All posts by Kevin

Pitot tube upgrade

OK. Time for boat stuff. I recently upgraded the pitot tube pickups on the Rowboat. These are the little rudder-looking objects that provide water pressure levels to let the speedometers tell you how fast you are going. The original units were very old plastic ones and were getting plugged up a lot. Time for an upgrade. I did some searching and decided to buy two of these units from SkiDim (Discount Inboard Marine). You need two for a true ski boat from this era because they have two speedometers mounted side-by-side on the dashboard.

Old pitot
Old pitot

You just unscrew the little nut looking thingy and pull off the tube. Then two Phillips-head screws and the old unit should pop right off.

Disconnecting
Disconnecting

Here is a look at the old and new side-by-side. Note how the new unit has metal in the pickup and where the tube attaches. It also just “feels” better, which is likely just because it is new. It just does not feel like it is super-brittle and about to break.

Top, Old. Bottom, New.
Top, Old. Bottom, New.

The problem with these replacement units is that the holes do not align with the original unit holes that are already drilled in the boat. So you need to drill out the holes a little bit.

Drill time
Drill time

The holes needed to be elongated in an inward direction. I just used a drill and selected a bit the size of the existing hole.

Ready for surgery.
Ready for surgery.

After that I got some fresh sealant (3M 5200) and put lots of goo into the holes before putting the new pitot pickups in place. Ta-da!

All done
All done

The entire job took less than an hour.

Misty morning

Spending the weekend at the cabin and you can just barely see the mountains through the mist. Note the extremely low level of snow on Snoqualmie Pass. I also took this photo of the 4-wheel-drive vehicles all lined up.





Time for a return to boat stuff

I notice that there is not enough boat stuff on my boat blog. So it is time to start blogging about the boat stuff. I have some things to do and I’ll be posting here again eventually. First up will be figuring out the leaky transmission.

Until then – I’ll upload some photos.

I love the words on the back of our boat
I love the words on the back of our boat
I think this will be my new photo at the top of this blog
I think this will be my new photo at the top of this blog

It is cold

Time to put the rowboat away for the winter. Drained all the fluids and disconnected the battery. I don’t think that it will freeze in my garage, but it is better to be safe than sorry.

I think I need to pull the transmission to fix a leaky seal sometime this winter, so more blog posts to come!

IMG_0644.JPG

A quick update

When we took the boat out on the inaugural run there were a couple of issues. One of the most concerning was a horrible noise that occurred when the engine was at idle and in gear. It sounded like rattling ball bearings in an old coffee can. Remember when coffee came in cans? Anyhow – some internet helpers said that this was “damper plate rattle”. I’ll let you figure out what that is on your own, but the solution was to fix a low engine idle speed. While fixing this issue I also realized that my transmission cable was rather sloppy. Happily I still had the one from the purple Tree Nautique, so I pulled the cable, installed the purple boat one and decided that it was a good improvement.

Thus, I decided that it was time for a real test. We went skiing! My brother and my youngest son went wakeboarding and it was awesome.  My time behind the boat is coming soon, but it was so cool to use the boat for it’s intended purpose. What a machine. It is so fun to be out on the water.

My brother took a few photos. His oldest daughter came along and she had fun too. She has a good future ahead of her as a boat-driver!