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Author Topic:   Question - Dauntless 15
Florida15 posted 04-13-2004 11:37 AM ET (US)   Profile for Florida15   Send Email to Florida15  
I recently purchased a 1996 Dauntless 15. I put a new transducer on it and had to unscrew the top of the box that's back by the transom to get better access to the rigging tunnel. (the box that the plug is in)
The previous owner had put 4200 all around the seams on the lid of the box. Is this necessary ? Anybody else do this ? Isn't that part of what the box is for , to collect water ? I figured that was why the drain was there.
It's a mess to try to get all the old 4200 off and put new on so I just screwed it down and it looks fine. Any sense in putting new 4200 on the seams?
Comments please.
JohnJ80 posted 04-13-2004 09:49 PM ET (US)     Profile for JohnJ80  Send Email to JohnJ80     
This is, I think, the only thing about my D15 that i don't really like.

It is a bilge and that is where the water runs to. I know others have had a problem making it waterproof - i don't think the plastic mates will with the fiberglass deck. Also, if you get a good blast of water, it almost for sure will be higher than the little neck that the control cables came out of.

I just resigned myself to having to pump it after it rains. Since I leave my boat on a jet dock, i just leave the plug out.

Occasionally, i get the urge to put a bilge pump in - especially in the fall when the water in that bilge gets really cold and you need to remove the plug.

what winds up happening is that the last foot of the tunnel and the bilge will wind up with water in it. Just make sure you use a good grade of marine electrical wiring and that the wires have no nicks in the insulation - then you'll have no problems.

great boat. you are going to have a great time with her.


jimh posted 04-13-2004 11:07 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
What is a box doing on a boat?
Florida15 posted 04-14-2004 10:08 AM ET (US)     Profile for Florida15  Send Email to Florida15     
Jim, it's not really a "box", not above the deck anyway.
It's a boxed in area, probably about 15"x15" by the stern,
below the deck. It's got a screw-on lid and there is also a 4" screw on lid so you can get to the drain plug without
unscrewing the whole thing.
It's got a thru-hull drain in there and also the rigging tunnel goes through there. It's really kind of weird and I don't know who came up with the idea. Maybe they had an engineering co-op student working on that project.
I mean, it really doesn't hurt anything, I just don't see the point.
Florida15 posted 04-14-2004 10:11 AM ET (US)     Profile for Florida15  Send Email to Florida15     
John, so are you saying it should be waterproofed ?
How would you rig a bilge pump in there ? Where would you route the hose ?
It seems that if water comes in the scuppers, it would fill up in a hurry.
I trailer my boat so I'm not worried about it filling up from rain.
JohnJ80 posted 04-14-2004 08:13 PM ET (US)     Profile for JohnJ80  Send Email to JohnJ80     
I'm saying it SHOULD be waterproof, but it IS NOT because of the crappy design.

The reason to the put the bilge pump in there is that it is almost impossible to make it waterproof. The plastic cover flexes, the neck for the control cable exit is not high enough so that it is easy for water to enter there etc... I've been looking at that but haven't done it. My thoughts were to put a bilge pump in there that is automatic and connect my solar panel charger to it while it is on the jet dock. Then the battery would not go dead and if it rained, it would be pumped dry. Mostly I think its my high geek factor at work again.

For Jim, Its a box shaped area (square) that is set into the deck so that the surface of this bilge cover (the problem) is more or less flush with the deck. The tunnel from the console terminates there. The cover is rectangular but has a beckson screw in hatch (4" IIRC). But the think is too flexible and doesn't mount well with the deck so caulking is pretty much pointless.


Florida15 posted 04-15-2004 12:26 PM ET (US)     Profile for Florida15  Send Email to Florida15     
So John, you've made no attempt to waterproof yours ?
How would you route the hose from a bilge pump, cut a hole in the lid ?
I shouldn't get much water in the boat unless it comes in from the scuppers and I'll just keep the plug out when I'm washing it down at home.
It sure seems like they could've come up with a better design. I think you could stop a lot of water with 4200 around the seams.
JohnJ80 posted 04-15-2004 12:46 PM ET (US)     Profile for JohnJ80  Send Email to JohnJ80     
There already is a hole in the lid where the control cables exit the cover to go to the motor and the transom (at least there is on mine). Its a molded in about 1" (recalling here, boat is still in storage) neck up off the black cover.

I tried caulking it but it wasn't successful. It eventually worked loose (caulk). It only will fill up enough to get the water level so it is even with the deck - after that it runs out the scuppers. In my experience this is less than 2 gallons and closer to 1 - at most. Since the boat floats nose up, the whole tunnel isn't filled either - looking in the console, it doesn't show water up there. It will only fill up to the level of the scupper at which point it runs out the back.

So, it really isn't a big deal, its just a bilge (like on most other boats I've owned).

I just don't like water in there since I finicky about wiring and water (I'm an electrical engineer). If you have good marine wire, it isn't an issue.

What they should have done is mount a pump in there to begin with or used another method to run the wires. Really, if they had made that neck larger and run it up to the transom it would have been better too. I see the design problem, you need a tunnel for routing to the console. Once you have this below deck level, you need a drain for it. So, this is the compromise on the rest of the design elements (positives) that make it the boat that it is.

Florida15 posted 04-15-2004 02:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for Florida15  Send Email to Florida15     
You are right, I wasn't even thinking about the hole where the cables come out the lid to the engine. That would be a good place for the bilge pump drain to go if there is room.
Seems like mine is about full. I had a hard time just getting a transducer cable through there.
When I bought my boat the lid was sealed up pretty good.
In fact, it would be a bear to get all that 4200 off there.
It doesn't seem like much water would get in the boat anyway unless you were out in really rough water (which I try not to be out in), get caught in a rainstorm or moor the boat.
I think I'm going to put a line of 4200 along the seam and leave it at that . The previous owner put a bunch of 4200 down and then set the lid on it and then sealed the seam on top.
I guess Whaler figured it was no big deal to get water in the rigging tunnel or they wouldn't have designed it that way.
JohnJ80 posted 04-16-2004 03:19 PM ET (US)     Profile for JohnJ80  Send Email to JohnJ80     
For me the biggest issue is rain. I keep the boat on a Jet Dock and I have a Mills cover that goes over the console. The rest of the boat is open.

So, any rain at all will cause the bilge to fill before it runs out the scuppers. I could leave the plug out when on the dock, but that just seems to me to not be a good idea. Even though it really isn't an issue with a whaler, old habits die hard.

When i repowered, there were yet more cables that were added so my little neck got enlarged. So making it waterproof really isn't an option on mine. I even contemplated taking the damn thing off and just leaving the little bilge hole open - it isn't all that big and it would be just fine. I don't think it would look better or worse.

So, I don't know. The gadget freak in me says do the pump. The practical side says forget it. Another year to contemplate it.


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