Folks who live on boats know what I mean here - the rest of you are going, "Wha..?"
Now, gentle readers, I must dissuade you, lest you think this is the beginning of a treatise on hair care. Alas, it is not, and I apologize for any confusion. Today we will be discussing the marine head, and its proper lubrication.
Aside: the designers of this mechanism were very clever. The piston does double-duty - the space below the piston pumps out the bowl contents, while the space above is used to deliver the flush water. So that, for example, when the handle is pulled up, the piston inhales bowl contents in the lower chamber and squeezes out the load of flush water above the piston. This rinses the cylinder walls with every stroke, and means that the seal where the pump shaft leaves sees nothing but clean seawaterEventually, the cylinder walls and the o-ring on the piston get completely wiped clean of lubricant and the pump starts to squeal when it is operated. If the increasing difficulty of operating an unlubricated pump wasn't enough for you, this is your signal: Lubrication needed.
With our old Groco heads, lubricating the pump required a complete disassembly, meaning that the (disgusting, even after pumping a lot of rinse water) contents of the discharge hose all the way up to the anti-siphon loop would run out onto the floor. In addition to being messy, the task took a good hour. And you risked breaking the fragile internals of the pump each time. And it seemed that the pump always leaked after reassembly, and so required multiple assembly attempts. It was a nightmare, and so we did it absolutely as infrequently as possible.
But with the Jabsco head, this is a 5-minute task. The Jabsco folks (long may they prosper!) made this easy by making it possible to withdraw the piston from the top, without having to completely disassemble the pump (the way we had to with the Groco heads). So,
- Unscrew the (o-ring sealed!) top of the pump cylinder and withdraw the piston and shaft.
- Wipe the o-ring and the cylinder walls with white teflon-bearing grease.
- Screw it back together.
And so, less than 5 minutes after starting, I was done and hoisting a beer to Jabsco.
And yes, my hair remains grease-free.