USAMARINE Web Group - Captains' Corner Boatbuilding Tips

Livewell Splash Shields and Baffle

Transom Mount Livewell

Gotta' love those great transom mounted livewells!  EXCEPT.... for the volumes of water, and sometimes even expensive live baits, that slosh out either end, when fishing in a heavy beam sea. To add insult to injury, you're standing next to it and get 2 gallons of 60º water dumped into your pocket!

Here's a cure that I designed recently for a Carolina Custom Express.

The livewell is center mounted, taking up about the middle 1/3 of the transom, with two hatch lids hinged to a center plate, each opening from the outboard side. The livewell is drained and overflowed by means of a stand pipe in the center, and holds about 40 gallons of water when in use.

Using clear acrylic plastic, I added a splash shield to each end. 3/8" was chosen for strength, (probably overkill, but that's the way I am), with a nice, user friendly, rounded over, and polished 3/4" edging. Just this addition was enough to stop sloshing out by 95%.  One rather heavy roll on the next trip out proved that 5º could still end up in a pocket.

While the splash shields worked great, and even afforded a nice shelf where bait bridles, rigging needles, and some spare VMC hook rigs could be kept conveniently at hand, the velocity of the water racing from one end to the other, was enough to overflow the shields.

The next addition was to tame that water down by inserting a 1/4" acrylic plastic baffle. This accomplished the desired effect and totally stopped the water from getting over or past the shields. As an added bonus, baits could now be divided up on either side. And chasing those last two blue runners, swimming around at mach one, ducking the dip net, was no longer a two man job.
mounting a stud in a composite laminate

All support and mounting strips were done with polyethylene, (Starboard), and all joints tightly caulked with polyurethane. The Baffle is removeable by sliding it up.

While I'm at it, here's a similar cure that I did on a 32' Luhr's Express.

The Luhr's has the livewell built in as part of one of the cockpit cabinets either side of the step-up to the helm. It holds a little less water than the transom units, and has a much heavier lid that won't allow major gushes of water to escape.

None the less, water will slosh out and can account for some wet feet.

This one only has one fixed shield, and with the 3/4" lip extended only from the lower face. The resulting access is opened or closed by a sliding top panel, that is tensioned enough not to slide open by itself.

Looking for the Ultimate Transom Livewell?
Check this one out!

Custom Transom Livewell by Capt Patrick McCrary

Have fun! Feel free to download and print this drawing, but please don't use it on a website without linking it to USAMARINE. It's part of our upcoming revisions and is sort of a preview, (for the gang here at the boatbuilding bulletin board), of some tips and techniques that I'm assembling for use in the Captains' Corner Projects area.

Capt Patrick McCrary

Capt Patrick McCrary

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