REFERENCE TO THE SUBJECT OF "FLYING GULLSWEEPS®" (OVERBOARD AND LOST)
I, personally, have inspected hundreds of Gullsweep® installations throughout the North East area over the years during visits to various harbors and friends on the water. I have seen Gullsweeps® under every type of installation imaginable. These visual inspections revealed that about 80% of them were installed in accordance with our recommendations, 10% were marginal and 10% were destined to fail.
In our continuing R&D efforts we have over 35 Gullsweeps® (4’, 6’ & 8’ in dia.) working 24/7, year round, in the worst or at least the most difficult weather conditions possible. When Irene blew through in early September of this year at 60 mph it destroyed a 4’ Gullsweep®. Another 3 footer blew off a 20’ boat nearby. Close inspection showed the mounting pin on the boat had tipped over to about a 45° angle to the water and the Gullsweep® went overboard. By reconstructing the boat’s location on its mooring and the wind direction of the storm, we knew the specific location of disappearance. At low tide the water was 4’ deep and the missing Gullsweep® was right there on the bottom. The red vanes were most visible. We readjusted and secured the mounting pin, washed off the Gullsweep® and we were back in business. Gullsweeps® do not fly, however they can fall off a tilted mounting pin, and they do not float. If you have had such an occurrence, reconstruct the conditions and you will find the Gullsweep® close to the event, on the bottom. Shallow water makes the find much easier.
A lesson learned is that not every installation is perfect. The installation can change over time with severe wind and rotational vibration that Gullsweep® generates, and so we have designed a simple foolproof retainer clip to eliminate this unfortunate event that happens to a few Gullsweeps®. From May 2012 on, every Gullsweep® comes with a retainer clip on the mounting pin that prevents them from falling off the pin no matter what the angle is. Simple in design, however every installer must read the installation instructions carefully to be assured the retainer can do its job if called upon, and will not inhibit the normal operation of Gullsweep®; see the section on Retainer Clip (As in the instructions, there should always be clearance between the retainer clip and the Gullsweep® hub so drag friction does not occur). We do not want unhappy customers who are sure their Gullsweep® just flew away. If you do not have a retainer on your Gullsweep®, they are available as a GS-RK accessory.
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