The Scrubbis hull cleaning system enables an owner to clean their hull while it’s in the water. Does it work? Graham Snook tests the system to find out
WHY IT’S USEFUL
Scrubbis is a hull cleaning system that saves you having to haul out to get your hull cleaned. Like it or not, whatever antifoul you use, it will get growth that slows your yacht down, reduces her pointing ability and uses more fuel when you motor her.
The Scrubbis is an angled pole with buoyant heads that can be attached. It’s a simple idea; the buoyant head keeps the head (either a plastic scraper, foam paddles or a tough AstroTurf-like attachment) against the hull. The system also has a waterline cleaner with a large abrasive pad.
HOW WE TESTED
Before getting my Sadler 32 lifted this year, I used the Scrubbis and its various accessories (including the waterline scrubber) on the starboard side of the boat, leaving the port side as a control. The Scrubbis was easily assembled and all the attachments were used on sections of the boat.
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Firstly, my boat had been in the water for around 18 months and Scrubbis recommend cleaning the hull once or twice a month, so this test was probably tougher than what was expected.
Even so, when I lifted the boat out, the side I had cleaned was noticeably clearer than the uncleaned side, and it achieved this without me having to get in the water. From that point of view, it was a real success.
The test did, however, highlight a few problems with the system.
Firstly, the handle has a hard-edged loop to hang the pole up by, but a rounded end would have been more comfortable.
The handle also isn’t secured to the pole, so trying to manoeuver the head made the handle twist round the pole.
The biggest problem is when trying to clean a keel without wings or a bulb, it’s easy for the brush to go past the bottom of the keel so that the buoyant head pops up on the other side of the keel.
The handle twists but the pole doesn’t, and flexes in a worrying manner. Eventually, it was possible to push the pole down and wiggle it aft in steps. The same thing happened, albeit to a lesser extent, when it got stuck between my propeller and rudder skeg.
From the pontoon, it looked like the system was doing an impressive job and on lift-out, it had cleaned well in places and was certainly cleaner than the untouched side, but the difficulty in controlling it meant that the results were rather patchy.
The Scrubbis hull cleaning system costs £75 and is available from www.marineindustrial.co.uk/dealers