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Screws in the bilge -- aaaaggghhh.

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    Screws in the bilge -- aaaaggghhh.

    My boat is a 1999 Bayliner Capri 1950 bowrider. Access to the bilge/storage compartment midships is via a floor hatch made of wood inside an oval metal frame. The wood is screwed to the underside of the metal frame with short hex head machine screws. From time to time, I have found said screws loose on the floor of the bilge. Apparently they work loose due to flexing of the boards when people step on them. Having ignored this for a while, I now have a problem.. one or more of the screws has apparently gone into the tube allowing this storage compartment to drain into the rear bilge under the engine, and lodged there. This passageway is about the diameter of my thumb and is under the floor, stretching about 48 inches from storage compartment to engine compartment.

    I have probed the passageway with a flexible aluminum rod and I am able to pass it all the way through (pushed out a leaf and some foam) but I can also feel it hitting against something hard which I believe to be screws from the hatch. Drainage is not completely blocked but it is slow. I tried blasting them through to the rear with a powerwasher but it did not produce results.

    Does anyone have suggestions for a technique or a specific tool that might allow me to remove the screws (without cutting the floor open)?

    #2
    Two suggestions. First, get an endoscope with a reasonable length cord. 50' is a bit much even though it's only a buck or so more. I buy mine from, where else, amazon. They plug into a USB port and need to be activated the same as a thumb drive. The camera has lights built into it, but the biggest trick is interpreting what you are seeing on the screen.
    Second, replace the screws with stainless steel bolts, oversized washers (I like fender washers) and nyloc nuts.
    P/C Pete
    Edmonds Yacht Club (Commodore 1993)
    1988 3818 "GLAUBEN”
    Hino EH700 175 Onan MDKD Genset
    1980 Encounter Sunbridge "Misty Blue" (Sold)
    MMSI 367770440
    1972 Chevrolet Nova Frame off Resto-mod in the garage
    Boating on the Salish Sea since 1948

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      #3
      Here you go:

      https://www.amazon.com/Waterproof-Fi.../dp/B0025MNTLS
      Jim Gandee
      1989 3888
      Hino 175's
      Fire Escape
      Fyrflyer@ca.rr.com

      Comment


        #4
        I have experienced "irritations" with the bilge drainage setup on my 1986 1950 Capri as well. Your hull shape may be different, but on mine the drainage is such that the contents in the transom area drain forward and pool in that little access hatch area ( in the Cuddy in my case..). We've been very attentive over the 30+ years we've owned the boat to drain that compartment as well as the main bilge, but it is a nuisance. Recently, it occurred to me to simply plug the forward drain tube from the transom area so that the water there can't flow forward. After doing so, the amount of water that has collected in the forward bilge compartment is essentially zip. You might give this a try and possibly just forget about those errant screws...
        1986 Capri 1950 Cuddy
        AQ131A / 275
        (original owner)

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          #5
          I believe that the drain is there to drain the storage compartment to the bilge. This area is meant to hold ski's etc., and they are usually put in there wet... hence the drain.
          These screws are likely stainless steel. You can check with a magnet and see if they stick to it or not. If they do, they're not stainless. In this case you may be able to retrieve the screw with a magnet. One of the extending ones could be attached to a light cord and then shoved down the drain tube until they make contact, then pull the cord back out. If this is not possible, pick up an inexpensive drain cleaner with a head on it smaller than the diameter of the tube. Try and push the screw out from the bilge side, rather than trying to force it through to the bilge. It's likely gone in pointy end first and has dug in to the tube. Pushing it further in that direction may only make it harder to get out.
          Bob Hawes.
          Kelowna, B.C.
          1998 Trophy 2052 WA
          4.3 Vortec, A1 G2

          Comment


            #6
            Trust me, Bayliner dropped a bunch of screws in you boat when they assembled it.. How about a wet vac on one side and a hose on the other?
            Tally and Vicki
            "Wickus" Meridian 341
            MMSI 338014939

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              #7
              The storage space under the two seats in the bow drain into the ski locker, the ski locker drains into the bilge.
              The drain pipe is under the fuel tank.
              I viewed the screw stuck in my drain with a Harbor Freight Inspection Camera (about $50) and my laptop. I haven't been able to push it through in either direction.
              1998 Capri 1950CL
              3 Liter MerCruiser
              Furuno 1622 Radar, Garmin echoMAP44dv, Si-tex ADF, Uniden Cl 2 VHF with Hailer,
              2 batteries with Combiner, Joystick Wakeboard Tower

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                #8
                Thanks for the replies.. Ordered an endoscope and a 3-foot long gripper tool, will try to push up from rear, to within range of the gripper. And will definitely change out the scews for the bolts with nylock nuts.

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