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post #1 of 15 Old 03-03-2013 Thread Starter
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Cockpit Drains

I am restoring a 1981 Offshore 33 Cat Ketch. The cockpit is approximatelt 6 foot wide by 8 feet long? (just an off the cuff guess for 33' boat with a 10 foor beam) with a sealed table/helm pedestal filling most of the space.

The cockpit drains through two 1-1/2 inch holes in the cockpit sole. Each drain is routed through a hose to a tube glassed into the bottom above the waterline, manual and automatic bilge pumps are also routed to the cockpit drains.

Here are my questions,
  1. Should I remove the tubes and install seacocks?
  2. Arer two 1-1/2 openings enough for the size of my cockpit?

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post #2 of 15 Old 03-04-2013
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Re: Cockpit Drains

1) not really. Unless you leave the boat in the water during the winter, and live where there is lots of snow.

2) depends. They wouldn't be enough in real storm conditions, since they wouldn't drain the cockpit fast enough. But to drain a cockpit that size would require a major upgrade.

Assuming the cockpit is 3 foot deep, your cockpit holds 144 cubic foot of water. Or just over 1,000 gallons. The specs say the cockpit drains should be able to drain the entire cockpit in less than 60 seconds, which would require roughly 28 square inches of gravity drains ( a six inch pipe basically). The other option is to not go out in weather where taking breaking water over the stern is an issue.

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post #3 of 15 Old 03-04-2013
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Re: Cockpit Drains

1) Good question. Normally it's a good idea to have seacocks on any thru-hull penetration - but in the case of cockpit drains that are always left open, what are they for? You might argue that the boat hasn't sunk for 32 years now, so the design isn't all that bad. I guess the answer is that you should have seacocks, but they wouldn't be top of my list of things to do....

2) As pointed out in Coles & Bruce "Heavy Weather Sailing", the real equation here is how much weight of water is in a fully flooded cockpit, how that relates to the boat's overall buoyancy (how will the boat sail with a flooded cockpit), AND how quickly the cockpit drains itself.

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post #4 of 15 Old 03-04-2013
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Re: Cockpit Drains

With the drain outlets above the waterline there is no need for a seacock. if you are using the boat for sailing in extreme conditions then you may want bigger. some will eliminate the hose and go to glassed in fiberglass tubing

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post #5 of 15 Old 03-04-2013
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Re: Cockpit Drains

I agree with the general tone of the feedback. Nicer to have seacocks on every thru hull penetration, but not absolutely necessary above the waterline. The only additional thought is they may not be above the waterline when heeled over. Nevertheless, if you had to close them when heeled, you would have no way to drain the cockpit and that's not a terribly good situation either.

What got my attention is having all of your bilge pumps routed to the cockpit drains. They have a tendency to collect stuff and clog. I highly prefer a dedicated thru hull. In fact, I don't like the manual bilge sharing the auto bilge plumbing either. It could be the plumbing that failed that has you hand pumping.
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post #6 of 15 Old 03-04-2013
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Re: Cockpit Drains

Routing bilge pumps to the cockpit has only one advantage, you'll know when it's pumping.

You'll know because suddenly all that nasty stuff in your bilge is washing over your toes.

If there were anything I'd do regarding your drainage I'd change that - the rest will do for all but extremes - and then a bucket will work unless you get pooped by a huge wave.
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post #7 of 15 Old 03-04-2013
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Re: Cockpit Drains

I'm tackling a similar thing on Aeolus. I have two drains in the cockpit, each with an opening of 1 1/4 at top and they go down to a 3/4 elbow fitting on the seacock. No good. I'm going to take the seacock off entirely, as they are well above the waterline, and this alone will nearly double the drainage rate for my drains. I might remove and replace the cockpit opening to upsize to 1 1/2" but time will dictate that.

As Salish Sea cruisers and even West Coast Vancouver Island people, we are not forced to endure breaking seas large enough to fill our cockpit as we are never far from secure anchorage. If we were going offshore, that would require a different, more robust approach. We've spent plenty of time in ugly 6+ feet seas but nothing more than heavy splashes have ever violated the sanctity of my cockpit. My main concern is just having drainage large enough to not clog from a wad of dog hair or some random little object that falls down the drains for when I wash her out.

Just for fun, I've been wanting to do that activity you often see in books where you plug your drains, fill your cockpit. See what it does to your boat trim and time the drain. Like most good boats, Aeolus will fill her cockpit to a point where it drains over the transom before it drains into the cabin, but it would still be a lot of water. We have locks on our lockers, but some water would definitely squirt in, but nothing beyond a bilge pump capacity.

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post #8 of 15 Old 03-04-2013
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Re: Cockpit Drains

Here's what the ISAF OSR regulations say about bilge pumps emptying into the cockpit.

3.23.1
No bilge pump may discharge into a cockpit unless that cockpit opens aft to the sea.

3.23.2
Bilge pumps shall not be connected to cockpit drains. (OSR 3.09)
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post #9 of 15 Old 03-04-2013 Thread Starter
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Re: Cockpit Drains

Quote:
Originally Posted by tap View Post
Here's what the ISAF OSR regulations say about bilge pumps emptying into the cockpit.

3.23.1
No bilge pump may discharge into a cockpit unless that cockpit opens aft to the sea.

3.23.2
Bilge pumps shall not be connected to cockpit drains. (OSR 3.09)
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nuff said

Yeah and my shower drains to the holding tank which I also think is kinda stoopid

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post #10 of 15 Old 03-04-2013
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Re: Cockpit Drains

Quote:
Originally Posted by katsailor View Post
.....Yeah and my shower drains to the holding tank which I also think is kinda stoopid
Actually, there are some waters that require grey water to be held aboard.

Its the rule that is very stooooopid.
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