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Old 10-03-2013, 14:53   #1
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We are university students from Greece, from Product and System Design Engineering School, Syros.(GR -)
We are currently running a project, in which we must design a dust buster. We decided to design a dust buster for the interior and the cockpit of sailing boats, so we would like to ask you some questions. We would be very grateful if you can help us with our research!
So let's begin!

What type of boat do you own/ you are used to sail with?
What's the most common type of dirt on your boat druing and after a trip?(fluff, sand,food remains etc)
How do you usually clean that dirt?
Which spots are harder to clean?
Do you have a dust buster or a similar accessory?
Would you find it useful if a specially designed dust buster for sailing boats existed?
Thanks in advance for your help!

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Old 11-03-2013, 13:15   #2
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Re: cleaning

Dust Buster is trademarked, I believe, but if you're referring to a small vacuum cleaner with a rechargeable battery, I find it ideal for cruisers who don't have household power 100% of the time. The nuisance part is creating a charging station for this and other rechargeables, which we seem to have in greater numbers each year (scrub brush, polisher, LED flashlights, stick blender, entertainment electronics, ad inf.) Perhaps the best place to start is with the design of the boat itself, one with a convenient, multi-outlet charging station. It goes without saying that the charge station and appliance should tolerate salt water and it's also a plus if it takes a common battery size that doesn't cost a fortune to replace. Good luck with this project.

Janet Groene
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Old 31-03-2013, 16:04   #3
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Wink Re: cleaning

Good luck with your project!

To answer your questions
[LIST=1][*]What type of boat do you own/ you are used to sail with?
1977 Pearson 365 36.5 foot sailboat ketch[*]What's the most common type of dirt on your boat druing and after a trip?(fluff, sand,food remains etc)
Crumbs from food, sanding debris and sand.[*]How do you usually clean that dirt?
In the cockpit: brush and dustpan followed by water and/or the dust buster vaccuum
In the salon, usually the Dirt Devil Extreme Power[*]Which spots are harder to clean?
Fine, light particles have too much of a tendency to spread. If it's really heard to clean, I'd use a scrub brush or plastic "brillow" -- old fashioned elbow grease![*]Do you have a dust buster or a similar accessory?
Yes; bought a Dirt Devil Extreme Power used; one of our smarter purchases for getting set up. We use it A LOT.[*]Would you find it useful if a specially designed dust buster for sailing boats ex
Yes, but I wouldn't pay a lot for one -- I'm cheap and found mine used, but not all sailors are as cheap as me . Ideally it would use DC power when recharging or to bypass a tired battery (mine has to go through a less efficient inverter), have a very long cord for that, and be a wet-dry vac. It should still be able to get into small spaces like my Dirt Devil Extreme Power with its little flip out nose for tight spots.

Dana aka GalleyWenchTales
It's not the size that matters, but the motion of the ocean.
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Old 31-03-2013, 16:19   #4
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Re: cleaning

Just make it stronger. Little wet/dry dewalt is the best small vac I've ever seen.
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Old 31-03-2013, 16:26   #5
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I believe everything should have more than one use on a small boat. Check out

This is a 120V vacuum head that connects to any five gallon bucket.
" requires a strong moral principle to prevent me from deliberately stepping into the street, and methodically knocking people's hats off- then, I account it high time to get to sea..." Ishmael
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Old 31-03-2013, 17:00   #6
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Re: cleaning

Since I'm in the middle of a rennovation have a lot of fiberglass dust to pick up. Need a lot of suction to break the electrostatic bond it seems to achieve with everything it gets on. Normal sailing, it's mostly dust and crumbs which are fairly easy to pick up with a vacuum.

I'm not big on battery powered vac's. The motors tend to be small and the suction anemic. Not worth the effort to throw away when they inevitably blow up in short order. A plug in dc powered vac would be something I'd really consider. Something with a decent sized motor so it would really develop some suction. Have a surplus of solar power so not worried about DC consumption. Currently use a small ac vacuum from Home Depot. Power it via an inverter which works but hate to depend on.
Peter O.
'Ae'a Pearson 35
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Old 06-04-2013, 04:47   #7
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Re: cleaning

If you were able to design and build an efficient hand-powered vacuum that does not require 110V or 230V AC or 12/24V DC power and cables plus charging system then you will most certainly discover a large market. Many boats have no or an insufficient electric system and as sailors we trust manual or mechanical devices more than electronic ones since the sea eats away at everything.

It might not be glamorous to build a hand-powered system, but it would get used.
-Zanshin (SV Zanshin)
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Old 06-04-2013, 05:33   #8
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Re: cleaning

First time my sealand has failed. I think someone pt a paper towel in the head. This should work for any system. with a empty holding tank I stuck the shop vac on the vent fitting at the tank. Pumped up the system and the shop vac pulled enough to clear the issue. beat the hell out of taking apart pluged up hoses.. Fan of small shop vac and inverter.
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Old 06-04-2013, 05:52   #9
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Re: cleaning

I tried a handheld vacum cleaner onboard once - was quicker / easier with a brush and dustpan! and a damp cloth.

Boats is full of nooks and crannies - and wet / damp, so I would want something with a soft nozzel that when jambed into corners or used without any great thought! does not damage the paint / wood / fibreglass. Being able to cope with damp, even if not water would be useful.....albeit in the cockpit / on deck a hosepipe or a bucket with a brush cleans everything a vacum cleaner could. and for light cleaning a simple brush is hard to beat.......inside the boat pretty much like inside a house dirt wise (a bit of everything), apart from sometimes being a bit damper. except down in the bilges (and that not an everyday thing).

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