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Old 15 October 2013, 16:28   #141
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Engine height looks fine to me. Glad that question is resolved.

I would look very carefully at the manual and reassemble the boat though. The floor boards look too low in the latest pic (relative to the elephant trunk hole) but I've never had one of these hulls before, just a somewhat similar Bombard hull. In that construction there's a groove in the aftmost edge of the floor board, that groove fits onto the rib of aluminum on the transom, not above or below it, right onto it. But the manual is your best guid to proper floor board placement. Don't assume, just check the manual and reassemble step by step.

I have found foot pumps completely inadequate for getting proper tube pressure. Get a good pump (electric) and a good gauge and pump that keel tube to exact rated pressure. (although I use a scuba tank with adapter) If its underinflated you will end up with a "cupped" hull and the exact bow steering symptoms you describe.

The OPV on the foot pump could very well be defective or venting too soon and you'll never get a good ride with inadequate keel tube pressure. Readjust all the tube prssures after its been in the water at least 15mins.
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Old 15 October 2013, 16:50   #142
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The floorboards are appropriately assembled in the photo in my basement and the most recent one where the transom has been raised. The proper assembly is described on p.8 of the attached manual. The diagram indicates that one ought to expect to see the metal rim of the ledge on the bottom of the transom that fits into the groove of the rear floorboard. That rim ought to be visible just above the back end of floorboard at the junction with the transom. That's not the issue at present. However, in the spring, I do intend to reassemble the boat because I want to see what the aft portion of he keel looks like under the floor.

The large drain hole you can see in the recent pic is for rapidly draining deep water that is above the floor. There is a separate drain for draining water below the floor.

The manual indicates a goal pressure of 2.5 PSI. I had the boat pumped up to over 3.5 PSI and did so after the boat had 15 minutes to sit in the cold water. F*%ck these boats if one needs an electric pump to get proper pressure. I've been assembling and enjoying Zodiacs for over 30 years without an electric pump. Even as a 16 year old kid, I could over inflate a boat by jumping on the pump. In those days, Zodiacs had intercommunicating valves and you could screw on the gauge until it made an airtight seal with the valve. Those readings were pretty accurate and we must have had several of those gauges because we had several boats and they'd correlate well with each other. I never had a boat that put its nose down like this one. I know all about appropriate air pressure, and so I appreciate your advice to pay attention to it. Believe me, I do and on the day of the sea trial, I paid specific attention to the pressure including (and especially) the keel pressure. I really don't think that that is the issue. If it was, all kinds of people would be having serious boating issues (like I'm having) all of the time all around the world with inflatable boats. There's more going on with my boat than under-inflation of the keel.
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Old 15 October 2013, 17:00   #143
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Floor boards assemble exactly like my old Bombard (also made by Zodiac). Guess they just drilled the elephant trunk hole a little high.

2.5 psi for a keel tube sounds underinflated to me, but I've never had a boat with an inflatable keel. I'm starting to come around to Sibrider's position. Maybe the prop is radically off and entraining too much air leading to your annoying ventilation once you trim up the engine.

Ps My foot pump is only used in emergencies, it sucks humping that thing like a dog for 30 miutes to inflate a boat!
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Old 15 October 2013, 22:02   #144
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Everyone is concerned that he had sufficient pressure at 3.5 lb when the manual states a target pressure of 2.5 lb. really? Does anyone doubt the ability of Zodiac to state a proper pressure.

Looked up my Avon manual which states keel pressure of 2.0 to 3.0 lb and 2.5 recommended, so that pretty well agrees with Zodiac.

The floorboard fits a tongue and groove piece, so why would anyone doubt he assembled the boat correctly?

Projectile, I will leave you to the experts, and I hope you get a satisfactory fix for your problem.
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Old 16 October 2013, 16:18   #145
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Projectile where are you in Canada? Anywhere in BC? I'm kinda out of commission right now for boating, but in a few weeks I'd be happy to take a ride in your SIB and offer some suggestions on what's going wrong. I'm in the Seattle area.
That's a really wonderful and generous offer, but I'm east of BC. Thanks, though.
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Old 16 October 2013, 16:24   #146
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Projectile, I will leave you to the experts, and I hope you get a satisfactory fix for your problem.
Thanks, frankc. You were the first person to bring a hooked hull to my attention and for that, I thank you too. I do believe that the behavior of my boat suggests a hull problem, and when I looked, sure enough, there was what appears to be a hook in my hull. This hypothesis has the most going for it right now.

I'll update the thread when I hear back from Zodiac, who are examining the pics.
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Old 16 October 2013, 16:39   #147
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interesting that they reduced required air pressure so significantly. Love those original intercommunicating valves. F470 calls for 3.4 PSI main tubes and ~3.1 for keel.

Genius of design although bit more leaky maybe.
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Old 16 October 2013, 16:40   #148
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As this pic shows, the black stopper on the yellow part of the Bravo 9 pump will pop off at 4.4 PSI.

This confirms that my Zodiac dealer rep over-inflated the keel to 4.4 PSI as the over pressure stopper did pop off when he did so. IMO, this indicates *nothing whatsoever* about the pressure in the keel prior to the 4 or 5 pumps that he put into it. I had confirmed a pressure of at least 3.5 PSI after the boat had cooled off in the water for 15 minutes, and that's already 1 PSI greater than the recommended pressure of 2.5 PSI by the manufacturer. I provided objective evidence that my keel was properly inflated. My Zodiac dealer rep provided no objective evidence whatsoever that my keel was under inflated.

Accordingly, it is highly implausible to me that my keel was under inflated.
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Old 16 October 2013, 16:41   #149
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SIBRider, I too LOVE the intercommunicating valves. Our older Zodiacs from the 1980s all had those.

The FC470 is my dream boat. Enjoy yours in health!

It is interesting that they recommend a lower pressure for the keel than for the buoyancy tubes ... Since I aimed for the same pressure, I think it is even less likely that my keel was under-inflated. Remember, my Zodiac dealer rep indicated that he thought that my buoyancy tubes were appropriately pumped up ...
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Old 16 October 2013, 16:45   #150
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Everyone is concerned that he had sufficient pressure at 3.5 lb when the manual states a target pressure of 2.5 lb. really? Does anyone doubt the ability of Zodiac to state a proper pressure.

Looked up my Avon manual which states keel pressure of 2.0 to 3.0 lb and 2.5 recommended, so that pretty well agrees with Zodiac.
It is noteworthy that my boat, though badged as a Zodiac, is in fact, an AVON! AVON originally made the WB465 and still makes them in their UK factory for Zodiac. Now, they are black instead of grey, and the have Zodiac carrying handles and badges on them, but otherwise, same boat.
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