Low buck projects- Let's see 'em! - Page 87 - SailNet Community
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post #861 of 1407 Old 11-03-2013
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Re: Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!

Seeing how there's some home made fridge compressor vacuum projects, I thought I'd share my one I made a couple of years ago to rebuild my cockpit floor.

I got the compressor out of an old fridge at home that was no longer working and following some instructions on the Internet I added a vacuum gauge and a dashpot and microswitch to make the thing switch off when vacuum was reached. During the trial run, the switch kept cutting in and out too quickly, causing the compressor to stall so I made a couple of vacuum tanks out of scrap plumbing pipe to act as a reservoir. I used builders plastic for the vacuum bag, sealed with "No more nails" glue. I used garden microspray fittings for the the hoses and connections and a rubber dent puller for the connection to the job. Taffeta was used for the "peel ply" and shade cloth for the breather fabric.

The whole contraption costs me about $30 all up - most of that being for the vacuum gauge. I found a couple of things in use. 1) The dashpot and microswitch are a waste of time. The compressor can just be made to run full time; 2) The vacuum gauge is excellent for ensuring that the bag is adequately sealed as the smallest of leaks will decrease the vacuum; 3) The compressor gets very hot. Hot enough after a few hours to start blowing smoke from the lubricating oil. I think this is not only because the compressor is running at a high duty cycle, but also because there is very little air pumping through it. Being cheap and not having a suitable fan at hand, I stuck a couple of large old computer CPU heatsinks over the dome of the compressor which sucked just enough heat away to keep the compressor happy.

Here's my setup



Finished repair:

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post #862 of 1407 Old 11-04-2013
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Re: Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!

Using Brent Swain's idea I built a block...Instead of alluminum at $1 a pound I went for stainless at $1.80 a pound so $5.40 and the new cutting boards are only 1/4 inch thick so I bought 1 inch high density plastic...$10.00 only used 1/4 so $2.50 and stainless bolts $3.85...So all in at $11.75...
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Last edited by Bob142; 11-05-2013 at 11:48 PM. Reason: Broken link...
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post #863 of 1407 Old 11-04-2013
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Re: Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!

The link to your pic is broken. Looks good and a heck of a lot cheaper than new blocks!

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post #864 of 1407 Old 11-04-2013
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Re: Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!

Anchor Washdown Pump

Anchors and rodes often come up muddy. Having a wash down pump seemed a good idea. This one consists of a Rule 500 GPH pump mounted on some PVC scraps inside a 24" x 4" PVC pipe (this size/length from Lowes), several hose clamps, old 3/4" hose, connector and elbow, 7 ft. of 3/8" nylon, one each, 15 ft. and 25 ft. outdoor power cord, fuse holder for pump, plug for 12v outlet inside boat at navigation desk, a few stainless steel screws, and 1 1/2" PVC pipe scrap with two caps. The shorter power cord is cut into two parts. One end , as shown in the picture, connects inside the PVC capsule to fuse holder and connector wire to 12V outlet on instrument panel. The other end is attached to the pump and terminates on deck. The 25 ft. cord goes in between. The pump is dropped overboard at the anchor station and secured to a stanchion with the 3/8" nylon line. When you are ready to use the pump, simply connect the power cords. These pumps don't like pumping over much height (gives much reduced flow), so if I were doing it again, I'd try the 800 gph pump if it would fit inside the large tube. Also, I may add a wand attached to the end of the hose using two 24" lengths of PVC pipe and screw-in fittings. With the hose held low to water surface, a really strong flow is available and should handle any mud accumulation. The 4" tube serves as a mandrel for the hose and the power cord and 3/8" rope are stored inside the tube, making the whole thing relatively compact (about the size of a fender) for storage. The unit can also be used as a spare bilge pump should it ever be needed and the 25 ft. power cord is available for other uses on board. The plug in unit is kept in the navigation desk.
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post #865 of 1407 Old 11-04-2013
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Re: Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!

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Anchor Washdown Pump

Anchors and rodes often come up muddy. Having a wash down pump seemed a good idea.

..... SNIP ....

With the hose held low to water surface, a really strong flow is available and should handle any mud accumulation. The 4" tube serves as a mandrel for the hose and the power cord and 3/8" rope are stored inside the tube, making the whole thing relatively compact (about the size of a fender) for storage. The unit can also be used as a spare bilge pump should it ever be needed and the 25 ft. power cord is available for other uses on board. The plug in unit is kept in the navigation desk.
Good one NCC320,

I did something similar with an above deck wash down, but I had the space in a box on deck to mount it. See photos below.

Another big, BIG advantage is that if you travel in tropical waters in the heat of summer. We found in the Sea of Cortez, when the air temp was over 100 and the water temp was over 95, we could drop our pick-up hose deep (15 to 20 Foot) at anchor and pick up water below the thermalcline and it was like having air conditioning aboard our 27 foot boat!!!

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post #866 of 1407 Old 11-04-2013
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Re: Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!

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Originally Posted by tschmidty View Post
Replaced my companionway boards today. Lowes carries a plastic board now that is 11 inches wide and only 5/8 inch thick so it fit really well. The board was $30. The downside is they are a little heavy, but I plan to put some spare smoked acrylic in the middle one and a vent on the top one so that should help. The bottom one probably won't come out much.
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Any pics of how they overlap to keep water out?

Looks great.


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post #867 of 1407 Old 11-04-2013
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Re: Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!

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Originally Posted by tschmidty View Post
The link to your pic is broken. Looks good and a heck of a lot cheaper than new blocks!

Nice. If you took just a little longer and sanded them down to 1200 then buffed them with a wheel they would look better than just about anything you can buy. Also filing off the markings on the bolt heads and buffing them spiffs things up that last little bit.

Custom built S/S hardware - just like the maxi boats.

I, myself, personally intend to continue being outspoken and opinionated, intolerant of all fanatics, fools and ignoramuses, deeply suspicious of all those who have "found the answer" and on my bad days, downright rude.
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post #868 of 1407 Old 11-04-2013
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Re: Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!

Wasn't quite a finished product..I just hung it up to check that it ran smooth and get the pictures...

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post #869 of 1407 Old 11-04-2013
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Re: Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!

What's it on, Bob? Can't imagine much on a ML48 that can get by with a 4 part tackle...

Ron

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post #870 of 1407 Old 11-04-2013
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Re: Low buck projects- Let's see 'em!

I finally have some here. I got a lot of my ideas just by reading the things you guys have wrote.

I have updated the old counter top from my head and my nav station by using "sticky tile" from Home Depot. Under 30 dollars and it is able to be changed pretty easy and you don't even have to remove the old stuff. Just cut and stick.

I would post the pics of the new tile but the picture is apparently too large to upload.

Also shown here is a box for the chart plotter using the teak from my seats when I had to redo them after Hurricane Isaac. This was free because I refuse to waste any teak.
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