April 2002 — By Tim
|Springtime steps to avoid MSD migraines this boating season.|
Search long enough and you can find an expert on any subject under the sun. Or almost any. When Peggy Hall bought her first boat back in the 1980s, a used express cruiser in need of a little reconditioning, she searched high and low for an authority in the marine industry who could help her overhaul its sanitation system. Hall quickly learned that true specialists were virtually nonexistent, so she became one herself. "I wasn’t getting any answers from inside the industry," Hall told me, "so I went looking elsewhere and found that the knowledge was there; it just hadn’t been applied on boats." The company she formed, Peal Products (which she later sold to Raritan Engineering), was one of the first entities in the pleasureboating industry to exclusively address marine sanitation. Largely through her efforts–ongoing via her consultancy, The Hall Group–you can learn a lot more these days about avoiding "head aches."
"Avoiding" is the key word here, and it’s central to Hall’s approach. Spring recommissioning is not only a time for annual maintenance but also an opportunity to review your system with an eye toward improvement and prevention. And any work you undertake now, in cool weather with the toilet and below-deck system dry and relatively clean, will be far more agreeable than during the summer season.
Because some parts of a marine sanitation system can dry out and become brittle over the winter, Hall recommends that you rebuild your marine toilet once a year if you regularly haul your boat in the off-season. If you boat year-round, once every two years is prudent.
This article originally appeared in the January 2003 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.