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Thread: self bailing deck

  1. #1

    Default self bailing deck

    What are your opinions on self drain decks. Would you rather have it or not? What are the pro's and con's. Thanks for your help.

  2. #2

    Smile No con, only pro

    Are you asking what is better, to sink or not to sink? Mine has a self-bailing deck, I can turn on the washdown and spray forever, I can pour buckets of water in it until my arms are tired, I can take a wave from a passing ferry over the side, it can rain in it for a month, the water is always gone, gone, gone. There is no negative to having scuppers, if you don't have them and your bilge and battery quit get out your hip boats and bailing bucket!
    (Also, removing the drain plug never happens on my boat -no reason ever.)

  3. #3
    Member jrogers's Avatar
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    All self bailing decks are not the same. If they are too low to the water at the rear, you can have a deck that is wet alot in rough water. I do agree that you want a good self bailing deck though. If it is done right, then there is no downside to it.

  4. #4
    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    Properly designed they are the way to go. The key is the deck needs to be high enough that under normal loads it is above the water line.

  5. #5

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    Yes, I agree above wateline is essential. I have those cups with a ball in them, water coming back in slides the ball against the hole sealing it shut. Its like a one way valve, it also flushes out the fish guts with the action of the ball so its almost impossible to plug. Deck is always dry in rough seas and moving in reverse.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Myers View Post
    Are you asking what is better, to sink or not to sink? Mine has a self-bailing deck, I can turn on the washdown and spray forever, I can pour buckets of water in it until my arms are tired, I can take a wave from a passing ferry over the side, it can rain in it for a month, the water is always gone, gone, gone. There is no negative to having scuppers, if you don't have them and your bilge and battery quit get out your hip boats and bailing bucket!
    (Also, removing the drain plug never happens on my boat -no reason ever.)
    Never remove the drain plug? I always seem to get some water in the bilge, either through the side vents (rain), or where the engine cover meets the deck. If I never remove mine, I'd do so during the winter in case water gets inside the bilge and made a big ice cube.

  7. #7

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    For the most part its relatively dry regardless of what I do when washing, its a good fitting engine cover and the engine box has a good edge all around. I clean and shop vac if anything, and I splash pink anti-freeze in after its cleaned and winterized as a precautionary measure since moisture runs down hill.

  8. #8

    Default A drain?

    Self draining decks can be great. However, not having one is not the safety issue that others have and will make it out to be. If you park your boat without shore power and it rains, rains, rains, and rains-finally wearing your pump out which will take a very long time, then your boat eventually sinks. With that said, that is going to take huge amount of rain.....

    I don't have a self bailing deck. I'm not sure that my next boat will have one either. My old boat had a wonderfully designed (NOT) self-bailing deck that would fill the boat full of water when rear fish box was full of fish when everyone (5 people) were fishing for halibut in the back of the boat. What was especially nice about it was that the engine compartment also leaked (from the access cover above) and it was basically half full of water by the time I got back to Seward. From that time on, my plugs were in so water couldn't come in the boat. It was annoying to say the least. If the boat was empty, or nearly empty, it was fine.

  9. #9
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    I've run both - a non-bailing 26' Hewes, and a self bailing 20' aluminum from a small Vancouver Island builder. For general fishing/shrimping/crabbing use, the self bailer is where it's at. I will echo what's been said about proper design and attention to waterline level. That wasn't a problem on the 20' boat.

  10. #10
    xtrareliable
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    It's certainly a nice to have (in my opinion). I think you'll end up finding that most manufacturers have (or will do) self bailing decks. I happen to live in a place where we get more than our fair share of rain...our record is 27 consecutive days...so the feature is important to me. Good luck on your search.

  11. #11

    Default Yes.....

    My 26' Hewes Ak. Sea Runner does not have them, I wish it did. It does have 2 bildge pumps. In really big seas I think if I took a wave over the stern or side and it filled the boat with water it would be a lot easier for the next wave to add to my troubles as I floundered sideways in the trough.

  12. #12

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    Another thing I thought of was fish guts. If the only way to get water out of the boat is by using bilge pumps, then fish guts can easily clog the pump intake and require that you keep clearing it.

    Good point about taking a wave over the side and having to rely on pumps only.

  13. #13
    Member spoiled one's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by .338 mag. View Post
    In really big seas I think if I took a wave over the stern or side and it filled the boat with water it would be a lot easier for the next wave to add to my troubles as I floundered sideways in the trough.
    I would venture to say that most builders do not provide scuppers that are large enough to drain the aft deck fast enough making the second wave a real mother as.338 mag stated. A couple 3-4" holes aren't going to do it IMO.
    Spending my kids' inheritance with them, one adventure at a time.

  14. #14

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    Some of the older boats have about a one inch hole -needs to be bigger, mine are about two inches, they clear quick! Another feature of a newer boat with the self-bailer is a gutter track on the edge of the deck and under the fish box lid. It instantly clears the deck as everything heads for the gutter, which is about two inches also. The gutter/scupper combo dumps water very fast, its as if a engineer designed the size to accomodate the wave intervals, great design!

  15. #15

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by .338 mag. View Post
    My 26' Hewes Ak. Sea Runner does not have them, I wish it did. It does have 2 bildge pumps. In really big seas I think if I took a wave over the stern or side and it filled the boat with water it would be a lot easier for the next wave to add to my troubles as I floundered sideways in the trough.
    I you are in seas that rough, you are screwed. Don't be fooled in to thinking that those little dinky holes are going to drain fast enough to save your butt.....nor will the pumps. Now, if it is just one wave (unlikely) that you have to deal with, sure it will help.

  16. #16

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    I have been in some stuff that made it stand straight up before, if I had got sideways I probably would have had to watch from far away to see if it drains or not because I would have been tossed out. I went to the tug boat rally in Seattle one year, they have modern and ancient boats all shapes and sizes. The coolest thing I saw was the new Crowley tractor tug push sideways so hard it burried everything but the pilot house! Now that is a self-bailing deck!

  17. #17

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Myers View Post
    I have been in some stuff that made it stand straight up before, if I had got sideways I probably would have had to watch from far away to see if it drains or not because I would have been tossed out. I went to the tug boat rally in Seattle one year, they have modern and ancient boats all shapes and sizes. The coolest thing I saw was the new Crowley tractor tug push sideways so hard it burried everything but the pilot house! Now that is a self-bailing deck!
    Clearly, that is a different story. The Sea Sport 27 had dinky ones and there is no way that they would save your butt. In fact, they were so useless that they may actually sink you if you took a wave over the side as the extra weight would make it take on more water. I too have been in really stupid stuff in my old Sea Sport and my C-Dory 22. Don't ask me which one I like better, the Sea Sport was better for going fast and burning gas. Some days I miss that boat, but I couldn't pull it with my dually with the 12 foot camper (6000 pounds) on it as there wasn't a hitch strong enough to take that kind of extension. I am not against real self draining decks, I am just against the cheezy ones that boat builders put on some boats as a sell factor.

  18. #18

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    I would say your probably right about a giant wave, unless the ball scupper plugged incoming water tight, if it got real heavy. They have there purpose for rain-drain, giant splashes, draining as your running in a nasty splashing following sea. I have seen small useless ones that like Bauer said would be a detroment if it got low, it would act like a hole.

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