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Old 24-07-2006, 10:54   #1
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Prop shaft seal

A friend of mine has ask for help to replace the prop shaft seal on his Catalina 30, and would like to do it while the boat is in the water, I read that it could be done if the new seal is ready for installation, but I do not think it is a good idea, any suggestions would help, other than wear my pfd.
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Old 24-07-2006, 11:22   #2
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If it's a patented seal I think you have to haul the boat but if it's just repacking the stuffing box, that can be done in the water. What exactly is he doing?
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Old 24-07-2006, 14:08   #3
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he is just repacking the stuffing box, from what I read , have the packing cut to size and ready to install, when removing the old packing how much water will come in the boat, and will the packing be difficult to install
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Old 24-07-2006, 14:41   #4
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The method I have read involves swimming under the boat.

Take some modeling clay wrap it in plastic wrap, Jump in the water and stuff the plastic wrapped modeling clay around the shaft where the cutless bearing takes in water. Then go and repack your stuffing box. When finished be very sure to remove the plug before running the shaft. The plastic is meant to keep the modeling clay from sticking permanently in your cutless bearing.

That said I have been told by a professional that he just lets the water flow when he replaces packing in the water and finds he can get it done before there is any significant amount of water in the bilges.

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Old 24-07-2006, 14:51   #5
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Repacking the stuffing box while the boat is in the water is fairly easy. The secret is to have some bicycle inner tube rubber handy. Also a tool to pick the old packing out. I use an old screwdriver that I've sharpened to a point and bent the tip a bit.

1. Back off the locking nut and then back the stuffing box off the shaft.
2. Wrap the inner tube rubber around the shaft and the shaft log and tie it
off. This'll stop the water from coming in.
3. Pick out all the old packing. Sometimes this is the hardest part of the
job.
4. Cut a ring of packing and put it in the stuffing box. Cut another ring and put it on 180 degrees from the first one. (so the joints aren't in the same spot. repeat with a third ring. If you find it difficult to get the packing in, turn the stuffing box down the shaft log after each ring.
5. Take off the rubber and turn the box down. Tighten the lock nut.
6. Run the engine in gear and monitor the stuffing box. It should drip slightly, a drop or two per minute. If it doesn't drip and gets hot to the touch loosen the box a turn. Getting it just right is through trial and error.
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Old 24-07-2006, 18:33   #6
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I have installed two PSS shaft seals. One on a Catalina 30 and the second on a Catalina 34. Both were done on the mooring at my marina. Some water will intrude into the boat while assembling the seal, but nothing the bilge pump won't handle. The key to easy removal and installation is a five pound hammer to remove the flange from the shaft.
Most of the preparation is done with the stuffing box intact and the shaft in place. Once the flange is removed, the stuffing box and rubber hose can be removed and the shaft slid aft to slide the box and hose off. A rag tied around the shaft will stem the flow of water, sufficiently, while additional preparations are made.
Then it is merely a matter of installing the PSS or whatever brand you have chosen.
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Old 25-07-2006, 10:43   #7
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Thanks for suggesttions, my concern was getting the packing installed correctly with water coming in,
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Old 17-11-2006, 16:14   #8
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Anyone with experience using teflon packing?

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Old 17-11-2006, 16:42   #9
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John,
Some of the guys in the 27 group swear by teflon. I have not tried it myself.
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Old 17-11-2006, 17:00   #10
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There are several threads here that talk about Goretex packing. Is that what you mean by teflon?
Re-Sell Me on GFO Packing
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Old 17-11-2006, 20:48   #11
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Aloha Deep,
The product that I am questioning is TefPak synthetic shaft packing from the West Marine catalog. Probably not much different than the Goretex stuff but I'm not sure. I went ahead and installed it today. I smeared a bunch of the PTFE Stuffing Box Lubricant on the shaft as well but I'm not certain about that product either.
Any opinions would be appreciated.
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Old 18-11-2006, 00:38   #12
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Can't speak to the packing materials in particular but Teflon and GoreTex are both PTFE so really the same thing.
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