Sunday, December 4, 2011

St. Pete Boat Show

We drove over yesterday to the St. Pete Boat Show. We had no pressing needs but went to look around, and also keep in touch with some of our friends who were showing there.

By the time we drove 3 hours over and 3 hours back, we only had 3 hours there. But since we were NOT in the market for a boat, or any major systems, that was plenty of time to go through the 2 tents and see what we wanted to see.

Dave enjoyed talking with Travis at Mack Sails, and a couple of the watermaker vendors. We are still trying to find the right hose to replace the leaky high pressure hose that goes between the pump and the membranes. Our current hose, only 4 years old, sprung a pinhole leak and sprayed salt water all over the engine (oh NO!!). Dave was NOT amused.

So he doesn't want to replace that hose with hose from the same source. But of course that's OEM-branded (Village Marine) stuff and hard to find out specs and part numbers. There is a LOT of inexpensive hose made for the pressure-washer (car wash) industry, but it's not 'FDA approved'. We don't want to save $20 and poison ourselves (or gum up our membranes) with inappropriate stuff. Our search is complicated by the fact that Dave wants to be able to re-use the expensive 'reusable' fittings he bought with the first hose, so we need hose of the same diameter and thickness.

The guys at Cruise RO Water have been the most helpful. Their pitch is that all their stuff for their watermaker kits are 'off the shelf' and they don't try to hide who the manufacturer is, so you HAVE to buy the replacement from them. These are good guys who understand the problems we have out cruising in remote areas. If we can't soon find the right hose that meets our needs, we'll buy replacement hose with additional fittings from them.

We also had fun talking with the young man from Lithium Ion Batteries. He's selling 12v RV and Marine batteries that look like they have a LOT of advantages of the traditional Lead Acid batteries. They are pricey, though. But if we were planning on renewing our batteries, we'd have to take a hard look at it. Our Rolls Batteries are doing fine after 5 years of heavy usage, so we're not shopping yet.

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