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Old 22-06-2011, 08:35   #1
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Show Us Your Shaft Lock System

The "What transmission is this" thread has prompted me to start this.

So how do you lock your Shaft? (Don't even go there DOJ)

Off the shelf or home made or combination of the two?

Pictures would be well appreciated for us "do it yourself-ers"

I've got nothing at the moment and am looking for some ideas.
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Old 22-06-2011, 08:44   #2
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Re: Show Us Your Shaft Lock System

i dont. my shaft turns even in neutral and it does it slowly--i figgered the designers made it that way fro a reason.....
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Old 22-06-2011, 08:59   #3
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Re: Show Us Your Shaft Lock System

I don't lock the shaft. Yanmar says leave it in neutral so I do.

I have been known to drop to reverse in a pot field, though only when I realize I am gonna go right over one. Full keel and an aperture likely mean I won't snag, but hey, why chance it.

Don't you have some fancy home made feathering prop that ends up stored under the galley while you sail?
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Old 22-06-2011, 09:11   #4
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Re: Show Us Your Shaft Lock System

I have to agree with Frank, the only time I need it to stop I just put it in reverse to keep the prop from fouling, other than that my particular engine doesn't have a problem with spinning shaft.
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Old 22-06-2011, 09:41   #5
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Re: Show Us Your Shaft Lock System

For me the Transmission is fine to have it spin...but it does/must where the cutlass and probably the thrust bearing/s in the transmission....and I here it when below.
I would like to lock it.
I do have at least one half baked idea FRANK!
I've been wanting to store some compessed air on board for some time...a belt or belts off the prop shaft to a compressor may give me the ability to make compressed air, and by closing the inlet or outlet to the compressor may actually work as a soft brake.. so if I forget to release the valve before putting it in gear it would probably be able to turn the shaft to some degree (would have a pressure release valve) the engine would dog, belching black smoke...
Lots of opportunities to automate different aspects of this.
Like I said it half baked.
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Old 22-06-2011, 09:54   #6
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Re: Show Us Your Shaft Lock System

Hi James,

I am told that my transmission is OK to freewheel but, as you mention, there is still wear on the cutlass bearing and packing gland. Plus the noise when the shaft spins is annoying. Since I have a hydraulic transmission putting it in reverse does nothing so I have to lock the shaft or get a folding/feathering prop.

The existing shaft lock is hydraulic and operates by a hose to the transmission. I don't like this system because the failure mode is to lock the shaft. There is a collar around the prop shaft with a couple of slots in it and a SS rod from the shaft lock that is spring loaded to fit into the slots and lock the prop shaft. There is a hose from the transmission to a small hydraulic cylinder on the shaft lock. When the engine is running the hydraulic pressure from the transmission holds the rod out against the spring allowing the prop shaft to turn. So you see my concern. Anything happens to the cylinder or hydraulic line, you lose pressure and the spring drops the rod into the locking collar. Nice, simple, reliable system but would prefer it to fail open instead of closed. There is a pin to pull that will release the locking rod but with a V-drive system I would need a pet octopus to get to it quickly.

Currently removed while I'm overhauling the boat and not certain I will put it back in.
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Old 22-06-2011, 10:33   #7
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Re: Show Us Your Shaft Lock System

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Originally Posted by skipmac View Post
Hi James,

I am told that my transmission is OK to freewheel but, as you mention, there is still wear on the cutlass bearing and packing gland. Plus the noise when the shaft spins is annoying. Since I have a hydraulic transmission putting it in reverse does nothing so I have to lock the shaft or get a folding/feathering prop.

The existing shaft lock is hydraulic and operates by a hose to the transmission. I don't like this system because the failure mode is to lock the shaft. There is a collar around the prop shaft with a couple of slots in it and a SS rod from the shaft lock that is spring loaded to fit into the slots and lock the prop shaft. There is a hose from the transmission to a small hydraulic cylinder on the shaft lock. When the engine is running the hydraulic pressure from the transmission holds the rod out against the spring allowing the prop shaft to turn. So you see my concern. Anything happens to the cylinder or hydraulic line, you lose pressure and the spring drops the rod into the locking collar. Nice, simple, reliable system but would prefer it to fail open instead of closed. There is a pin to pull that will release the locking rod but with a V-drive system I would need a pet octopus to get to it quickly.

Currently removed while I'm overhauling the boat and not certain I will put it back in.
I looked at a similar system and I had the same concerns as you.
Additionally Velvet Drive would void the warranty if this system was tied in to their fluid...(or so I was told by a third party)
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Old 22-06-2011, 12:17   #8
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Re: Show Us Your Shaft Lock System

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Originally Posted by James S View Post
I looked at a similar system and I had the same concerns as you.
Additionally Velvet Drive would void the warranty if this system was tied in to their fluid...(or so I was told by a third party)
When I looked at the one on my boat and the 1" SS locking rod I had to wonder what would happen if the system failed and that rod slammed home while I was motoring. Paranoid vision #2, I'm in a tight spot and need power fast and the lock doesn't release when the engine cranks and I'm hanging upside down in the bilge trying to pull the cotter pin out while the boat drifts up onto a reef.

The more I think about it the more I don't want to put that back in. Want a good deal on a shaft lock? You can wait until the warranty runs out on the Velvet Drive before you install it.
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Old 22-06-2011, 13:00   #9
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Re: Show Us Your Shaft Lock System

When I read these threads I always wonder how the cost of the shaft locking systems compares price wise to a folding prop? My Flex-O-Fold cost me $2350 this year. The shaft doesn't turn, there isn't any noise/vibiration/wear, the boats sails faster, and it motors better in both directions.

Of course I guess if you just make a lock out of a piece of wood that you can clamp on the shaft it's pretty cheap. Until you forget to unlock it one day when you want to motor.
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Old 22-06-2011, 13:20   #10
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Re: Show Us Your Shaft Lock System

vicegrips
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Old 22-06-2011, 20:11   #11
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Re: Show Us Your Shaft Lock System

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Originally Posted by Don Lucas View Post
When I read these threads I always wonder how the cost of the shaft locking systems compares price wise to a folding prop? My Flex-O-Fold cost me $2350 this year. The shaft doesn't turn, there isn't any noise/vibiration/wear, the boats sails faster, and it motors better in both directions.
Well that's the way I'm thinking. In fact specifically looking at the Flex-O-Fold. So how do you like yours so far?

I did look up the Shaftlok system just to see what they've got.

SHAFT LOK INC.

From what I can see on the website it answers all the concerns I have about my current lock. If I understand correctly it cannot fail in locked mode and requires no hydraulic or other outside power to operate. Three models on the website $300, $700 and $1100. I think the cheaper ones will work on a sailboat so a bit cheaper than the prop but still have the drag of an open prop.
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Old 23-06-2011, 06:10   #12
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Re: Show Us Your Shaft Lock System

Quote:
Originally Posted by FrankZ View Post
I don't lock the shaft. Yanmar says leave it in neutral so I do ...
Yanmar says leave it in neutral, or use a shaft brake:
http://www.mainehuntersailing.com/fi..._MSA08-003.pdf

"... If the customer desires that the propeller shaft not spin while sailing, either a folding propeller, shaft break, or other suitable device may be used ..."
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Old 23-06-2011, 08:43   #13
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Re: Show Us Your Shaft Lock System

the folks in leaky teaky yacht club, a yahoo group, make their own. i understand it works well. our boats do not fit folding or feathering props f or some reason-- so i just let mine free-- hasnt hurt it yet..i keep fluid levels proper and check temp and fluid levels -- and the speed difference like so really matters whenye sail a brick--NOT!!!! so i dont worry about mine. yeah yeah yeah, i know.....LOL
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Old 23-06-2011, 16:52   #14
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Re: Show Us Your Shaft Lock System

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Originally Posted by zeehag View Post
the folks in leaky teaky yacht club, a yahoo group, make their own. i understand it works well. our boats do not fit folding or feathering props f or some reason-- so i just let mine free-- hasnt hurt it yet..i keep fluid levels proper and check temp and fluid levels -- and the speed difference like so really matters whenye sail a brick--NOT!!!! so i dont worry about mine. yeah yeah yeah, i know.....LOL
Hi Z,

How about a link or some photos on how to do this homebrew lock. Bet it's cheaper than the storebought kind.
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Old 23-06-2011, 16:58   #15
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Re: Show Us Your Shaft Lock System

i do no tuse one but in the leaky teaky yacht club group on yahoo... is in htere--ask julia.... she uses it mebbe walt also---- i will ask em to see---- i didnt see any pix but julia was speaking of it as she uses it...
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