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Old 21-02-2010, 20:59   #1
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Location: Chicago
Boat: 1972 35' Allied Seabreeze "Sally Forth"
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Cutlass Bearing Water Flow ?

I'm replacing a cutlass bearing as suggested by the purchase survey of my 35' Allied Seabreeze (full keel/CB with a stern tube). I've read as many installation guides as possible, as the procedure is new to me.

I thought I had it down but then, when I took the shaft and prop to be inspected, the shop guy asked what means I had to insure proper water flow to the new bearing. I thought water simply entered the back end of the bearing and the stuffing box prevented it from coming in the boat! He claims a hole must be drilled through the stern tube and bearing.

In all the guides I've read I've never seen any mention of this. Yet, in a link in this forum to "ABYC's P-6 Propellor Shafting System", sect. 6.8.2 states "A means shall be provided to insure the flow of water through the strut bearing".

Why is this not addressed in ANY instructional guides I've read? Can anyone clarify this for me? Thanks.
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Old 21-02-2010, 22:37   #2
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Full keel type cutlass bearings are fully enclosed in the aft of the keel vs a strut mounted cutlass, which has water entering from the forward end.

There are two methods that I've seen (I've never owned a full keel).
1) There were holes forward of the cutlass bearing that passed through the keel strut allowing water to get sucked into the bearing.
2) There is a line from the raw water pump or it's tributaries that is plumbed into the cutlass bearing from inside the hull.

Personally, I would prefer #2. Sea life can plug up external holes. I've even seen these external holes covered up with bottom paint. You might want to check that.
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