06 June 2017 | Fare Lagoon, Huahine, French Polynesia
It appears that our raw water pump has a broken piece that probably cannot be repaired. One end of the pump’s drive shaft sits inside the engine and is turned by a pin. The part of the shaft that couples with that pin was originally attached to the shaft by being heated, slid over the shaft, then cooled, permanently bonding it to the shaft. It’s done like a metal hoop is put over a wagon wheel to act as a rim. At any rate, that’s what it appears. The coupling piece has cracked from age and stress, so the drive pin can rotate and not rotate the impeller. The impeller sits at the other end of the shaft from the drive pin.
I contacted the people who sold me a rebuild kit for the pump two years ago and they still have the rebuild kit and, amazingly, a new shaft. So, plan 1 is for my sister to bring us two kits (I might ruin one in my enthusiasm to repair the pump) and the shaft when they arrive on 11 June. I’ll spend some quality time with the pump and disassemble it, change the parts, including bearings, shaft, and seals, and then reassemble it. Once bolted into place, we should be good to go.
A nice member of the Passport sailboat list serve mentioned that there is another pump that might fit, and I ordered that too. Plan 2, then, is to simply bolt the replacement pump into place and move on. I have less hope for that than rebuilding the pump, but we have those two methods.
Method 3 is for me to use an electric pump already used for the water maker and re-purpose its output to run water through the engine cooling system. The positive point here is that it bypasses any difficulty with the pump replacement or rebuild. I feel much better about possible success tonight since we have several options and something will work. We had all of this done by mid-day today.
We spent the day doing odd jobs around the boat and at 2:30, we jumped in the dinghy and went to town. As we strolled around town, we enjoyed a cold Hinano on tap at the Huahine Yacht Club. An hour later, we took a sight-seeing cruise around the lagoon in the dinghy. Hey, why not? Until the parts arrive, we’ve nothing but time.
The generator is droning away on deck, trying to re-charge the batteries that become so depleted by the refrigerator. It’s been an absolutely beautiful evening and sunset was spectacular. The day was exceptionally hot and there was little in the way of breeze, making everyone hid for most of the day. As soon as the sun began to set, people started emerging from their dark holes and began to enjoy the place again. When it’s that hot, even the locals don’t enjoy it.
Tomorrow is more the same. Finally, we’re living the cruiser’s life.