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schoonerdog 22-06-2009 20:48

Rookie Mistake
I walked away while filling the water tanks. And I didn't come back.


I guess we get to look into that cool new flooring we've been talking about.

11 years living aboard and the last time this happened was the day we took possession of our very first live aboard boat. Total rookie mistake.

I posted photos on our blog (link below). I am hanging my head in shame :rolleyes:

(Schoonerdog's wife, Cindy)

mesquaukee 22-06-2009 22:31

Don't feel bad. Once we forgot to flip the valve for the rinse water to the head.
We were reading in the salon when my wife started screaming. Sea water was advancing up through the cabin sole.
We pumped her out. For a while we never knew what we would be eating until we opened a can.

Red Charlotte 29-06-2009 21:47

Wow Cindy, you are so brave to admit that publicly!! I love reading your blog by the way. It's inspiring for when we start our own family.

maxingout 29-06-2009 22:08

If you have been living aboard for 11 years, you are not a rookie.

If a mistake like this happens only once every eleven years, you are lucky. Consider yourself on a roll.:)

44'cruisingcat 30-06-2009 00:36

Is that the standard filling set up for the water tanks?

On my boat there are deck fillers, if you left the hose running for a month all you'd end up with is a wet cockpit sole.

With that set-up you could do some serious damage if you forget for long enough.

Dockhead 30-06-2009 00:55


Originally Posted by 44'cruisingcat (Post 298818)

With that set-up you could do some serious damage if you forget for long enough.

Serious damage as in sinking, if the automatic bilge pumps aren't switched on, are non-functional, or can't keep up.

That's not a rookie mistake. It can, and will happen, inevitably, to anyone, no matter how experienced. That's bad design of the system. It's important to understand the difference.

I would really urge you to update that system, with a standard deck filler. If that's not practical for some reason, then I would suggest that you have a rigid policy of never stepping away, even for a second, while the tank is filling. Otherwise you are really asking for trouble.

Talbot 30-06-2009 02:32

I looked at your blog for details, and like the access hatch in order to be able to get inside the tank for cleaning occassionally, but I would definitely have deck filling points, plus an air breathing tube higher - thus able to fill the tanks to caapcity without worrying about filling up the inside of the boat.

schoonerdog 30-06-2009 04:40

Here's the deal with our overflow vent scenario.

On the starboard side we could use the deck fill rather than filling from inside, but our overflow is a tube under the bathroom sink, still vents inside but the bathroom has a floor level drain to sweep water in to. We could be T'd into an existing outlet, or it could be put into another dedicated through hull above the waterline fairly easily. The only time that the overfill would come into effect though is when you're filling up from above the water tank (at the deck) and then the water would basically squirt out the vent tube in the bathroom. We usually avoid all this mess by just WATCHING the darn thing. I goofed and walked away.

The port side though we had to sacrifice the deck fill water because of the larger refrigerator (there was no room to put in the refrig and keep the water lead). So we have to use inspection hatch for the port side. And if we're using the inspection hatch then it's impossible for an overflow valve as you are filling up the tank directly at tank level, it would never go up and out the tube. I guess it's possible I could put in a new water line from a different place on the deck to reach that port tank...but frankly the more lines there are with water leads the more opportunity for leaks and other things.

So that's our story...

Does it make a lick of sense? (Doug feel free to jump in and correct me here if I got it wrong honey :)

RedCharlotte - thanks for your kind words.

I think I have REALLY learned my lesson... never, EVER walk away.
Maybe we should call it a Distracted Boat Mommy Mistake :)


Kefaa 30-06-2009 05:32

I agree with Maxingout - once in 11 years, even if messing and annoying, is minor. Away from the stove, on deck without a harness in a storm, leaving the head seat up... well those would be far more of an issue.

Sometimes life interrupts.

Too often blogs glamorize the stupid (At the bottom, I took off my scuba tank so I could fit into the hole and...) or enhance the true story (40' waves came across the bow - the worst we'd seen in the Chesapeake). This was a reminder that even experienced people fall prey to Murphy (which is often why we call them experienced)

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