This is more of a "help me bring the right tool" question than anything.  I am going to be pulling my helm station as part of my TCS refit so I can gain access to the helm wiring.  I'd like to avoid disconnecting the hydraulic lines off of the pump.  Instead, I would like to separate the pump from the helm station and tie it off out of the way while the helm station is removed.  I am assuming its as simple as unthreading the black conical-ish bezel around the shaft?  I pulled the steering wheel and didn't see any fasteners keeping the pump socked to the helm station, so I'm assuming the helm station is sandwiched between the pump block and this black bezel?  I just don't want to pull if its a screw or vice-versa.  Any help would be great!

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I think there is a bracket that you should be able to see with the gauge panel open. The bracket anchors the helm pump to the wooden portion of the helm. The fiberglass does not carry any weight or at least it is that way on mine.

I suspect that Chris Craft tried several different approaches in a very short period of time so this advice is probably more of a guess than absolute fact.

Thanks Ronald!  Here is a picture of the rear mounting orientation - it does appear to be mounted as I described.  However, back to my original question: how to get it off?

Assuming it is the same as my 47 you are in for some fun.  You'll need a gear puller for the wheel.  I had to pull my pump for seal repair.  To get it out I had to expand the hole where the shaft was to get to the four bolts that were holding it.  As with many things CC had no concern about access after the boat was built. If I can find the pictures I send them. It was a struggle.  There was no just moving mine.  If you have copper lines be careful and they won't move.  If you can do it without removal I would leave it alone.  

I sense some sarcasm in the "fun" part of you response, Mike.  The good news is that my wheel comes right off, the bad new is that I can't nail down the retention method.  The most plausible explanation would be the conical bezel just unscrews, kind of like removing a windshield wiper motor from the cowl area of a car.  I just don't want to put a wrench on and twist and risk breaking something or boogering up the bezel - I'm sure both are made of unobtainium....

Mike Watson said:

Assuming it is the same as my 47 you are in for some fun.  You'll need a gear puller for the wheel.  I had to pull my pump for seal repair.  To get it out I had to expand the hole where the shaft was to get to the four bolts that were holding it.  As with many things CC had no concern about access after the boat was built. If I can find the pictures I send them. It was a struggle.  There was no just moving mine.  If you have copper lines be careful and they won't move.  If you can do it without removal I would leave it alone.  

When I pulled my bezel, different than yours and looks bigger the whole is just big enough for the shaft.  I had to cut open the hole to get to the 4 screws that held the pump to the support shaft.  

John Mario said:

I sense some sarcasm in the "fun" part of you response, Mike.  The good news is that my wheel comes right off, the bad new is that I can't nail down the retention method.  The most plausible explanation would be the conical bezel just unscrews, kind of like removing a windshield wiper motor from the cowl area of a car.  I just don't want to put a wrench on and twist and risk breaking something or boogering up the bezel - I'm sure both are made of unobtainium....

Mike Watson said:

Assuming it is the same as my 47 you are in for some fun.  You'll need a gear puller for the wheel.  I had to pull my pump for seal repair.  To get it out I had to expand the hole where the shaft was to get to the four bolts that were holding it.  As with many things CC had no concern about access after the boat was built. If I can find the pictures I send them. It was a struggle.  There was no just moving mine.  If you have copper lines be careful and they won't move.  If you can do it without removal I would leave it alone.  

Update: Ron Z was mostly correct after all. There is a 1/4” thick steel bracket that is bolted to the fiberglass helm using screws from the Morse controls. The pump is bolted to this bracket. The bezel is ornamental and is sandwiched using a large nut, similar to how a sink drain is attached to a sink. Good news is, I got it off. The bad news is I busted the smaller hose fitting flush at the pump block. I’m pretty sure I can get the NPT portion remaining in the block with an extractor, but looking at the pump itself, it’s definitely oozing.  So two questions:

1. Should I get this one rebuilt or can I just by a new one?

2. The fluid that came out of this system smelled something awful.  Was this hydraulic fluid at one point? Or was it/can it be ATF?

SeaStar hydraulic fluid is what I use. I found a guy in NC that rebuilds these pumps. Turned it around in a week at a reasonable cost. I was going to do it but when the spring loaded ball bearings went flying I started looking for someone. Mine was leaking.

Usually Dexron was the norm for the the steering system though most any hydraulic type oil will work.

I would be cautious of removing the broken off fitting. No issue in removing the fitting but you do need to use some caution in getting any metal chips into the pump. The issue is that the steering pump is a gear-rotor style pump and has some fairly tight tolerances. If you happen to run a chip through it, it may leave a slight dimple from the chip and create a hard stop when rotating the helm wheel. This is not a huge deal just a warning for something that could be an irritation down the road.

If you are are going to rebuild the pump, which involves basically just installing a seal kit, I would remove the broken fitting when the pump was apart, otherwise just use a little bit of caution with the chips from the extractor.

John Mario said:

Update: Ron Z was mostly correct after all. There is a 1/4” thick steel bracket that is bolted to the fiberglass helm using screws from the Morse controls. The pump is bolted to this bracket. The bezel is ornamental and is sandwiched using a large nut, similar to how a sink drain is attached to a sink. Good news is, I got it off. The bad news is I busted the smaller hose fitting flush at the pump block. I’m pretty sure I can get the NPT portion remaining in the block with an extractor, but looking at the pump itself, it’s definitely oozing.  So two questions:

1. Should I get this one rebuilt or can I just by a new one?

2. The fluid that came out of this system smelled something awful.  Was this hydraulic fluid at one point? Or was it/can it be ATF?

I'd like to remove the helm pump on my 1973 410. Happy to see this thread full of good info. Whats the bottom line on removal? 

Pull steering wheel

Remove black bezel

Remove hose fittings

Unbolt bracket somewhere from the rear

Is that about right?

Thanks

John Brock

Hi John - providing your 1973 is the same as my 1972, the process is as follows:

1. Remove the wheel.

2. Remove the black bezel.  Again, if you've ever replaced a sink drain, this is very similar, where the black bezel would be the "pretty side" that drops into the sink hole and would have a threaded OD and a big nut that threads on from the rear and sandwiches the fiberglass cutout.

3. Remove all three hydraulic lines from the pump.  Use two wrenches, one to apply load on the hose fittings, and the other to apply equal, but opposite load to the stationary fittings. I busted off the 90 degree return fitting like nothing, despite being careful (replacement found on Amazon btw if it does happen to you).  Caution: THERE WILL BE PRESSURE ON THESE LINES, so crack them loose and let them ooze, or depressurize the system beforehand.  Have a bucket ready.

4. Unscrew the decorative covers off the throttle and gear sticks.  You will see several brass machine screws.  Some secure the controls to the helm and other secure the big black bracket containing the pump (pictures below) to the helm.  Remove the latter of the bunch.  Use caution, this bracket is a heavy sucker and once the last screw is out its going to want to hit the ground.

5.  Slide the whole assembly forward (towards the bow of the boat), then lift out.

6.  From here its pretty straightforward.  As you can see, mine has a gear for autopilot (I presume) that have woodruff dowels hammered in, so those will need to be drilled out and the gear should slide off.  On mine, the gear is likely not going back on.

Hope this helps! 



John Brock said:

I'd like to remove the helm pump on my 1973 410. Happy to see this thread full of good info. Whats the bottom line on removal? 

Pull steering wheel

Remove black bezel

Remove hose fittings

Unbolt bracket somewhere from the rear

Is that about right?

Thanks

John Brock

Thanks John. The photo really helps a lot.

John 

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