RE: Valve Screws - Suggestion for a better design
I live in Perth Australia and windsurf all year round. The temperatures here in the summer reach over 40c on some days. My boards are bagged with insulation but go on the roof of the car when I go to the beach. Hence the "plug paranoia".
I don't think your suggestion of opening and closing it once a year would work for me.
The problem is, I feel, the potentially catastrophic effects of forgetting the board plug (both ways), not losing the plug as such.
I've done it once and ruined a board when I sailed with it loose.
I can live with the screw, I just think a way should be worked out that would FORCE the user to check it before sailing.
Real Wind's suggestion was very good, with my new board I will deffinately employ a similar method.
I've heard of some board manufactures employing goretex type membranes over a small hole which sounds good to me.
PS this is from the board maker Blue Juice in Perth....
When I make a board I put the vent plug in the nose area, so if it forgotten to be done up then that area of the board has the highest chance of staying out of the water, you can also see it when sailing which helps remind you to think if it was done up.
CJW leaving it done up all the time means that the board shrinks and expands EVERYDAY with the min and max temps, so after this happening say 730 times(2years)the weakest link in the board which is the bond between the little polystyrene balls pulls apart and the board delams. Ive ripped open many delam boards for repairs and theres a thin layer of beads still stuck the skin of the board.