1946 Chris Craft Brightside U22 Engine Install

One more milestone as come and gone.

Finally, her newly rebuilt power plant is sitting on her engine mounts. Because, much early in this preservation project, we removed a twist and hog from her hull, and then replaced the keel and keelson, aligning everything perfectly was not a challenge we were eager to tackle.

However a combination of relocating the engine wedges ever so slightly and reaming the prop bore a bit aligned everything nicely. The engine couplers mate perfectly through 360 degrees, and the prop shaft runs freely in its stuffing box and the strut.

We will be making some final adjustments, pack the stuffing box and tighten everything down. Installing the rudder and related steering components is next.

Inspecting the wiring “harness,” by contrast, informed us that the guy who assaulted her in so many ways also created a huge fire hazard. The wiring is a patched-together rat’s nest of short lengths of wire that are strung together with horrific butt connectors. The single wraps of black electrician’s tape he/she used to hide the bare wires everywhere made us shudder.

Much of the wire was hanging loosely from bilge stringers and elsewhere, with much of it laying in the bilge.

The cherry on top was the absence of proper termination. Our electrical genius simply stripped and wrapped bare wire around terminals. My goodness!

Suffice it to say that RJ has spent much of yesterday afternoon and all of today building an entirely new harness using proper gauges of cloth-wrapped marine wire.

We will begin installing ceiling planks tomorrow, with a goal of having everything in place by week’s end.

I know it is cliché to say so, but really, really, the light at the end of the tunnel is shining more brightly with each passing day!

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