How to Create a Deck Dam


A plastic bag filled with sand may be all you need to route rainwater into your tanks

When Mark Edwards, a rigger from Auckland, New Zealand, molded the deck for his 50-footer Relapse, he deliberately included raised toerails that trap water on deck for most of the length of the boat: as in, all the way back to the fill-point for the water tanks. When he wants to catch water, he first lets the rain wash the deck clean, then he creates a dam just aft of the fill with a baggy filled with sand. On a single day last sailing season he collected 320 gallons of free water, or as Edwards put it, “showers for a month.” 

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