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Old 06-07-2009, 04:30   #1
TOM
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Need Stuffing Box Help

I need to repack my stuffing box. I have never performed this task before in fact a year ago I did not even know what a stuffing box was!.My dilema is that I have whats knowen as a “rigid stuffing box” as apposed to a flexable one.All the info I can find on the web relates to flexable stuffing boxes. I’m hoping one of you have had experience repacking a rigid box.I have attached a pic and iam assuming that I undo the 2 nuts and slide the flange up the shaft I will then be able to remove the old packing and repack.
Ques 1 Is my assumtion correct ?
Ques 2 Can I do this without slipping the boat.

Hope some of the experts can help as I have a hunch the stuffingbox has not been repacked in years.

www.byamee.com

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Old 06-07-2009, 07:45   #2
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Taking the plate off is the way to go.

“Ques 2 Can I do this without slipping the boat.”

Do you mean in the water?
If so you will have a lot of water rushing in.
I have replaced the packing in our boat while it was in the water.

You need to dive on the boat. Take a long lengths of 2 mil plastic (plastic shopping bags work) and wind it around the propeller shaft tight up against the hull or tube were it comes out of the hull. Put a lot on and get it as tight as possible.
Back inside remove the plate. Carefully loosen and pick out the old packing.
If you see a stream of water coming in you did not seal up the other end tight enough. You should be able to get it bone dry.
It isn’t that hard to do but if you do not feel confident lift the boat.
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Old 06-07-2009, 09:37   #3
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I have done the repacking in the water without trying to seal the shaft, and the stream of water was easily handled by the bilge pump. If you want to go swimming, another material for sealing the shaft is the wax rings they use to seal toilets--its the right consistency to jam in between the propeller shaft and the tube on the outside of the boat.
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Old 12-07-2009, 11:28   #4
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It looks like you hace a "one-off" stuffing box there.

You will need to pull the box forward so you can measure for the size of packing you need..

Just slide the unit forward and measure the distance from the collar/tube to the shaft. 1/4-5/16-3/8.....the dimension should be one of those.......

when you get your packing, buy a t-handle packing puller----

before you repack---measure your packing around the shaft and pre-cut your pieces.

Then start pulling your packing.......

if you get a good gush-----you have the last piece out----put one ring in and tighten the nuts down----alternate you gaps------usually one you get that first good ring in---the rest will go easier----it is tedious---dont try to put in more than one ring at a time----

For your future reference write the number of rings you have put in on the bulkhead
so you know which one is the "Jesus Ring".....

I have done this from everything from Sailboats to Tugs---in water----

don't be a'skeert!!!
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Old 12-09-2009, 17:49   #5
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The methods in the earlier replies are as I would do . I have used a handful of grease on the outside of the shaft where it exits the hull as a sealant.
What I dont understand however , is the anode on the shaft on the inside of the boat , unless its been put there to prevent the shaft slipping backwards out through the gland ???? But then why would that happen if the coupling is still connected ???mmmmmmmmmm I not know ,.
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Old 12-09-2009, 18:33   #6
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I yanked mine clear out of the coupler and jammed it hard against the rudder. Wish I had had that stopper there. How? Snatched a burried lobster pot line full speed fwd
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Old 12-09-2009, 20:30   #7
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A boat I was on lost a 2" prop shaft when the coupling went. A 2" hole lets a lot of water in.
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Old 12-09-2009, 20:33   #8
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As previously stated, you seem to have a non-standard brand stuffing box.
If it were me, I would prefer to do the packing replacement while above water as you may not know how much flow you will get into your boat - many people do replace their packing in the water.
The other suggestions posted about stemming the flow make a lot of sense as well if you choose to do this job while your boat is still in the water. Toilet bowl wax and plastic wrap around the shaft exit point can help reduce the water ingress as far as I have heard.
You have no way of knowing what size packing material you will need until you remove those 2 bolts and move the plate forward and measure it with a caliper (or at least a finger tip). I highly recommend using Gore GFO packing and nothing else: Virtually Dripless Packing by Gore GFO
Instead of waiting to measure the aperture of the stuffing box you could purchase several sizes of this packing material, say: 3/8, 5/16, 1/4" sizes should cover you but I just hate surprises so I bought the same array of material before I did mine on the hard.
Here is a tutorial for a "normal" stuffing box repair that is one of the best on the web: Re-Packing A Traditional Stuffing Box Photo Gallery by Maine Sailing at pbase.com
This job is normally not so difficult once you get into it.
Good luck and keep us posted.
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Old 12-09-2009, 22:34   #9
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I couldn't have put it any better.

BTW you won't get a whole lot of water until you pull "The Jesus Ring" out"

This is similar to the Jesus Nut on a helo rotor/airplane or boat propeller
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