How to keep bilges dry

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Joined: Sat January 7th, 2012, 4:16 pm

How to keep bilges dry

Post by Claytos »

Apologies if this is a daft question. I have bought an old 26 foot Eventide to restore. At first inspection it appears that it has a single bilge compartment running the length of the boat. The problem is that the cockpit drains into the bilge. So every time I leave the boat, the bilges fill with rainwater and it rises above the boards in the cabin. Apart from fitting a float swith operated bilge pump are there any other sensible options to either divide up the bilges or seal the cockpit floor ?
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Fiddler's Green
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Joined: Wed March 1st, 2006, 12:58 pm
Location: Essex

Re: How to keep bilges dry

Post by Fiddler's Green »

Hello Claytos,

The standard Eventide is designed with the cockpit floor too low to self drain, so either you have to allow water to drain into the bilge and that means the whole boat, (would be dangerous to seal off the rear end and just let the back end fill, she could alter trim and fill....) Or you do what most of us did with these, make a cockpit cover! Easy enough to do for the DIYer or a sailmaker will make one for a fee. Do have a centre tab with eyelet fitted, so you can tie the cover up to the boom and make it shed water, or it will fill and then deposit the lot in the bilge!

An electric bilge pump with separate battery and solar charger can be an option, but as it is rain water that makes boat rot, I would rather keep it out altogether in the first place!

Used this for 10 years on 'Bluenose'.

On later boats the hull and raised topsides were raised 5" in accordance with our later drawings, to compensate for deeper immersion of hull with more balast. So the cockpit floor can be raised easily (and the seats etc), and the cockpit self drains. Mine drains out the transom, so no extra holes under the water!

hope that helps,
Proud owner and builder of 'Fiddler's Green'
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