When we were out on the water with Kenutu, we discovered that her wenches were a little arthritic. They functioned okay, but they didn't feel like they were happy functioning. We decided to take them apart and lube them up.
We've never serviced a wench before, but why not pretend we know what we're doing and go for it?
We tried to get the first cap off and got schooled. We tried to use a couple of deck plate keys (aka a little metal sheet with a bunch of weird prominences that you use to open various tanks and stuff) to unscrew it, but it failed. Then we tried some screwdrivers, but that failed. Then we drilled some holes into a spare piece of wood we had and shoved the screwdrivers and upside down drill bits through the holes to make a tool, but that started to fail. Finally, we drilled some holes in a metal bracket that we took off of a cockpit table we were modifing and voila, easy as pie.
Pie ain't easy.
Once we lifted the cap off, it became very apparent that we needed to keep very close track of where everything went so we could put it back together. We laid down a towel and made a train of the pieces as we took them off, thinking that when it came time to reconstruct it, we'd just go backwards. That mostly worked, but we had to put little spaces between some parts that were subunits of other subunits. Just pay attention and it'll be fine.
As Mack took the pieces apart, I cleaned them with WD-40, rags, and a toothbrush. I was sloppier than I should have been. I got weirdly into cleaning those little greasy pieces. It was so gratifying to see them go from so filthy to shiny and smooth. So gratifying I didn't even notice I was getting myself and the boat filthy. Good decision to wear white shorts.
After I got them cleaned, Mack started gooping them up with fresh marine grease. Making things messy is his specialty. Luckily, his specialty is also not stopping until he gets things figured out. We couldn't do this boating thing if he gave up as easily as I do when uncertainty gets in the way.
He managed to get the wench together again without any confusion really. It went together logically enough, we got it bolted back down, and just before Mack put the cap on, I took a look at our handiwork. Daaaaammmmmnnnn, that is a beautiful wench.
Two people dumb enough to think anything is possible and smart enough to bumble their way into discoveries.