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The smoke and flames continue, the steering is history…

September 26, 2014

Trotted down at 10am with brother in tow. Got him to work on the sanding, then called him up into the cabin to help put in the crawl ways. Finally got them in good enough so I could wriggle to the back end of the cockpit and start taking the hydraulic steering apart. Or at least that’s what I thought I’d do. Couldn’t get any of the connections apart, couldn’t cut the hose (wire reinforced), and finally resorted to pulling the hinge pins and removing the entire cylinder, hoses and all. Then took the sabre saw to the copper tube. Hydraulic fluid all over the place. After that, taking the nuts off the 4 bolts holding the pedestal to the deck was almost relaxing. Of cource, where a 1 inch bolt would do, our previous owner stayed true to his philosophy and used 4 inchers, two stainless, one bronze and one regular. At least the nuts didn’t put up a fight.

Once the steering was apart below deck, I sent brother back down to sand and mopped up the hydraulic fluid, off the deck, and off my face.  Then I took the pedestal apart. As expected it was a completely home made unit, with store bought pump and cylinder. A bit of work with an allen wrench and it came apart, and disappeared over the side. I expect the pump is shot, and the cylinder needs a total overhaul so I’ll not bother for now. I have the Edson pedestal and the chain to wire set up, which should go in easily once the cockpit has been raised 8 inches.

Mike showed up late, coffees in hand and got to it. All the various holes left over from fittings have been filled in now, and he did a very nice job of getting them flush. Very little if any filler needed, probably the epoxy paint itself will fill any of the imperfections.

Going to take a bit of a break tomorrow, my body is complaining rather loudly at the abuse I put it through crawling around under the cockpit. Even with the crawl way, I ended up laying across a couple of frames and they ground into the hip bone and back muscles something fierce. I’ll be hitting the tylenol 3’s before bed tonight and setting up a trip to the chiro tomorrow.

So far the weather gods have been kind, a gorgeous fall day, promising at least a week more of the same. Mike is busy Monday and Tuesday but Wednesday we’ll be back at it getting the cockpit done. That will be the last of the major welding, only a few small jobs after that. Unless I really go nuts and change the main hatch a bit. (something I’ve been contemplating for  long time  now)

As promised, some photos:

patch 3

The finished patch, first epoxy coat on.

stbd side crawl way 2

The starboard side crawl way. The X shaped black tubes are the cockpit drains, the rudder post is behind that, which is where I had to wriggle to get at the cylinder. The frames with the wire bundles on them are what I had to lay against, there is very little room between the hull side and the bottom of the cockpit.

coupon welding 1

A couple of the coupons being welded in.




From → Meat n Taters

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