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Old 09-03-2015, 12:07   #1
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Bilge and Places We Don't See.

Hi all, I came across some really neat looking and cheap web cams on fleebay. What do you guys think about installing a bunch of these below decks where we cannot easily see or check out regularly? I have this fear of a bum bilge pump (have 3 now) so I was thinking these might ease my worrisome mind a bit as I will be able to check in on these places at will. Maybe near the thru-hulls, etc...As an after thought, night vision security cams aren't too expensive either...
Any input or suggestions are welcome as usual...
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Old 09-03-2015, 13:15   #2
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Re: Bilge and Places We Don't See.

Get a borescope. Anything cheap you can bury below the cabin sole, is going to get eaten by the moisture. and then you've got a rat's nest of extra cables to run. And the cheap webcams often have a horrible picture.
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Old 09-03-2015, 13:25   #3
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Re: Bilge and Places We Don't See.

Personally I think I would like to be able to check in on my stuffing box and possibly rudder shaft stuffing box every now and again, can't hurt. Maybe one on the engine too?
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Old 09-03-2015, 13:32   #4
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Re: Bilge and Places We Don't See.

Bilge alarm.
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Old 09-03-2015, 13:40   #5
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Re: Bilge and Places We Don't See.

I have a floor hatch in the salon which lets me see the bilge and I made it a habit to open it at least once a day and right away after I come back from a few days absence. The stuffing box is visible either by a) lifting the companionway stairs, b) head diving into the lazarette or opening a side hatch in the aft quarter berth (the easiest method unless I have a deflated dinghy there).

Although I did get a bilge alarm but yet to install it as I am thinking of doing a complete rewiring job and don't want to complicate it by wiring new stuff which I will be re-doing anyway.
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Old 09-03-2015, 13:56   #6
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Re: Bilge and Places We Don't See.

I hear ya...I also have not installed the bilge alarm yet! I think I am going to try 3 of these webcams...
360 Rotating USB 2 0 30 0 Mega HD Webcam Web Cam Camera for PC Laptop Computer | eBay
If I get 6-8 months out of them it'll be ok...wutta ya want for 4 bucks!! I have seen wireless ones as well. I'm thinking:
stuffing box
rudder stuffing box
lowest part of bilge and pump
WHERE ELSE????
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Old 09-03-2015, 21:43   #7
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Re: Bilge and Places We Don't See.

Someplace DRY and not SALTY?
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Old 09-03-2015, 22:52   #8
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Re: Bilge and Places We Don't See.

Now wait a minute 64. You guys cannot see these areas on your boat by opening a hatch or floorboard?
Is this a trend with newer sailboats?
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Old 10-03-2015, 20:56   #9
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Re: Bilge and Places We Don't See.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrlee View Post
I hear ya...I also have not installed the bilge alarm yet! I think I am going to try 3 of these webcams...
360 Rotating USB 2 0 30 0 Mega HD Webcam Web Cam Camera for PC Laptop Computer | eBay
If I get 6-8 months out of them it'll be ok...wutta ya want for 4 bucks!! I have seen wireless ones as well. I'm thinking:
stuffing box
rudder stuffing box
lowest part of bilge and pump
WHERE ELSE????
You're over-thinking.
The video in the dark bilge area will be a black screen. Are you going to install lights with each?

Just buy a portable and use it when necessary. Inspection Cameras - Power Tools -*The Home Depot

The additional advantage is you can use it anywhere - inside the mast for example. You wouldn't be happy if you needed to see something and the cameras were elsewhere.
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Old 10-03-2015, 21:05   #10
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Re: Bilge and Places We Don't See.

Quote:
Originally Posted by s/v Beth View Post
Now wait a minute 64. You guys cannot see these areas on your boat by opening a hatch or floorboard?
Is this a trend with newer sailboats?
May be they just don't know where to look?
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Old 10-03-2015, 21:16   #11
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Re: Bilge and Places We Don't See.

My suggestion rather than these web cams would be to install two bilge pumps along with an alarm console. Their not expensive.

What you have in mind I think would require your computer to be on all the time or they can't record to anything. If your intent is to see places when your under way and sailing, then I really don't see that as necessary. If it is necessary, then 'whoa'! why? where's the hole?

The two inexpensive bilge pumps you put one down low and then above that one you put a second. There are basic instructions in the alarm console packet at how to wire it. The idea is that if the 'lower' bilge switch fails to turn on, then the second switch goes off when the water reaches it, along with an alarm. So if your sleeping, you will get a rude awakening.

You can also set up a little diode on the circuit with a cheap little LED light that if the top alarm goes off when your on your mooring, the light comes on and stays on until you reset it. That way when your away from your mooring and the second higher bilge went off and empty's the bilge, you will know it happen and can then go looking as to why that happened.
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Old 11-03-2015, 19:51   #12
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Re: Bilge and Places We Don't See.

Web cams or security cameras?
I have security cameras for my engine rooms and I am planning to add for the stuffing box area. Most multifunction displays provide for a video input, so that while you are going along you can toggle cams and see everything is okay from the cockpit.
Many come with lowlight leds so they work in the dark. No corrosion so far in 8 years..


Why can't things remain where i carelessly left them?
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Old 14-03-2015, 12:50   #13
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Re: Bilge and Places We Don't See.

Yeah, this kind of post makes me nervous.
If your not looking at stuff, that should be looked at now and then, and your relaying on cameras to do that, your setting yourself up for a failure.
You can't see the progression of problems this way. Just the ending, when stuff breaks.



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Old 14-03-2015, 12:56   #14
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Re: Bilge and Places We Don't See.

Maybe if your getting tired of looking in places on a boat you cannot really see well.
You should probably buy a house on Terrafirma, it's going to be safer for you.
My Opinion.


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