Monday, March 5, 2012

Udderly ridiculous

I was working on the boat at the weekend and an expedition into the aft locker reminded me of a fitting I added over a year ago.

At some time in Little Grace’s history someone added a water tank under the cockpit sole. One of the first changes I made was to remove it. It had been out of use for so long that I would not trust how healthy it would be whatever cleaning/purifying chemicals were used. I was also advised by other Alacrity owners via the forum that it was in a bad place for weight distribution. Furthermore, I prefer to use portable containers so I can move the weight fore, aft, port or starboard of the cabin to optimise trim for the point of sail.  On top of this it is more likely that I will be able to fill up with water quickly and more often if I can take the containers to a convent tap rather than coming alongside where there is a hose.
The fillercap; the photo was taken in the winter of 2010/2011

Here it is 04/03/2012

I removed the hose that used to run to the water tank but kept the fitting itself. The cap is left on when Little Grace is not in use but when aboard I remove the cap and run the fuel pipe from the tank in the starboard cockpit locker, through the hole and then behind the mainsheet horse to the engine. The only problem with this convenient and tidy arraignment is that any direct rain drops or pooping wave could go through the fitting and into the bilge. I knew I could reduce this risk if I could find a gasket but I did not find the right size and my attempts to make one were less than successful. However, in a pile of throw outs in our barn I found the rubber part of a milking machine’s suction pump, one of four that goes on the cow’s udder.

Here it is fitted as a gasket/gland over the end and inside the plastic tube the hose used to be attached to. The rubber fits snugly and minimises the risk of water ingress.