto bilge pumps with alarms are a REALLY GOOD INVESTMENT!
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post #5 of 10 Old 05-24-2016
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Re: Bilge Procedures on a Cat 27

No short and simple answer to this question. Keel stepped masts mean some water is normal, but boats with deck stepped masts should be much drier. If you have an inboard with a standard packed stuffing box, then you get a bit of water when motoring. With an outboard, then that source is eliminated. I would be concerned if I had a deck stepped mast and an outboard and had to pump the bilge regularly.
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post #6 of 10 Old 05-24-2016 Thread Starter
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Re: Bilge Procedures on a Cat 27

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Originally Posted by Minnewaska View Post
This is fresh water, not sea water, right? This is going to be dependent on how much rain you get and the pumping capacity of the bilge pump. 15 seconds would generally tell me you are shipping more than a normal amount of water or your pump is undersized.

A tarp or cover might help.
Well the boat is sitting in fresh water but yes I'm pretty sure it is water from rain and condensation rather than the river water. The pump is pretty strong and the stream coming out of the bilge outlet is pretty solid so yeah it looks like I might be taking in a bit more water than normal.
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post #7 of 10 Old 05-24-2016 Thread Starter
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Re: Bilge Procedures on a Cat 27

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Auto bilge pumps with alarms are a REALLY GOOD INVESTMENT!
I'm looking at building my own little auto pump with an arduino monitoring water level and being able to automatically flip on the pump as well as me being able to do it remotely. But just want to make sure she doesn't sink in the 2-3 months it takes me to build that out
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post #8 of 10 Old 05-24-2016
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Re: Bilge Procedures on a Cat 27

There are bilge pump cycle counters that you can install. They indicate how many cycles the bilge pump has made while you're away. If the number of cycles is significant, you know you have a problem.

I disagree on the value of bilge pump alarms. Due to the litigious nature of people these days, neighbors will rarely board an unattended vessel to pump it out when a bilge pump alarm is sounding off. If you're lucky, a marina employee might call you to inform you that your alarm is sounding off, but I've watched people pass by a boat with it's alarm screaming all day long.

The best system is strong batteries, a suitable pump for your boat and a reliable automatic switch and a cycle counter. The next possible step, which comes with its own pro's and con's, is shore power connected to an onboard battery charger to keep the batteries alive and pumping in case a leak becomes a constant ingress of water.

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post #9 of 10 Old 05-24-2016
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Re: Bilge Procedures on a Cat 27

I don't know what your bilge looks like its important to know there are some out there that don't ever get enough water to start the pump. Mine is that way, its so flat there will be a little water everywhere from mostly rainwater coming in the Keel stepped Mast (pump 1) and just a touch from the packing but that gets under the Motor (pump 2) and dries to salt so I keep it wiped down. 3 or 4 times a year I will block the area off and put enough fresh water in the bilge to run the pump, I don't count on it working just because I hear it run. Then I get the shop Vac out and dry it up. Its a PITA but necessary to be sure it will work when needed. Step one was rerouting the ice box drain away from draining into the Bilge. I miss my full keel boat from years ago you just hose it down and let the pump work for a while. A little left is not a problem where there's space.



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post #10 of 10 Old 05-24-2016
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Re: Bilge Procedures on a Cat 27

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Originally Posted by clifgray View Post
Well the boat is sitting in fresh water but yes I'm pretty sure it is water from rain and condensation rather than the river water. The pump is pretty strong and the stream coming out of the bilge outlet is pretty solid so yeah it looks like I might be taking in a bit more water than normal.

Most likely is your packing gland if it drips sitting still its loose, should only drip periodically while turning to cool it off. Hard to get enough water to be more than a nuisance from the Mast and small deck leaks.
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