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Old 31-03-2013, 17:02   #1
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SHE DID NOT SINK! or How NOT to do plumbing

Just got an old aluminum boat, was aboard fooling around and cleaning including vacuuming the dirt and dust out of the bilges. I says to myself "those snapping shrimp sure are loud today" (I was in denial), followed a bit later by "actually that sounds like running water and it sounds like it is nearby". Sure enough, I walk back to the salon and look where I had been and there it is.

Did I mention that it is Easter Sunday?

See the picture and count the errors. I missed it at my quick pre-purchase inspection as it was hidden beneath another hose and the rest of the plumbing looked like it met standards.
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Old 31-03-2013, 17:07   #2
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Re: SHE DID NOT SINK! or How NOT to do plumbing

The one possible exception being the hose clamp, I see nothing in that picture which meets my standards. IOW, what "standards" do you mean?
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Old 31-03-2013, 17:12   #3
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Re: SHE DID NOT SINK! or How NOT to do plumbing

I removed the oth hose so I could see, drove down the street to the other boat for my dive gear, pounded a softwood plug in the thruhull.
I maybe the first person to actually use one of them. Let me tell you, they work like shinola. Too hard and the little nubbins in the thruhull to install it keep it from seating well. While pounding, I am wondering if the bronze has eaten away the hull surrounding the thru hull and will I knock the whole thing through?
Gave me some piece of mind but did not really diminish the flow, but would have helped if the pipe gave way completely.

Gave me some time to go to the store and get a plug and a cap. Did I mention it is Easter Sunday and the nearby stores are closed.

Got back and wiggled the nipple loose- convenient that it did not need to unscrew huh? Put the plug in place, still leaked as the threads in the elbow were eaten away. A quick redo with gobs of Permatex#2 made it dry. Fortunately, I was planning a haul out in the next few weeks.

Just to make this experience extra delightful, of course it is the head outlet hose.
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Old 31-03-2013, 17:15   #4
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Re: SHE DID NOT SINK! or How NOT to do plumbing

LOL, that's an eye opener. Some say toilet sealing wax is a good thing to goop up in there. Never heard it being used, but might be something to have around.
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Old 31-03-2013, 17:17   #5
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Thumbs down Re: SHE DID NOT SINK! or How NOT to do plumbing

Bronze thru hull on alum boat
No seacocks bolted to hull
Galvanized anything
Galvanized anything again, did I mention the head outflow for extra corrosion if needed?
Credit for the Marelon valve, unfortunately not quite properly placed relative to the leak. it did keep the hose contents from flowing into the bilge at least.
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Old 31-03-2013, 17:51   #6
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Re: SHE DID NOT SINK! or How NOT to do plumbing

I'm sometimes surprised at the speed with which galvanized nipples rust. Some of them are covered in rust after just a couple weeks exposure to rainwater. Given the wall thickness is minimal, a "blown" nipple can occur within a fairly short period of time.
Glad you caught the problem before it was to late.
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Old 31-03-2013, 17:58   #7
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Re: SHE DID NOT SINK! or How NOT to do plumbing

Re toilet wax....

Some blithering idiot I know, me, managed to drill a hole through their steel hull.

Small hole, small leak.

Nonetheless a gob of toilet bowl wax was a great temp fix.
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Old 31-03-2013, 19:09   #8
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Re: SHE DID NOT SINK! or How NOT to do plumbing

Got me convinced to spend some money on one of those Forespar orange foam plugs. I will keep a gob of wax aboard as well.
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Old 31-03-2013, 19:16   #9
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Re: SHE DID NOT SINK! or How NOT to do plumbing

Melt a couple of rings into an oleo tub or something.
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Old 31-03-2013, 21:39   #10
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Re: SHE DID NOT SINK! or How NOT to do plumbing

This is a fun post. What would you guys do to stop the leak long enough to haul the boat and make a real repair?
The OP used a tapered wood plug from outside.
Toilet sealing ring wax has been suggested.
My first thought was to wrap it with self amalgamating tape like Rescue Tape.
What else would work?
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Old 31-03-2013, 22:27   #11
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A mate used a potato. After the beer bottle he started with started to leak! It was in there for about a month while he worked on the cockpit...
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Old 31-03-2013, 22:35   #12
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Re: SHE DID NOT SINK! or How NOT to do plumbing

Bees wax (toilet rings) works well, I have used wax to stop minor leaks such as what the OP has. For larger leaks I have used Splash Zone underwater epoxy putty. It is as permanent as such a fix can be but should always be thought of as temporary.

BTW: bar soap works well for fuel (diesel or gasoline) leaks. Ivory seems to work best.
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Old 01-04-2013, 04:03   #13
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Re: SHE DID NOT SINK! or How NOT to do plumbing

I do not think tape would have worked as the fitting was mechanically unstable. My general experieince is that any fix from the boat side is likely to fail, has to be done from the outside so water pressure holds it in place. Potato in the thru hull from outside is a clever idea.
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Old 01-04-2013, 06:08   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sanibel sailor View Post
Potato in the thru hull from outside is a clever idea.
Ha. I thought he was an idiot... But the boat didn't sink, so he got the last laugh. In truth I can't remember the details. I still think he should have used a turnip or a carrot.

You can see what I would prefer to use if I haven't got a vegetable handy in this ramble.
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Old 01-04-2013, 07:15   #15
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Re: SHE DID NOT SINK! or How NOT to do plumbing

I'm sure a creative mind can come up with all kinds of things to stuff in an inlet to reduce or stop the flow of water. Any port in a storm.
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