Inevitably, water sometimes appears in the bilges and needs to be dealt with. Sponging out is laborious and time consuming if there is a substantial amount – I recently struggled to replace the log impeller blank and took on quite a lot of water into the bilge.
There is also a sensible recommendation in the World Cruising (ARC) guidelines to have ‘a second manual bilge pump operable from below decks’.
Applying myself to this challenge, I came up with the following simple solution:-
This arrangement works incredibly well and is cheap and reliable. Just pump the heads as usual and ‘voila’ dry bilge! It is now just stowed to be deployed whenever required.
In my business, we use silicone to manufacture moulds and there is often too much produced on the basis better too much than too little. This excess would usually go to waste so I have given instructions that any leftover should be used to make these bungs. The excess silicone is simply poured into a paper cup around a boss where it sets, the cup and boss are removed and that is the ‘business end’ of the system. I have supplied some fellow Southerly Owners (that attended the SOA ‘laying up supper’) with bungs but they slowly continue to be produced.
If any yacht owners are interested and would like to provide their address, I will send them a bung and they can subsequently pay the cost of the postage and whatever they think it is worth once they have tried it. You may have to be patient if there is a lot of interest…