Latest News: Forums Technical Where to Site a Bilge Pump

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  • #4362

    Dear Forum

    We have bought a new hand-bilge pump but are not sure where to site it on the boat. Wondered if attaching to transom locker casing with a plywood backing plate on the inside would work. Seen them cited in the centerboard casing area but wondered if things were already cluttered up that end.

    Any recommendations?

    Yours faithfully

    Trevor Thompson


    I’ve sailed on a W whose bilge pump was up by the forward benches. This allows it to reach the deepest part of the bilge. A stern-mounted one could work with a long enough hose, but I think in practise the helm has enough to do without being responsible for bailing as well.


    Thanks – do you know where the said bilge pump was attached? The centreboard case did not seem ideal as screws would interfere with the mvt of the centreboard


    I’m struggling to remember exactly- it was on another club’s boat and I only sailed it once. I don’t think it was on the centreboard case. The boat was a MkI so perhaps it was on the aft face of the deck moulding (the part that makes a sort of ‘arch’ shape). On a MkII you could probably put one on the buoyancy tank bulkhead. And a floorboard would offer the easiest place of all to mount one- maybe tucked underneath the front benches? The tabernacle could be an option but it might end up getting tangled with your halyards.


    Hi, we have a pump on board it is attached to the starboard side of the front buoyancy tank, the of top handle is just below the level of the shelf, it is nicely out of the way of ropes but easily reached by crew to pump out.


    Thanks ‘farers – seems like a bit of choice here. Take point that putting it on rear locker means the job falls to the helm. OTOH the forward positions possibly not as good for getting good clean access for pumping purposes.

    Awry best



    I mounted a bilge pump onto the floorboard directly below the thwart, on the port side. The pump has a removable handle, so it tucks away fairly well. The suction pipe tucks below the floorboard, with a cut-out in the board to allow access to the inlet strainer (strumbox) on the end. The discharge pipe is through a plastic skin fitting drilled and sealed in the hull above the waterline. The pump is not essential, but it’s useful if I can’t get the speed to operate the self balers.

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