Originally Posted by Steve Olson
When I bought my boat about three months ago (a 1986 Hunter
34), it was noted in the survey
that the engine shaft packing gland was dripping excessively (about one or two drips every second). I brought it to the attention of a mechanic
, who tightened this. About two weeks later, while motoring, I suddenly noticed excessive vibration noise (more obvious at certain RPM's than others). The packing gland is again dripping as it originally did. Would this be an issue with the cut less bearing? Did he possibly over-tighten the packing gland, causing excessive friction and heat? What is my next step? Am I able to use my boat in the meantime or does this require an immediate fix?
Have you re-packed the gland? If not, do it properly, making sure that you remove ALL the old packing first. You may need an old dental pick to do this properly. Then adjust the compression
plate to get the correct drip, go for a motor
around the marina and adjust again. Quite often the cutlass bearing may also need to be replaced. This can sometimes be done by a diver whilst the boat is in the water
, but it is best to do it on the hard
. Replace the shaft anodes at the same time.
Although we like to think that the packing gland will last forever, they do not. Maybe you should look at replacing it with a dripless unit.