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Old 04-03-2012, 20:42   #1
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Stuffing Box Leaking Through the Thread

Hi,

I have a standard stuffing box. Recently it has been completely cleaned by a mechanic (now it is is nice shiny). However the problem is that now it is leaking through the tread. I tried to put some grease between the treads but it only hold for a couple of days. The leak is not serious (probably a drop every minute).

Any idea how to seal the tread? It has to be some kind of sealant which does not set (so I can still adjust it).

Cheers
Geza
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Old 04-03-2012, 21:16   #2
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Re: Stuffing box leaking through the thread

AHHH stuffing glands should leak a drip or two every minute or so it helps lube the shaft !! at least thats what I was taught ! just my 2 cents Bob and Connie
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Old 04-03-2012, 21:50   #3
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Re: Stuffing box leaking through the thread

Well, thanks for the reply. Yes. The stuffing box should leak from the front side where the stuffing is but should not from the threaded (aft) side.
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Old 04-03-2012, 21:56   #4
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Re: Stuffing box leaking through the thread

If it is leaking out the aft side of the stuffing box (around the threads and where the locking nut tightens against the pressure nut) then the packing inside is not seating correctly against the body of the tube.

Repack it and make sure the rings of packing are the right length and not crimped or gaped, especially on the last one installed, the one that fits against the threaded body.
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Old 04-03-2012, 22:06   #5
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Re: Stuffing box leaking through the thread

You might also check to make sure there are no nicks or dings on the end of the threaded body.
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Old 05-03-2012, 08:38   #6
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Re: Stuffing Box Leaking Through the Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by rotorman View Post
The leak is not serious (probably a drop every minute).
What you think as a problem is actually the normal function of a stuffing box. If it leaks a drop a minute (it will be a bit more when the shaft is spinning), it is, in fact, operating properly.

I have a fibreglass boat with a traditional stuffing box with a Teflon-impregnated packing. The spiral of stuffing is three turns with the ends trimmed at an angle to more or less meet to make a "triple coil".

I inspect it once a year and have had to adjust it once in five years. I use surplus dental tools to put it in place, a job more calmly done out of the water, by the way. The coil of packing I bought for 10 bucks years ago should last me until I die at this rate.

I also have a steel boat with a PSS device. This is the so-called "dripless" bellows-type. Water, if you're doing it right, never enters the boat. It's expensive and more finicky than a stuffing box, and it's generally an "all or nothing" proposition in that if it's working, you forget about it, but if it fails...whoosh glug blub!

But with steel I don't even want an unnoticed drop inside. Your needs may vary.
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Old 05-03-2012, 08:42   #7
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Re: Stuffing Box Leaking Through the Thread

Oops, I read this again. Your stuffing may indeed be poorly seated, or you may have damaged threads. You may wish to wrap the threads in teflon plumbing tape to see if that helps, but if the actual problem is worn or damaged thread, teflon tape may close that gap.
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Old 05-03-2012, 09:26   #8
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Re: Stuffing Box Leaking Through the Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by S/V Alchemy View Post
Oops, I read this again. Your stuffing may indeed be poorly seated, or you may have damaged threads. You may wish to wrap the threads in teflon plumbing tape to see if that helps, but if the actual problem is worn or damaged thread, teflon tape may close that gap.
I'm thinking the packing was not properly cut or for some other reason the packing is not seated against the threaded housing.
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Old 05-03-2012, 09:31   #9
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Re: Stuffing Box Leaking Through the Thread

You might want to check out Mainesail's web site with great photos and detailed description of a traditional stuffing box and step-by-step instructions on how to repack one.

Re-Packing A Traditional Stuffing Box Photo Gallery by Compass Marine at pbase.com
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