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the_dude

97 Sunsetter VLX planned ballast install

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the_dude

Ok so I've been researching a lot on this forum as well as several other boat/wakeboarding specific forums I frequent.

My 97 sunsetter VLX currently has the MLS center sack and I added the fly high vdrive sacks to the rear but have been using the manual $99 pump.

My biggest question/issue with planning out this system is how I will attach the Tsunami 1200 pumps to my thru hull. I've seen people mention using the W747 to convert the inlet on the pump to 3/4". However that 3/4" is still NPSM thread rather than NPT right? So how do I connect that to the NPT threads on my thru hull?

I've been planning on installing a 1" bronze thru hull > 1" 90* fitting > 1" full port ball valve

www.discountmarinesupplies.com seems to have the best prices on Bronze versions of these parts.

However that leaves me with a 1" female NPT opening. I need to T this into two Tsunami pumps. How do I accomplish this? I wanted the T to also stay 1" so that if I do end up using the W747 that is the only 3/4" restirction point on the inlet side. Otherwise I'd just run 3/4" starting at the thru hull rather than the 1".

Next I was thinking of running 1" hose from the 1200 pumps for fill and using the 800 pumps for drain with the 3/4" hose. I read on this site where someone else used this setup and acheived 5 min fill times and 7 min drain times. Does that sound reasonable? I'm all for saving money but if 1200 on drains make a large difference then maybe it's worth running 1" drains with the 1200 pumps?

With a system like this when filling is it safe to fill until you see water coming out the vent/drain thru hull on the side of the boat to know when you have full bags? 1" inlet versus 3/4 vent/drain isn't going to burst the bags if you accidently leave the pump on for an extra minute is it?

Finally, Anyone else with a similar set up share how much hose in each size they needed? I'm hoping to pick up the clear braided hose at home depot or lowes that I've read about on here.

Thanks

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wakeboard_omega

i used 3/4 inch thru-hulls, to a small nipple, to a 3/4 inch 90, to a 3/4 ball valve and then threaded the w747 carefully on until tight, it doesnt leak. i tried, to T a thru hull off, , and i found you really run into problems with fitment. you'ld be surprised how quickly you run out of room, plus remember, even if it fits, you have to thread parts onto eachother, and actually connect them. id sugest using 2 separate thru-hulls. one on each side. ultimatly, it will make things easier, even when using a T seems easier. i spent hours trying to make things work, and finally just got separate thru-hulls. this way also, i can easily remove the pumps for replacment, and winterization.

i open the hatch a bit, and keep and eye on the bags, they do start to trickle when they get very full, never tested to see what happens when there ready to burst.

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fastjohnny

I am working on a similar project, I have a 1 1/2 thru hull, then a 90 elbow then a shut off valve, then to a pvc manifold. I will be running 3 1200gph Tsunami's, and as all have figured out, connecting those is not straight-forward. I have contemplated just gluing them in with pvc cement (would smooth off the threads first, and would be a custom fit deal). I have also found a compression fitting that should work as well.

Other thoughts: Also thinking I'll use the 800's for draining... Can drain on the way back to dock, under power, should not have a problem waiting... On filling, you won't risk bursting the bags, the water will just drain out...

If you do use the 747 fitting which is NPSM, I am pretty sure it will just thread into the NPT fitting as well, just use pipe dope and thread till tight. I am doing the same thing on my thru hull, which is NPS, going into my elbow, which is NPT. It works.

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Chia
I am working on a similar project, I have a 1 1/2 thru hull, then a 90 elbow then a shut off valve, then to a pvc manifold. I will be running 3 1200gph Tsunami's, and as all have figured out, connecting those is not straight-forward. I have contemplated just gluing them in with pvc cement (would smooth off the threads first, and would be a custom fit deal). I have also found a compression fitting that should work as well.

Other thoughts: Also thinking I'll use the 800's for draining... Can drain on the way back to dock, under power, should not have a problem waiting... On filling, you won't risk bursting the bags, the water will just drain out...

If you do use the 747 fitting which is NPSM, I am pretty sure it will just thread into the NPT fitting as well, just use pipe dope and thread till tight. I am doing the same thing on my thru hull, which is NPS, going into my elbow, which is NPT. It works.

i don't think the tsunami pumps will suck water if they are above the water line, if that is what you are doing. they will not self prime.

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Chia
Ok so I've been researching a lot on this forum as well as several other boat/wakeboarding specific forums I frequent.

My 97 sunsetter VLX currently has the MLS center sack and I added the fly high vdrive sacks to the rear but have been using the manual $99 pump.

My biggest question/issue with planning out this system is how I will attach the Tsunami 1200 pumps to my thru hull. I've seen people mention using the W747 to convert the inlet on the pump to 3/4". However that 3/4" is still NPSM thread rather than NPT right? So how do I connect that to the NPT threads on my thru hull?

I've been planning on installing a 1" bronze thru hull > 1" 90* fitting > 1" full port ball valve

www.discountmarinesupplies.com seems to have the best prices on Bronze versions of these parts.

However that leaves me with a 1" female NPT opening. I need to T this into two Tsunami pumps. How do I accomplish this? I wanted the T to also stay 1" so that if I do end up using the W747 that is the only 3/4" restirction point on the inlet side. Otherwise I'd just run 3/4" starting at the thru hull rather than the 1".

Next I was thinking of running 1" hose from the 1200 pumps for fill and using the 800 pumps for drain with the 3/4" hose. I read on this site where someone else used this setup and acheived 5 min fill times and 7 min drain times. Does that sound reasonable? I'm all for saving money but if 1200 on drains make a large difference then maybe it's worth running 1" drains with the 1200 pumps?

With a system like this when filling is it safe to fill until you see water coming out the vent/drain thru hull on the side of the boat to know when you have full bags? 1" inlet versus 3/4 vent/drain isn't going to burst the bags if you accidently leave the pump on for an extra minute is it?

Finally, Anyone else with a similar set up share how much hose in each size they needed? I'm hoping to pick up the clear braided hose at home depot or lowes that I've read about on here.

Thanks

the bags will not burst. Skicrave posted a great piece of information that a 3/4 inch thru hull will allow you to draw 2,200GPH thru it. Besides the tsunami pumps do not work very well when they come up against any kind of resistance. They are volume pumps not pressure pumps.

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fastjohnny
I am working on a similar project, I have a 1 1/2 thru hull, then a 90 elbow then a shut off valve, then to a pvc manifold. I will be running 3 1200gph Tsunami's, and as all have figured out, connecting those is not straight-forward. I have contemplated just gluing them in with pvc cement (would smooth off the threads first, and would be a custom fit deal). I have also found a compression fitting that should work as well.

Other thoughts: Also thinking I'll use the 800's for draining... Can drain on the way back to dock, under power, should not have a problem waiting... On filling, you won't risk bursting the bags, the water will just drain out...

If you do use the 747 fitting which is NPSM, I am pretty sure it will just thread into the NPT fitting as well, just use pipe dope and thread till tight. I am doing the same thing on my thru hull, which is NPS, going into my elbow, which is NPT. It works.

i don't think the tsunami pumps will suck water if they are above the water line, if that is what you are doing. they will not self prime.

Not sure if you are referring to the fill pumps or the drain. The fill pump/manifold setup will be below the waterline in the bilge, so yes they work, many have done it with success. On the drain pump, I thread it into the bottom hole on the sac, and that works fine too.

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Chia
I am working on a similar project, I have a 1 1/2 thru hull, then a 90 elbow then a shut off valve, then to a pvc manifold. I will be running 3 1200gph Tsunami's, and as all have figured out, connecting those is not straight-forward. I have contemplated just gluing them in with pvc cement (would smooth off the threads first, and would be a custom fit deal). I have also found a compression fitting that should work as well.

Other thoughts: Also thinking I'll use the 800's for draining... Can drain on the way back to dock, under power, should not have a problem waiting... On filling, you won't risk bursting the bags, the water will just drain out...

If you do use the 747 fitting which is NPSM, I am pretty sure it will just thread into the NPT fitting as well, just use pipe dope and thread till tight. I am doing the same thing on my thru hull, which is NPS, going into my elbow, which is NPT. It works.

i don't think the tsunami pumps will suck water if they are above the water line, if that is what you are doing. they will not self prime.

Not sure if you are referring to the fill pumps or the drain. The fill pump/manifold setup will be below the waterline in the bilge, so yes they work, many have done it with success. On the drain pump, I thread it into the bottom hole on the sac, and that works fine too.

just wanted to make sure, there doesn't seem to be much room down there for all that.

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Tao of Wake
Ok so I've been researching a lot on this forum as well as several other boat/wakeboarding specific forums I frequent.

My 97 sunsetter VLX currently has the MLS center sack and I added the fly high vdrive sacks to the rear but have been using the manual $99 pump.

My biggest question/issue with planning out this system is how I will attach the Tsunami 1200 pumps to my thru hull. I've seen people mention using the W747 to convert the inlet on the pump to 3/4". However that 3/4" is still NPSM thread rather than NPT right? So how do I connect that to the NPT threads on my thru hull?

I've been planning on installing a 1" bronze thru hull > 1" 90* fitting > 1" full port ball valve

www.discountmarinesupplies.com seems to have the best prices on Bronze versions of these parts.

However that leaves me with a 1" female NPT opening. I need to T this into two Tsunami pumps. How do I accomplish this? I wanted the T to also stay 1" so that if I do end up using the W747 that is the only 3/4" restirction point on the inlet side. Otherwise I'd just run 3/4" starting at the thru hull rather than the 1".

Next I was thinking of running 1" hose from the 1200 pumps for fill and using the 800 pumps for drain with the 3/4" hose. I read on this site where someone else used this setup and acheived 5 min fill times and 7 min drain times. Does that sound reasonable? I'm all for saving money but if 1200 on drains make a large difference then maybe it's worth running 1" drains with the 1200 pumps?

With a system like this when filling is it safe to fill until you see water coming out the vent/drain thru hull on the side of the boat to know when you have full bags? 1" inlet versus 3/4 vent/drain isn't going to burst the bags if you accidently leave the pump on for an extra minute is it?

Finally, Anyone else with a similar set up share how much hose in each size they needed? I'm hoping to pick up the clear braided hose at home depot or lowes that I've read about on here.

Thanks

I installed my system last Spring and spent all summer tweaking it. Here are some things I learned:

- Install a vent line. You can do it without, but you will be much happier with one. This will allow you to completely fill the sac without having to manually burp it. I installed a PVC tee with two check valves so that I could have both the drain and vent on the same thru hull.

- You don't need 1" thru hulls for the Tsunami pumps (both fill & drain). Just save the money and get 3/4". The 3/4" garboard drains that Malibu uses work perfectly for the fill (see bakesonline.com or your dealer for exactly what you need). For the drain/vent, use the exact same fitting as Malibu so that it matches.

- Just route your tubing for the drain/vent up as high as you can and put a loop in it. If you go the same route as me and use the check valves, then you won't have any problems with auto-draining. The loop and the check valves will take care of this. Also, another advantage to this setup is that when you drain the bag, it COMPLETELY drains it. The bag collapses completely because there is no way for air to enter it as you empty it. Oh, I forgot to mention, just put a check valve in the fill line after the pump so that it doesn't auto-drain through the fill pump. I tried to route the tubing high, but I just couldn't get it high enough, so I just installed a check valve.

- Install two thru hulls for the fills. As others have said, it will be much easier and cleaner than putting a tee on a single thru hull.

- I used 1" tubing, but I am not sure I needed it. I think 3/4" would have worked just fine.

- I can't really comment on 800 GPH vs 1200 GPH as I just used the 1200 GPH for both the fill and drain. The cost difference was almost negligible. I just used a short piece of the 1" hose to connect the 1-1/8" fitting (I used the 1-/18" version of this fitting; you could use the 3/4" version) to the 1" Fly High W746 adapter (you could use the W742).

Here is a link to the check valves I used. Unfortunately, they don't have it in 3/4". You could always use the one above it.

Here is the tubing I first used and was not happy with it. It would kink. So I switched it out with this tubing. It is not that easy to get connected to the barb fittings (have to use a little vaseline), but it is very easy to route, loop, etc.

I hope this all helps in some way. I received A LOT of help and advise on this forum. I initially ignored some of it but eventually came around. The great thing is that you can learn from other's experience. Use it and you will save yourself time, money and frustration.

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Tao of Wake
just wanted to make sure, there doesn't seem to be much room down there for all that.

You've got that right! I put everything in last Spring, and I think I am still sore from contorting myself in the rear locker to get everything installed. I feel terrible for all the bad language that spewed from my mouth while installing the thru hulls and fittings in such a cramped space. It's all worth it now! Completely automatic and extremely fast fill & drain. I love it. Thanks again for all your help while I was designing it.

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the_dude

Ok I have been searching and am continuing to search this site and others for pics of people installs on the fill side.

How in the world did you guys fit a 3/4 thru hull, 3/4 ball valve with a Tsunami 1200 pump into the bottom starboard side on a Sunsetter VLX? I assembled the parts with 3/4 thru hull > 90* > 3/4 ball valve > W747 adapter > Tsunami 1200 pump. I tried fitting it in various angles on the starboard side and really don't see how to make this fit reasonably.

pics please!

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MikeR

I installed my system last Spring and spent all summer tweaking it. Here are some things I learned:

- Install a vent line. You can do it without, but you will be much happier with one. This will allow you to completely fill the sac without having to manually burp it. I installed a PVC tee with two check valves so that I could have both the drain and vent on the same thru hull.

- You don't need 1" thru hulls for the Tsunami pumps (both fill & drain). Just save the money and get 3/4". The 3/4" garboard drains that Malibu uses work perfectly for the fill (see bakesonline.com or your dealer for exactly what you need). For the drain/vent, use the exact same fitting as Malibu so that it matches.

- Just route your tubing for the drain/vent up as high as you can and put a loop in it. If you go the same route as me and use the check valves, then you won't have any problems with auto-draining. The loop and the check valves will take care of this. Also, another advantage to this setup is that when you drain the bag, it COMPLETELY drains it. The bag collapses completely because there is no way for air to enter it as you empty it. Oh, I forgot to mention, just put a check valve in the fill line after the pump so that it doesn't auto-drain through the fill pump. I tried to route the tubing high, but I just couldn't get it high enough, so I just installed a check valve.

- Install two thru hulls for the fills. As others have said, it will be much easier and cleaner than putting a tee on a single thru hull.

- I used 1" tubing, but I am not sure I needed it. I think 3/4" would have worked just fine.

- I can't really comment on 800 GPH vs 1200 GPH as I just used the 1200 GPH for both the fill and drain. The cost difference was almost negligible. I just used a short piece of the 1" hose to connect the 1-1/8" fitting (I used the 1-/18" version of this fitting; you could use the 3/4" version) to the 1" Fly High W746 adapter (you could use the W742).

Here is a link to the check valves I used. Unfortunately, they don't have it in 3/4". You could always use the one above it.

Here is the tubing I first used and was not happy with it. It would kink. So I switched it out with this tubing. It is not that easy to get connected to the barb fittings (have to use a little vaseline), but it is very easy to route, loop, etc.

I hope this all helps in some way. I received A LOT of help and advise on this forum. I initially ignored some of it but eventually came around. The great thing is that you can learn from other's experience. Use it and you will save yourself time, money and frustration.

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Awest

I have a 98 sunsetter vlx and did the complete install last summer. The starboard side through hull was a tight squeeze with an 800 gph pump and I do not think I could have gotten in a 1200. No way. It went in at a 45 degree angle behind the engine water intake hose. Angled back toward the center of the boat.

Do it like this:

Disconnect your shower mixer valve and get the hoses out of the way. I also would have removed the engine water intake in hindsight but that is a bit harder to disconnect.

Dry fit the pump, through hull lock nut, valve and short galvy riser before you drill the hole to show exact placement.

Drill a small 1/8" pilot hole in the center of your mounting location.

Get someone skinny to crawl under the boat and drill the hole for the through hull.

Don't let them get out yet. If you have the kind of through hull that Bakes sold me there is more work to do. The one they sold had a bronze notch on it that has to be accounted for by dremelling out the notch in the fiberglass. This through hull is actually screwed to the bottom of the hull as well so the alignment has to be precise with all screw holes marked and predrilled. If you have a regular through hull with no notch and a lock nut on top you are lucky and you just have to dry fit the whole system with the guy under the boat screwing the fitting into the assembly while you hold it in place. Then unscrew it and silicone the hell out the fitting before final assembly.

Center ballast was a bit simpler but I hate working in that space. Vent and drain actually fit nicely through the hole at the front of the locker where the steering cables came through. All vents are on the starboard side to view when the bags are full or empty. I used 3/4 inch tube and about 40' if I remember correctly. Fill times are about 5 minutes. Just enough time to switch from wakeboarding to surfing.

Dana Marine made me some beautiful switches that mounted on the vinyl wall below my throttle and above the eyeglass holder thingy. Get the lighted switches. You will know when the pumps are on.

One word on the ballast system. In order to surf well with this boat I added a bow sac. I have not permanently plumbed that in since it does not fit well under the seats. I also just switched to a 700 lb sac on one side as the 400 did not cut it.

If I get a chance I will send some photos.

AW

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skicrave

Ok I have been searching and am continuing to search this site and others for pics of people installs on the fill side.

How in the world did you guys fit a 3/4 thru hull, 3/4 ball valve with a Tsunami 1200 pump into the bottom starboard side on a Sunsetter VLX? I assembled the parts with 3/4 thru hull > 90* > 3/4 ball valve > W747 adapter > Tsunami 1200 pump. I tried fitting it in various angles on the starboard side and really don't see how to make this fit reasonably.

pics please!

Did you try without the 90 between the intake and the ball valve? Also, I'm assuming you shortened the intake of the pump down to it's minimum?

Also, if you're using a standard intake you can cut it down to as short as possible as it's NPS thread throughout. We DO NOT recommend using this type of intake in a ballast system as it does not mate correctly with the NPT thread of the ball valve or elbow, but also understand that people are going to do that regardless of what we say.

FWIW, the difference in speed between the T1200 and the T800 is pretty minor until you start to talk about pumping hundreds of gallons of water, so for most people it won't be worth the additional hassle. We do have the 1 1/8" thread to 1" hose barb adapter available separately if you do decide to go with the T1200, which can help with the plumbing.

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