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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2007
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    Question Refurbishing a Speedseal?

    My Volvo 2003 has a Speedseal cover fitted to its water pump. It is quite old now; it was on the boat when I bought her, and I've had her for 12 years. The inside of the cover has worn, and I suspect is no longer making a seal against the impeller, so that the pump is not working as well as it should - water is still coming out of the exhaust, but not as much as expected. I have just cleared the exhaust elbow out, so it's not that. I haven't tried it yet, but I do have the original cover to test if my theory is correct, but assuming that it is, is there any way to refurbish a speedseal cover? I am not a metalworker and don't have ready access to metalworking machinery. As Speedseal have ceased trading, I can't simply buy a new one!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2007
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    38,809

    Default Re: Refurbishing a Speedseal?

    See how much it's actually worn by holding a straight edge across it.
    You could reduce the effect of wear by rubbing the cover on a piece of w&d paper on a flat surface.
    I suspect that any reduction in flow might indicate the heat exchanger and/or mixing elbow need cleaning out though...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    West Yorkshire
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    1,410

    Default Re: Refurbishing a Speedseal?

    If the cover is worn & marked you could try using some wet & dry paper with oil to polish the inside of the cover by rubbing on a flat surface to remove the worst of the wear marks.
    Last edited by DinghyMan; 24-09-19 at 14:12. Reason: above typed faster than me...
    Custom engineering for marine & dive use; http://ffsystems.co.uk

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Me; Nth County Dublin, Boat;Malahide
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    881

    Default Re: Refurbishing a Speedseal?

    The flat surface referred to should preferably be a piece of plate glass.
    AFAIR, the Speedseal cover can be reversed, to double its working life.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    UK East Coast
    Posts
    36,976

    Default Re: Refurbishing a Speedseal?

    First step is to try the original cover (assuming it's not excessively worn) to see if that increases the water flow. If it does, any machine shop should be able to re-finish your Speedseal. As I recall, it has a tiny groove machined in it for an O-ring, so it's not just as simple as sanding it flat.

  6. #6
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    May 2007
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    Cambridge, UK
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    Default Re: Refurbishing a Speedseal?

    Quote Originally Posted by lw395 View Post
    See how much it's actually worn by holding a straight edge across it.
    You could reduce the effect of wear by rubbing the cover on a piece of w&d paper on a flat surface.
    I suspect that any reduction in flow might indicate the heat exchanger and/or mixing elbow need cleaning out though...
    Quote Originally Posted by DinghyMan View Post
    If the cover is worn & marked you could try using some wet & dry paper with oil to polish the inside of the cover by rubbing on a flat surface to remove the worst of the wear marks.
    The snag with simply making it flat is that there is a very shallow groove to seat an O-ring; taking material off would probably make that groove too shallow to seat the O-ring. The point of the Speedseal is that it seals without needing a gasket, and can therefore be removed and replaced repeatedly without needing to replace a gasket.

    As noted in my original post, I have already thoroughly cleaned the exhaust elbow - which certainly needed it, but which now allows water to pass freely through it's galleries and into the exhaust. The engine is raw water cooled, so there is no heat exchanger.

    What I was wondering was whether a machinist could mill out a circular area and them fill it with a flat plate to bring it back to the original thickness. If this sounds feasible, does anyone know where I might find such a machinist?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
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    Home - Sothampton, Boat - Gosport
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    10,544

    Default Re: Refurbishing a Speedseal?

    I can't give you a recommendation, but googling "metal machining Cambridge" comes up with a fair few possibilities.

    I do wonder if it wouldn't be cheaper to have a new one made than dig out the worn bit and put new metal in. Time is the expensive part and cutting a piece of plate, machining a circle for the O ring and drilling a few holes sounds quicker than adding metal, but they'd be able to tell you.
    Steve
    Never believe anything until it has been officially denied.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    UK East Coast
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    1,895

    Default Re: Refurbishing a Speedseal?

    Quote Originally Posted by AntarcticPilot View Post
    My Volvo 2003 has a Speedseal cover fitted to its water pump. It is quite old now; it was on the boat when I bought her, and I've had her for 12 years. The inside of the cover has worn, and I suspect is no longer making a seal against the impeller, so that the pump is not working as well as it should - water is still coming out of the exhaust, but not as much as expected. I have just cleared the exhaust elbow out, so it's not that. I haven't tried it yet, but I do have the original cover to test if my theory is correct, but assuming that it is, is there any way to refurbish a speedseal cover? I am not a metalworker and don't have ready access to metalworking machinery. As Speedseal have ceased trading, I can't simply buy a new one!
    If the pump is priming ok and the engine is not overheating when working very hard then you do not have a problem. Judging flow rate by eye is not very accurate. My speedseal is older than yours and is still doing a good job. If you really want to do something about the wear, make a new one out of 6mm perspex sealed with just a smear of gasket sealant without a gasket or just reverse the cover plate also sealed with just a smear of sealant (hylomar?) as you will not be able to use the o-ring. If these fixes result in the same visual flow rate the go back to square one.

    www.solocoastalsailing.co.uk

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Posts
    38,809

    Default Re: Refurbishing a Speedseal?

    The grooves on those I've seen are not ever so shallow, so you could flatten it some and the o-ring whould still seat properly?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Cambridge, UK
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    6,203

    Default Re: Refurbishing a Speedseal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Plum View Post
    If the pump is priming ok and the engine is not overheating when working very hard then you do not have a problem. Judging flow rate by eye is not very accurate. My speedseal is older than yours and is still doing a good job. If you really want to do something about the wear, make a new one out of 6mm perspex sealed with just a smear of gasket sealant without a gasket or just reverse the cover plate also sealed with just a smear of sealant (hylomar?) as you will not be able to use the o-ring. If these fixes result in the same visual flow rate the go back to square one.

    www.solocoastalsailing.co.uk
    Thanks for the suggestion - these may be ways to go. The flow rate on the Volvo 2003 has always been low, so that water comes out in discrete "belches" from the water trap, and both the amount and frequency of the "belches" seems to be less than I've seen before. It is only possible to judge the rate at mid-range revs; at the highest revs the exhaustgases make everything move too fast to see what is going on - on my Moody 31, the exhaust points down into the water under the counter only a few inches above the waterline.
    At present there doesn't seem to be any overheating - after running for a while, the exhaust hose is warm but only warm to the touch - you can keep your hand on it comfortably. The elbow itself is a little hotter, but not a lot - again, you can keep your hand on it, but not comfortably! But I am more concerned that the cooling is marginal, and that any change could result in overheating.

    As I mentioned, I do have the original cover, which I think isn't worn, so I can try that first.

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