Are You Still Looking for a Good Idea for Your Boat?
Here are some Handy Tips from PCS Marine
Restoring the Shine to Fiberglass
"How often should my boat's hull be cleaned?"
FastBottoms hull diving
Clean bottoms are FastBottoms!
The fact is that relatively frequent, gentle cleanings are better for the boat, better for the environment and better for your
wallet than less frequent, more abrasive cleanings. Ask your hull cleaner if he is a member of the California Professional Divers
Association. CPDA divers are trained and certified in the use of industry standard In-water Hull Cleaning Best Management Practices, making them the best trained, best educated hull
cleaners in California.
This is a question hull divers are often asked. It is a common misconception that frequent hull cleaning reduces the length of time your anti fouling paint remains viable. But by employing an experienced, knowledgeable hull cleaner using Best Management Practices, quite the opposite is true.
The key to making your anti fouling paint last a long time is to never let it get so
dirty that it cannot be cleaned with the softest cleaning media (and by that we mean carpet or a white pad.) A typical hull cleaning frequency here in the San Francisco Bay Area is every three
months. This schedule virtually ensures that within the first year, your diver will have to clean the boat with something more abrasive. And that means scrubbing paint off unnecessarily which, of
course, shortens your paint's lifespan. A typical bottom job cleaned on a quarterly schedule will last about two years.
You paid a lot of money for your bottom job and you want it last as long as possible. Here in the Bay Area, a 2-month cleaning frequency is recommended. This ensures that your diver can use the softest pad when cleaning your hull, often for the entire life of the paint. A less frequent regimen means a more abrasive pad will have to be used, which not only shortens the lifespan of your anti fouling paint but releases more copper into the water than otherwise would be. Further, with the 2-month cleaning cycle, your hull is clean more of the time, thereby improving performance both under power and sail and reducing your fuel consumption and carbon emissions. By gently cleaning your hull just 6 times per year (as opposed to 4 times) your bottom paint can last three years or more, potentially saving you thousands of dollars in haulout/bottom painting costs.
Here's the math for 10 years of ownership of a 40' sailboat:
3-month hull cleaning schedule (painted every 2 years)
$2700 bottom job X 5 = $13,500
$90.00 hull cleaning (4 times/year X 10) = $3600
Total expenditure (10 years) = $17,100
2-month hull cleaning schedule (painted every 3 years)
$2700 bottom job X 3 = $8100
$90.00 hull cleaning (6 times/year X 10) = $5400
Total expenditure (10 years) = $13,500
Total savings = $3600
That's quite a savings. Not to mention your fuel cost savings from operating the boat with a clean bottom more of the time. And consider also that the cost of the bottom job is only going to increase in the future.
Vessel Safety Checklist. What do the inspectors look for? Use the following checklist to test your own boat.
USCG Auxiliary SEAL OF SAFETY Checklist
The following is a list of safety equipment that will be checked during a Free Courtesy Marine Examination(CME) - conducted by the USCG Auxiliary.
Boats meeting the requirements will receive a CME dec
USCG Auxiliary SEAL OF SAFETY Checklist.[...]
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Chose the Right Personal Floating Device (PFD)
Marine Radio Communication
VHF Marine Radio Service
The Marine VHF radio is installed on all large ships and most motorized boats. It is used for a wide variety of purposes, including summoning rescue services and communicating with harbors and marinas and operates in the VHF frequency range, between 156 to 174 MHz.
A marine VHF set is a combined transmitter and receiver and only operates on standard, international frequencies known as channels. Channel 16 (156.8 MHz) is the international calling and distress channel. Channel 9 can also be used in some places as a secondary call and distress channel. Transmission power ranges between 1 and 25 watts, giving a maximum range of up to about 60 nautical miles between aerials mounted on tall ships and hills and 5 nautical miles between aerials mounted on small boats at sea level. (Frequency modulation is used).
Marine VHF mostly uses ‘simplex’ transmission, where communication can only take place in one direction at a time. A transmit button on the set or microphone determines whether it is operating as a transmitter or a receiver. The majority of channels, however, are set aside for ‘duplex’ transmissions channels where communication can take place in both directions simultaneously. Each duplex channel has two frequency assignments. This is mainly because, in the days before mobile phones became widespread, the duplex channels could be used to place calls on the public telephone system for a fee via a marine operator. This facility is still available in some areas, though its use has largely died out. In US waters, Marine VHF radios can also receive weather radio broadcasts, where they are available, on receive only channels.
United States Coast Guard