Skip to main content

How to remove old seacocks and thru-hulls

There are two main methods and both of them are approaching the problem from the outside of the hull. Usually it's impossible to take the seacock assemblies apart from the inside due to the bad access and the huge force and large tools needed for breaking the thread-locks and all the old rusty nuts.

From outside what you can do is to separate the thru-hull's flange from the threaded part, then you can just pull the whole thing in. One way is to hammer in a wooden plug, then drill into the hole with a slightly (1-2mm) larger hole-saw than the thru-hull hole (which is the inner part of the thru-hull's threaded pipe). I tried this approach first, but my wooden plug kept rotating and falling out, so I opted for the second approach instead. Take an angle grinder with a metal disk and grind away the flange of the thru-hull. You need to be careful and do it with small motions not to damage the hull, but it's doable. This was the first time for me and I managed to get away with a few lighter scratches in the antifouling . Always wear a mask and a good eye protection, small metal pieces will fly all over. And if your hand starts to get tired, take a break! Otherwise the chances for making a mistake will increase.

Grinding away one thru-hull can take a few minutes, depending on it's size. Once all the flanges were gone and the hoses were disconnected from the seacocks, it was possible to push the old assemblies in. If they are still stuck, you can hammer them in from outside with a larger wooden plug or something similar. But most of them were quite easy to pull out.

I couldn't get one of the hoses off, so I ended up cutting it with a multitool. If you're planning to do a seacock replacement, I suggest checking out the @SailingBritaly youtube channel, where Chris recorded a 1 hour long video documenting the whole process. That's where I got the courage from :)


Popular posts from this blog

New ventillators and smoke detector

Three old ventillators have been replaced last weekend as they were falling apart due to UV damage and the brittle plastic. We could get the exact same type of ventillators, so we went with those. No new holes to drill and hopefully these will do the job for another 10 years. I was also considering changing them to solar vents, but I haven't read too good reviews about them. They're usually much bigger (need a bigger hole) and according to many they tend to die after a year or two (either the battery or the fan motor gets loud) and doesn't worth the extra price tag.  We're going to add some regular 12V car fans inside before we sail to warmer climates. We already have a gas/propane alarm in the galley and now I also installed a battery powered smoke detector. Very easy and no drilling required, it's held in place with velcro strips.

Bilge reinforcement - Part 2

Read Part 1 After careful surface preparation the bilge reinforcement project continued with laying the new laminate. I consulted with West System on what fabric to use and they suggested biaxial cloth without chopped strand matting. The biaxial cloth is very strong and CSM would just add weight. We bought 600g biaxial cloth with 45/45 degree strands from Composite24 and West System 105 epoxy with 206 fast hardener at a local marine store. Cutting fabric The work was done in sections, we started with the bilge bottom while the keel nuts and washers were removed. It got 4 layers that come up 10cm at the bilge sides. This area gets most of the load and we wanted to reinforce it by connecting the fabric on the bottom to the fabric layed on the sides. 4 layers on the bottom In theory these types of reinforcements are suggested to be done either with the keel dropped or while the keel is hanging so it's not compressing the joint while the boat is standing on th

Electrical refit - Part 3

The electrical refit continues with the DC panel. We're installing a new panel (Pros by Ditel) with hydraulic magnetic breakers from Carlingtech. I tried to select appropriately sized breakers for the separate circuits and where necessary (or practical), combine several functions on one switch, like the NMEA instruments and navigation. In these cases the combined circuits will be fused separately in a fuse box behind the panel and the breaker on the panel is used just as a switch. We selected the Pros Modular panel because it was the only one we could find that was a fit for the cabinet door frame on the boat. There aren't many nice horizontal panels on the market unfortunately. The 10 switch horizontal panel (PROSXRC10) and the sailboat light indicator panel (PROSLCL1) fits perfectly in our door frame side by side.  The plywood insert had to be removed from the frame to replace it with a new one, which was not easy. I considered just gluing on one more layer of a thin mahagon