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Old 08-20-2015, 08:11 AM   #1
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a couple of " I'm not sure" questions...

Being a new salt water boating guy, also being a new big boat guy I'm having all kinds of questions and yall are my go too place For the most part I figure them out on my own but sometimes I'm just not sure. My wife and I have been going out on a few 3-4 hour trips in the Portland area to shake down and get used to our new boat. Installed a new norcold fridge, Raritan fresh water head, couple of macerator pumps and so on.

I'm always seeing folks at the dock hosing off their boats after they come in, mostly smaller fiberglass but some large ones also. I was wondering what everyone does after going out on a cruise for a few hours or a few days... If you have a small forest of teak (that needs attention) on deck what's the scoop hose it down? salt or fresh? Hose all your lines off? Or leave it alone and have a beer to celebrate getting safely back to the dock.

One other thing, do you have a dry bilge? Dry all the time? Wet when you come back in from a trip or wet all the time?

As always, thank you all for the help, guidance and opinion.
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Old 08-20-2015, 08:17 AM   #2
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Old 08-20-2015, 08:39 AM   #3
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Fresh water rinse off after every trip. Full wash as needed. Which could be once a week, twice a month, once a month, etc. Depends on the boats location and how it gets used.

Teak decks get scrubbed as needed or at every full wash. Brightened/bleached maybe once a year.
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Old 08-20-2015, 08:42 AM   #4
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RWave,
I have seen a lot of fishing charter boats in our area rinsing/ scrubbing down after their trip. The purpose to mean seems to be getting remaining salt residue from the vessel. Personally.. At times I spray off with fresh water (we have great pressure at the slip). I think it's worth doing if you have the time .


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Old 08-20-2015, 08:53 AM   #5
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We have a forest of teak on our deck, rails, etc. when we go out for a day cruise or normally an overnight we don't routinely wash everything down. We usually get a good rain a couple of times a week and let Mother Nature help with that. Now when we go offshore or are in tougher waters with a lot of spray, we do hose off the salt build up that can and does occur. I've also heard that a saltwater wash down is better for the teak decks but don't always use it. As for lines, they are on their own. We do wash windows frequently or at least as needed. We have two dogs with us so the interior is cleaned quite often, usually on each trip or weekends at the dock. The celebratory beers are certainly a priority after each trip. That's a whole different kind of wash down.
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Old 08-20-2015, 10:37 AM   #6
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I rarely hose down my boat. Too many other things to do! The last time I hosed down the hull was when I was on the hard. We washed the upper surfaces just before we left on our trip 11 weeks ago. I'll probably try and give it a wash sometime over the next 2 weeks.

I see these guys washing down their boats when they arrive at guest marinas and I do feel guilty--that I am a lesser owner. But damn! I've put in my time doing all the other stuff! Also there's a water shortage up here right now. I can wait until that eases.


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Old 08-20-2015, 10:51 AM   #7
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The very first day of my first purchase of a big, saltwater boat, the broker told me that "salt is the enemy."

That was in 1995 and I've never forgotten it! I rinse off the boat after each outing. It takes about 20 minutes to do a good job and I feel much better for it.
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Old 08-20-2015, 11:05 AM   #8
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I rinse the boat as soon as we arrive somewhere if it's in salt water. The salt crystals stick everywhere and makes the boat look like a pretzel.
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Old 08-20-2015, 11:10 AM   #9
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Quote:
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Also there's a water shortage up here right now. I can wait until that eases.
Hmmm, water meters will be everywhere before you know it. Not that it will save much water.
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Old 08-20-2015, 12:09 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Codger2 View Post
The very first day of my first purchase of a big, saltwater boat, the broker told me that "salt is the enemy."

That was in 1995 and I've never forgotten it! I rinse off the boat after each outing. It takes about 20 minutes to do a good job and I feel much better for it.
Same exact routine here. By hose down I mean something between a mist and a shower, as gentle a touch as possible; you just want to dilute and rid yourself of the salt spray. Metal work, exposed brightwork and windows more important than the hull in my case, then as often as I feel like it (which is usually) a quick wipe off with a damp microfiber towel or a chamois mop. The vast majority of our trips are multi day, anchored or mooring. If we have had any kind of a sporty run, I will do a very quick misting using our fresh water supply on the railings, windows etc and wipe them down. It's amazing how much salt can build up.

As for the teak decks, occasionally washed down with clean saltwater and maybe a going over with a very very soft brush.

When marina bound for awhile, as Bill said, it depends. I've been places near a steel mill for instance and you better try to get to it as often as possible (in our case every day since we lived aboard).

A real wash with some kind of soap, maybe once a month or so. If your boat is treated with something like AwlCare, Zaino, or our case Rejex, the water-only hose downs mitigate the need for that.
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Old 08-20-2015, 12:20 PM   #11
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Salt is indeed an enemy (along with sun and water and electricity!).

We are in freshwater under cover - an hour plus the locks to get to the salt - and I always rinse with Saltaway when returning. Their dispenser sucks - use this one from HF:
http://m.harborfreight.com/car-wash-...not%20provided
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Old 08-20-2015, 12:47 PM   #12
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I washed my 36' sailboat down for the first time in 19 years this season. It was on a mooring until this year and hadn't been to a dock since 1996. Prior to that I let rain do the job. Right now is fog season and the boat is pretty wet with condensation every day. That said, the guy on the next finger over spends 2-3 hours washing and then going over his entire Eastbay 38 with a chamois every time it leaves the dock. There is a boat on the face dock 50 feet from mine that gets washed down at least twice a week and dried off with a chamois EVERY time it gets wet. It is a 112 footer and cleaning the exterior of the main boat and the 35' tender is all one crew member does. The boat does look good.
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Old 08-20-2015, 12:57 PM   #13
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We will hose down with fresh water after a trip, thou many times not till the next day. We wash the whole boat only when needed. We remove black streaks with "Reel Shine Cleaner wax", also good for the stainless btw. We wax the boat every 6-8 months.

for the teak, we only clean it with saltwater. Once a year we clean it with TSP (trip sodium phosphate)
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Old 08-20-2015, 04:01 PM   #14
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Yes, inside and out. I rinse off boat and then flush engine with fresh water.
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Old 08-20-2015, 05:35 PM   #15
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I run boats including mine in the winter when fresh water washdowns arent available or advisable.


Not saying it isn't a good thing...but in the big scheme of things...I have seen boats that do get washed not look a whole lot better than those that don't.


Assuming both sit in a pretty salty environment such as seaside marinas close to the ocean.
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Old 08-20-2015, 05:49 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by refugio View Post
Salt is indeed an enemy (along with sun and water and electricity!).

We are in freshwater under cover - an hour plus the locks to get to the salt - and I always rinse with Saltaway when returning. Their dispenser sucks - use this one from HF:
Car Wash Nozzle
After each run we double team it with the same thing keep 2 in case one breaks and we use brush on a extension pole takes about 15 minutes wife sprays so she is done first the she goes and staightens the galley

When I am done with the wash I go to the engine room (turned on the blowers just Before I dock) I check the engines and the bilge and no my bilge is not dry but after the new pumps it should be dryer
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Old 08-20-2015, 05:57 PM   #17
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I hate the feeling of dry salt on the handrails. Thus, we wash the boat upon returning with freshwater and wipe down the rails.
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Old 08-20-2015, 06:05 PM   #18
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Here in the keys anytime on the water ,the boat will have salt on everything, weather moving or at the dock. Wash with the hose every 4-5 days spraying everything and take note of black streaks,bird droppings,etc.. Then wash with soap/water, cleaners every 10 days or so.Do a real hard wash/wax every four months on a section of hull,deck so boat is waxed on the water in a year. When hauled do a compounding/waxing x3 on the hull. Seams to last until the next haul,21/2-3years. Clean the bottom every 2 weeks by diving and doing it myself with a 8inch drywall scraper and a painter tool,perfect tool to scrape to 2" shafts while looking for lobster under the boat. If you let salt build up it is a stainer,corrosive and will make everything feel sticky, wet and will be harder to clean. Drink that beer while hosing off the boat,I do.
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Old 08-20-2015, 06:19 PM   #19
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Sounds like everyone has their 'right' reasons for rinsing down after use

My justification has NOTHING to do with right or wrong. It has to do with that the next time I go out to the boat whether it's to use her or putter around I usually run up against, along or on something. I find it onerous that I get salt crusted just getting to the boat for moving around on her. I like a clean boat, and that usually includes the outside. My wife and I have a routine after dropping guests off at the dock before we return to the mooring. I rinse the outside and neaten up the deck. She vacuums the inside to get the 'bug attractors' cleaned up prior to putting Slip Aweigh to bed.
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Old 08-20-2015, 06:42 PM   #20
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I find the biggest issue with crusted salt is zippers. They are only on the flybridge so its only an issue with heavy spray. We keep the boat in fresh water. the closest brackish to salt water is about 30 miles away.
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