These Radios Float

Waterproof VHFs and a clever bilge pump are featured in New Products from our May 2010 issue

June 3, 2010

Courtesy of Cobra Marine| |The MR HH330 FLT and the Bluetooth-equipped MR HH475 FLT BT| Dropping your handheld VHF in the drink doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to watch it sink to the bottom. Two new waterproof radios from Cobra Marine float. The MR HH330 FLT and the Bluetooth-equipped MR HH475 FLT BT (now there’s a mouthful) are full-feature VHFs with simple controls and large LCD screens for easy viewing. Each bright-orange and black handheld allows users to monitor three channels at a time or scan through all the channels. And both even have a unique “burp” feature that vibrates water out of the speaker grill once you fish it out of the drink. Cool technology, but couldn’t they have thought up some catchier names?
$130 to $170, (773) 889-8870,

Courtesy of Lansman| |The Drainman|

It Keeps on Pumping
If you’re looking for a way to make sure that the bilge of your dinghy is always being pumped dry without going to the expense or aggravation of rigging an electric-powered bilge pump or a boat cover, check this out: The Drainman from Lansman is a clever little bilge pump that’s powered by using a dinghy’s natural motion in wind and waves when it’s tethered to a dock, a mooring pendant, or the stern of your boat. The Drainman connects to a dock line or a painter; every time the line goes tight, it pumps some water out of the bottom of the boat. Now this little pump won’t keep up with a Biblical downpour, but as long as the boat moves enough to tension the line holding it, the pump will pump. The company says that the pump can move 660 gallons per day.
$100, +46-31-788-1600,


Courtesy of Larand Products| |Plate-Mate|

Open Any Deck Plate
Some ideas are just so simple that it’s amazing that they’re just debuting now. Take The Plate-Mate, for instance. It’s a durable plastic handle/key/wrench that makes it a heck of a lot easier to unscrew flush-mounted plastic deck plates. It couldn’t be simpler to use, and as anyone who’s tried to unscrew a plastic deck plate that hasn’t been opened in a while can attest, it couldn’t be more useful. You can even adjust the plastic pegs that provide the needed purchase so it’ll work on a wide variety of plates.
$13, (877) 786-0606,

Courtesy of Parker Energy| |FPM-52 Fuel Recirculation System|


Clean Up Your Fuel
As diesel fuel warms, through engine use or simply on a hot day, its natural capacity to absorb water increases. When the fuel cools, any water in the fuel condenses in the tank, forming a bacteria-harboring slime that can seriously affect your engine. One way to counter this is to “polish” your fuel. And an easy way to do that is to install a Parker Energy System FPM-52 Fuel Recirculation System with a Racor fuel filter/water separator. It works by continually filtering the entire fuel system, even when the engine isn’t running. Yes, the tiny pump runs constantly, but it can be powered by a small solar panel, and it can save the time and trouble that contamination in your fuel can cause.
From $587, (877) 217-4501,

Courtesy of Manson Anchors| |Racer Anchor|

Lightweight Holding Power
Are you looking for a secondary anchor that’s light and can be stowed easily in a locker but will still supply the pull when you need it? The new Manson Racer anchor is built of aluminum, and though it’s intended for racers, all sailors can benefit from its significant fluke surface area, which is often more important than weight when it comes to an anchor staying set. It’s available in 12 different sizes, and there’s even an optional storage bag.
From $118, (800) 262-8464,


More Gear