I hate to admit it but it I haven't been paying enough attention to the mechanical side of my autopilot
system (idiot) and now it's giving me trouble. The electronics
are fine. I have a Simrad
RPU300 reversible hydraulic pump and a large brass Hynuatic ram of unknown model number.
I did the Marion to Bermuda race
in June which was a total of 1400 miles of mostly very rough seas. So the AP was tortured with heavy usage. The sound of the mechanics changed over time which I knew was a warning sign but there were too many other things to worry about, and somehow I didn't attend to it. I've never had to touch this system in the 4 years I've had this boat, but never used it so much either. I'm kicking myself for this now, as I know better.
Yesterday I started an 18 day cruise
and the AP stopped actuating the ram not far from home. I discovered the system was very low on fluid so topped it up in the expansion reservoir and did the purging as directed. This seems to get it all working again but still with a wrong noise
. At first I thought it was because of low oil
in the ram and I was hearing friction, but now I'm quite sure the noise
is either in the motor
itself or in the valve on top of the motor
. Hard to tell exactly which. Either way I'd love to here some advice on what to look for and what to do. If I have to replace the whole thing that's fine, but have to figure out how to get one somewhere on my voyage in Maine
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