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 Post subject: Electric Bilge Pump - AI
PostPosted: Sun Feb 24, 2013 10:37 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jul 03, 2012 12:27 am
Posts: 18
Location: Honolulu, Hawaii
After reading about the risks of swamping the AI, I'm working on installing an electric bilge pump. Various threads and posts have some great ideas about the types of pumps as well as drain, pump and switch locations and how best to use the pump.

During rough water days, I've seen quite a bit of water in the hull. As others have suspected, I also believe most of my water is coming from the front hatch, especially on days with strong waves. Recently, on a strong trade wind day, a friend of mine (also on a AI) took on so much water, he couldn't pull the kayak up on the beach without draining it first.

I've decided to power the pump with an extra strong battery which I plan to power a chartplotter/GPS as well. Thank you to hollgi for the inspiration.

A key decision is where to locate the skin fitting for the drain. Since there is very little freeboard, I'm thinking of mounting the fitting along the top of the kayak forward of the port side pocket. That will require the use of a plug to stop water from entering in the line.

A 500 GPH pump should do the trick. It's located under the center of the rear cargo area. I'm wondering what experience others have had with a pump and any ideas on battery type and location. I've purchased an 18 ah battery which is too big for a dry box, so I'm going to put it in a dry bag and put the dry bag in a soft cooler.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 12:18 am 
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Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2007 6:14 pm
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Location: South Florida
Years ago, I thought about a bilge pump. In the intervening years, it has become clear that leaks in an AI/tandem can be fixed. The most recent and best thread on the topic is http://www.hobiecat.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=71&t=46579&start=0

Why put in a bilge pump which involves a lot of money, effort, and a new large hole in your hull, when you haven't gone to the source of the problem? I think, if you had a basement room and it was flooding, you would not put in a permanent pump--you would stop the flooding. Why is an AI any different?

I do agree with you on one thing:
Laukahi wrote:
A 500 GPH pump should do the trick.

Yes, it should.

Keith

PS Your friend, whose boat leaks so much he can't get it up the beach, ought to go to his Hobie dealer and get the problem fixed. That much water is a warranty issue.

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I sail: Biscayne Bay, Everglades to Cape Romano, Ft Desoto, Cedar Key

"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex ... It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction." A. Einstein


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 1:38 am 
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Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2009 4:07 am
Posts: 91
Location: Byron Bay, NSW, Australia
Here is my setup
http://modernkayakfishing.com/articles/ ... for-kayaks

Three things to now:

Put your pump as far back as you can. The water accumulates in the back. Once it's deep enough that you could pump from the centre hatch you are going down.
I have mine under the rear well, but would put it right in the back, after the rear hatch if I would do it again.

Don't use an automates switch / bilge switch in the kayak, they stutter and switch on and off all the time.

Don't use only a one way valve , they leak. They need a watercolum / water pressure to seal. If there is just little bit by little bit they let the water through.
Tested three different ones, all of them leaked when I just put ml by ml in. Once there is a hose attached and a foot of water pressing on it they seal well.

Solder all connections, put lots of silicone around the connection and then shrink heat shrink over it. Correctly done the silicone will squeeze out on both sides and you end up with a 100% waterproof connection.

Hope that helps.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 1:46 am 
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Location: Byron Bay, NSW, Australia
Chekika wrote:
Years ago, I thought about a bilge pump. In the intervening years, it has become clear that leaks in an AI/tandem can be fixed. The most recent and best thread on the topic is http://www.hobiecat.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=71&t=46579&start=0

Why put in a bilge pump which involves a lot of money, effort, and a new large hole in your hull, when you haven't gone to the source of the problem? I think, if you had a basement room and it was flooding, you would not put in a permanent pump--you would stop the flooding. Why is an AI any

Keith
.


I have to 100% disagree with you Keith!
It's not about sealing a hull, it's about safety and a backup.
I have seen it several times that people developed a crack or leak several kilometres off shore. Without a bailpump all of them would have in deep (censored)!
It's a safety issue and a must offshore!


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 2:31 am 
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Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 2:31 pm
Posts: 2738
Location: Kailua 96734
Lau, having a reliable pump that works when you need it would be nice to have on any offshore Hawaiian boat, though not as important as redundant safety gear. It will add weight and complexity (and more pukas :lol: ), so it's not for everyone who sails a Hobie.

Personally, I'd like to have one and look forward to your working it out. But I don't even have a fishfinder, :cry: so mitigating leaks is my first order or business. Your friend really needs to have his hull carefully checked.

The battery you have sounds like a doozy (used in electric scooters and such). Maybe you want to add a motor??

I would be cautious about double sealing it inside the hull. Usually, temp build up and H2 outgassing are problems only associated with charging different styles of batteries, but it's worth maybe looking into more closely.

But I'm a just a wuss, cheap rum and a cigar are the only flammable things I like to carry on board.

In any case, don't charge that puppy inside a sealed battery box or bag.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 3:54 am 
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Location: Byron Bay, NSW, Australia
Well Nohuhu

I really, really believe everybody needs a reliable way to bail water out of the hull.
A hand pump with a 1 m hose will do as well.( without hose you can't reach the water). Once you can bail with a normal hand pump from the centre hull you are so far down that it is pointless, because more water enters the hull through the open centre hatch than you can get out.
Believe me I saw it several times and tested it as well, relying on a waterproof hull alone is not good enough
A reliable bail solution is a must, no matter if modified hand pump, or electrical pump os personal choice.

Image

By the way,most batteries used for sounders are hermetic sealed and do not gas as normal car batteries do.

I do like rum as safety gear though, of course strictly for medicinal purposes only :lol: :lol:


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 5:32 am 
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Joined: Wed Oct 10, 2012 11:20 pm
Posts: 273
Location: London UK
Here is Rob's article on fitting one

http://www.saltwaterkayakfisherman.com/2013/02/bilge-pump-installation.html

cc

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 7:48 am 
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Joined: Sat Nov 05, 2011 1:58 am
Posts: 1524
Location: Forster, NSW, Australia
Josh Holmes of ModernKayakFishing.com.au came up with this idea which I have incorporated into my TI.

Once I retrieve my pump from the centre hatch, I close it and keep it closed.
Image
The pump has a small extension of 1" diameter plastic tube (not shown) which tightly fills the small plug hole, and reaches further into the hull.
Image
The idea is that the hull remains sealed while you are pumping out water.

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Tony Stott
2012 Tandem Island "SIC EM"
www.scenefromabove.com.au


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 9:18 am 
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Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2007 6:14 pm
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Location: South Florida
hollgi wrote:
Chekika wrote:
Why put in a bilge pump which involves a lot of money, effort, and a new large hole in your hull, when you haven't gone to the source of the problem? I think, if you had a basement room and it was flooding, you would not put in a permanent pump--you would stop the flooding. Why is an AI any different?


I have to 100% disagree with you Keith!
It's not about sealing a hull, it's about safety and a backup.
It's a safety issue and a must offshore!

Laukahi spoke only about leaks in his opening post. My comments deal with his post.

Safety is another issue, although a catastrophic leak would fit that, and can be dealt with in different ways. I am one of the few people who has flooded the hull. It was not a leak but a screw-up. I made it the mile to shore. http://www.hobiecat.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=70&t=7276&start=180

I have never heard of a Hobie AI/tandem being deep-sixed because of a leak. Maybe it has happened and this discussion will bring them out of the closet. Presumably, everyone carries standard safety gear: a hand pump, VHF radio, PFDs. Flotation can be added easily... http://www.nrsweb.com/shop/product_list.asp?deptid=1760...or, you could put in a 500 GPM bilge pump, but as NOHUHU says, that is not for everyone. And, not for me.

Keith

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I sail: Biscayne Bay, Everglades to Cape Romano, Ft Desoto, Cedar Key

"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex ... It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction." A. Einstein


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 3:34 pm 
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Joined: Fri Nov 11, 2011 10:17 pm
Posts: 22
Location: Northwest Florida
Recently I installed a manual Whale diaphram bilge pump in my TI. The project was just completed today and soon I will share details about the pump and its install with the Hobie forum. I am not ready to do so just yet. However, given the subject of this thread I felt it timely to offer some information here.

I agree with the folks that feel they need/want a bilge pump so I sought a solution that works for me. I went with a diaghram pump that is installed below deck. It is built into the boat so it cannot be left behind. I also did not want the weight or reliability issues associated with an electric motor, float switches or a second or larger battery. I may be wrong here but I also felt that the manual plunger type pumps are not as reliable as the pump I chose to install. When I am a few miles offshore or just on a multi-day trip, even if not offshore, I feel better having a bilge pump.

I note that the pump, as I installed it, is not for taking out the small volume of water many find at the end of a rough water passage. It will however rapidly empty a flooded hull of all but about 1 1/2 inch of water. Further, it will do this without opening a hatch, from my normal seated position, so I can contiue to sail while using the pump.

The down-side, as I installed the bilge pump in my boat, is that I have given up routine use of the twist & stow hatch in the aft cockpit. While I can still use it for items that fit in a small and narrow dry bag, the gear bucket I previously used frequently no longer fits.

I'll get more details and pics out in the next week or so.

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Martin Hochberg
Tandem Island 2012


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 3:51 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 2:31 pm
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Location: Kailua 96734
Can't wait...

I'm a big fan of the manual pump access port, per Tony. Less of the powered variety because of expense, weight and multipoints of failure. Glad he brought that up.

Rob's install is cool, except for the toggle switches and dam around the pump (self defeating). Bracing the pump under the seat made sense, but a removable one makes more sense to me. Did he ever cover the power install?

Props to Hollgi for his version. As good as any, I've seen. Good tips too.

Still- any power sump pump is vulnerable, to any number of things. Also limited in effectiveness as your TI sloshes around in swells. A major breach, open hatch or a missing bung could still overwhelm any pump. In which case, you need to be prepared to sail a submarine.

I've been on and around a couple swamped AI/TI's and I know to count on 3 things.

1. When it's half full, you're not going to be able to bail it,
2. It's going to swim like a pig through the surf,
3. It's going to drag like a dead cow when you make the beach.

Anything that prevents you from getting to that point is worth a try.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 4:05 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2007 6:14 pm
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Location: South Florida
A couple years ago, 3 professional football players went out in their fishing sport boat off the west coast of Florida. Through poor boatsmanship, they sank their boat. They floated around off shore for several days. 2 of them drifted off and were never found. The 3rd was found with the overturned boat.

This type of accident is usually the consequence of a number of mistakes. In this case, the boaters screwed up and sank their boat. They carried no devices to signal for help. There may have been other mistakes--did they have a working VHF radio? Did they have extra fresh water? Bottom line: 2 people died.

Whenever I think of this accident, and about using an AI/TI several miles offshore, I wonder, do people have one of the most important safety/rescue devices: a PLB (personal EPIRB) and/or a SPOT messaging device? These devices are most likely to get you rescued when you are in the worst possible situation--like the 3 football players stranded at sea.

Keith

_________________
I sail: Biscayne Bay, Everglades to Cape Romano, Ft Desoto, Cedar Key

"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex ... It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction." A. Einstein


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 5:20 pm 
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Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2009 4:07 am
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Location: Byron Bay, NSW, Australia
I agree Cheika,
But I do belive in selfrescue before pressing the PLB nutton.
You should have all the safety gear including a PLB when you venture out in the open ocen.
On of them is a reliable bailing device. If electic or manual is personal choice.
Both have points for and against it:

Electric system:

Cons: weight(although i have the battery anyway,the pump doesn't weight a lot), Electrics might fail or battery is empty, 'complexety' as some call it, although a cable runnung through a switch to a pump os hardly complex..

Pros:"easy to work,'sail and bail', keeps my hands free for other tasks (sailing to shore), much faster than a hand pump, less strenuous, can pump down to about 5-10 mm water depth. Can be mounted right in the back where the water accumulates. If you already have a battery installed for a sounder/plotter there is no difference in weight between an electrical pump and a hand pump.

The key to a good electrical system is to install it right and to really really waterproof everything.

Manual:

Pros: lightweight, easy mechanical device,reliable, more or less maintenance free

Cons: hard work after a while/strenuous . Awkward to pack and to get in and out through the hatch with a 1.5 m hose attached(without kinking the hose which creates problems in use later).
Packing on deck is the easier solution but I have seen manual hand pumps handles break off because of weakend plastic/ UV damage.
You can't sail and bail at the same time.


Joshes port is a great idea, but does not work without a long enough hose attached to it on a Ai as we found out (can't comment on the TI). With a 1.5m hose it does well.

I wonder how many actually tested their system instead of installing something and believing it will work.


Last edited by hollgi on Mon Feb 25, 2013 5:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 5:37 pm 
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Location: South Florida
I certainly agree, Hollgi. Fortunately, there is no conflict with doing all you can to keep yourself afloat and working at self-rescue, AND, having a personal EPIRB and/or SPOT so you can press the 911 button when things go south.

Keith

_________________
I sail: Biscayne Bay, Everglades to Cape Romano, Ft Desoto, Cedar Key

"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex ... It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction." A. Einstein


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 5:50 pm 
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Location: Byron Bay, NSW, Australia
Chekika wrote:
I certainly agree, Hollgi. Fortunately, there is no conflict with doing all you can to keep yourself afloat and working at self-rescue, AND, having a personal EPIRB and/or SPOT so you can press the 911 button when things go south.

Keith



:D


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