s/v Black Prince
Join Date: Jun 2007
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Re: Bilges - On vs. Automatic; Capacity?
After a few scares with the boat taking on water...one while sailing and another at the dock (both because of human error and all the stars lining up to result in emergency) I reworked my bilge to maximize GPH as follows:
First, my main bilge pump is and remains a Rule 3000 GPH on a separate float switch, with a 3/4 hose, and wired directly to house batteries using the standard Manual, Auto, Off switch.
Next, I saw that my manual cockpit bilge pump had a 1 1/2 hose running to the bilge. So I disconnected the hose, put a Y-connection in a cockpit drain hose that runs under my cockpit and drains out the hull, and connected the 1 1/2 hose that was connected to my cockpit manual pump to the Y-connection. Then I connected a Rule 4,500 GPH pump to the other end of that larger hose in my bilge, but I mounted the pump on a fiberglass base so that it sits about 5 inches off the bilge floor (that way it doesn't sit in bilge water at any time). Instead of using another float switch, I connected the hi capacity pump to a electronic sensor switch that I mounted about half way up the side wall in the bilge. This way, the hi capacity pump is only triggered in emergency situation where the water infiltration to too much for main bilge to handle, or the main bilge fails. This configuration also saves my emergency hi capacity pump from doing the small stuff and using power except when really needed.
Been sailing all day with Dad, and I need a drink?