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Old 07-08-2014, 18:41   #16
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Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Kilmarnock, VA
Boat: Moody M46 46
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Re: Spare Parts Inventory

Spares are a huge problem. When I was in the army, we had a demand-based system. So many demands for a spare in a certain time frame established a basis to stock that part. When one thinks of what one "could" need, well, we all will be towing a barge of parts behind us unless we get a better system

I think we have to use a demand history and common sense. And the cost of stocking spares will also get one's attention. I have a Moody boat like Dockhead, a well-built boat, and my manual bilge pump failed last month. I test it monthly, so I knew it went bad before an emergency arose. A Whale Gusher, so I bought the kit and rebuilt it. A failed gray water pump is not the same urgency as a failed bilge pump. Like Dockhead, I have two gray water pumps, so I could move to another part of the boat for my shower. But I have not bought a second kit for the bilge pump. The original lasted 14 years.

But--I might. I don't have answers. Logisticians have spent years trying to get the balance between what are necessary spares, the cost of spares, the consequences of failure, and the ability to carry spares, correct. I know how many millions Uncle Sam has spent to no avail. Got to use the age of your boat, your experience, and knowledge of your boat, coupled with your ability to improvise and fix. Even if you could afford to by every spare you might need, you cannot carry it. Got to keep room for the booze, you know. Not easy answers or checklists.

But--you can really help yourself by keeping a computer-based inventory on what you have and where it is. I will never admit to how many parts I have bought only to find, "damn, I already have that one."

This is a worthy topic.

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Old 07-08-2014, 19:53   #17
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Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: San Diego
Boat: Pearson 39-2 "Sea Story"
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Re: Spare Parts Inventory

I started to do this with everything we found on board, but it turned out that I don't know what all of it is. I put all the engine stuff in a bag - if I need something for the engine, I will check there first.

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Old 07-08-2014, 21:51   #18
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Re: Spare Parts Inventory

When you buy spare rubber/synthetic parts, wipe them with Armorall(sp?) and store them in seal-a-meal bags or zip locks. Oxygen and air-pollutants are the killer of diaphrams, impellors, or anything similar. Armorall protects against oxygen, etc. Worth a try! ______Grant.
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Old 09-08-2014, 10:38   #19
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Posts: 347
Re: Spare Parts Inventory

Originally Posted by carstenb View Post

I carry a ton of spares just for coastal cruising. Our friends laugh at me.

One little trick I've used is that every time I find I need a screw or a bolt - I buy 5 of them. This has led to having a rather large inventory of screws, nuts and bolts - but I'm also never stimied by not having one if I strip the head or threads or lose one overboard (do not ask how I know this is a PITA).

I'm putting together a spreadsheet of "mission critical" parts, spares and replacements for our RTW. This list is getting longer and longer (sigh).

My biggest problem so far is organising and stowing it all so I can find it

I find myself frequently helping others in marinas when they need spares - and I'm amazed that they sail without even the basics.
I bet this sailor might wish he had you as a mentor.

"Another young Australian sailor David Dicks missed out on a 'non-stop unassisted' circumnavigation in 1996 by accepting one small bolt mid-ocean in order to repair his yacht. "

What "one small bolt" would be that critical in nature that some sort of jury rigged substitute couldn't be found on board ? Whatever it is, I want at least three spares !

Duck tape, and bailing wire: Don't leave home without it...


"The best cure for sea sickness, is to sit under a tree."
~Spike Milligan.
.............."Life's not fair, and people don't act right"~Me.........
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