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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #11  
Old 03-04-2008
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This generally doesn't work on modern sailboats, since it will miss the entire turn of the bilge and most of the keel on a full-keel boat. On a fin keel, it'll miss sections of the hull adjacent to the keel and the sides of the keel as well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tjaldur View Post
Or you can use the ancient way of keelhauling. Two men pull in turn the same rope, going under the boat and by this clean the boat for barnacles etc.
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  #12  
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Agreed sailingdog that it will not take all of the barnacles but still it will take most of it and thus make the underwater job easier.
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Wow, thanks for all of the help guys. I'm going to tackle this job in a couple of weeks when my buddies bring up my snorkle stuff. My marina is fairly small so hopefully it isn't as nasty as all of the marina's you guys are talking about.
I think i'm going to use a scotchbrite pad and a plastic knife.

Steve
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Good luck and be very carefull. Barnacles can be very sharp and make nasty cuts.
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Good luck steve... keep us posted on how it goes. The hint about barnacles is a good one...they're nasty.

BTW, be careful if you're planning on doing this in a marina. If they have an AC leak, you can get into serious trouble pretty quickly. If you can, move the boat away from the marina and do it at anchor instead.

See these stories about electrocution in marinas... LINK LINK
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  #16  
Old 03-04-2008
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OK, now that all the amateurs have given their $.02, let's hear from somebody who actually cleans hulls for a living...

I use 3M "Doodlebug" pads to do the bulk of the cleaning. They are essentially industrial size Scotchbrite pads. They cover more territory quicker than their smaller cousins and that is of primary importance. You can get them at most chandleries. You can buy a handled holder for them as well, but these are ridiculously expensive. I make my own out of 1/8" foam PVC, the handle from a cheap mastic spreader and some marine grade Velcro. Maybe $10.00 worth of stuff, works great. Or you can always hold them in your hand. Lots of guys do.

I also go into the water with a 6" putty knife. The cheapest one Ace Hardware sells. Lasts many time longer than anything else I've used. This will shave off grass and shelled animals. Hopefully you don't find too much of either.

For the running gear, Rubbermaid makes a plastic wire brush with a scraper on the end. One of the most important tools I own.

Shaft zinc replacement will require either a flat-head screwdriver or an Allen wrench, depending on the brand of zinc you use. Attaching a wrist lanyard to either tool helps insure you don't have to go to the bottom looking for it.

Never clean a hull without wearing a hood, regardless of water temperature. The crud and bugs you take off the hull are good at finding places to hide. Don't let your ears be one of them. Don't worry too much about being electrocuted while in the water. Every marina in the state has divers working in them every day and they all go home safe at night. In 14 years of hull cleaning I have only heard one story of anybody being hurt and that was second or third hand at best. Unplug your boat from the shorepower before diving on it, though. Better safe than sorry.

Regardless of what your boat is painted with, it will need cleaning while you are in California waters. Remember that frequent, gentle cleanings are better for your paint and the environment than infrequent, more abrasive cleanings. This means every couple of months in Northern California and every 3-4 weeks in Southern California. BTW, since you plan to snorkle your way through you hull cleaning, you're gonna find out pretty quick why people pay to have it done for them.

Last edited by Fstbttms; 03-05-2008 at 12:17 AM.
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Aw cmon fast I can hold my breath long enough...ok maybe not lol. Have seen a lot of that around here. BTW the proper attitude of a Good diver is that they clean it like it will be hauled out tomorrow!

Regards,
Red
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my diver uses a piece of carpet instead of scotchbrite, when possible, as kinder to the bottom paint
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dohenyboy View Post
my diver uses a piece of carpet instead of scotchbrite, when possible, as kinder to the bottom paint
They can get away with that in SoCal, where a 3-week schedule keeps the bottom pretty clean. The average dirty bottom up here requires something more.
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If you're going to dive anyway, take a decent pair of garden gloves and use contact adhesive to stick the abrasive pads to them. Safe over barnacles and you never lose them or have the scotchbrite pad slip away from between your hand and a barnacle when you least want it to.

We have also used a bent aluminium pool cleaning brush handle (3 metres long) with a 10 litre plastic bottle (empty ) fastened to it to press it up agains the hull when we don't want to be in the water.

Be alarmed when the whole slip around your boat changes colour. This is ablative paint coming off in a rush!!

Andre
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