I finished TIG welding the 4 old forward railing stanchion tops to match the 4 new longer ones I bought. Then filed down the welds and sanded and sanded and sanded and sanded some more until they were shiny again. Now instead of 18" stanchions all around, She has two 18" a 25" and a 26" stanchion on each side. I'll now be able to run a 3/4" or 1" rope for a railing. I think it will add a bit more of a "classic" look.
I've been shopping online for the railing rope. I found the "vintage ", "natural" looking rope but its made of polypropylene, not my favorite rope material ! Its either that or white nylon three strand. I think I will order a sample of the vintage stuff before I commit. I'm still undecided how to attach the lower smaller railing ropes. However I'm leaning towards some kind of lashing instead of welding loops to all the stanchions.
There were some metal shavings visible under the pump shaft where it enters the pump bearing, so I knew I'd better investigate before summer boating season.
The water pump was a bit of a challenge getting off the motor and also taken apart. It mounts on the left side of the motor under a web of hoses, tubing, wires and cables! Basically kneeling on the transmission and forcing my arms through the "web". Once there I found I could only loosen one bolt with the wrench I had. I decided I needed a 3/8 drive breaker bar and socket to get on the other bolts. That little breaker bar must be the only tool I don't own! I had to go buy one. Luckily the bolts loosened and I managed to extract the pump through the "web".
Turns out the bearing inner race was in seven pieces and the shaft was worn about a 1/16" deep there!!! The impeller wasn't in great shape either, it had a broken blade and several were permanently bent.
I just got the pump major rebuild kit the other day, I'm still waiting for the new shaft to come.
While waiting for the new parts I cleaned the rust off and re-painted the iron pump mounts and drive dog. I also bought all new bolts for re-assembly.