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Topics - Patches

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Main Message Board / Noisy Partners
« on: May 21, 2019, 05:50:24 PM »
No not that kind!

Now that I have your attention, I had a rigger on my boat today to take a look at the rig and replace a problematic pin I noticed when I was aloft last week.  One of the things I wanted him to look at was the mast partners on my boat, and the fact that they make small "popping noises" when you walk around on deck in the vicinity, and also under sail sometimes when the sails are full.  I also had fore and aft wedges--very thin--fall out, leaving only the side wedges (thicker) in place.

After tuning the rig, the noises remained. There is daylight all around the mast within the partners, except for the wedges. He messed about with the turnbuckle below, which essentially holds down the deck in that area when you tighten the shrouds.  No relief.

He thinks the sound is the wedges themselves when greater force is applied through contact with the partners--whether due to someone on deck, or the rig loading up.  Coincidentally, today he worked on another Catalina 34 after my boat, same vintage, and it had the same exact issue!

Anyone dealt with this issue before?  Is there a recommended fix for eliminating this?  Spartite?  Other?

As always, interested to hear your responses.


Main Message Board / Aft Lazarette Wood Refinishing
« on: April 27, 2019, 03:10:00 PM »

Every time my wife goes down to the boat she looks at the wood under the helm seat and says:  "Thats got to be re-finished."  After working down the priority list of projects, I'm finally there.  Or maybe I'm there because she volunteered to do it this weekend...

For me refinishing exterior wood is kind of a fool's errand. Or maybe it was a conspiracy between the boat manufacturers and the marine paint/finish industry.  Anyway, the wood under the helm seat on my boat looks like some poor former attempts with Cetol.  Then there is a poor attempt at running silicone caulk along the top edge, I guess to prevent water leaking down between the seat and the wood trim. Didn't work.  After taking a look, I found the trim is screwed on from the back--through the aft locker lid.  "Great!"  I thought, I'll just remove it all, put a little marine tex over the (8!) holes, sand it, buff it, and never worry about refinishing that wood again.

Then I discovered why that trim piece is there:  To stiffen the very thin layup in the front of the lid. Back to refinishing.

In the process of scraping and sanding the trim pieces, I'm thinking the wood may be mahogany--not teak.

DOES ANYONE KNOW FOR SURE?  It will help me decide how to replace the center piece of trim, which is toast, and help inform the kind of finish I use going forward.




Main Message Board / Factory engine wiring questions
« on: February 23, 2019, 04:42:16 PM »
I have a 1990 C34 1.25.  I am putting my engine back together after making many of the suggested upgrades. Full disclosure:  I have a poor understanding--but getting better-- of all things electrical in my boat.

When hooking up the new harness, I note that I have two "4 AWG" positives coming off the "C" post of the battery selector switch and running to my engine compartment.

One of the 4 awg wires looks to be bundled with the two positive cables running from the selector switch (1 and 2) to the two batteries in the battery compartment.  It runs from the selector switch down under the macerator pump, takes a hard turn aft through conduit into the compartment under the head sink, and then goes around to the back side of the engine before ultimately attaching to the starter post. A negative follows the same path, and was bolted to the bell housing.

The second 4 awg wire runs from the "C" post down by the macerator and then out into the central bilge area.  From there it joins a negative wire in some clear tubing/housing and pops up in the floor of the engine compartment-roughly under the alternator.  This positive wire is also connected to the starter, but the negative was originally connected to the "-" on the starter--not the bell housing.

As some of you know, I am staying with a small 51 amp alternator, internally regulated, for a while before doing a larger battery bank upgrade in a few years.  I'm trying to figure out why I have two 4awg positives, and two 4awg negatives coming into the engine via different routes.  It would seem that a single 4awg positive and a single 4awg negative would handle it--No?

My new internally regulated alternator, with the AO and remote sense wires will run to the solenoid post, and should charge the batteries back through one of the 4awg positives to the "C" post on the selector switch, correct?

Or do I need to keep both of those 4 gauge positive wires connected to the starter?

If not, was the intent that one of the 4awg positives (the one running under the floor/bilge area) could/would be used for the AO to go directly to the batteries if the owner later upgraded?

If so, can I use that positive for that purpose when I upgrade my battery bank in a couple of years, and also upgrade to an externally regulated alternator?  Or is the 4awg too small for that purpose, and I should really be going to a 2awg for the AO when I upgrade later?

Thank you in advance!  I appreciate any enlightenment you can provide.


Main Message Board / Fuel Pump to Ignition Switch Wiring for M25XP
« on: January 28, 2019, 10:28:50 PM »
My apologies in advance for the simplicity of this question, but I can't locate the answer from any wiring diagrams i've seen.

I have the M25xp engine, circa 1990, and am replacing the engine panel and wiring harness (both from CD).  I tossed the terminal strip and butt connected the harness to the new panel wires with marine heat shrink connectors.  I have suspended and secured the harness so that the weight of the harness is is supported--not by the butt connectors--but by securing the harness to the aft panel of the port lazarette.

My fuel pump is activated by a separate red wire which runs from the ignition switch on the panel.  I know because I removed it from the old panel.  And that's my problem because I don't remember which post I removed it from on the old ignition switch. Doh!

The switch on the new CD panel--like the old one-- has "on" and a "momentary" key positions, the latter which you hold to heat the glow plugs.  The "on" looks to be fed by the #10 "panel feed" wire off the solenoid "+".   The "momentary" looks to be fed by a white #10 which goes to the glow plugs.

Is the red wire to the fuel pump supposed to attach to the post on the ignition switch with the red wire (on), or the post with the white wire (momentary)?  My thought is to the same as the "red" (on) because that would mean it runs any time the panel is (1) "on" or (2) when engine is running.  If connected to the white (momentary) then the fuel pump would only pump if I was trying to preheat glow plugs.  But alas, my thoughts when it comes to things electrical are often "off."

Thanks in advance for your replies.



Main Message Board / New Member seeking alternator input
« on: January 23, 2019, 03:18:53 PM »
Hello to all, and my apologies for the lengthy preamble to this request for input.

I recently became the owner of a 1990 Mark 1.25.  When purchased, it was in largely "stock," unmolested, condition including:
--two group 24 flooded lead-acid batteries
--original (and dangerous) engine harness with trailer connectors.
--original instrument panel in the cockpit
--Prestolite 51 amp alternator
--autohelm st4000 autopilot
--no refrigeration
--battery charging from the alternator via the 1-2-both switch on the panel.

My intent is to slowly upgrade the boat as the budget allows.  I live in the Pacific Northwest, and cruised this past summer for two weeks straight without any issues.  Longest time away from shore power was 4 nights.

Because of my lack of experience with inboards, electrical demands, and bigger boats, one of the first things I did (8 months ago) was purchase two new Group 24 batteries with 85 amp hours each.  (I know, I know, dumb)  This was a (more or less) direct replacement of what was there when I bought the boat, and it seemed to work fine for the sailing and cruising I did this past summer.

I also started to address some of the other priorities set forth by the surveyor.  I have purchased a new exhaust riser, exhaust flange, heat exchanger, engine soundproofing, engine panel and wiring harness, hoses, raw water strainer, and raw water pump.  To get the exhaust riser out, I had to cut it off near the flange on the exhaust manifold, take the manifold off, and then work for days to separate the flange from the manifold.  Eventually I succeeded.  Many thanks to the contributors on this forum to help me understand how to attack these things!

Which gets me to the present issue before I start putting everything back together:

I had to take the original alternator off to get to the rest of it.  When I did, it leaked oil.  I took it into an alternator shop which deals with Leece-Neville alternators, and the tech opined that it was not cost effective to rebuild.  It is also 28 years old.  Which raises the issue of the type of replacement.

After all the expenses recently made, the budget is not equipped to handle a serious upgrade to the battery bank, high output alternator, new pulleys and belts, external regulation, refrigeration, etc.. I would like to get a few more years out of the present configuration, which assumes the new alternator charging the "smallish" battery bank by installing a larger output wire (e.g. 8 awg-or larger) to the positive post of the starter as recommended by others.  And I would like to buy a replacement alternator to accomplish this goal until I'm ready to spend more money on a more comprehensive electrical upgrade.

My attempts at researching this suggest the following which, admittedly, may be ill-informed:

1. Sizing the new alternator depends on (1) the size of the existing battery bank and (2) the footprint of the old alternator.

2.  For lead-acid batteries, a rule of thumb is to size the alternator output at 25% of the battery capacity.  For me, this is only 170 amp hours.

3.  Prestolite/Leece Neville manufactured several internally regulated alternators which allegedly fit in the "footprint" of the original alternator.  These are a 51 amp model, a 72 amp model, and 90 amp model.  The 51 amp model I can't find anywhere.  The 72 amp (8MR2058PA) and 90 amp (8MR2069TA) models are still available.  These can be had for <$200 each.

My questions for those experienced in these things, and given my desire to tackle a more comprehensive battery/electrical upgrade later:

1.  Do I risk any harm to my electrical system or batteries by replacing my existing 51 amp alternator with another internally regulated 72 amp (or 90 amp) replacement from Prestolite?

2.  If so, what is the expected harm?

3.  Would a switch to either of these higher output alternators require upsizing wires?  I have the 4awg positive and ground wires from the panel to the starter motor and engine block, respectively.  How about the AO wire to the starter?

4.  Leece-Neville also makes other 51 amp and 65 amp (8MR) small frame alternators, although they have different dimensions (deeper and three mounting holes along the top).  Anyone have experience trying to fit these into the M25XP alternator bracket?

5.  Given your experience, what would you do in my situation?

Thanks in advance for your replies.  I really appreciate the depth of knowledge and willingness to share found here! 

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