Your Marine Sanitation Professionals Discuss How to Make Quick Fixes With Everyday Items 

Raritan Engineering your marine sanitation distributors would like to share this article we thought would be of interest to you this month regarding how to make temporary fixes while boating. 

What’s your longest-lasting ‘temporary fix’? Your marine sanitation suppliers talk about how with the best of intentions we’ve solved some minor inconveniences while underway, swearing we’d create a more permanent and reliable solution once we hit the dock. But something strange often occurs once the dock lines are secured. 

We eventually got in touch with Don Whelan of Harken to describe our problem with an exact description of the ‘thingamajig’ we needed that, you know, goes on the side of a main sheet block. With appropriate questions narrowing the options he figured out exactly what we needed, and, once acquired, the project took all of five minutes.   

We swore we’d fix it right away but it was working and there were other things to do. Now we’re trying to remember, did that happen last summer or two summers ago?

Epoxy Sticks, and JB Weld. Either one or both of these emergency fix-its belongs in your boat. You can use this stuff to temporarily patch just about anything from a broken Bimini top support to a trashed transducer mount, and it’s super-strong. Better yet, it will adhere to nearly any material, including gel-coated fiberglass. 

Pantyhose. Yes, pantyhose—it may be intended as an article of clothing but this stuff has a wide range of uses on a boat in need. If you need a strainer to deal with dirty fuel or to serve as an emergency filter, for example, pantyhose will do the trick. 

White Vinegar. It may not keep you from sinking or get that stalled engine to re-start, but the emergency uses for white vinegar on a boat are almost endless. For starters, it comes in handy when nature gets unfriendly and you need to “fix” yourself or another boater. 

Potatoes. These aren’t an emergency food source, they’re a fits-all-size emergency plug. If a through-hull fitting breaks or the hose pops off and the fitting is jammed open, you can push a potato up against it, give it a half-turn, and instantly shut off the flow of water. 

We Talk About Do-It-Yourself Repairs While Boating

Duct Tape. Few inventions have proved as handy in an emergency as duct tape—and we really feel like we don’t have to explain this one. Marine sanitation is critical on your vessel, so check us out at Raritan Engineering, where we always take care of your marine sanitation supply needs.

Extra-Large Garbage Bags. These take up a tiny amount of space, but are hugely important to have onboard. On small boats with very limited stowage, they’re particularly beneficial. A 16’ or 18’ boat, for example, doesn’t have enough stowage space to keep four sets of foul weather gear around at all times. But surely, there’s enough room for four garbage bags. 

Wax Candles. Forget about lighting up the cabin, the real reason to carry a candle onboard is for lubrication. Everything from jammed zippers to corroded snaps to sticky cables to jerky steering arms can be loosened up and smoothed out, by rubbing a wax candle over the offending part. 

Extra Line. Yes, this one’s rather obvious, but we can’t neglect to mention it. Rope is often needed for lashing things down, tying broken pieces-parts together, and countless other uses.

A Plastic Water Bottle. Again, the main emergency use—hydration—is obvious. But there’s more here than meets the eye. The bottle can be chopped off at the end, and turned into a bailing device. 

A Tool Kit. Sure, you can file this one under “duh”. But ask around, and you’ll be shocked at how many boaters leave the dock without a basic spare tool kit aboard. At the very least, it needs to include adjustable wrenches and screw-drivers, pliers, and a knife. 

So don’t forget these helpful things to keep on hand when making your quick boating repairs. 1) Pantyhose: If you need a strainer to deal with dirty fuel or to serve as an emergency filter, for example, pantyhose will do the trick;  2) potatoes: If a through-hull fitting breaks or the hose pops off and the fitting is jammed open, you can push a potato up against it, give it a half-turn, and instantly shut off the flow of water;  and 3) a plastic water bottle: The bottle can be chopped off at the end, and turned into a bailing device.

Repairing Your Outboard Boat Motor

If you keep up with your outboard maintenance, the troubles you are most likely to experience on the water only call for minor repairs. 

Fishing-trip checklists never include a computer loaded with engine diagnostic software like the ones service technicians use to troubleshoot a cantankerous outboard. 

Myers says engine alarms will sound or illuminate and shut down the engine before water in the fuel passes into the system. He recommends carrying a spare fuel-water-separator filter on board, along with quart-size Ziploc baggies. Most outboard manufacturers recommend 10-micron filters for the best protection. 

Perform a visual inspection on fuel-water filters, and run a hand over the base housing and the filter canister to check for rust or corrosion. “The bilge is moist, and salt spray causes rust. I see it all the time, and it can be a major fire hazard,” Myers says. He recommends changing filters every 50 hours of running time as a precaution, and at 100 hours regardless.

A stiff wire brush to clear corrosion off battery terminals and cables, a few spare battery connectors and fuses, zip ties for hoses and electrical bundles, electrical and duct tape, and ­anti-corrosion spray to free corroded bolts should also be part of the boat’s standard gear. 

“It’s hard for the do-it-yourselfer to do much beyond basic fluid and simple part changes on digital four-strokes,” adds Jay Wissman, a service advisor for the Marine Max dealership in Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina. “The designs are much more complicated than the carbureted two-strokes. Many of the parts, like on the Verados, are sealed or can only be checked with computer diagnostics.”

Digital electronics and fuel injection have made boating and fishing less stressful. But an outboard that won’t crank or run properly still ruins the day. Prevent potential problems by servicing the engine regularly and avoiding ethanol fuel. Carry a tool kit and some key spare parts on board. And just in case, get a towing service contract to cover all the bases.

Must-Have Spares for Your Boat

Aside from extra outboard oil and a tube of waterproof grease, it’s smart to always carry these on board: • Spare propeller with cotter pin, and thrust and lock washers
• Spark plugs (complete set)
• Fuel-water-separator and other spare fuel filters
• Battery connectors (various sizes) and fuses (various amps)

Essential Tools for Outboard Engine Repair

• Vice Grip pliers
• Socket set with extension handle
• Convertible screwdriver with various head types
• Side-cutter pliers
• Stiff wire brush
• Prop wrench
• Zip ties
• Electrical tape
• Duct tape
• Anti-corrosion spray
• Ziploc bags (quart-size)

Buy sanitation equipment here at Raritan Engineering. We are your #1 expert in marine sanitation supplies. Be sure to watch our latest video on marine sanitation products below.

via Temporary Fix

via 10 Emergency Fix-it Items that Belong on Every Boat

via Repairing Your Outboard Boat Motor