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Old 14-05-2012, 12:15   #1
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Volvo MD17C/(?gearbox?)

I don't know what gear box I have on my md17c but I need to find out what type of oil to add to it as I'm now running at the add line.
Any info here would be appreciated.

Also, while on the subject, we were out sailing yesterday and cruising along at about 6 knots when the prop started turning. Placing it in gear didn't stop it and I was a little concerned about getting back to the dock under power. the prop did stop turning during a tack and never started again. We didn't have any problem with power when returning to the dock so everything seems ok, except that when I started the engine there was a horrible squeal. It sounded exactly like an alternator belt squeal but when I opened the engine room door, it was so loud that I couldn't tell where it was coming from. I inspected the alternator belt this morning and it doesn't show any glazing as if it had been slipping. It is a little loose but is in new condition. I just replaced it in January.
Upon starting the engine cold this morning, there was no squeal.

Any thoughts?

Thanks
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Old 14-05-2012, 12:59   #2
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I have the same engine and i just throw the same oil in that sits in my engine worked for the last 5 years and 15k miles
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Old 14-05-2012, 14:01   #3
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Re: Volvo MD17C/(?gearbox?)

Okay thanks. The oil on the dipstick does look fairly thin.

Does your driveshaft/prop spin when under sail?
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Old 14-05-2012, 14:30   #4
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I put it in reverse and then no it doesnt spin
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Old 14-05-2012, 14:49   #5
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Re: Volvo MD17C/(?gearbox?)

There is no rule to say what gearbox you have hence no way to tell what oil it takes. You can post a picture of the gearbox?

MSB / MS2 were common on original installations, leg types 110S / 120S.

You can get oil specs for these from the engine book. Unless the box was replaced with a newer one along the way (beware!), the engine book states the type of the box (as well as oil type for it).

Gear boxes have a plate where the type is given.

These four original VP boxes took SAE 20/30, SAE 10 if below 10 degs cent. I believe the service interval is 100 hours.

Other boxes may require different oils.

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Old 14-05-2012, 17:48   #6
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Re: Volvo MD17C/(?gearbox?)

From memory, Volvo suggests the same oil as specified for the engine. Many people used Dexron ATF. Just make sure that whatever oil you use, it has no anti-friction additive.
If you have the cone drive box it is prone to failure. We got rid of our engine after 1000 hours because of the box continually failing and eventually the Volvo agent admitted there was little they could do about it.
Two major problems: 1. The fibre inserts in the cones wear out. 2.There is a helix shaft that puts pressure on the cones to keep them engaged when transmitting power. There is a circlip on that shaft that takes thrust in reverse. That circlip can and does pop off, leaving you with no drive.
This box was used on a number of engines, the 17 being the biggest. In my experience it was just not up to the job.
We re engined with a Yanmar 3JH and had no further problems.
Next time you hear a screech, shift to neutral. If the noise persists, check the bearings in your alternator and fresh water pump by running the engine briefly with the drive belt off.

Regards,
Richard
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Old 14-05-2012, 21:11   #7
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Re: Volvo MD17C/(?gearbox?)

Here are a couple of pics of the gearbox. Ya I was going to shutdown upon another squeal and remove the alt belt as a test. There is no fresh water pump on this engine so it either has to be the belt or bearing. Is there anything in the gearbox that could squeal? That's my concern, as that is big bucks.
I'll be firing her up and checking it out further tomorrow.

Thanks again guys.
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Old 14-05-2012, 21:32   #8
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Re: Volvo MD17C/(?gearbox?)

I found a manual for the engine online and it gives the oil recommendations for the engine, as well as for the engine including reverse gear/excluding filter and including filter. So that confirms that.
I'll let you know what I find out about that squeal tomorrow.

Cheers all
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Old 15-05-2012, 02:19   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Capt Wraun
Here are a couple of pics of the gearbox. Ya I was going to shutdown upon another squeal and remove the alt belt as a test. There is no fresh water pump on this engine so it either has to be the belt or bearing. Is there anything in the gearbox that could squeal? That's my concern, as that is big bucks.
I'll be firing her up and checking it out further tomorrow.

Thanks again guys.
Same gear box as mine. Wish I could help but the only problems we had were a worn throw out bearing which we had rebuilt. We have put a couple hundred hours on it without problems. But I would agree it is a bit undersized, if there is a rebuild in your future for the gear box might want to consider the difference in price to upgrade To larger gear box...
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Old 15-05-2012, 02:36   #10
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Re: Volvo MD17C/(?gearbox?)

That gearbox drives through cones. Except for some early ones which were metal to metal, there is a metal male cone, and a fibre lined female cone.
I suppose if the fibre has worn out, and you have a metal to metal situation, there could be screeching, combined with diminished drive.
If this is the case, expect to see particles in the gearbox oil.
It is possible to have the female cones re lined with a bonded brake lining type of material.
Regards,
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Old 15-05-2012, 06:43   #11
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Re: Volvo MD17C/(?gearbox?)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Capt Wraun View Post
Here are a couple of pics of the gearbox.(...)
MSB

The big nut has oil stick below it - this is where you remove and add oil. CD SAE 20W-30 if temperature above 10 degrees centigrade, 10W if below.

BTW If you have access below the transmission is a bolt that allows you to remove all oil from the transmission - well worth the effort!

Fantastic piece of equipment. Ours is 30+ years old. Makes silly hissing sound in reverse.

Cheers,
b.
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Old 15-05-2012, 06:49   #12
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Re: Volvo MD17C/(?gearbox?)

BTW If anyone knows why ours makes that silly hiss when engaged in reverse?

No apparent power loss, just the sound, not deteriorating over last 10 years, was there when we got the boat.

THX
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Old 15-05-2012, 06:52   #13
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Re: Volvo MD17C/(?gearbox?)

Cones eh. So more like a clutch system then. I'm going to add some oil and take her out this morning and see if the squeal comes back. If it does, I'll eliminate the alternator and see if it makes a difference. Afterwards, I'll change the oil and see if there is any debris in the oil.
I'm suspecting the gearbox because of the propellor starting to turn unexpectedly under sail.
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Old 15-05-2012, 07:05   #14
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Re: Volvo MD17C/(?gearbox?)

Quote:
Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post
BTW If anyone knows why ours makes that silly hiss when engaged in reverse?

No apparent power loss, just the sound, not deteriorating over last 10 years, was there when we got the boat.

THX
Mine does as well. Nice to hear it isnt just ours. I had the cone replaced when i bought the boat as it had worn unevenly and assumed ti was tied to this, but hundreds of hours later it is still there. So glad to hear others have this sound
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Old 15-05-2012, 07:07   #15
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Re: Volvo MD17C/(?gearbox?)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Capt Wraun View Post
Cones eh. So more like a clutch system then. I'm going to add some oil and take her out this morning and see if the squeal comes back. If it does, I'll eliminate the alternator and see if it makes a difference. Afterwards, I'll change the oil and see if there is any debris in the oil.
I'm suspecting the gearbox because of the propellor starting to turn unexpectedly under sail.
makes sense that it is an issue with the cones seating into the fiber pad as a preivous poster mentioned. If there is metal on metal contact it would account for the squeal, and if there was a worn element it would not keep the properlor from freewheeling...
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