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WakeWorld Discussion Board » >> Boats, Accessories & Tow Vehicles Archive » Archive through January 14, 2005 » Aerator pumps, advice please for ballast system « Previous Next »
By Mike (mikeski) on Friday, November 05, 2004 - 2:59 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Well it's getting cold outside and I am thinking more about boat improvements instead of boarding. I am buying a new boat and I want to do the ballast right the first time. I am not impressed by any of the factory systems so I will install my own.

I am currently running a the Simer pumps but after riding in my buddies boat with dual impeller pumps for each sack I am reconsidering the aerator pumps. Looking at the Rule website they have several options .

Before going to the Simers I had used a portable Rule 1100 that was slow and sucked lots of air. Now I am thinking it was more of a problem being portable rather than the pump technology. My new system will probably have a belly sack and two sacks in the rear. I might consider a dedicated fill and dedicated drain pump for each sack.

Which pumps do you guys use/recommend? The Rule 205faa with anti-airlock looks interesting but it is only 1100gpm. Do the 2000gpm pumps have difficulty keeping prime?

Please send me your recommendations.

By Jamie Close (yooper) on Friday, November 05, 2004 - 8:21 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Send me an email to remind me... I have diagrams and suppliers for the system I built, but it's all on my computer at work. I had simers in my old boat and aerators now. My system now is WAY better. You want the 205FC here:

Anti-airlock isn't necessary when you build the system properly.

By derek boyer (toyotafreak) on Friday, November 05, 2004 - 10:40 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
You must have had a bad pump cuz Rule 1100s pump an awesome amount of water. One pump will do 700 pounds in like 5 minutes, so you could probably be cool with four pumps split fore and aft.

One thing I just noticed on the Rule page is that you CAN mount the pumps horizontal if you have the outlet pointing upwards (to allow air bubbles to vent up and out of the chamber).

As far as doing it right the first might check out the Flow Rite valves. They're high flow and are cable-actuated. If you rigged a microswitch or two to the valve bodies, you could have the mechanical actuation of the valve also activate the fill and drain pumps. All you'd have at the helm would be a couple three-position lever switches. Kinda old-school looking, but you gotta love mechanical approaches to things.

By Mike (mikeski) on Tuesday, November 09, 2004 - 11:20 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
Thanks Derek, the Rule may have been cracked or something before it entered my hands.

I think I have decided to go with either the Rule Tsunami 1200s or the Johnson 1000s. My system should not require any check valves if I can get my loops fixed at the correct heights. Basically water doesn't flow uphill, it will be vented so it shouldn't siphon either. The only thing I need to worry about is my scupper filling the sacks when I am slalom skiing. I will probably add a gate or ball valve before the water inlet manifold.

Here is a diagram of the plumbing:
Plumbing diagram

The electrical is also kind of a no brainer since these pumps only draw about 5 amps each. For additional sacks/tanks I just need to make sure the fill hose has a loop and vent in it.

Any fluid dynamics specialists out there? Am I heading down the right track?

By derek boyer (toyotafreak) on Tuesday, November 09, 2004 - 1:33 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
You're onto something there with the vented loop. Haven't been able to figure that one out (implications to a ballast system), but have seen them included in boat crapper plumbing systems.

I was hoping that you could fill and drain through the same hole in the sac (bottom), and then tee-off to the two pumps. Vents could be done in much smaller tubing, but would require some check-valvage. Is valvage a word? How 'bout vulvage?

BTW, might doublecheck the distance between the height of the top of the bag and the height of the drain thru-hull. I think that's a critical relationship for like v-drive locker bags, but you've shown the easier ski locker bag application (much lower in the boat means less risk of self-emptying/siphoning while underway).

By Mike (mikeski) on Tuesday, November 09, 2004 - 7:30 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
I believe the vented lines will eliminate all siphon issues.

I think the discharge port could be at any height, it's the top of the loop that matters since it's vented.

Basic principle is that water won't go back up a vented hose right? Am I missing anything?

I hate having to hit myself in the head and say DOHHHH...

(Message edited by mikeski on November 09, 2004)

By derek boyer (toyotafreak) on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 10:02 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
Hey Mike, not suggesting either of these two are better, but here's about where I'm at.

Two valves, two pumps
3-way valve, two pumps

By Wes Gardner (wesgardner) on Monday, November 15, 2004 - 5:31 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
Hey All,

Can someone shoot me a link for the Flow Rite valve?


By Mike D. (mdan) on Monday, November 15, 2004 - 2:33 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
I would have the flowrite valves control each tank, bag, that way you can fill/empty independently. I am going to do something like this over the winter, using the flowrite valves to control three fills off one simer pump. Right now I use the basic pvc blue top valves to control three bags, all manually.
By Matt Ostmeyer (matt_ostmeyer) on Tuesday, November 16, 2004 - 11:43 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
Jamie- I'm interested in your system too. I have a simer system now with 4 pumps (each isolated to 1 or 4 bags) - I think it works pretty well, but am interested in what made you go back to aerators. If you can't post it, it'd be awesome if you could send it in email!

By Jamie Close (yooper) on Wednesday, November 17, 2004 - 6:31 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
I used a 1 1/2" scoop intake, and built the manifold out of PVC pipe. The gate valve is an RV waste dump valve, and works flawlessly. The pumps I used are Johnson/mayfair marine aerator pumps, 1000 gph. They are faster than rule 1100's, and cheaper too. The check valves are zero pressure PVC flap style valves. By using check valves and tying the vent and empty hoses together, I only needed to drill one hole on each side.
I am MUCH more pleased with this system than I was with the reversible pumps. Less power drain, no need for relays, and MUCH faster. Plus these pumps can run dry with no damage. I really haven't found any disadvantages...

By trace (trace) on Wednesday, November 17, 2004 - 7:46 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
Jamie, that's a really slick system. would you mind posting vendor info for the check & gate valves?
By Jamie Close (yooper) on Wednesday, November 17, 2004 - 8:21 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
How's this? I couldn't find the Johnson 1000 online, but the rule is essentially the same.

Electric Gate Valve:,19&skunum=26178

Swing check valve (3/4):

Rule 1100 GPH livewell pump (205FC):

Thru-Hull scoop strainer:

Stainless steel thru-hull fitting:

Contura waterproof switch: DPDT, on/off/on(pump) #96149
DPDT, mom.on/off/mom.on (valve) #96151

By Jamie Close (yooper) on Wednesday, November 17, 2004 - 8:25 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
Here's how to wire the switches:

Valve Switch

By Jamie Close (yooper) on Wednesday, November 17, 2004 - 8:27 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
And for the pumps:

By trace (trace) on Wednesday, November 17, 2004 - 10:58 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
awesome, thanks. i found the PVC swing checks on McMaster too, after i posted. i also looked for the Mayfair/Johnson 1000 online, but didn't see anything bigger than 750.

is there any reason you couldn't/wouldn't wire the gate valve to open when any fill pump is turned on, instead of having a separate switch? (would require diodes or relays, of course, but would be a more idiot-proof)

i've been looking to redo my Simer system this offseason, and your system is the cleanest i've seen. i will probably keep one Simer in the system for the bag in my walkthru. i don't like to leave hoses attached to that one after it's full (and it's moved elsewhere when we surf), but all my stationary bags will probably be getting set up this way.

out of curiosity, whose bags are you using?

thanks again for the great info.

By Jamie Close (yooper) on Wednesday, November 17, 2004 - 12:39 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
I thought about wiring the valve to the pump switches, but the valve requires momentary power. In other words, you hold the switch "on" long enough for the valve to open, then release the switch.
There probably is a way to do it, but someone smarter than me needs to figure it out.

By trace (trace) on Wednesday, November 17, 2004 - 1:21 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
ah, makes sense. that would be more trouble than it's worth. i think it could be done with latching relays, but those aren't cheap & may not even be available in 12V. thanks again.

anyone else know where to find the Mayfair 1000's?

By actiondcpd (actiondcpd) on Wednesday, November 17, 2004 - 2:16 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Jamie, Do you happen to have a picture of the manifold you have with the gate integrated in? Isn't the gate opening like 3" wide? How did you get that down to to 1.5". Also, what diameter is your tubing after the pumps? 3/4"?
By derek boyer (toyotafreak) on Wednesday, November 17, 2004 - 2:57 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Jamie, you're the illest ;-)
By Jamie Close (yooper) on Wednesday, November 17, 2004 - 4:05 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
You can get a 1.5" adapter which works with PVC pipe. Yes, my tubing is all 3/4". I don't have any pictures, and this time of year it's dark when I leave for work and getting dark when I get home, so picture time is kind of limited, but I'll do my best to get one. Maybe I'll take a light out there tonight.

...and yes, I am rather ill, but I believe Swass is a bit iller. I wanna party with that guy!

By Jamie Close (yooper) on Wednesday, November 17, 2004 - 5:34 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
All right, I went out in the dark and climbed in underneath the boat cover with a lamp from the house...... ONLY because this system never would have got done without the ideas I got from this board.

Here is where the intake enters the hull. I used a tee rather than a 90 so that I could add a 3rd bag for the walk through at some point. It is on the other side of the valve so it will have water available at all times. I'll use a reversible pump for this one. It will both fill and empty through the strainer. No vent hoses or through hulls will be necessary since you will be able to monitor the bag visually. I may add a pressure relief valve like Ty-one-on talks about in his recent post.

Here is a shot of my switches. The toggle switch is for the valve, but I'm going to change it. They make momentary on/off/mometary on switches that match the looks of the ones I have.

Here's a shot of the thru-hulls I used for draining. The plastic ones are much cheaper, but I like the looks of the stainless.

By trace (trace) on Wednesday, November 17, 2004 - 6:31 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
awesome. i too will be adding one of Ty's vents to my walk-thru bag.

how high above the tops of the bags are your thru-hulls? i am also adding vents to mine when i tear into it, and i'll probably do some testing to find the ideal height. i am concerned about venting my locker sack - i think the rise to around the rubrail is too much, and will allow too much pressure in it before it vents.

thanks for braving the cold and dark for us! :-)

By Jamie Close (yooper) on Thursday, November 18, 2004 - 5:24 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
They are only 4 or 5 inches higher. I'm not sure the sack manufacturer, but they are V-Drive sacks. 250 pound size each. The sacks are set up with the openings in the following positions. It works perfect. With the drain hose on the bottom end of the sack, the empty pumps never lose prime. When they start to slow down when they are almost empty, I just give the boat a bit of throttle, bring the nose up, the water runs to the back, and the last of it pumps out.
By the way, by actual stopwatch timing, the sacks are full in 3 minutes, 14 seconds.

By Paul (paublo) on Thursday, November 18, 2004 - 7:32 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
That is a nice system- well thought out, simple, fast, relatively inexpensive, and also an exact copy of the Rival system- intake, pumps, piping, elec. valve, check valves, controls, everything. As they say, imatation is the sincerest form of flattery. If you did come up with it all on your own, props to you. If not, you could have at least given a little credit where due. You've got a great system, enjoy it.
By Jamie Close (yooper) on Thursday, November 18, 2004 - 7:57 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
Oh, absolutely! It is almost exactly the same... In fact, I got a lot of help from Terry Barrett at Rival. There were a couple of things I was going to do differently, and Terry explained to me why he designed it like he did.
The Rival System is hands down the best aftermarket system available. If you want a turnkey system, including sacks, the Rival Download system is DEFINITELY the way to go.

Alot of people on this board, myself included, are do-it-yourselfers.... Personally, I enjoy working on my boat almost as much as Wakeboarding. If you want to build it yourself, this is how I did it. That's all. Of course I didn't come up with it all on my own.

By actiondcpd (actiondcpd) on Thursday, November 18, 2004 - 9:11 am:    Edit Post Delete Post

Thanks a lot of posting the pictures... they are very helpfull. Now I just have to figure out where to put all that stuff.

By actiondcpd (actiondcpd) on Thursday, November 18, 2004 - 9:19 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
Do you think i'll have any luck with sacs with only two openings. Both are on the same side. I think it will work if I turn them upside-down but I probably won't be able to fill them all the way right?
By trace (trace) on Thursday, November 18, 2004 - 9:44 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
you can add a fitting to a sack pretty easily using a plastic thru-hull fitting. there's a thread somewhere around here showing how, but you basically just cut a hole the size of the threads on the thru-hull, and push the mushroom end through it. load it up with sealant, screw the nut on tight, and let it dry.
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