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Old 11-11-2019, 08:02 PM   #1
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Shoring up

So in my Canadian Navy Officer basic training, shoring up - covering holes in the bulkhead as water gushed in - was part and parcel of our education. So I got to thinking what if for whatever reason my boat was holed, what would I use to shore it up.

Then I thought maybe some here have already given that some thought and have supplies for this possible eventuality. So what do you have on your boat for damage control?
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Old 11-11-2019, 08:08 PM   #2
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So in my Canadian Navy Officer basic training, shoring up - covering holes in the bulkhead as water gushed in - was part and parcel of our education. So I got to thinking what if for whatever reason my boat was holed, what would I use to shore it up.

Then I thought maybe some here have already given that some thought and have supplies for this possible eventuality. So what do you have on your boat for damage control?
A life raft. If the pumps can't hold her I am not trying to patch her up.

Along the AICW it's not an issue, in most places, if I can't get her to a sling in time, after she sinks we will sit on the FB having a sody pop until Sea Tow arrives to secure the diesel and oil.

Off shore watch the water levels and if the pumps ain't doing it and I can't get to a beach to run her up on - then we are off on the raft with the EPIRBs.

She is insured and I am not going below into cramped spaces to plug holes.
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Old 11-11-2019, 08:31 PM   #3
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Stay Afloat works well on small holes or even plugging an open seacock. Check the video on their web site:
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For big holes, a piece of reinforced canvas or a strong tarp will stop much of the flow. In the old days a fothering sail was stretched over the hole. Ashes or sawdust was forced under water to help plug the canvas.
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Old 11-11-2019, 08:45 PM   #4
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Stay Afloat works well on small holes or even plugging an open seacock. Check the video on their web site:
Home

For big holes, a piece of reinforced canvas or a strong tarp will stop much of the flow. In the old days a fothering sail was stretched over the hole. Ashes or sawdust was forced under water to help plug the canvas.
You have those on board?
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Old 11-11-2019, 09:33 PM   #5
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I've got a variety of gear for this, including the standard tapered plugs up to 3", various pieces of 1/4' plywood, 2x4's, foam balls, heavy tarp, sails, long screws. Can also use pillows, life jackets, raincoats etc.

Also, the highest risk areas of my hull are protected. The front of the bow is a closed chamber to above the water line. Same with the sides (integral water tanks). The full length keel and rolling chocks also provide good hull protection.

I don't feel the need for a life raft.
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Old 11-11-2019, 09:40 PM   #6
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We carry a collision blanket on Sandpiper. It's a 10' X 12' HD plastic tarp with long lines tied to the corners. Just in case we're too far from shore.

Also have a 110 VAC emergency trash pump and hose.
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Old 11-11-2019, 10:13 PM   #7
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I carry a bag of tapered plugs of various sizes (stored next to the hammer). And a couple of those big foam plugs. Beyond that, I don't usually have anything ready to go (but could improvise something from stuff on board), but I also don't run in areas where holing the hull is a big risk without a major navigation screwup.

Pump-wise, my current in-progress bilge pump redesign includes having enough real-world pump capacity to keep up with a failure of any single thru hull (including shaft logs) to provide time to do something about the issue.
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Old 11-11-2019, 10:17 PM   #8
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I carry a toilet wax ring seal in the engine room. It’s amazing what that sticky wax can seal even when water is rushing in. It looks exactly like Lepke’s stay afloat.
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Old 11-11-2019, 11:32 PM   #9
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A life raft. If the pumps can't hold her I am not trying to patch her up.

Along the AICW it's not an issue, in most places, if I can't get her to a sling in time, after she sinks we will sit on the FB having a sody pop until Sea Tow arrives to secure the diesel and oil.

Off shore watch the water levels and if the pumps ain't doing it and I can't get to a beach to run her up on - then we are off on the raft with the EPIRBs.

She is insured and I am not going below into cramped spaces to plug holes.
REALLY??! You wouldn't try and save her (if it was safe to do so)? Insurance is all well and good but that's MY BABY. If I can SAFELY do something then I will.
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Old 11-11-2019, 11:51 PM   #10
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You have those on board?
One of the reasons I have a big boat is so I can carry stuff I might need. I have a fothering sail I made about 50 years ago that's been carried on all of my personal boats. I also carry a tub of Stay Afloat, wood plugs, emergency tiller, and so on. Along with engine spares.
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Old 11-12-2019, 12:07 AM   #11
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REALLY??! You wouldn't try and save her (if it was safe to do so)? Insurance is all well and good but that's MY BABY. If I can SAFELY do something then I will.
I agree. Most trawlers have enough reserve buoyancy to stay afloat if pumps can keep up. If enough battery capacity located above the rising water can run long enough to get the boat ashore.

Anything stuffed into the hole to slow the flow of water coming in helps.

We carry a 13' tender when we boat in the summer and that could take us a long distance if we are forced to abandon ship. Highly unlikely since we've never been holed or aground in 35 years of trawlering.. We have driven over deadheads and logs but fortunately both trawlers owned was/is a single with a protected prop and the strikes nothing but a big Oh! Sh$# scare.

The rest of the year, travelifts are in close proximity to our cruising area in Puget Sound.
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Old 11-12-2019, 01:22 AM   #12
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I know pretty much zero about the East Coast boating scene, geography, tidal currents, etc. But over here on the West Coast from roughly Anacortes Washington into deep Alaskan Panhandle, logs for whatever reason broken loose from log booms is a real issue. Trees, which are easier to see than dead heads, are also an issue especially after some nasty storms. One time I was headed to Refuge Cove in Desolation and ran into so many tree floating around the area, I took the cowardly way out and headed over to Squirrel's Cove to avoid any undesired intimate contact.

I've hit two deadheads on sailboats but they were going so slow, I just heard the log clunking along the hull. But all of us with express cruisers with decent speed fear hitting a deadhead.

This is from Safe Boating: "A deadhead is a log or heavy timber floating nearly vertical, with little of its bulk showing above the surface. Deadheads can present an extreme hazard to vessels and in tidal areas, deadheads can cause significant damage to marinas and the vessels moored within."

Logs in the water is an issue here in BC; the following is an article of Beachcombers in a dispute with the province over pay of harvesting said logs:

"Beachcombers fight B.C.'s control over log salvaging
ROBERT MATAS
VANCOUVER
PUBLISHED MARCH 24, 2000
UPDATED MARCH 27, 2018
PUBLISHED MARCH 24, 2000
This article was published more than 10 years ago. Some information in it may no longer be current.

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A group of British Columbia's beachcombers who want more money for the logs they collect along the West Coast has launched a lawsuit challenging the province's authority to regulate their business.

The Western Association of Salvors and Handloggers, represented by the Sierra Legal Defence Fund, claims in a document filed yesterday in B.C. Supreme Court that the federal government has exclusive authority to deal with the log-salvage operators.

The association maintains that beachcombers would be better off financially if the federal government, not the province, had jurisdiction over log salvage.

Although the B.C. government has not officially responded, a spokesman said the province is confident its jurisdiction will be upheld.

The provincial government became involved in the issue several years ago in an attempt to curtail repeated court actions between beachcombers and forest companies that accuse beachcombers of stealing their property.

Stuart Messenger, a manager in the B.C. Ministry of Forests, said finders of lost property do not own whatever they find. But if the owner of the logs cannot be identified, the finders can claim them.

He defended the province's constitutional right to regulate log salvagers, but acknowledged that the government is open to suggestions for a system of compensation that might work better.

"So far, we have not been able to find one," he said.

At the heart of the dispute is the value of cedar, hemlock and other logs that regularly wash up along the shore.

The province licensed a consortium of forest companies, Gulf Log Salvage Co-operative Association, to pay for logs that cannot be traced to their proper owners and to resell the wood."
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Old 11-12-2019, 06:49 AM   #13
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REALLY??! You wouldn't try and save her (if it was safe to do so)? Insurance is all well and good but that's MY BABY. If I can SAFELY do something then I will.
Through hull hose, yep, close it. Punctured hull that the four bilge pumps can't keep up with, unless it is a very safe and easy solution, nope. If I feel not doing something would endanger us then I would try, but that is unlikely given other preparations.

Sonas isn't my baby (my wife says my mistress!), and there are other boats just like her.

I know everyone is different, but I won't be down there patching.

I'd like to hear from others who have had to patch due to more water coming in than the pumps could handle.
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Old 11-12-2019, 08:03 AM   #14
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I felt pretty comfortable with my setup: 4 pumps with a total nominal capacity of 8500 GPH on a 40' boat.

However, when changing a depth transducer I realized a failure of even that single small fitting would overwhelm all my pumping capacity and sink the boat.

The math is pretty straightforward. Even assuming all 4 pumps work correctly my effective pump rate would probably be 4000-5000 GPH. The transducer fitting, a 2" hole located 2' below the waterline will admit about 6700 GPH.

Absent quickly acquiring more pumping capacity or stemming the flow, the boat is going to the bottom.
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Old 11-12-2019, 04:54 PM   #15
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The math is pretty straightforward. Even assuming all 4 pumps work correctly my effective pump rate would probably be 4000-5000 GPH. The transducer fitting, a 2" hole located 2' below the waterline will admit about 6700 GPH.

Absent quickly acquiring more pumping capacity or stemming the flow, the boat is going to the bottom.


But the pumps will buy you time while Sea Tow or the like respond with their pumps.
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Old 11-12-2019, 05:40 PM   #16
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I have:
Two Rule 3700 GPH bilge pumps
One Rule 2000 GPH bilge pump
One Jabsco 574 GPH diaphragm bilge pump

And for backup a 2000 GPH 115VAC Johnson utility trash pump

Total capacity is 11,400 GPH but realistically around 5,000 to 7,000 GPH

And the engine raw water pump as a last resort.
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Old 11-12-2019, 07:06 PM   #17
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Interesting that folks are commenting on what pump volume they have rather than shoring tools and processes!
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Old 11-12-2019, 07:19 PM   #18
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I have found flow rates from various pumps to be a bit of BS. The rating is accurate as long as the fluid doesn't have to go up hill, then the rating is bunk.
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Old 11-12-2019, 07:36 PM   #19
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A lot of pumps publish output numbers at different head pressure, so it's possible to figure out what it'll really flow. For smaller centrifugal pumps, it's fairly safe to figure 40 - 50% of nameplate output. For larger centrifugal pumps, figure 50 - 60%.
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Old 11-12-2019, 07:38 PM   #20
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Just thought I would highlight the original question.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rsn48 View Post
So in my Canadian Navy Officer basic training, shoring up - covering holes in the bulkhead as water gushed in - was part and parcel of our education. So I got to thinking what if for whatever reason my boat was holed, what would I use to shore it up.

Then I thought maybe some here have already given that some thought and have supplies for this possible eventuality. So what do you have on your boat for damage control?
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