We have released a new silicone battery compartment gasket for the Velocitek ProStart. Here’s the installation video:
Through April 30, we are offering this upgrade to ProStart owners for free with free shipping. Please visit our online store to get your new gasket:
If you’re curious how this upgrade came about, here is the background story:
The Velocitek ProStart was designed to the IPX8 industrial water resistance standard for continuous immersion. Our production samples were tested to this standard and they passed. Practical Sailor magazine also tested the ProStart to this standard during their review of the product and the ProStart passed those tests as well. It turns out there is a big difference between sitting in a bucket of still water and wiping out on a fast boat.
Velocitek received an unusually high number of ProStart warranty returns due to water damage, especially from customers using the product on boats like the International Moth that can capsize violently and hold the ProStart underwater. In these instances we looked after our customers and honored their warranties. But this was a frustrating situation: it was expensive for us and inconvenient for our customers.
Earlier this year, Velocitek had some Australian Moth sailors coming back for their second and third ProStart warranty replacements. It was clear that we needed to improve the product.
Though customer feedback and our continued product testing we understood that the water was entering through the battery compartment. Velocitek teamed up with a company on the East Coast that specializes in gaskets for medical and industrial equipment for a solution.
The solution was to replace the hard rubber o-ring used to seal the battery compartment lid with a much softer, thicker silicone gasket. This gives us more overlap between the ridge on the battery compartment lid and the gasket, providing a much better seal.
Thus far, ProStarts with these new gaskets have passed a number of rigorous testing scenarios including smashing the product into the surface of the water at different angles, immersion in overhead surf and use by Australians.
All Velocitek ProStarts that ship from now on will be equipped with the new gasket design. We hope this improvement helps you get even more out of your ProStart.