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Old 17-12-2012, 11:00   #1
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Through Hull-Valve Broken or Not-Broken?

Hello fellow captains and sailors! I'm new to the sailing community after purchasing a 74' Catalina 27 a few months back.

Absolutely love this boat, however it does need some TLC.
Im currently in the middle of putting a new head in the bathroom, (did not enjoy the 20yr old porta-potty) and when I was testing the through hull sewage outlet valve, I noticed the middle of the valve cracked all the way around (see picture.) There was no leaking, Im just not sure if this is a decade of corrosion breaking free, or if this valve needs to be replaced ASAP before it sinks the boat? Would repairing the valve or turning it into a seacock be possible? If I am replacing the valve does anyone recommend a brand or type of seacock and a recipe to seal the valve to the hull?

Also, does anyone know any regulations stating whether a sewage holding tank must be connected to a thru-deck outlet? I was going to setup a sewage tank that I could disconnet and manually take out of the cabin myself (10gallon capacity? or pump out of) I mean is this really different then emptying the base of a porta-potty? I just hate to have to drill holes for a thru-deck fitting and run hoses and venting outside, its a really crapy job.
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Old 17-12-2012, 11:05   #2
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Re: Through Hull-Valve Broken or Not-Broken?

Firstly, start here for your seacock question:
Replacing Thru-Hulls and Seacocks Photo Gallery by Compass Marine at pbase.com

Its an excellent primer. I wouldn't trust that valve aboard my boat. You don't want to be fretting about it. Not only is it old, suspect, and corroded, but look at how easily it appears it could be damaged if something collided with it. You want a proper flange there and a good seacock.

Secondly, if you don't want all the hassle of a pump out/holding tank install and plan on dumping the thing yourself, have you considered a composting head instead?

Look up:
Airhead
Natureshead
C-head
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Old 17-12-2012, 12:24   #3
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Re: Through Hull-Valve Broken or Not-Broken?

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Originally Posted by Jado27 View Post
I noticed the middle of the valve cracked all the way around (see picture.) thats not cracking thats a gate valve and that's where the bonnent and body are screwed together There was no leaking, Im just not sure if this is a decade of corrosion breaking free, or if this valve needs to be replaced ASAP before it sinks the boat? a gate valve is not a good choice to start with and if i were mine I would be looking at replacing it with seacok on thur fitting/valve

Also, does anyone know any regulations stating whether a sewage holding tank must be connected to a thru-deck outlet? There isn't one and the only requirement is that the valve must be lockable, in some places an overbaoard vave isn't even allowed . Nothing says you have to be able to discharge the holding tank overboard or even to be able to pump it out (nothng says that that the sh*t can ot stay in your boat forever)
I would be looking to replace any 1974 hull valve, especially if it was just a gate valve.
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Old 17-12-2012, 12:37   #4
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Re: Through Hull-Valve Broken or Not-Broken?

I had a valve break on me before. What I ended up doing is diving on the boat with a rag, a soft wood plug, and a hammer. I wrapped the rag around the plug once and then put it thru the hull and hit it with a hammer. The rag acts like a gasket. From there I was able to remove the valve and replace it. Only a trickle of water came thru. It is very important to know what kind of threads there are on the thru hull. You might try a Catalina 27 owners group for more exact answers.
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Old 17-12-2012, 12:41   #5
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Re: Through Hull-Valve Broken or Not-Broken?

I would replace all of the thru hulls as they are origanols like that one. I Just purchased my boat as well and first thing I did was get a quote on doing my it came out to roughly $1200 or so for all my thru hulls and valves (outboard setup). Of course my boat only needs the one under the sink replaced as the head already has marelon, but they still quoted all the fittings.

I would suggest putting in a macerator pump and also plumbing in the cleanout and vent. Once away from the marina the macerator works like a champ and if we are jsut day sailing we try to keep solids out of the system. I could not imagine wanting to carry 5 gallons of poo water down the dock.

Anyway you cut it, plumb it or cap it the boat will have to be pulled to do the work, it will cost a bit.
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Old 17-12-2012, 14:33   #6
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Re: Through Hull-Valve Broken or Not-Broken?

Good info lads. I will definately be swapping out the valve. Ill have to do some research and make sure I get the threading right. Probably not a good idea to do it in the water. Other thru-hulls appear to have been replaced at some point as I know the Cats didnt come stock with seacocks, however they are getting a little old. I ran into a Navy boat repair guy today who said I wouldnt have corrosion issues if I used brass/nickel alloy valves as apposed to the all brass ones I have.

Does anyone know how much these macerator pumps cost? Can these act as a pump to unload the sewage or just to chew stuff up? Also, nothing wrong with a little poo water stroll down the dock for some humility, cmon Gary!
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Old 17-12-2012, 14:47   #7
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Re: Through Hull-Valve Broken or Not-Broken?

We should run an office pool on whether there is actually any gate on that one at all. I just pulled the thru-hulls on my 1974 boat. Out of 3 gates all were gone. Out of 4 ball valves 3 were gone or non-functional. Out 7 removed there will be only 3 will going back in, the rest get plugged. Doesnt include my a/c and engine intake (which has no valve).
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Old 17-12-2012, 18:48   #8
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Re: Through Hull-Valve Broken or Not-Broken?

The macerator chews the stuff up and shoots it overboard below the waterline. You can see a little trail of bubbles as it goes away. Honestly in the month I have owned the boat I have never pumped it out at the station. If in the marina I use the public restroom and if away from the dock it gets pumped over the side. I believe it is required to have a pump out connection for holding tanks. I am unaware of any grandfathering in old poo setups. Others may (errrr definitely) know more.

My tank is below the settee and I can't imagine a way to remove it when full and hand truck it down the dock.

I know my head cost about $200 as the PO wanted to use it as a selling point. The macerator I do not know. One thing they did do when they PO installed my clean out is put the wrong fitting. On my fresh water fill there are no markings and on my poo clean out it says "water". I am glad I traced everything out before my first fill up.

Just for gp and the fact that people like pictures here is on of my bad thru hull under the galley.
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Old 22-12-2012, 16:01   #9
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Re: Through Hull-Valve Broken or Not-Broken?

The crack you are looking at is NOT a break; it is to dismantle the valve.
That said it IS NOT A PROPER SEACOCK and should be removed from the boat immediately. It is a gate valve. A seacock has a lever (direct 90 degree off/on) with a cone shaped valve (NOT a ball valve) that will cut virtually ANYTHING that gets in the valve so it will close all the way, which gate valves cannot do.
I would recommend true silicone bronze seacocks; the proper ones, not plastic home depot stuff. This is one place where saving money is NOT commensurate with the risk.
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Old 27-12-2012, 09:55   #10
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Re: Through Hull-Valve Broken or Not-Broken?

Please take Capta's advice ASAP.... Before you learn that the valve wheel spins continuously while the gate (valve part) doesn't close... All while holding your breath underwater inside the hull.... This is a disaster waiting to happen...
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Old 27-12-2012, 10:04   #11
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Re: Through Hull-Valve Broken or Not-Broken?

Definitely replace it with a proper ball valve, either bronze or plastic is fine. Just remember to exercise plastic valves frequently.
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Old 27-12-2012, 10:33   #12
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Re: Through Hull-Valve Broken or Not-Broken?

Perhaps the worst and most dangerous part of that installation is that back during that build period Catalina fiber glassed pipe nipples into the hull. They are not true bronze thru-hull fittings, just pipe nipples glassed in. You probably have one of the last ones that has not yet leaked or been noticed leaking. Most of these were fixed along the way..

The gate valve needs to go as do the glassed in pipe nipples. I did this job on C-30 back in the 90's and it was pretty scary just how little was holding those valves into the boat..
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Old 04-01-2013, 18:55   #13
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Re: Through Hull-Valve Broken or Not-Broken?

Jado

The Catalina 27 is a very nice boat. However, as you've clearly noticed boat builders in the 1970's were a resourceful lot. And you have a 38 year old example of how capricious Murphy's law can be. I'm sure the prior owner would say "I never had a problem with this valve." It's the kind of statement that Murphy loves to hear. He got away lucky, and it looks like your diligence will beat Murphy on this issue.

However, the main reason I'm responding is to try and answer the second question you raised about the need for a head deck pump out fitting.

I believe you do need one if you're going to install a fixed head system. Going from a portable holding tank to a fixed tank puts you in a different category of regulations. Check your local marine patrol or the CG.

If they board you, one of the things they do is put a dye in the head and flush, if dye shows up in the water, you're in trouble. Some places you're only required to close the head tank seacock. other places you're required to lock the seacock and/or remove the handle. Most cruisers I know simply remove the handle and store it. On Lake Champlain and the Canadian Great Lakes you need to completely disconnect the head system from the overboard seacock.

A good seacock allows you to remove the handle without any fuss. However, I wouldn't recommend trying to remove a Forespar Marelon 849 or 93 handle, especially on the OEM 93 series, unless you want to sink your boat. It's simply not a well thought out design. Upon removing the handle you will receive solid flow of water. There's a good chance you won't be able to get the handle back on without removing the hose and there's now easy solution to stemming the water flow. The best I've heard of is wrapping a specialty tape around the seacock.

Lastly, it's a little known fact, but the Forespar 849 seacock is NOT ABYC approved, it has never been UL 1121 tested a major factor in ABYC H-27 acceptance.
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Old 13-01-2013, 17:55   #14
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Re: Through Hull-Valve Broken or Not-Broken?

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Perhaps the worst and most dangerous part of that installation is that back during that build period Catalina fiber glassed pipe nipples into the hull. They are not true bronze thru-hull fittings, just pipe nipples glassed in. You probably have one of the last ones that has not yet leaked or been noticed leaking. Most of these were fixed along the way..

The gate valve needs to go as do the glassed in pipe nipples. I did this job on C-30 back in the 90's and it was pretty scary just how little was holding those valves into the boat..
I am preparing to replace the pipe nipples you are speaking about...do they have any tupe of flange buried in the glass, or just a nipple?
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Old 15-03-2016, 12:32   #15
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Re: Through Hull-Valve Broken or Not-Broken?

Does anyone know how many and what size the thru hulls are on C30 (1981)?
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