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Old 21-05-2013, 12:24   #1
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Plugging Through Hulls

I realized I didn't have enough wooden plugs for my usual practice of having a plug in the vicinity of each through hull in the event of failure. The local chandlery was out, but showed me a couple of alternatives. One was a putty which allegedly expands on use and is designed for the application. Another was a soft plastic cone with gradations that can be pushed into any reasonable sized round hole and allegedly sticks. Another option was to stock a Nerf football (American) and stuff it into the hole.

I've always used the soft wooden plugs, but the conversation raised the general question. What (if anything) do you stock to plug through hulls if they fail? Is there any reason to believe that any of the newer solutions are better/worse than the wooden plugs? The Nerf solution is certainly cost effective.
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Old 21-05-2013, 14:36   #2
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Re: Plugging Through Hulls

A USCG guy on the west coast put me onto the nerf balls. So, I have some wooden plugs and various sizes of nerf balls, and someone gave me one of those foam cones for Christmas.

I suspect they all would work fine for a nice clean round hole, like if a thru hull broke off. The USCG guy said the nerf/foam cone solutions worked much better for a not so round and not so clean hole.

There is an interesting (and there's also a part 2 video) where a British magazine punches a hole thru a fiberglass boat and then experiments with how best to plug it.
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Old 21-05-2013, 15:09   #3
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Re: Plugging Through Hulls

If you're a vegetarian some big carrots and potatoes come in handy. estarzinger sent you to the right place with Yachting Monthly, but I think this is site he meant to post.



Why aren't depth sounders and knot logs considered thru-hulls?
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Old 21-05-2013, 15:44   #4
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Re: Plugging Through Hulls

Thanks. Those are great videos. It's worth watching all three. I was impressed at how hard it was to actually make a hole in the boat. I also wondered how the British aplomb would have held up if the leaking boat hadn't been in slings. It was good to see the potatoes and carrots get used. In a real situation, it would be hard to avoid the panic which can block creative solutions.

I've got a couple of seacocks in very tight quarters. I'm guessing it would be easier to get a Nerf ball in there than a bung. Sounds like having options and knowing how to use them is, as usual, the way to go.
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