HOW HIGH TO TIE?
I have an Albin 32 stored on a 20,000-pound lift in Florida. In the event of a hur-
ricane, should I elevate the boat in the lift or lower it so it floats and secure it
with a four-point tie? Eric Dehmel
Port Charlotte, FL
Beth Leonard: Every storm is different, as is every location in every storm, so there’s
no silver bullet answer. But in our experience, boats do not fare well on lifts. Wind, surge, and
waves, especially in combination, destroy lifts and displace boats stored in them. The answer
to your question depends on the specifics of your location. Is your boat in a canal with good
wind protection? If so, tying it in the center of the canal with doubled lines and chafe gear to
the bow, stern, and spring cleats on each side may be your best alternative. If strong storm
surge is likely, the lines need to be long and at a shallow angle to allow the boat to float with
the surge. You can determine your storm surge risk by checking the NOAA SLOSH models
( www.nhc.noaa.gov/surge/slosh.php) for your area or looking at your county’s hurricane-preparedness plan. If the area isn’t well-protected from wind, the boat will be more likely to
survive if you take it somewhere and haul out. Think about where you can take the boat and
make arrangements as part of your hurricane plan.
I have an Ericson 36, and need to replace the hose between the stuffing box and the shaft
log. What type of hose do I use? Ray Falco
tom neaLe: There’s hose made specifically for this job, referred to as “packing-box hose”
or “stuffing-box hose.” This typically has a thickness of five-ply and is custom made for the
82 | Boatu.s. magazine AUGUST | SEPTEMBER 2014
purpose. The plies are made of alternating layers of synthetic material vulcanized together.
Buy the hose you need from retailers such as
Jamestown Distributors and online.
While some try to use exhaust hose as a
substitute, it’s not adequate for this purpose.
These hoses suffer constant vibration and
torque as you run. Exhaust hoses aren’t thick
enough to resist twisting or turning when
you apply torque to them, as you’ll do when
changing the packing. Sometimes these thinner exhaust hoses even tear, particularly if
they’ve aged, and water comes flooding into
the boat at a high rate.
Be sure to use four high-quality hose
clamps, two at each end. They should be
316-grade stainless, including not only the
band, but also the barrel and gear. Clamps
with weld spots rather than mechanical
construction can also be weaker because of
the frailties of welding materials in conjunction with the base material and saltwater.
The edges should be rounded up to avoid
cutting into the hose, and the perforations
shouldn’t be all the way through the band.
This is particularly important because these
hose clamps are typically sprayed with saltwater and there’s a high likelihood of failure
of inadequate clamps. Regular checking of
clamps and hose is important, and tightening the clamps after a few
hours of running after
you install them is often
Note we’re not talking about lubricating
hoses for so-called “
drip-less” shaft glands, which
depend on water being
injected into the gland
for lubrication from a
smaller hose, usually
coming from the engine’s
raw-water pump plumbing. That’s a different hose, just intended to carry and inject
the cooling water. The issues are different. If
that hose kinks, or for any reason the water
stops flowing into the gland, the gland will
I recently added a DC-powered TV to my
boat. Everything works fine until we try to
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