Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 21-03-2011, 15:17   #1
Registered User

Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 586
Images: 3
Stuffing Box Wrenches

The stuffing box in my boat is nearly inaccessible, the normal condition of most critical parts on a sailboat. Does anyone have a suggestion on a set of opposing wrenches that are small enough to get in a space that is way too small to swing or even set pipe wrenches? Am thinking of making two narrow, offset wrenches but someone must manufacture something like this for sailboats. Plenty of boats were built with the box buried in a dark, narrow tunnel and there must be just the right tool to get at it "easily". If anyone has found the perfect tool, would appreciate hearing about it.
__________________

__________________
smurphny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-03-2011, 15:22   #2
Registered User

Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Kemah, TX
Boat: Moody 42
Posts: 235
How about stuffing box wrenches?
__________________

__________________
Sailorman375 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-03-2011, 15:26   #3
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Tasmania
Boat: VandeStadt IOR 40' - Insatiable
Posts: 2,317
Images: 91
Re: Stuffing box wrenches

Can't you make some out of, say 1/4" aluminium plate?
__________________
Weyalan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-03-2011, 15:41   #4
Moderator
 
Boracay's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Pelican Bay, Great Sandy National Park
Boat: Steel Roberts Offshore 44
Posts: 5,175
Images: 18
Local engineering workshop?

Some of the more established shipwrights or marine mechanics may have a few tools for your sort of job, but they would likely be highly prized and not sold (or lent!) lightly.

Have you considered making a dummy set of wrenches out of (say) plywood or scrap lumber, measuring the distance between the faces of all nuts accurately, checking that it will actually do what you want and then taking it to your local engineering workshop. Some plans, diagrams, measurements, photos and notes may not go astray either.

Mine does high quality and very reasonably priced work, though they do seem to expect a bit of a chat about my boat. Modern engineering could be quite a high stress job so a relaxed approach may also be also be part of the deal.

I would not be surprised to find a custom fabrication to be cheaper than a mass produced piece of junk...
__________________
Rust never sleeps
Boracay Blog.
Boracay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-03-2011, 15:41   #5
Registered User

Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 586
Images: 3
Re: Stuffing box wrenches

Don't think regular stuffing box wrenches will fit. Something like offset under-sink wrenches might work. Might try them. As Weyalan suggests, will probably make them from some 1/4-1/2" plate w/ offset handles. Just thought someone may have found a better solution. Not exactly a piece of gear you want to have a hard time with should it start leaking a lot when in west bum#$%&ck.
__________________
smurphny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-03-2011, 16:06   #6
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Chesapeake Region and Maine
Boat: 42' Bob Perry sloop
Posts: 4,038
Images: 4
Re: Stuffing box wrenches

You probably don't need two wrenches. One will do.

I have the same setup....nearly inaccessible. I have one wrench with an offset handle made from 1/4" aluminum.

Here's the trick: loosen the REAR nut first. Then, back it off quite a ways by hand, adjust the front nut using the wrench, then screw up the back nut and tighten it with the wrench.

Watch your knuckles :-)

Bill
__________________
btrayfors is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-03-2011, 16:15   #7
Registered User

Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 3,949
Re: Stuffing box wrenches

Sounds like you probably can't get it in there, but I have a pair of vice grips that are designed with a very large jaw that is somewhat rounded and yet they have rather slim tips on the jaws. I can clamp that around one of the nuts while using a typical slim flat metal stern gland wrench on the other nut. The vise grips go on the nut that is closest to the stern and hangs down in the fiberglass trough the shaft goes through, which on my boat is pretty deep.
__________________
Kettlewell Cruising
Kettlewell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-03-2011, 16:16   #8
sitting on the dock of the bay

Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 1,513
Images: 6
Send a message via Yahoo to gonesail
Re: Stuffing box wrenches

are you implying your stuffing box has not been adjusted since 1967
__________________
sometimes the things that may or may not be true are the things a man needs to believe in the most.
gonesail is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-03-2011, 17:20   #9
Registered User
 
captain465's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Ft Lauderdale, FL
Boat: 38ft Irwin center cockpit sloop MERIDIAN
Posts: 618
Re: Stuffing box wrenches

You might try looking at McMaster-Carr on line...look up "pump wrenches". They are very slender and have an offset handle with the usually wide jaw opening that is neccessary for stuffing box work.
__________________
Do not go where the path may lead.........
go instead where there is no path........
and leave a trail.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
captain465 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-03-2011, 17:43   #10
Moderator Emeritus
 
GordMay's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Thunder Bay, Ontario - 48-29N x 89-20W
Boat: (Cruiser Living On Dirt)
Posts: 31,582
Images: 240
Re: Stuffing box wrenches

Strap or chain wrench?
__________________
Gord May
"If you didn't have the time or money to do it right in the first place, when will you get the time/$ to fix it?"



GordMay is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 21-03-2011, 21:18   #11
Registered User

Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 249
Re: Stuffing box wrenches

I had a couple made after nothing else worked. Fairly cheap. Still awkward though as you need two hands but can only get one in so have to wedge the other spanner. Not sure about doing one at a time but the locknut seems to need less pressure to me. A real pain as can require a fairly fine adjustment so sometimes need several shots. I think someone makes something but not available here. Mine from memory were 2" nuts so only about 1/2" either side.
__________________
chris_gee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-03-2011, 23:19   #12
Registered User

Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 249
Re: Stuffing box wrenches

Oops probably four inch.
__________________
chris_gee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-03-2011, 05:15   #13
Registered User

Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 28
Re: Stuffing box wrenches

I made a pair using some scrap g10 fiberglass board and they fit the tiny space around the vdrive. Formerly, I had to use a very long screwdriver and hammer strike to break the box loose. But g10 is expensive and metal plate would be cheaper if you don't already have some around.

photo link
Pearson323_repower_17 | Flickr - Photo Sharing!
__________________
danhaun is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-03-2011, 06:08   #14
Registered User
 
Kalinka1's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Toronto
Boat: Heritage 35
Posts: 301
Re: Stuffing box wrenches

Had a pair made up at a fab shop about $20.00 for a pair. 2 different sized nuts One handle shorter than the other once lock nut loose can usually just use hand to tighten.
__________________
Kalinka1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-03-2011, 06:17   #15
Registered User

Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 586
Images: 3
Re: Stuffing box wrenches

Great responses guys, thank You! Maybe actually grinding down a pair of large vice grips would work. This would allow one-handed access and prevent wrenches from falling into the abyss. Don't need a lot of torque, just a sure grip. The shaft log dripped more than normal all summer last year. Didn't want to even screw with it while in the water because anything breaking in there would be a haul-it-out-quick fire drill. Was able to loosen it when hauled to repack (after soaking w/ Liquid Wrench) but didn't feel confident that I got it really tight. Would never use anything but two opposing wrenches for any situation like this to avoid turning the wrong side, doing damage to the "hose" section. This would be a real disaster, necessitating pulling the shaft to install a new one. The packing box unit is in good shape. It was replaced when the engine was replaced with a Yanmar but shortly thereafter, sat for years in a boatyard. The engine had < 100 hours on it when I got it. The log nuts were probably in the same place they were in the late 80s when the engine was swapped, hence pretty well locked in place.
__________________

__________________
smurphny is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Stuffing Box Help kb79 Propellers & Drive Systems 13 21-09-2010 09:11
Is it My Stuffing Box? cmesiam Propellers & Drive Systems 13 24-09-2009 11:09
Need Stuffing Box Help TOM Propellers & Drive Systems 8 12-09-2009 22:34
Stuffing box or re-stuffing the box / dripless Dave in Eugene General Sailing Forum 10 28-12-2007 16:45
Stuffing box help Iain Propellers & Drive Systems 18 30-08-2007 07:32



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 05:40.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.