How much water in your BCC’s bilges?

Hey everyone,

I’d be keen to know how much water is in your boat’s bilges?
We have a wooden BCC built down here in Tasmania, and she normally carries about 1cm of water perpetually in the bilge just below the companionway stairs.

Be keen to know if this is normal.
My understanding is Chris (the previous owner) had fitted a drip-less seal on the prop shaft, so it should be dry.

Boat has 4 active hull throughs, although they don’t appear to be weeping.

Water ingress appears to be about 0.5cm per week or so, and I suspect it may be coming from the cockpit drains - maybe a faulty jubilee clip or the like.
Anyway… thoughts?

As long as it is salt water, do not worry. However fresh water is the enemy of a wooden hull. The shipwrights in Devon always threw big handfuls of salt into every nook and cranny of a newly-built hull before launch “to pickle 'er”. I sometimes sprinkle rock salt onto our beech decks after a long spell of rain. A timber vessel will always “work” in a swell and some small leaks are almost inevitable. BTW, I also have a PSS dripless seal, but I have it adjusted so that when the shaft is spinning, there is a very slight weep in order to lubricate the mating faces of the seal.

Hey Gus,

Thanks for your words of wisdom.
I’ll be sure to check whether it’s salt or not.

I presume the best way to test would be to take a sample and allow it to dry and see if there is any salt residue?
It’s looks dirty water but not sure if that’s simply the staining on the paintwork.


To check if it’s salt, just taste it!, What could go wrong?

Good call!
I’ll do that. :grinning:

New to the group: I see this bilge discussion was 3.5 years ago, so I dont know if anybody will see it.
I have a BCC '28. The main bilge is clear but in the head bilge there is about an inch of water. I think its coming in when it rains thru the anchor chain thrudeck. Thoughts and how best to prevent? Thanks. TomK