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Old 26-09-2010, 18:03   #16
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still think the whole looks cross threaded or the shaft is way out of line. or both

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Old 26-09-2010, 18:34   #17
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boys--do NOT beat your boats. if you have a shaft log there you will sink the boat by hitting it apart. not funny.
omg -you made me cuss. now i have to pay me a quarter....

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Old 26-09-2010, 19:09   #18
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Which direction does your shaft turn when running ahead?

In most cases that is the direction of tightening.

You may be trying to go the wrong way
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Old 26-09-2010, 21:19   #19
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Make sure you have a good auto bilge pump or are out of the water before taking any drastic measures.

As a last resort I've had to use a hammer and flat chisel in tight spaces a few times. If the box is mounted to a rubber tube as is most common, chances of cracking the stern tube are low, as the rubber cutlass bearing cushions the shaft, and the rubber hose limits the forces transmitted to the stern tube. Make sure you are going the right way, then try the chisel on the locknut first. The end of the chisel should be around 1/4" in from a corner of the nut. For the first couple blows I keep the chisel nearly perpendicular to the surface, then can angle it more in the direction I want the nut to turn. THIS WILL LEAVE A DENT IN THE BRONZE NUT. And as such only use it as a last resort. I prefer a small sledge hammer swung lightly over high speed beatings with a lighter hammer. If the locknut won't loosen, try going the other way with the main packing nut. If you can get any to loosen a little it sometimes unlocks enough that the other can be freed, followed by thorough cleaning with oil, wire brushes, etc so it all fits back together freely. If you have to do this always check the integrity of the rubber tube, shaft, and related hardware. Keep in mind also that with this method is is possible to bend the shaft, though I have never had a problem with that.

If still doesn't move, you might be able to make up an extended wrench. Have a long piece of pipe welded to a properly sized open-end wrench, x2, and pull the handles towards each other just like with the pipe wrenches but with far more leverage. Eventually either the nuts will come free, the wrenches will break, or the stuffing box will break. One way or another something exciting will happen. (keep appropriate beverages on hand for all possible outcomes)
With heat, though it won't do a lot while in the water, you can get the nut(s) to warm enough to help break them free from the stuffing box. Actually the nuts will get far warmer than the box/threaded tube which is cooled by the water, which causes the nuts to expand more than the box, which increases the chances of increasing diameter clearances and breaking the 2 free from each other from what I've ran into.
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Old 27-09-2010, 09:21   #20
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Thank you for all your answers.
Sabray, the shaft is in line (the picture is somehow distorted), so that doesn't seem to be our problem and I don't think the threads are the problem neither.
We've been using the righty tighty, lefty loosey rule and if the threads are right threaded (which we will check - thank you Philsboat), we are trying to turn the locking nut in the right direction. Daddle, thank you for your tip ("common threads are right-handed. Using your right hand, curl your fingers and stick out your thumb. The screw or nut will move in the direction your thumb is pointing when the screw or nut is turned in the direction your fingers are pointing"). I'll try to remember it!
So, we've sprayed some corrosion-X on the nuts, as we certainly do not want to risk damaging the packing itself. I will let you know if it works.
Thanks again and if you have any other suggestions, let me know.
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Old 27-09-2010, 17:36   #21
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What direction does your shaft turn when going ahead?

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