View Full Version : sailing dingy transom drains

Anthony Zucker
04-06-2003, 03:29 PM
I'm restoring a GP14 sailing dingy and the two small transom drains had a lot of rot about them. After scraping, sanding, CPESing, I am wondering about installing larger drains or can I get away without drains at all?

04-06-2003, 04:29 PM
I'd think if the boat is light weight enough that you could just flip it upside down to get water out of it you could get away with no drains, but the drains are very convenient because the boat just has to be on a slight inclined to drain it, and drains can be left open when the boat is out of the water, won't fill up with rain, etc. Twer it me I'd keep the drains.

04-07-2003, 05:03 AM
Had a lot of trouble over the years with the family heirloom Sailfish leaking. Found out after 30 years that the 'drains' and the leaks were one and the same thing! Decided not to address some rot at the stern with a new bottom, shortened the hull by about an inch or so, new transom, S/S drains. I'll find out if she still leaks after some new varnish!

04-07-2003, 05:53 AM
GP 14's sometimes had large (8' diameter) transom drains fitted with rudimentary one way systems (large funnels on a shockcord or plastic flaps), so that you could empty them fast after a capsize. These would be higher on the transom than the standard drains. Does your boat have auto bailers (Anderson/Elvstrom type), if so you can drain the boat through them. Personally I'd do whatever it takes to fix the transom drains. As dinghies go the old GP is fairly heavy (but a great boat) and you'll want to be able to drain water easily when it is on the dolly.

Anthony Zucker
04-07-2003, 12:08 PM
Thanks for your comments. The original drains were 1/2 inch diameter with 3/8 inch plastic tubes on each end which meant that water got to the wood in the middle of the transom and that caused the rot. So I will bore it out to accept a 1&1/4 inch brass drain tube and hopefully bed it properly. Thanks again

04-08-2003, 07:46 AM
All I ever found those 3/8" transom drains good for was dumping water from cleaning her on the trailer; it took too long and clogged with leaf sculch too easily.
If you need to dump water under way, those big shock-corded transom flaps, like Fireballs use, would be more useful. For cleaning her on the trailer, what you're doing sounds better than what she had at least. Be sure to ge all the rot out. CPES-ing it wouldn't hurt either.

[ 04-08-2003, 08:48 AM: Message edited by: TomRobb ]

Andrew Craig-Bennett
04-08-2005, 11:08 AM
Got just the same tiddly little drains in the transom of the family Firefly; you need 'em to drain the boat of anything that gets in under the cover when she is left propped bow up, boom up, under her cover in the dinghy park, but they ain't much use for other stuff.

I agree with Anthony's solution.

04-08-2005, 12:07 PM
Did a search for GP14 images on the web and noticed that many have transom flaps fitted. Personally, I'd go that route.

They're just a couple of flaps (you can make 'em out of plexiglass) on the outside of the transom that are hinged at the top. Put a gasket around the opening (neoprene would be good but weatherstripping will do in a pinch) and hold them closed with a piece of shock cord.

This URL (Albacore page with transom shot) (http://www.albacore.ca/project/index.html) has a nice interior shot of an Albacore transom showing them held closed. The shock cord in the photo is simply looped over a small hook installed on the bottom of the hull just aft of the centerboard trunk. To drain while underway you just unhook the shock cord and she'll go from swamped to dry (well, reasonably so) in a few minutes.