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Old 06-04-2019, 08:26 AM   #1
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Anchor locker drains

Oh, the joys of age and Ibuprofen.

Forward lockers at the bow, alongside the anchor locker, weren't draining effectively. Starboard one wasn't draining at all. Various crud clogging the drains. And, of course, no quick fixes like aiming the hose down from above or alongside. Or a coat hanger bent straight to poke around...

Had to pay out all the chain to get a look at the drains. Various bits of mud/leaf litter had clogged them. Simply blasting them with the hose didn't help. Nor did hanging my not inconsiderable bulk waaaaay down into the locker help get an angle on poking at the drains (thus the Advil). Had to bring the dinghy around and use shore water to blast the drains from the outside, as I'd nearly run the on-board tanks dry using the freshwater washdown. Oh, and it being low tide made for added fun clambering back up to the pedestal since I'd forgotten to turn the water on when up there getting the hose (two Advil job, now). But a few blasts of water from the outside were sufficient to dislodge the crud. Now the lockers all drain freely.

I didn't have spare line on-board, otherwise I'd have replaced the line securing the end of the chain to the boat. A friend at the marina mentioned using floating poly line for the job. As in, if you have a situation where you have to pay out and lose the entire chain, having some floating rode might at least give you a better chance of recovering it.

So, one task off my to-do list... and another one added. Two steps forward...
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Old 06-04-2019, 11:09 AM   #2
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My drain is fairly large, like a shower drain. This drains into my forward bilge. The reason was to eliminate thu-hull holes.
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Old 06-04-2019, 11:21 AM   #3
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I like mine draining overboard so the crap goes out instead of into the bilge to stink. I think I could reach the drain from the inside but I have not tried yet.
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Old 06-04-2019, 03:07 PM   #4
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My drain is fairly large, like a shower drain. This drains into my forward bilge. The reason was to eliminate thu-hull holes.
I don't understand why you would drain an anchor locker into a bilge...which itself has to be cleaned out at some stage. And I don't think an above waterline anchor locker drain counts as a thru hull.
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Old 06-04-2019, 03:21 PM   #5
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I agree it isnít really a through hull since if it goes under water and some water comes in it will just run back out on the next wave.
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Old 06-04-2019, 03:35 PM   #6
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Mine originally drained into the bilge. During my refit, I did some testing and found that I could plumb a line from the locker to the shower and sink sump with a continuous downward slope. I'm pretty good at cleaning my chain before it goes in the locker, but still clean the shower sump once a year to remove the small amount of sediment.

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Old 06-04-2019, 05:27 PM   #7
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I'm pretty happy to have an anchor locker that drain overboard. So far, I've not had it clog. Usually once a season I'll drop the anchor at the dock and then rinse out the locker and do an exceptionally thorough rinse of the chain as I bring it back on board.
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Old 06-05-2019, 11:11 AM   #8
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I don't understand why you would drain an anchor locker into a bilge...which itself has to be cleaned out at some stage. And I don't think an above waterline anchor locker drain counts as a thru hull.
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I agree it isnít really a through hull since if it goes under water and some water comes in it will just run back out on the next wave.
Its the way it is designed. No holes in the side of the boat. It doesn't stick and very easy to clean.
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Old 06-05-2019, 11:40 AM   #9
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I'm pretty happy to have an anchor locker that drain overboard. So far, I've not had it clog. Usually once a season I'll drop the anchor at the dock and then rinse out the locker and do an exceptionally thorough rinse of the chain as I bring it back on board.
That'll be my plain going forward. We spray the chain as it's being hauled up by the windlass, but some muck/debris undoubtedly makes it past. The locker is, thankfully, isolated from the interior and bilge, so there's no smells escaping from it.

But it'll hopefully be a lot easier to do this as a small job once a season than the bigger job I went through. Well, it wasn't "that bad", it just involved a lot more back/forth than I would have liked. Knowing what I do now, I'll be able to tackle it more effectively next time.

I'll be running the chain out again at some point as I want to re-apply the 25' interval paint markers.
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Old 06-06-2019, 05:42 AM   #10
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There is very little extra hassle or cost to install a 2 inch drain , instead of a 3/4inch sized drain.
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Old 06-06-2019, 06:04 AM   #11
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There is very little extra hassle or cost to install a 2 inch drain , instead of a 3/4inch sized drain.
Uh, no, that's wrong. At least not without dramatically changing how the locker drains and where it goes overboard. Right now the drains are molded into the fiberglass and there's zero access to that area, at least not without considerable fiberglass cutting work, and subsequent repainting. It would a considerable hassle and no doubt quite expensive.
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Old 06-06-2019, 07:40 AM   #12
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A couple of pieces of Dri-Deck with a finer mesh on top will keep stuff like leaves from plugging the drain and keep rode dryer.
A small shop vac w long hose / straight tube once / year is my usual routine to clean leaves, twigs, dead weeds, etc
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Old 06-06-2019, 08:14 AM   #13
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We just discovered after pulling all of the old chain out of the locker that the drain sits several inches above the bottom meaning there is always a few inches of water that the chain sits in. The access into the locker is very small. Hubby has been trying to think of something he can put down there that the chain can sit on above the water. Any suggestions?
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Old 06-06-2019, 08:47 AM   #14
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I don't know how big the base of the locker is, but you could make a little "pallet" out of plastic (Starboard) for the chain to rest on ith lots of openeings for the water to drain.
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Old 06-06-2019, 08:47 AM   #15
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A couple of pieces of Dri-Deck with a finer mesh on top will keep stuff like leaves from plugging the drain and keep rode dryer.
A small shop vac w long hose / straight tube once / year is my usual routine to clean leaves, twigs, dead weeds, etc
THAT is a great idea. Some friends just got a 50' Palm Beach and the previous owners had added that into various lockers.

Though I wonder how well it'd hold up to 150' of chain being laid on it?
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Old 06-06-2019, 08:59 AM   #16
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We just discovered after pulling all of the old chain out of the locker that the drain sits several inches above the bottom meaning there is always a few inches of water that the chain sits in. The access into the locker is very small. Hubby has been trying to think of something he can put down there that the chain can sit on above the water. Any suggestions?

Bachusí suggestion of Dry-deck would work. It is simply a plastic grid tile designed to keep your feet and gear from sitting in water on a wet deck. It can be cut with a hacksaw to shape. It is only about 1/2Ē thick but I donít see why it couldnít be stacked up. Water runs through and under it very well.
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Old 06-06-2019, 09:06 AM   #17
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THAT is a great idea. Some friends just got a 50' Palm Beach and the previous owners had added that into various lockers.



Though I wonder how well it'd hold up to 150' of chain being laid on it?

Consider that it is designed to be walked on. Iím no longer svelte. If I am geared up with foul weather gear, life jacket, harness etc... I probably weigh 240lbs. If I am walking on it, any time Iím standing on one foot Iím putting all that weight on the ball if my foot about 9 sq in. Iíve decked sailboat cockpits with the stuff and it held up really well.

So I think it can certainly hold up under a mound of 150 lb chain.
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Old 06-06-2019, 09:25 AM   #18
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The Dri-Deck has plastic "nubs" or supports very closely spaced. Wt shouldnt be a problem either stack layers or build a support grid under it for more depth.
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Old 06-06-2019, 09:30 AM   #19
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I've ordered a box of the Dri-Dek tiles (they come in boxes of six). I'm figuring it'll take probably three to cover the floor of the chain locker. There are two other lockers alongside (port/starboard). I think their bottom areas have a flat spot that might benefit from a tile being cut to fit. We'll see.

My concern about the weight is the chain itself is heavy but is made of links, which randomly piled up would probably leave 'enough' room for most crud/silt to wash through to the drain hole. I'd worry the Dri-Dek would get crushed along a line and result in damming up the crud. But I'm probably over-thinking it and will await delivery/installation of the tiles to see how it goes.
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Old 06-06-2019, 09:42 AM   #20
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Let us know how it goes. You will need a hacksaw and some tough work gloves to cut the tiles. I put them on the bottom of all my outside lockers on my current boat so lots of cutting.
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