110 Cookson Lane | Whitefield, ME  04353 | 207-232-7600 |  tim@lackeysailing.com

Pearson Vanguard #5 | Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The first thing on the work list on this day was to look a bit further into the damage located on the keel forefoot, which I'd briefly explored earlier.  To this end, I removed bottom paint over a generous area on both sides of the leading edge of the keel, as well as beneath the keel, as far back as the forward keel blocking.  This revealed what appeared to be red gelcoat beneath the paint.

The keel seemed generally sound within reasonable proximity to the large hole and damaged laminate, which was good news as it meant that repair could be effected without needing to remove too much adjacent material.  I also sanded away some of the loose, dry (i.e. resin-starved) material in the hole and damaged area itself, though for the moment I stopped well short of the amount of grinding and material removal I'd need to do assuming repairs to the area went forward as planned.  With plans for the boat's restoration still evolving at this point, we were looking to determine the potential extent of the repair in this area before proceeding.

There were a few minor cracks a bit further up on the leading edge of the keel, about which I also removed bottom paint for a closer look.  None of these cracks appeared represent significant damage and could be easily repaired along with the base of the keel.

The after portion of the keel, from the forward keel blocks aft, appeared to be sound.



Next, I prepared to remove the engine, a Universal M-25XP dating to the mid 1980s.  Several weeks earlier, the owners and I had attempted to test-run the engine in the boat, to no avail; the starter didn't turn.  Closer inspection revealed not only that the starter was virtually inaccessible with the engine in the boat, but that it appeared highly corroded and suspect.  With this in mind, we determined early on to remove the engine for better access and to determine the proper course of action.

The engine was shoehorned into the space once occupied by the vessel's original engine, an Atomic 4.  There was reasonable space to starboard, but the port side was pressed tightly against the edge of the engine room, with access further hampered by the galley sink location just above.

After removing whatever components of the galley and companionway ladder that I could for the best possible access, I began to work methodically to remove the various connections to the engine, including control cables, exhaust, raw water, fuel, and electrical.  I also removed an external heat exchanger mounted at the aft end of the engine, as it impeded access to other critical areas.

The tight access and corroded condition of most fasteners made this a challenge, but bit by bit the connections acceded.   The aluminum engine mounts were in poor condition, and in some cases enough dissimilar metal corrosion (aluminum and stainless steel) had occurred to completely fill in the bolt slots, locking the stainless steel bolts firmly in place.




By the end of the day, I'd prepared everything for the engine's removal except the port after engine mount, access to which was extremely difficult.  For the other mounts (aluminum-bodied mounts with rubber inserts), I'd removed the bolts securing them to the engine foundations, but on this last one there was no access possible to the forward mounting bolt, at least not that I could determine.  While I could get to the after bolt, I couldn't gain enough leverage in the tight, contorted space to turn it.

Similarly, I was unable to loosen the large nuts securing the engine flange to the mounting stud; well rusted in place, these nuts simply caused the whole rubber insert to twist when I tried a wrench on the nuts.


Though I'd hoped to have the engine completely ready for removal by the end of the day, the last mount defied me.   Eventually, I sprayed it with penetrating solvent and left it alone to attack anew the next day.


Total Time on This Job Today:  6 hours

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