C320 Muffler Box Leak??? - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 12-02-2007
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C320 Muffler Box Leak???

1994 C320. Persistent water in the bilge (if you can call THAT a bilge )

APPEARS to be coming from the muffler box which is located in the aft cabin.
This boat is new to our club and I've not had experience w/ this type of muffler setup. I "assume" there is is a gasket that may not be seated properly. Has anyone else had leakage like this? And is it "possible" that water is entering the exhaust port on the hull and running down into the box and then leaking.

Any suggestions?

Also, any C320 owners... what hose to YOU pop off to pump antifreeze in to winterize the system?
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Old 12-03-2007
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If you're not aware of it, there is an owners' web site for the 320. You may have better luck there. The URL is: http://www.catalina320.org.
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Old 12-03-2007
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Hi,

Ya, I had that problem too. It is the fiberglass box (aqua lift muffler, I think it's called.) it comes out pretty easy, just 4 screws (one on each corner) The biggest thing about getting it out and back in, is the heavy black muffler hoses. You should be able to get them to back off enough to lift the box out (you will need to loosen the large clamps.)

If you do an inspection on the dock you will find some sort of leak from the box itself, probably along the lower edge (underside.) It's not built very well and prone to a split or crack at the seam or maybe at the screw holes.

My problem was the underside seam. I first tried just some putty like stuff. (liquid steel I think) I just pushed it into the area. It failed after a few months. So the next time, I used the grinder on it to get a clean surface and used a few layers of fiberglass and epoxy. Now My fixed area is stronger than the rest of the box! The good thing is, it doesn't matter what it looks like when your done.

Good Luck, PM me with any questions, glad to help.

Todd
s/v Hestia
currently: New Smyrna, FL - Bahamas bound!

Last edited by trodzen; 12-03-2007 at 10:12 PM.
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Old 12-04-2007
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Yep, found the C320 site and registered but they haven't sent my password. I can't log in... Grrrrrr!

Todd: I am glad to hear I'm not the only one w/ this issue. I was hesitant to take anything apart w/o first talking to someone about this. (didn't want to have a gusher of water coming in!)

So is this box constantly FULL of water? I haven't gone poking around enough yet; is there a seacock or valve that shuts off the exhaust to the outside? IE what will happen when I unscrew those four LITTLE screws the hold the box down???

This is all new to me. I had more experience on larger and older boats. Including woodies. I like the C320 for what it's being used for... but there is no way I'd take it out of Chesapeake Bay!

Thanks, Gotta run.
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Old 12-05-2007
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Dave,

The four little screws only hold the box in place. it is a self contained, enclosed box, well at least it should be, except for the leaks you will find along the edge or at one of the screw holes.

No worry about incoming water, the exhaust hose has a large above waterline loop in the stern. The box itself does have a seacock to empty it (into the bilge) but it will only have about a gallan in it. You can leave it shut (especially if it is corrodid like mine and others I've seen.) Just take off the two exhaust hoses, mop up any water with a towel.

I heard of two other C320's with the problem. One had leaks at or in the four screw holes. That fix was a little more complicated. He, used epoxy to completly close up all four screw holes, then re-drilled them. The four screws don't do anything except keep it from vibrating around.

I took it out on the dock, washed it up, let it dry in the sun, filled it full of water, then looked for leaks.

I heard of Catalina replacing one, but they wanted the original shipped to them so they could "replicate" it. ?? I guess they are not exact standard size on all C320s.

What year is yours?

BTW, I have lived on mine for many summers and one winter from The Virgin Islands, P.R., Mona Passage, D.R., Bahamas, Gulf Stream, FL, ICW. She's a great "little" boat. I'm currently in FL, Bahamas bound. We had some nasty "seas" in the Chesapeake a few weeks ago.

My blog and pictures
http://www.svhestia.com

Last edited by trodzen; 12-05-2007 at 01:08 PM.
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Old 12-06-2007
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WOW! That is some great info. I was really not looking fwd to this. Still not, but I figure once this is resolved we can get the bilge completely dried out. There has been standing water in the bilge and of COURSE the VHF connection was there right by the compression post. It's all corroded beyond belief. Before we repair that I want to take care of this water issue.

I will have to see what I can do about this in a week or so when I go back to the boat.

ALSO, there is a loud hum when the shore power is on. Seems to be the charger. I was digging around (remember this is a new boat to our club) and in the port lazarette I found a breaker panel w/ a REVERSE POLARITY light and it was lit. Hmmmm. Any other C320 owners have this problem?


Boat is 1994 vintage. Hardly used the past several years.
Thanks again!

Last edited by sailordave; 12-06-2007 at 12:23 AM.
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