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Replacing the Emergency Manual Bilge Pump

Whale Gusher Manual Bilge

Whale Gusher Manual Bilge

It has been said that there is no better bilge pump than a bucket and a scared sailor. I hope not to be that sailor.

Our CSY 33 came with a whale manual bilge pump. Everybody loves this bilge pump. It is built like a tank (much like everything on our CSY), but I have never been able to get the pump to worked consistently despite rebuilding it and lubricating the bellows. I knew once we decided to live aboard the boat, I would have to fix the pump sooner than later, especially before heading out of the Inter Coastal Waterways.

New/used Manual Bilge pump

New/used Manual Bilge pump

While I was at Sailors Exchange in St. Augustine, I found a plastimo manual bilge with an internal pump handle built in. It looked brand new and pumped great. It also had a quick disconnect system for the supply and discharge ports that make connecting hose a breeze. All that for $35!

new bilge pump installed

new bilge pump installed

I had to remove the old pump and cut away a fair amount of fiberglass to get the new pump to seat properly. Patiently I filed the fiberglass down to get a good fit and it went in like a glove!

We have always had a couple of inches on the bottom of the bilge where the automatic bilge couldn’t reach. I have always been annoyed at the residual water in the bilge. Today, the new manual bilge pump worked great and practically dried out the bilge for the first time in years!

Bilge in opperation

Bilge in opperation

The total time to swap out the pumps was about 2 hours due to all the fiberglass cutting and fitting. Otherwise it was a snap to install.

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