Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 28-03-2012, 15:22   #46
Registered User

Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 371
Re: Life Raft Self-Service

While I fully appreciate the cost savings and the need to undertake the repackaging while cruising out of range of a service center, performing this service independently presumably invalidates any warranty. If it is already out of warranty, then no big deal.
I just took my valise offshore LR for its first servicing (every 3 years) and expect to pay about $950 here in Rhode Island.
__________________

__________________
chrisjs is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28-03-2012, 18:19   #47
Registered User
 
Nicholson58's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Live aboard
Boat: Camper & Nicholson58 Ketch - ROXY Traverse City, Michigan No.668283
Posts: 3,466
Images: 83
Re: Life Raft Self-Service

[Your life raft is something you pray to God you never have to use, but IF you do ever need to use it, you want to be as sure as you can that it works. $500 every three years doesn't seem to me to be such a bad deal.[/QUOTE]

Don'k know where you get it done for 500. The best I can find is 1500 and more often 2000 to 2500. This does not include transport both ways.
__________________

__________________
Nicholson58 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28-03-2012, 18:56   #48
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: East and Gulf Coast USA
Boat: 37' Cutter
Posts: 5
Re: Life Raft Self-Service

I have a 1994 vintage Avon 4 man ocean raft. The raft, itself, is in great condition. I recently brought it to a service company who, in checking it out, found that the cylinder valve leaks and they cannot get a replacement “poppet assembly” to fix it because the valve manufacturer is out of business. The bottom line is that they cannot complete servicing the life raft.

Has anyone heard of this problem? Any info would be helpful.

Be careful about purchasing an older Avon life raft. It may be unserviceable.
__________________
PeterJG is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28-03-2012, 19:50   #49
Senior Cruiser
 
skipmac's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: 29° 49.16’ N 82° 25.82’ W
Boat: Pearson 422
Posts: 12,379
What about DIY inflation

Maybe this is a really dumb idea but off the top of my head I can't find a compelling reason why this wouldn't work.

What would be so wrong about connecting a small tank with a manual valve to a life raft. Yes I know in the panic of sinking, no time, one more task, etc but doesn't seem like it would take that much time or thought to just open a valve to inflate the raft. A crew member should be assigned to keep control of the raft anyway so why not?

This would eliminate what seems to be a weak point, common failure mode, expensive maintenance part to the whole system.
__________________
The water is always bluer on the other side of the ocean.
skipmac is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-03-2012, 09:07   #50
Registered User

Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: W Carib
Boat: Wildcat 35, Hobie 33
Posts: 7,947
Re: What about DIY inflation

Quote:
Originally Posted by skipmac View Post
Maybe this is a really dumb idea but off the top of my head I can't find a compelling reason why this wouldn't work.

What would be so wrong about connecting a small tank with a manual valve to a life raft. Yes I know in the panic of sinking, no time, one more task, etc but doesn't seem like it would take that much time or thought to just open a valve to inflate the raft. A crew member should be assigned to keep control of the raft anyway so why not?

This would eliminate what seems to be a weak point, common failure mode, expensive maintenance part to the whole system.
Exactly what I am doing with mine until I can get parts to service the automatic head. In my case, I had another C02 tank for which I had an adaptor made up. This tank is a manual valve, but since I am using it aboard a cat I am not concerned about rapid sinking. I need to have tank refilled with a C02-Nitrogen mix (95%-3%) and it should be good to go.
__________________
belizesailor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-03-2012, 09:27   #51
Senior Cruiser
 
skipmac's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: 29° 49.16’ N 82° 25.82’ W
Boat: Pearson 422
Posts: 12,379
Re: What about DIY inflation

Quote:
Originally Posted by belizesailor View Post
Exactly what I am doing with mine until I can get parts to service the automatic head. In my case, I had another C02 tank for which I had an adaptor made up. This tank is a manual valve, but since I am using it aboard a cat I am not concerned about rapid sinking. I need to have tank refilled with a C02-Nitrogen mix (95%-3%) and it should be good to go.
I did think of one possible downside to this idea.

If you have a tank with more gas than needed to fill the raft the person on the valve better be watching and ready to close off. Otherwise you could blow the raft up like a balloon and go POP! Not something you would want to see as your boat sinks from under you.
__________________
The water is always bluer on the other side of the ocean.
skipmac is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-03-2012, 09:49   #52
Registered User

Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: St-Lazare, Qc. Canada
Boat: Whitby 42 - Esmeralda II
Posts: 160
Re: Life Raft Self-Service

Quote:
Originally Posted by belizesailor View Post
CO2 was discharged to make return shipping of the raft to me easier. Also, it was due for a hydro test. So, it is now in the City getting hydro'ed and filled. Externally valve and tank were in excellent condition so I expect the hydro test will be fine. I like the idea of deploying the raft about every two years anyway to inspect it and refiling the bottle (cheap to do...about Q70 (< $10) here).
Where do you go to refill the CO2???
__________________
Roland on Esmeralda II - Whitby 42
rolandgilbert99 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-03-2012, 10:10   #53
Registered User

Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 3,016
Images: 4
Remember that the CO2 in the tanks is a liquid. So filling will probably need to proceed like that for LPG.
__________________
daddle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-03-2012, 10:28   #54
Registered User
 
PamlicoTraveler's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Depends
Boat: SB 43' Cutter
Posts: 679
Images: 13
Re: Life Raft Self-Service

We just had our liferaft recertified by a major manufacturer. They say it costs $295, but the materials they supply are heavily priced. They even charged us for each sticker with their name on it. It was over $1,000, and for a 3-year cert., but we had to have it to participate in ARC-Europe.

Yes, I think it is a racket.
__________________
The next best thing to playing and winning
is playing and losing ...
[I]
PamlicoTraveler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30-03-2012, 08:25   #55
Registered User

Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: W Carib
Boat: Wildcat 35, Hobie 33
Posts: 7,947
Re: What about DIY inflation

Quote:
Originally Posted by skipmac View Post
I did think of one possible downside to this idea.

If you have a tank with more gas than needed to fill the raft the person on the valve better be watching and ready to close off. Otherwise you could blow the raft up like a balloon and go POP! Not something you would want to see as your boat sinks from under you.
Not part of the plan, I will have it filled by weight to the specs for the raft.
__________________
belizesailor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30-03-2012, 08:27   #56
Registered User

Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: W Carib
Boat: Wildcat 35, Hobie 33
Posts: 7,947
Re: Life Raft Self-Service

Quote:
Originally Posted by rolandgilbert99 View Post
Where do you go to refill the CO2???
Here in Guatemala, I use "Productos del Aire". Big commercial gas operation -- I think they find the old gringo with the funny little C02 tanks amusing.
__________________
belizesailor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30-03-2012, 08:29   #57
Registered User

Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: W Carib
Boat: Wildcat 35, Hobie 33
Posts: 7,947
Re: Life Raft Self-Service

Quote:
Originally Posted by PamlicoTraveler View Post
We just had our liferaft recertified by a major manufacturer. They say it costs $295, but the materials they supply are heavily priced. They even charged us for each sticker with their name on it. It was over $1,000, and for a 3-year cert., but we had to have it to participate in ARC-Europe.

Yes, I think it is a racket.
Yes, this is part of why I am doing my own. At the $1,700 they quoted me (about 50% of the original purchase price) -- I think I would just be better off to buy a new raft every 3-5 years and sell the old one.
__________________
belizesailor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-04-2012, 09:43   #58
Registered User

Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: W Carib
Boat: Wildcat 35, Hobie 33
Posts: 7,947
Re: Life Raft Self-Service

Update:

Had a local industrial hose shop build an adaptor for me to use an existing tank. Hooked it up and did a partial test inflate -- worked just fine. It is a manual valve, but since I am using on a cat (can't sink fast at least) I am not concerned about using a manual valve.

Re-vaccum packed all the emergency supplies myself using a Food Saver machine and bags (essentially the same bags as used by Winslow).

Future plans: have a new valise bag built -- I like this better than the canister because it makes self-inspection easier and is less bulky to stow -- also I plan to build it loose so that precise packing of the raft is not important (one of the service issues pointed out with Winslow's earlier). Again, on a cat I am not concerned about automatic deployment from the deck (which requires a canister). Get replacement burst disk for automatic inflate head and rebuild head -- I would still prefer this over a manual valve -- just for speed and ease of operation.

Quite happy with what I learned from this exercise and much now much prefer the self-service approach for a cruising life raft. My plan is to deploy and inspect the life raft each season or two.
__________________
belizesailor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-04-2012, 09:54   #59
Marine Service Provider
 
liferaft's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Tacoma, WA
Posts: 23
Re: Life Raft Self-Service

Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterJG View Post
I have a 1994 vintage Avon 4 man ocean raft. The raft, itself, is in great condition. I recently brought it to a service company who, in checking it out, found that the cylinder valve leaks and they cannot get a replacement “poppet assembly” to fix it because the valve manufacturer is out of business. The bottom line is that they cannot complete servicing the life raft.

Has anyone heard of this problem? Any info would be helpful.

Be careful about purchasing an older Avon life raft. It may be unserviceable.
Avon used to use a valve manufactured by Kidde. Parts can no longer be obtained so what you are being told is correct.
__________________
Rollie Herman
Westpac Marine Services, Inc.
Tacoma, WA U.S.A.
liferaft is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-04-2012, 11:21   #60
Registered User
 
S/V_Surya's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Sasafra river,MD
Boat: gulfstar ketch 41 Surya
Posts: 658
Re: Life Raft Self-Service

I have been following this thread and it motivated me to get my life raft out which I inherited with my boat. It is an Avon and was last certified in 1980. I took the cylinder off and it still had pressure. I Blew it up manually and it is leaking around the manual inflate valves. I need to therefore replace them. Anybody got a part number and source for the replacement. I am going to do it myself as before I sink (haha) any money into this project I want to make sure it is worth it. i.e. holds air.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	life raft valve.jpg
Views:	218
Size:	402.1 KB
ID:	39823  
__________________

__________________
S/V_Surya is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
service

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Revere Offshore Elite vs Viking RescYou Life Rafts Ocean Roads Health, Safety & Related Gear 23 04-11-2016 19:01
For Sale: Sayes Rig Self-Steering genecohen123 Classifieds Archive 8 03-06-2012 12:36
Chain Plate Life Span stevensuf Deck hardware: Rigging, Sails & Hoisting 37 13-03-2012 12:26
For Sale: Autohelm Rudder Trim Tab Wind Vane Self-Steering GDD Classifieds Archive 10 09-03-2012 12:35
Need Recommended eMail Service for Iridium PamlicoTraveler Marine Electronics 6 09-03-2012 01:22



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 01:53.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.