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Bleeding Mayfair Steering - Driving me nuts

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Bleeding Mayfair Steering - Driving me nuts

Old 07-21-2021, 03:33 PM
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Default Bleeding Mayfair Steering - Driving me nuts

Trying for the third night now to bleed my steering. Spent more time than it takes to assemble a 2.5 EFI powerhead, and barely getting anywhere. ATF all over the place. Need to buy more tomorrow. This is driving me nuts.

Set-up:
1 Capilano helm pump
2 Mayfair rams with no bleeder fittings, just two 90 degree hose fittings
2 300 XS engines
No power steering or reservoir

A funnel is tightly attached to the air bleed fitting of the helm pump with a good supply of ATF and no air leaks.

We have lowered the front of the trailer and taken the rams off the mounts and rotated them so that the hose fittings face upwards. We have always started from the port engine since it is the furthest away from the helm.

Then we have tried all kinds of variations of how to bleed based on various discussions and instructions for how to do it: crack the fittings open (which I assume means unscrew them a little) or screw them off completely. Do it with the rams fully extended or with the rams all the way in. Do it on the side where the fluid enters the rams or where the fluid exits the rams. Open the bleeders (there aren't any). Etc.

No matter what, there seems to be air in the system that just moves from side to side. There is a big lag from when one ram starts moving to when the other starts. We bleed one, and the lag disappears, but it has just moved to the other ram. We bleed that one, and the lag moves back to the first ram.

What am I doing wrong?

Last edited by Markus; 07-21-2021 at 04:05 PM.
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Old 07-21-2021, 10:47 PM
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Should the ram that has been bled somehow be fixated while the other is bled?
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Old 07-22-2021, 06:08 AM
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I have always just moved the steering wheel all of the way to each side until the air is out of the system. You don't have to loosen the fittings or anything.....
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Old 07-22-2021, 08:14 AM
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rams need to be attached to the engine while you are bleeding them so the engines turn and both rams are moving together
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Old 07-22-2021, 04:24 PM
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I learned the hard way to double check all the connections in the system to assure that air is not being sucked in - especially on a pump return line if you have an electric pump. I had a faulty connection that would not leak fluid but would allow air to be pulled in.
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Old 07-23-2021, 01:30 AM
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Thanks, all!

Seems like the last attempt was successful after all.

While delay in one ram was a useful indicator of air at the beginning, in hindsight, it is obvious that if the rams are connected in parallel, the fluid will choose the path of least resistance and just move one ram.

The mistakes made along the way were:
1. Not having a fully tight connection at the bottom of the funnel leading stuck into the helm pump. It probably allowed for some are to get sucked in between funnel and fitting, like Revelocity suggests. Fixed by threading a hose with a hose clamp over the bleed fitting on the helm pump.
2. Not taking off the rams so that they could extend fully. Seems like some air could hide in the rams. Fixed by taking off the rams.

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