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Old 14-12-2010, 05:53   #1
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Blake's Seacock Maintenance

I know.. a pretty simple question, but this is our first boat with a true seacock. Where it is pretty important to have working perfectly all the time, I want to ensure I service it properly.

I want to service the Blake's seacock in our boat over the winter. There is a slight drip when it is being used. Not enough to worry about, but I figure it is time to take it apart. The handle is pretty loose, I am sure a slight tightening would take care of it.. I think it would be good practice to take it apart for preventative measures.

Reading the manual (found a reprint online), it suggests using "Blakes seacock grease". Is there anything special about it? Is there a grease that is available local (usa - boston ma) that would work as well?

If the valve needs to be ground, is there a recommended grinding compound to use as well. I suspect it will be fine (only 2 seasons since it was serviced by the previous owner), but figure I should have all the bases covered.

Any other tips or tricks?
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Old 14-12-2010, 12:35   #2
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Hello Phantomracer
To service the blakes sea valves is not rocket science.
You usually can get engine grinding paste from any good motorist store, try and get 'fine' or 'Medium' grade.

After cleaning the valve a bit, smear both the valve 'inside' and the 'insert' part and grind them 'TOGETHER', not apart, using a rotary back & forward motion and up and down from time to time.

I spend about 10 min with the medium grade then about 15 min with the fine grade of paste and grind them until they are smooth (not shiny)
Make sure the valve body internally and the insert part are absolutely clean before assembly.

A simple test is with a pensil, draw three vertical lines (top to bottom) down the outside of the insert part, then grind, all three of the pensil lines should disappear, any part showing says it is not fully ground.

The trick to assemble them is with the best thick quality grease you can buy, Blakes make thier own grease for the valves which here in the UK it is 12 a tin, BUT it will last you and the valve.

Do not tighten too tight on assembly, the handle should turn easily, if any sign of drips later just slightly tighten a bit more, as a guide I can turn mine with one finger.
Hope this helps.
Mike





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Old 27-12-2010, 20:03   #3
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Thanks for the writeup..very helpful.

The one on my boat, original to my 1968 Ohlson 38, works great. It was rebuilt by the previous owner to like new condition. I have used it 2 seasons. Operates very smoothly and very easily..maybe too much so..and it drips a little when opened.

Not sure, as I mentioned, if it needs rebuilding or not.. but figured it would be good to get to know the process a bit more hands-on.. take it apart on the hard and inspect/clean/grind if needed before it comes a problem. I might just need a quarter turn of the screws.. but not going to take the chance. Should be a fun project.

would wheel bearing grease (boat trailer bearing grease I have on hand) be good .. or use some other type of grease?
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Old 27-12-2010, 20:31   #4
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The grease used in plug valves for saltwater is very thick. Kind of like a black grease mixed with bees wax.

If you goto a valve shop they would be able to supply you with some. Let them know it's for saltwater.

They come in little turds coated with an inert power to keep them separate.
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Old 31-12-2010, 11:16   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phantomracer View Post
Thanks for the writeup..very helpful.
would wheel bearing grease (boat trailer bearing grease I have on hand) be good .. or use some other type of grease?
Hi
The grease you should use in the blakes valves should be the best you can afford ! namely it should be of good quality and be thick in build.

Blakes actualy manufacture their own grease that can be purchased from most on line sites, not cheap at 12.95 a tin in the UK, but does the job with plenty left over for next time.
http://www.yachtparts.co.uk/shop/mai...grease-scx6007

Mike
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Old 31-12-2010, 12:18   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tynesider View Post
Hi
The grease you should use in the blakes valves should be the best you can afford ! namely it should be of good quality and be thick in build.

Blakes actualy manufacture their own grease that can be purchased from most on line sites, not cheap at 12.95 a tin in the UK, but does the job with plenty left over for next time.
http://www.yachtparts.co.uk/shop/mai...grease-scx6007

Mike
I indicate in my opening message about using blakes.. but it is not available here.. and was wondering about alternatives before spending $50-60 for grease and the overseas shipping. Was just curious what brand and type of grease to do others use on this side of the pond.

I will probably get the blakes, as I really should order the spares kit for our Bake's Baby head we have.. at about $300+ its a bit of sticker shock..Second only to the replacement cost of the head itself ($6500)!
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Old 18-03-2012, 07:12   #7
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Re: Blake's Seacock Maintenance

Hi,
shame on me for earlier neglect.
Have my Westerly on the hard for maintenance.
The blake seacock does not want to disassemble - its jammed.
Trying to release the plug from outside the hull with a wooden plug and a hammer.
More violence & WD40 needed.
Any other ideas !?
Best s/y Katten
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Old 18-03-2012, 07:30   #8
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Re: Blake's Seacock Maintenance

While we are on the subject. I have older (circa 1976) Blakes on my Moody. The handles come off and can apparently be mounted in multiple positions. How does one tell if the seacock is open or closed?
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Old 18-03-2012, 07:48   #9
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Re: Blake's Seacock Maintenance

on mine its a very small arrow pointing .
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Old 18-03-2012, 08:39   #10
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Re: Blake's Seacock Maintenance

We had a stuck blakes and the hit it with a piece of wood from outside just wouldn't budge it - Finally removed it with a chunk of metal shoved into it and a well aimed blow from a sledgehammer - not for the-faint hearted!

Incidentally, we remove ours every haulout and grind each one as per post above. We open and close them once a month, by turning the handle, to keep them from sticking.

I wouldn't skimp on the type of grease as this is what makes them watertight. The cone 'floats' on the layer of grease, so don't overtighten the retaining thingy or you'll squeeze it all out and you'll be back to seacocks that are stuck!

I managed to put one back together the wrong way round, so what we thought was 'open' was actually closed, so now I always line them up hole to hose (open) and put the handle on 'in line' with the hose.

As far as the price is concerned, it's horrendous. Pity someone uk based can't drop you some in the post -even by fedex it would be cheaper than what you've been quoted.

The only thing I can think of as a sub, would be Johnsons Triple guard. That's waterproof and thick and sticky - I use it when re-packing the stern gland.

Best of luck getting that seacock cone out!

Lesley
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Old 18-03-2012, 09:09   #11
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Re: Blake's Seacock Maintenance

Thanks Lesley - will try more violence then
best from Katten
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Old 06-08-2013, 15:53   #12
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Re: Blake's Seacock Maintenance

I have six Blakes seacocks in my boat and I can tell you from bitter experience only use Blakes Grease. (wonderful 'eau de nil' green stuff!) Everything else seems to seize up mid season. PTEF was a disaster!

Does anyone know how to get Blakes grease out of the far and into a gun for mid-season re-greasing?
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Old 06-08-2013, 16:31   #13
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Re: Blake's Seacock Maintenance

I did have the Uk stuff Dunhams (sp?)grease but now use wheel bearing grease for boat trailers and available at any marine supply store ; "works a treat" as the Brits say.

Did try Lanocote one year, worked for a while but then seized up.
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Old 06-08-2013, 17:30   #14
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Re: Blake's Seacock Maintenance

since starting this thread a while back. I have serviced it using winch grease, and it seems to work fine. Next time I order parts for my Blakes Baby head, I might order some blakes grease to try it out.

The rebuild kit for my blakes baby costs more than the entire head of our other sailboat!! Unreal head though!!
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Old 07-08-2013, 07:53   #15
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Re: Blake's Seacock Maintenance

The cone on one of my Blake's 3" seacock is badly waisted, does anyone know how bad they can get and still be grind able? Anybody sell a new cone? What about building up the worn part with thickened epoxy?
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