20 June, 2012

Under The Knife

Huey, who has been out of commission for about a month, was waiting for some replacement parts to come in and of course, for the surgery to be accomplished.

Sparing no expense, we brought in a noted natorius stagnum (swimming pool) surgeon, Dr. Ramon Seinfeld, to perform the delicate and time-consuming surgical procedure (the operation took just under two hours). This doesn't take into account the month of waiting for the necessary body parts to be specially couriered down here to Belize.

Anyway, after scheduling the operating theatre,Dr. Seinfeld was gracious enough to allow us to shoot the entire procedure for posterity.

Here's the good doctor (without putting too delicate a description on it) 'opening up' the patient.
Huey's Operation Underway
As you can see Huey's Access Cover (that's the technical term) was relatively easy to open. Although, to be sure, opening the cover had little to do with the surgery at hand. It was done more as an exploratory activity for those students of poolology in the audience.
Removing the Access Cover
As Dr. Seinfeld explained, there's two major systems in Huey - his propulsion system and his turning system. Of course they work 'flipper in fin', so to speak, but they are two completely separate systems.

Below, you can see the major organ of the turning system, the so-called cone gear and associated smaller gears. The hose that connects to the pool skimmer (stagnum espumadera - named after the Spanish surgeon who discovered its purpose) connects to the top of the cone gear.
Cone Gear (Controls Turning)
The cone gear is actually turned by the much smaller inner gears (interius anni - for those following in their textbooks).
Inner Gears (Also For Turning)
Here we see Dr. Seinfeld preparing to clean the intake screen, which, it is thought, allows a constant stream of water to keep the medium turbine (turbina de medio) and associated gears cool and lubricated.
Rear Intake Screen (For Medium Turbine)
The oval piece above  with the two small holes is the housing for the medium turbine, which you can see opened up below.
Medium Turbine (Controls Turning)
With the medium turbine removed, you can see the water inlet port of the housing. This provides the power to complete the turning system. It, in effect, turns Huey' entire body, more or less keeping the hose stationary, thus allowing Huey to turn as he moves effortlessly about the pool.
Medium Turbine Housing Showing Inlet Ports
The propulsion system is what allows Huey to actually move about the pool. The main turbine (you can see it a bit further along in the operation) has two large bearing assemblies, which are shown below. Both were in a sad state. As Dr. Seinfeld removed the main turbine the bearing on the left of the picture completely disintegrated.
Broken Main Turbine Bearings
The main turbine (turbina principalis) sits in and is supported by the so-called 'A-Frame', shown below. The bearings, that I had found in the leaf trap a month ago were the first signs from Huey that surgery was necessary, came from the completely broken bearing you see below. In fact, the other three bearings, Dr. Seinfeld reported were almost in as bad a state. We were able to secure viable replacements for all these parts.
Broken and Worn Out A-Frame Bearings
According to the Board of the Academy Natorius Stagnum Medicorum, the organization certifying Dr. Seinfeld, the lower bumper assembly is obsolete and is seen in fewer cases. However, the good doctor felt that since Huey's assembly was still in good order, he wanted to leave it in place, and felt that Huey would feel more complete with it.
Lower Body and Bumper Assembly
So, the surgery progressed. Finally, at the end, after all the screws and what-nots were reattached, here's all the old and worn out parts. You can see the main turbine (the black thing) so you have an idea of what it is.
Old Parts Replaced By New Kit
Here's Huey in the recovery wing of the hospital. Already he's getting fired up and 'rarin' to go' as they say.
Huey in Recovery
Yesterday afternoon, we took Huey from the hospital to his home in the pool, to see how he fared with the surgery. He took to it 'Like a duck to water', so to speak. The operation was a success in every sense of the word.

We owe a deep debt of gratitude to Dr. Ramon Seinfeld for his expertise and caring, and once again, we express our thanks to him for letting us photograph his excellent surgical techniques in rehabilitating Huey.

PS - As a sort of post-script, when we bought Huey as a re-manufactured item on Amazon, he cost about $250.00 US. Tallying up the parts list, if we were to purchase separately, each part needed to make a complete Huey, it would cost us over $793.00 US - shipping not included.


JRinSC said...

Yikes.. not once was any form of anesthesia mentioned --- not even a Beliken... not good. I am thinking of forwarding this entire post to the UN Council on Elderly Machines (UNCEM) for their consideration.

Only the fact that the operation was a complete success keeps me from more stident action in this case.

Oh, say HI to Huey for me....


Dave Rider said...

Hi Julian,

Now that you mention it, I don't recall the good doctor saying anything about anesthesia.

You don't suppose he absconded with it and got himself well-lubricated, do you?

Of course, like you said, the operation was a success...

UNCEM - Aren't they the ones trying to implement the 'Elderly World Order', or something like that?


JRinSC said...

I think that I am a charter member of that Order... I think

PattiMontreal said...

Every Friday for a month now I have been missing "Happy Hour", the first Friday moving a three-bedroom apt. into a one-bedroom, no easy feat!

Has Huey's ailment (the ol' dear) made Happy Hour less happy?

Sounds as if soon April will become a little "Ape"...

Love and miss... PattiMontreal

Dave Rider said...

Hi Patti,

Surprisingly, during Huey's 'illness', we were able to keep the pool spotless, but his return to full duty is very welcome.

For being such a little girl, April is a real handful.

Sounds like you're shoveling everything into a shoebox - what fun.


JRinSC said...

Has April destroyed your intertube connection?? Or are you just enjoying life waiting for some computer part to arrive?

Whatever -- just hoping all is ok down there???


Dave Rider said...

Hi Julian,

You wouldn't believe it if I told you. My next post (I'm still working on it) will explain everything.

April's not the problem. She got fixed... literally and has mellowed - a lot!