CRUISING TIPS AND PRODUCTS
Be it coastal or blue water, the elements will bring out the gremlins in your yacht. Being prepared and stockpiling lots of miscellaneous stuff are two different things. The availability of engine parts and yacht components in foreign or remote places can be expensive and certainly difficult. Certain spares may be warranted, while bits of hose and wire, miscellaneous clamps screws, tubes of goo and cans of gunk can be readily found anywhere. Preparing your yacht for cruising is a very big deal. It is best to begin considerably earlier than one week prior to departure.
Batteries and Bilge Pumps:
These guys are special, they start your engines, keep your boat afloat and maintain your Kalik at an even 45°F.
Batteries: Generally speaking they'll last 2 1/2 years in planing boats and a little longer in full displacement vessels. There are exotic batteries ie; Gel cells and saturated matt. That can offer a little extended life in some application. Pounding from waves is surely the leading cause of demise followed by over charging and corrosion. Check battery fluid levels and terminals regularly. It is best to remove all the terminals, clean with a wire brush, reinstall and cover with grease. You will want to remove negative terminal first and install last to avoid shocks and sparks. The third year of a battery's life is borrowed time. Consider the debt paid and install all new for a hassle free cruising season.
Bilge Pumps: I work on hundreds of these things, and always see the same problems.
• Fishing line and tie wraps. Monofilament and cutoff tie wraps are commonly found entangled on the pumps impeller.
• Green butt connecters. All too often, I find bilge pump wires spliced several times and lying in bilge water.
Many bilge pump manufacturers provide or make available s/s screens that fit under the pump base to keep debris out of the impeller If your pumps don't have one, they should. Inspect all of the bilge pump wiring. It is recommended that you cut loose and replace all connectors in wet environments annually. Shrink wrap all connections securely above the splash zone. As a good safety measure, I would advise replacing all bilge pumps and switches after three years of service, regardless of performance or warranty.
Hose Clamp Kits: The following are available for immediate delivery. You will have all of the correct sizes of Breeze stainless marine grade clamps for the cooling system. If a clamp breaks, you have it. If one is bad, you should replace them all.
For the convenience of my clients, I have put together hose clamp kits. They are engine specific including the exact number and sizes of Breeze stainless steel marine grade clamps. An important cruise kit item.
• Mercruiser 7.4 Inboard - $63.12
• Mercruiser 5.0 & 5.7 Alfa - $82.38
• Mercruiser 5.0 &5.7 bravo - $90.78
• Crusader 454CID - $73.12
• Crusader 454XL - $66.78
• Cummins 6BT 5.9-M - $62.88
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