|Looking Down Into the Bilge Cavity Which is|
Just Aft of the Main Engine, with a Water Hose
Pumping Water In at a Pretty Good Clip.
Still, even as we were enjoying the distraction and satisfaction of recently completing two special projects – for the boat’s remote monitoring and CCTV systems, see two previous blogs – we of course continued to pay attention to the periodic duties that Ghost Rider requires to stay (and keep us) happy.
It is not normal to wake up one morning and think “let’s see if we can flood the boat today”, but that’s essentially the approach required when it’s time (annually) to test out the boat’s bilge pumps. Ghost Rider has four of those as part of its de-watering systems. Two are DC powered with automatic float switches: a Whale Gulper 320 for nuisance water and a Rule 3100 for high water, with 300 and 3,000 GPH ratings respectively. A third is manually operated via a hand pump; that’s an Edson 638 with a gallon-per-stroke rating. And the fourth is a Pacer crash pump which can evacuate up to 10,000 GPH – that’s about the volume of an average domestic in-ground pool here in south Florida – and is hydraulically powered via the PTO coming off the wing engine.
|The Hydraulic Pacer Crash Pump Located in the|
Lazarette. You Can Tell It's a Serious Pump by the
Size of the Input & Output Hoses.
And the recently installed remote sensor dutifully reported its detection of high water, but also revealed a weakness – it wouldn't dry out and kept triggering alarms. After huddling with the vendor (Monnit) it was determined that we had a faulty unit and they shipped a replacement. Rick fashioned a new mounting method for this one (vertical vs. horizontal orientation, and a few inches lower) and thus far it is behaving. To illustrate we have added a couple of updated photos of the bilge area towards the bottom of this post.
As mentioned in a previous blog we also needed to figure out what was wrong with the master stateroom's air conditioning unit, which had started throwing “HI PS” (high pressure) warnings and shutting itself down. After a week of trying his home remedies with no resolution, Rick called an A/C tech out to the boat; when he showed up as scheduled one morning, we cranked up the air conditioning unit in the master stateroom….and it performed flawlessly.
No "HI PS" errors, just a constant flow of nicely
chilled air. We had the tech (Craig,
from VIP Marine, LINK) check
the system for pressure, component temps and overall system health – all of which
he pronounced to be sound. Puzzlement. Theoretically the issue could be a control board
about to go bad, or an intermittently sticking pressure switch, or just a piece
of flotsam that unstuck itself from the cooling loop…with the latter being the
most likely and preferable. But at any rate
the problem seems to be gone. Perhaps occasionally
you just get lucky.
|The Sea Strainer for the A/C with a New "Hat". Rick Ordered a Whole New Lid|
with Rubber Gasket for it After Experiencing Issues with the Old Cork Gasket.
|The "Before" and "After" Pics of an Overhead Light Bezel (Trim Ring). It is|
Not a Difficult Task to Buff Out, but There Are 40 of Them.
As it turns out, rubbing them down with a 3M Scotch Pad soaked with white vinegar restores them quite nicely and is a lot cheaper than buying new ones. But there are 40 of the damned things and that took a while given the difficulty of prying them off and snapping them back on. (After the first dozen or so we learned a useful trick: lightly coat the inside of the snap-on trim ring with Superlube synthetic grease… after which they became much easier to reinstall.)
|The Pilot House Overhead Panel (Removed) Where Water Was Leaking; the Red|
Arrow Points to the Sirius/XM Antenna Wire Feed That Was the Source.
|Looking at the Underside of the Old Sirius/XM Antenna, with the Red Arrow|
Pointing to the Frayed (and Eventually Broken) Wire. It Was Pretty Obvious that
a Previous Owner Had Tried to Re-caulk & Tighten with Poor Technique.
|The New (and Properly Caulked) Sirius/XM Antenna on the Roof of the Pilot House. With No Leaks.|
|The Top of the Black Water (Waste) Tank with the Yellow Arrow Pointing to|
the Tank-Level-Probe Assembly that Needs to be Removed & Cleaned Annually
The device itself is dead nuts simple, with three adjustable level floats attached to a threaded top cap, and easy to remove (after labeling and disconnecting the four lead wires.) We then placed it into a large bag-lined bucket to (quickly) carry outside for a thorough hose down. We had replaced the original probe assembly with a new one when we first bought the boat, so it was in pretty good shape, easy to clean, and simple to reinstall. Rick followed up with a healthy shot of air sanitizer, also replacing the vent line charcoal filter, and those should not require attention for another year.
|A Schematic of What the Float Probes Look Like Inside the Black Water Tank. It Doesn't Take Much Imagination|
to Figure Out Why They Need to be Removed and Cleaned at Periodic Intervals...Unpleasant as that May Be.
|Ghost Rider Looking a Bit Cleaner While Comfortably Nestled in Her Slip at Legacy Harbour in Fort Myers|
|Closeup. of the New (Monnit) Remote Water Sensor (White Arrow) Mounted Vertically on a Black Starboard Base (Yellow Arrow), Extending 3 to 4 Inches Lower Than the High Water Bilge Shelf, but Still 8 or 9 Inches Above Normal Water Level.|