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The weather is turning cold now and winterisation should be on every boat owner's agenda over the next few weeks.

Kingfisher Boat Services (our sister company that carries out private boat work) would be pleased to quote for any winterisation that you may need doing and can offer many levels of service.

If you're doing it yourself, please make time soon as the forecasters seem to think it's going to get pretty cold this winter.

ALSO, we are told by Broads Beat that Fuel Thefts and Thefts of Outboards are on the up again. It's never a good idea to leave a valuable engine on a boat that's unattended for a long time, especially over a long winter, so, if you can, please remove your outboards from boats and store at home. We can offer winter storage if you can't do this. Also, remove outboard fuel tanks and, if you can secure your fuel filler cap or insert an anti-siphon adaptor into the filler hose, it would be recommended.

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Wise words Andy, but surely it cannot be colder than last winter! That biting north easterly blew for months it seemed.

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In general, it only needs to be a few days of sustained sub-zero or close temperatures for damage to occur. An overnight freeze followed by a thaw is unlikely to cause a problem, but never say never.

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I guess that's one disadvantage of having her ashore? At least in the water gives some help, even if the surface freezes over.

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I guess that's one disadvantage of having her ashore? At least in the water gives some help, even if the surface freezes over.

 

 

As Andy has said, it's sustained sub-zero temperatures that are the problem, regardless of whether the boat is afloat or hauled out ashore.

 

Raw water systems can freeze and crack even while craft are still afloat.

 

Pumps and heat exchangers in unheated engine bays will freeze solid when the air temp in them is below zero for sustained periods, even though the moving water surrounding the boat stays clear of ice.

 

People should also be wary of relying on tube heaters in the engine bay. Marina electric supplies can easily trip, and have done at my mooring, during one of the coldest spells last Winter.

 

Although I have a pair of tube heaters (to give some fault tolerant safety), when sustained sub zero temperatures are forecast I drain my engine as well.

 

It's particularly vulnerable to frost damage, being raw water cooled, but luckily is very quick easy to drain, via the four brass taps. 

 

According to marine insurance company reports, last Winter hundreds of such engines were ruined in that long cold snap.

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Absolutely, Strow. Ignore winterisation at your peril. Insurance may not cover you either if you have failed in this simple maintenance routine. Also agree with relying on electrics to prevent damage; don't.

 

A few years ago, we salvaged a boat from Percival's Moorings in Horning that went down because a sea-cock hadn't been turned off. Video of this is on our facebook page.

 

If your boat is ashore, you should drain the engine and all other water systems and dry out the bilges.

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Does it help making sure the closed water circuit contains antifreeze and the raw water side is flushed through with seasafe antifreeze after closing the seacock when leaving the boat in the water.

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Does it help making sure the closed water circuit contains antifreeze and the raw water side is flushed through with seasafe antifreeze after closing the seacock when leaving the boat in the water.

 

 

Yes, that's a perfectly acceptable means of protecting the engine from frost damage.

 

All closed circuit cooled engines should contain anti freeze all year round anyway, since it also contains corrosion inhibitors.

 

The temporary antifreeze in the raw cooling circuit needs to be drawn in as close to the seacock as possible. To ensure that it filled the intake pipe, raw cooling pump, heat exchanger, and exhaust pipe, I used to use a 1 gallon bucket premixed, and ran the engine till it was all drawn in.

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word orf ole warning ..........................ball valves ...................

 

 

when a ball valve is closed it will contain a small pocket orf ole fluid ,if that ole stuff is neat water it will freeze if the condtions are rite ..............

 

remedy.......once circuit has  had mix of nun freezin stuff put in and sucked up ,open said valve and let a little anti freezin stuff run into it then close agian so alittle of the anti freezin stuff is locked in the little ole valve 

 

do it quick not too slow ...........!!!

 

simples ........................

 

we have seen too many ball valves split over years......."up the gate valve "

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word orf ole warning ..........................ball valves ...................

when a ball valve is closed it will contain a small pocket orf ole fluid ,if that ole stuff is neat water it will freeze if the condtions are rite ..............

 

remedy.......once circuit has  had mix of nun freezin stuff put in and sucked up ,open said valve and let a little anti freezin stuff run into it then close agian so alittle of the anti freezin stuff is locked in the little ole valve 

 

 

Now that's a very good idea,  a very simple additional precaution that never occurred to me all the times that I put the anti freeze in....    :unsure:

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as me ole mother would say .............................

 

yer larner a new ting erva day .....................

 

never look a gift horse in tha mouth ..............

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some say drill a hole in the ball but we don't do this..

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At the point of appearing thick ! If you drilled a hole through the ball would this not let raw water to enter the system ? When I open my valve and remove the cap I get a fountain of river water as the top of the tube is below water level Which would stop you adding anti freeze at this point ? Also when I run the anti freeze through via the filter attached to the valve in the water intake ,then is the antifreeze as near to the bottom of the valve as possible ? If this makes sense.? would the anti freeze mix in with any small amount of raw water left in the system over time ? A puzelled Roy

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At the point of appearing thick ! If you drilled a hole through the ball would this not let raw water to enter the system ? When I open my valve and remove the cap I get a fountain of river water as the top of the tube is below water level Which would stop you adding anti freeze at this point ? Also when I run the anti freeze through via the filter attached to the valve in the water intake ,then is the antifreeze as near to the bottom of the valve as possible ? If this makes sense.? would the anti freeze mix in with any small amount of raw water left in the system over time ? A puzelled Roy

opening the valve to let a bit of antifreeze go the other way requires a bit of head/hight of water inside the boat above the water line, like your engine or possibly up to a antisifon loop, if you have a Fishermans/Norfolk style strainer directly on top of the valve and by the sounds of your case it is below the water line then it would shoot water in if you open valve with the top off, but with the top on the head of water within the engine should stop water ingress when you open the valve and push a little the other way.

Did that help at all?

and i think the idea is to drill only one side of the ball, never done it, never will!

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I have never seen it done but it would obviously only be through into the ball,

 

Mark,

 Out of interest why would you not do it, would it be because it may damage/weaken it, or because you don't see the point?

 

If it is a good idea I will race you to the patent office!

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I have never seen it done but it would obviously only be through into the ball,

 

Mark,

 Out of interest why would you not do it, would it be because it may damage/weaken it, or because you don't see the point?

 

If it is a good idea I will race you to the patent office!

No need to race Clive Im not a competitive person, the Ricco empire can have the patent!  to be honest I can see nothing wrong with the idea other than slightly weakening the ball, the hole would need to be Bur free as you would not want to score the seal (especially if the handle had been removed and the ball could go 360deg), It as a practice just does not sit right with me (we dont like change round these parts!), Even though I did change a ball valve early this year that had failed due to a split in the body around the ball and it could only have been caused by freezing within the ball.

 

one slight floor in the ball valve, but I would not go back to gate valves they fail in very other area!! 

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Aside from the merits or problems of having a hole in the ball of a ball valve, surely it would be very difficult to accomplish  ?

 

 

All of the ones I've seen had a stainless steel ball, which is very hard to drill.

 

Couple that with the fact that you are drilling into a small spherical surface, and it would be hard to not get any "wander".

 

My normal practice of trying to accurately drill a hole in stainless steel is to give a centre punch a good hard clout with a club hammer first, but I wouldn't want to do that with a stainless ball in a nylon seating, in-situ inside the valve's gunmetal or DZR housing.

 

Now if the ball was brass or bronze, that would be a different matter.

 

Much easier in a drill press with the ball valve removed from the boat I suppose, but that would mean slipping, or being very confident !   :)

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I guess you would use a centre drill with the ball valve on a pillar drill.

Its hypothetical anyway but doubt I would do it in situ or whack it with a centre punch.

 

I spent a couple of winters rebuilding gate valves, that was a waste of even my time, stupid things, if the wheel did not fall off in your hand then the things would not shut unless they were already shut due to not opening in the first place!

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Thanks for that answer Clive,I can see what you mean but if I open my valve it rushes in I i close the valve run the anti freeze through and then put the cap back on ,I feel that gets as much as possible round the system.it is a Bounty 28 and the top cap is well under the water line.

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fit new stainless gate valves boys ......

 

drill one side of ball fine but if it is not done very well ie a counter sink drill bevel edge and still with care it still damages the nylon sleeve in side !!!!

 

switch on and off agian experience tell you when  its rite

 

alittle grease of the rite type wil work wonders in them ole gate valves too

 

just a thought .........

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fit new stainless gate valves boys ......

 

drill one side of ball fine but if it is not done very well ie a counter sink drill bevel edge and still with care it still damages the nylon sleeve in side !!!!

 

switch on and off agian experience tell you when  its rite

 

alittle grease of the rite type wil work wonders in them ole gate valves too

 

just a thought .........

I do not care what metal the gate valves are made of, they are still horrible to operate. out of interest are all metal parts stainless? as a bit of crap on a stainless thread and the male and female threads will weld themselves together, anyone who has worked with stainless fixings will tell you what often happens to bolts and nylock nuts.

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I do not care what metal the gate valves are made of, they are still horrible to operate. out of interest are all metal parts stainless? as a bit of crap on a stainless thread and the male and female threads will weld themselves together, anyone who has worked with stainless fixings will tell you what often happens to bolts and nylock nuts.

 

 

On the subject of stainless steel threads welding up sometimes when being tightened, i have it on good authority from Beardshaws at Wroxham that it only happens with A2 grade stainless.

 

When you use an A2 bolt with an A2 nut you have something like a one in twenty chance of it locking up so that you have to cut it to get it off.  It's certainly happened about that many times to me !

 

If you use A2 bolts and A4 nuts though, it never happens, nor if you use A4 bolts and A4 nuts.

 

It only occurs (occasionally) with A2 bolts and A2 nuts.

 

Strange then that Norfolk Marine only stock A2 bolts and nuts.

 

(My solution is to buy my specific length/head bolts in A2 as and when I need them, but keep a stock of A4 nuts which I buy in bulk packs, much cheaper anyway. Since then, no problems with lock ups !)

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On the subject of stainless steel threads welding up sometimes when being tightened, i have it on good authority from Beardshaws at Wroxham that it only happens with A2 grade stainless.

 

When you use an A2 bolt with an A2 nut you have something like a one in twenty chance of it locking up so that you have to cut it to get it off.  It's certainly happened about that many times to me !

 

If you use A2 bolts and A4 nuts though, it never happens, nor if you use A4 bolts and A4 nuts.

 

It only occurs (occasionally) with A2 bolts and A2 nuts.

 

Strange then that Norfolk Marine only stock A2 bolts and nuts.

 

(My solution is to buy my specific length/head bolts in A2 as and when I need them, but keep a stock of A4 nuts which I buy in bulk packs, much cheaper anyway. Since then, no problems with lock ups !)

Top tip!

I did not know this, I shall make sure I only buy A4 nuts from now on.

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A2 and A4 (can't remember the ISO standard but it is for stainless fixings) are quite wide specs for stainless and tend to equate to 304 and 316 stainless. Both these are quite good grades of stainless for general use. Both contain Nickel and this makes it expensive to make. A traditional way to identify 304 or 316 is to use a magnet on the material as they are both non magnetic. Cheaper stainless grades are magnetic and need to be avoided in marine applications.

 

Now here comes the problem 200 series stainless steels are being used as they have low Nickel content and are therefore cheap to make and popular in India and the far east. The other factor is 200 series are non magnetic and are being passed off as 304 or 316 stainless grades.

 

So beware of cheap deals on stainless parts.

 

Ian

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