row2k Features
Coach Tricks
Rowing Hack: A Better Boat Pump
January 25, 2024
John FX Flynn, row2k

Don't let your launch fill up in the rain!

If you have water in your launch, whether from a good downpour or just one of those slow, hard-to-find leaks that older launches develop, Dave Deluliis sent us a pretty cool power tool hack that will save you from messing with hand pumps, bailers, and even sponges: go out and get yourself a Ryobi Telescoping Pole Pump.

This Rowing Hack at work
This Rowing Hack at work

While this toy isn't cheap, it is portable and runs off one of Ryobi's 18 volt rechargable batteries, so it is perfect for a boat that lives at the end of a dock, a long way from anywhere to plug in an electric pump.

That, after all, is a problem that inspired one of the first Rowing Hacks we ever featured--the Pump-o-matic--and this option doesn't require the big marine battery or hand truck we saw in that Hack.

Deluliis, the head coach at Assumption University, can attest that the pump moves something like 15 gallons a minute and is, in his words, "so much better than those god awful hand pumps."

At that volume, you can quickly pump out a whole fleet of launches that may have filled up in an overnight rain storm...and having a reliable pump is, of course, essential if you keep your launches in the water during the season.

Deluliis confessed that he got the idea from the coaches at UMass, which works for us: having a cool trick spotted and copied by another coach is one of the prime criteria for a Rowing Hack, after all.

This is not the only hack idea that we've seen using a product from one of these interchangeable battery ecosystems: one played a starring role in the Erg Race Fan Hack.

You do have to hand it to the toolmaker here, though: this pump seems tailor made for any rowing coach who is a proud member of the "jonboat navy"--and the fact that you can also use the battery for your drill and a bunch of other tools that can help out around the boathouse is a bonus, for sure.

Even we have to admit, the Pump-o-Matic might have met its match
Even we have to admit, the Pump-o-Matic might have met its match

Do you have a cool tool that gets stuff done at your place? If so, share your ideas--and hacks--in the comments below.

If you have a great rowing hack to suggest for future inclusion, then please send it to us like Dave did and we will feature your idea in a future column.

If you enjoy and rely on row2k, we need your help to be able to keep doing all this. Though row2k sometimes looks like a big, outside-funded operation, it mainly runs on enthusiasm and grit. Help us keep it coming, thank you! Learn more.


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01/26/2024  8:12:19 AM
1 people like this
I 3D printed something like this that takes a Milwaukee M18 battery.

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