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Old 23-04-2013, 12:03   #136
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Re: Life Raft Self-Service

The valve you are showing was manufactured by Kidde and parts can no longer be obtained. The solution is to replace the cylinder and valve with the current type but for a raft of this vintage it is more money than I would suggest a customer spend. Trying to use the existing valve is asking for a leak.
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Old 23-04-2013, 15:22   #137
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The valve you are showing was manufactured by Kidde and parts can no longer be obtained. The solution is to replace the cylinder and valve with the current type but for a raft of this vintage it is more money than I would suggest a customer spend. Trying to use the existing valve is asking for a leak.
Geez...how much is the valve?

Small CO2 tanks are about $50 (outside of the "marine" market of course).
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Old 23-04-2013, 16:03   #138
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Geez...how much is the valve?

Small CO2 tanks are about $50 (outside of the "marine" market of course).
Way too much. Hundreds of dollars. One needs to buy a new cylinder due to different thread requirements, the valve and then the operating head that actuates the valve.
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Old 23-04-2013, 16:27   #139
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Re: Life Raft Self-Service

Most scuba dive retailers will be able to get hold of a range of cylinder sizes from manufacturers such as Luxfer. If you want a cylinder valve, Mirada Research make nice ones, but maybe a little pricey, but they do most common cylinder threads.

Me; I wouldn't spend much money trying to "revive" a 20 year old liferaft. Chances are the air-holding capacity of the material and the glued joints etc will be on the way out.
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Old 03-09-2023, 09:53   #140
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Re: Life Raft Self-Service

Will any liferaft saty inflated 114 days for my unplanneded tour of the Pacific?
dingy stays hard for a year...
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Old 03-09-2023, 11:07   #141
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Re: Life Raft Self-Service

Long time ago! Follow up.

Absolutely nobody would refill my N2-CO2 mix or any liferaft tank. This includes life raft service providers and any random gas supplier. I studied on line how-to and deduced the procedure. Note above, my bottle is a mix of CO2 and nitrogen.

I acquired a short high pressure gas hose and necessary adapters.
I found an accurate scale.
I located the necessary gas bottles in the weld shop at the place where I worked.

I went in on a Sunday when nobody would bother me and I would not be in the way.

First weigh the tank
Add CO2 and vent to purge air.
Add CO2 by weight to reach the ounces noted on the tank net weights. This is not directly possible without chilling the tank. Filling with liquid required inverting the shop bottle since the valve does not have dip pipe. Fill until the flow dead-heads. Disconnect. Vent gas from the tank until the outside ices. Resume filling to the weight needed.
Connect to the nitrogen bottle and continue filling to the necessary full weight.

See! Easy-Peasy!

Now living aboard since 2016. Many cruisers carry no life boat. No law requires one. One never knows the reliability of one’s life boat. No place to service Avon or many others throughout the Caribbean. There are a few places but often, they service only the commercial guys such as ferry boats and offshore oil.

Generally accepted; I know the condition absolutely of my dinghy, OB, hand held radios. Easy to maintain a ditch bucket. Launching is as easy as two cam clutches. Life boat is still on deck and maybe it works, maybe its supplies are viable. The only other option appears to be buying a new life boat every 3-5 years.
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Old 03-09-2023, 11:10   #142
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Re: Life Raft Self-Service

Quote:
Originally Posted by GreenHeaven View Post
Will any liferaft saty inflated 114 days for my unplanneded tour of the Pacific?
dingy stays hard for a year...

Read my post above.

Life boat may not stay hard forever but testing requirements only call for about 24 hours. There must be a hand pump on any life boat to keep it inflated.
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Old 03-09-2023, 13:08   #143
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Re: Life Raft Self-Service

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Originally Posted by Nicholson58 View Post
Read my post above.



Life boat may not stay hard forever but testing requirements only call for about 24 hours. There must be a hand pump on any life boat to keep it inflated.


You are referring to a liferaft, not a life boat which is a different animal altogether.
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Old 04-09-2023, 06:47   #144
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Re: Life Raft Self-Service

I self-serviced our life raft a couple of years ago. This is the first and only service done. I took out some stuff I didn’t want and put in some other stuff. I left it inflated for about a week. I got the gas bottle re-filled and re-certified at the local life raft service station. For re-packing I bought a vacuum bag on amazon and used the vacuum cleaner to get the air out. The whole thing was a good and fun exercise for both me and my family. I will probably do it again in a few years.

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Old 06-09-2023, 04:03   #145
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Re: Life Raft Self-Service

no one mentions soap. assuming rainstorms, isnt this important?
g/f wants to bring shampoo ....


What about medications like antiseptic cream, pain killers, antibiotics, aspirin, stomach acid *for the pizza
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Old 06-09-2023, 05:42   #146
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Re: Life Raft Self-Service

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no one mentions soap. assuming rainstorms, isnt this important?
g/f wants to bring shampoo ....


What about medications like antiseptic cream, pain killers, antibiotics, aspirin, stomach acid *for the pizza

Long (indefinite) shelf life things can be packed in the raft. Everything else goes in the ditch bucket.
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Old 06-09-2023, 11:25   #147
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Re: Life Raft Self-Service

Quote:
Originally Posted by SoundOfSilence View Post
I self-serviced our life raft a couple of years ago. This is the first and only service done. I took out some stuff I didn’t want and put in some other stuff. I left it inflated for about a week. I got the gas bottle re-filled and re-certified at the local life raft service station. For re-packing I bought a vacuum bag on amazon and used the vacuum cleaner to get the air out. The whole thing was a good and fun exercise for both me and my family. I will probably do it again in a few years.

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Good on you!
I did the same. Re-filled at a local company that does specialized fills, in Seattle. There were 3 types of gas at %/ratios.
I added in fishing line w/lures, a big folding knife, a hand pump water filter, big hats, poncho and sun screen in with it too.
Took out the MRI crap. Probably goes bad anyway. Would rather eat raw fish.
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