Marelon vs. Bronze - Page 4 - SailNet Community
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post #31 of 50 Old 10-08-2015
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Re: Marelon vs. Bronze

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Originally Posted by Woodvet View Post
For info on this subject of metal vs Marelon you might check out what surveyor in England said with with very informative pictures.
This who don't have surveys or care need not start here.
Ignorance is bliss.
But for those who maintain a level of vigilance over their boat so as not to pull someone else into distress saving their transom...
Have a gander...
http://www.paulstevenssurveys.com/upload/Seacocks.pdf
Paul is talking about brass ball valves found on french boats not bronze !

The hysterical laughter you hear as you drive a way in your"new" boat ..... is the seller.
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Re: Marelon vs. Bronze

Copper may be best but over all the bureaucrats are closing in on it.
The coopers oxide in paint, copper fuel lines and so on.
"Admiralty bronze" AKA "Silicon bronze "Red bronze" (above water line "Naval Bronze" can be employed). I love the sight of copper in all it's states of decay. After all I spent decades as a copper plate engraver in intaglio etching. When you look at vinegar and urine as mordants you find it is not at at all impervious.
Thanks for the picture. It is a pretty sight but metal in general is undesired unless it pertains to tradition.
Back to the practicality though, the advantages of plastic are superior it you're not a bull in china shop.
Yet Bronze is malleable and bends easy, though it rarely breaks.
Boats are made of many different solutions.
I once owned a boat if you scrapped her out it would be as much weight as a person.
Many will say it is prettier and vanity may be a consideration but not on my vessel When my metal can be put ashore it will be...
I want to sail....
"This is an alloy that can cover both brass and bronze (red silicon brasses and red silicon bronzes). They typically contain 20% zinc and 6% silicon. Red brass has high strength and corrosion resistance and is commonly used for valve stems. Red bronze is very similar but it has lower concentrations of zinc. It is commonly used in the manufacturing of pump and valve components."
I am told that it is a little stinger than copper but it's saving grace is it's adaptability to sea water.

Last edited by Woodvet; 10-10-2015 at 01:28 PM.
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post #33 of 50 Old 10-12-2015
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Re: Marelon vs. Bronze

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"Admiralty bronze" AKA "Silicon bronze "Red bronze" (above water line "Naval Bronze" can be employed).
Your information is incorrect.......

Admiralty bronze is near 30% zinc and is not suitable for below the waterline use.

Silicone bronze is not "AKA" admiralty as there is only a few percentage points of zinc.

We all know what happens to zinc in salt water.
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post #34 of 50 Old 10-12-2015
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Re: Marelon vs. Bronze

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Your information is incorrect.......

Admiralty bronze is near 30% zinc and is not suitable for below the waterline use.

Silicone bronze is not "AKA" admiralty as there is only a few percentage points of zinc.

We all know what happens to zinc in salt water.
In the US 85-5-5-5 or Eighty-five - three-five bronze is what is used for seacocks by brands such as Buck, Apollo/Conbraco, Spartan & Groco... I have some 70 year old Wilcox 85-5-5-5 seacocks in my barn that came out of a wood boat restoration. Cleaned up they are not discernible from new. Good bronze is pretty bullet proof stuff. High zinc brass with no tin......
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post #35 of 50 Old 06-07-2017
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Re: Marelon vs. Bronze

Yes I know the thread is a few years old.

So what does the insurance companies and surveyors say about Marelon thru hulls below the water line?

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Re: Marelon vs. Bronze

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Yes I know the thread is a few years old.

So what does the insurance companies and surveyors say about Marelon thru hulls below the water line?
Very few underwriters actually read or understand if they do read the surveys. Most flip to the valuation page and write a policy.

Seacocks as per ABYC are supposed to withstand a 500lb lateral force (paraphrased). I used to put my foot on the valve and apply some pressure to see if it was solid (on land of course). I stopped doing it with Marelon valves years ago ........ I learned the hard way
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post #37 of 50 Old 06-07-2017
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Re: Marelon vs. Bronze

Seems that early Marelon seacocks didn't meet the ABYC standards when they were changed in 89/91. They redesigned the seacocks and they do now meet the standards including the 500lb load on the tailpipe.

Marelon history from Forespar:
Quote:
Standards
Around 1987, the A.B.Y.C. established a set of “standards” for recreational watercraft that included guidelines for plumbing components. This was the early stage of the H-27 “Recommended practices and standards covering seacocks, thru-hull fittings, and drain plugs.” By 1989 this was published by the A.B.Y.C. and builders were encouraged to comply. By 1991 the Marine U.L. began incorporating the A.B.Y.C. standards into their standards. The biggest change from the original U.L. standard was the A.B.Y.C. addition of a 500 lb. load test applied to the “outermost fitting” (the tailpipe) of the valve “system”. This was the first time a seacock was viewed as a “system” including the thru-hull and tailpipe (or 90 deg. elbow) for hose attachment.
Up until that time, the MF 849 style flanged seacocks were the only style Marelon® valves approved by the U.L. We sold many of these units to Catalina Yachts as well as T.P.I., Hinckley, C. & C. and a host of other prominent production sailboat builders. These units are still sold today, although they no longer have U.L. approval. The MF 849 ˝”, ľ” and 1-1/2” style valves and the MF 850 1” through 2” style valves would still pass the current U.L. test if submitted. We let the U.L. approval drop when the new “93” series integrated plumbing systems were introduced. Forespar® had to design a new system that would meet and exceed the “new” U.L. standard as recommended by the A.B.Y.C.
In early 1992, Forespar® undertook the challenge of redesigning marine plumbing in our Marelon® material to meet these new guidelines. This required a tremendous amount of resources as a complete “system” had to be designed, tooled and molded to meet the increasing demand for Marelon® plumbing. This was the beginnings of what we now generally call our “93” series of integrated plumbing systems. The tooling was completed, parts molded and sent to the U.L. for approvals in late 1992. By the spring of 1993, we showed this system in our catalog and we began shipping parts to Catalina Yachts as well as Sea Ray Boats and a very large number of production builders. They have grown in acceptance with production and custom builders every year since then.
Today
Marelon® plumbing is now used by custom builders such as Wally Yachts, Oyster, Swan, Baltic, Morris and many other production builders such as Wellcraft, Boston Whaler, Sabre, Godfrey, Triton, Hinkley, S-2, Baja, Cobalt, and more than 100 others, power and sail. Virtually all North American production boat builders use some Marelon® plumbing components in their boats. Forespar® ships over 45,000 valves a year to service these builders and have been supplying quality-plumbing components made of engineering polymers since 1982.
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post #38 of 50 Old 06-08-2017
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Re: Marelon vs. Bronze

And then along came Trudesign from New Zealand with a different approach that also meets ABYC standards. Their valves are better built than the Forespar ones are as well.

Marine | TRUDESIGN
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Re: Marelon vs. Bronze

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And then along came Trudesign from New Zealand with a different approach that also meets ABYC standards. Their valves are better built than the Forespar ones are as well.

Marine | TRUDESIGN
Good find! Did a search to see if they were sold in NA, and it seems Raritan have the exclusive distribution rights for USA.

This link gives good technical info.

This link gives pricing (Seem competitive considering it whole assembly?)
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Re: Marelon vs. Bronze

Marlon and other 'plastic' seacock valves have vastly improved over the years. Originally they were made of 'modified' nylon 'filled' with fiberglass etc. for 'strength'.
The problem with nylon years ago was its natural ability to 'uptake' water (to about ~16%), the water within the polymer structure lead to hydrolysis (similar to rusting of metals) of the nylon.
With the advent and development of DuPont ZYTEL® (family) most of the hydrolysis issues have been solved and apparently more 'fiberglass' for strength is now used in the 'mix'.
A few years ago I would discount totally the use of Marlon, etc. Today I might give it a chance as a good substitute for 'real' bronze.

The only thing sticking in my mind: what is the ability of a Marlon, etc. seacocks to structurally withstand a — bolt of lightning — exiting the boat through the plastic valve? ... OR if the plastic valve has a high dielectric (insulating) value, am I simply asking for a hole in the hull nearby the plastic valve?
Being 'hit' several times I have some confidence that a bronze valve should have 'no problem' with such a discharge.
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