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Old 11-28-2017, 07:27 PM   #1
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Dripless seal leaking

Hi,
I recently had the real gear box seal replaced and a month or two later the shaft seal has started leaking while under way.
Not sure what the brand of shaft seal I have or the best way of sorting out.
Where I live pulling the boat out if the water is difficult so I want avoid if possible.
Thanks for your help
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Old 11-28-2017, 08:12 PM   #2
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Doesn't look like the dripless units I've seen. Sure it's not a conventional stuffing box? If it is, you can tighten the nuts to compress the stuffing material.
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Old 11-28-2017, 08:27 PM   #3
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Greetings,
Mr. N. Welcome aboard, if I've missed you. What you have there is a fairly standard stuffing box. (Just saw Mr. R's post above and I agree, not a "dripless" unit) It appears not to have been serviced in some time given the amount of corrosion and verdigris on the bronze.
The packing material in those can be replaced while in the water. There are a few threads dealing with adjustment, re-packing techniques and materials.

I would try adjusting the two stainless?? bolts on the forward side of the flange BUT given the appearance of the fitting I would suggest you try to clean as much of the corrosion off as possible before attempting adjustments or packing replacements. Apply your favorite penetrating liquid to the two bolts, listen to some nice music, relax, talk to your wife/partner/neighbor... apply more penetrant and gently, oh, ever so gently, try to loosen off the two bolts. Once the bolts move easily, THEN gently tighten them a bit. You may stop the leak.
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Old 11-28-2017, 08:47 PM   #4
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Tidy accessible set up! Conventional, with water feed and what looks like a grease cap.
As your problem started after the gearbox seal was replaced, I`m wondering if the alignment was disturbed.
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Old 11-28-2017, 10:54 PM   #5
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Yup, looks like a standard two bolt stuffing box modified for a water feed and grease cup. Looks like it has run out of adjustment depth which is maybe why it is leaking. It's possible the gear box work disturbed it but if it has run out of adjustment then the packing may simply have reached the end of its life.

Repack it which should be able to be done in the water. Just have all the gear at hand.
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Old 11-29-2017, 12:45 AM   #6
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I don't like compressing old hardened packing. Great way to score a shaft. Replace that packing, in the water is fine. Then you can safely tighten it.
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Old 11-29-2017, 07:30 AM   #7
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Use the grease cup more often.
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Old 11-29-2017, 09:56 AM   #8
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Anyone else have a grease cup on a conventional stuffing box, with or without water feed? What is your experience? Would not the grease keep the cooling water away from the packing allowing over heating?
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Old 11-29-2017, 10:19 AM   #9
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Folks, it is not a "stuffing box". It is correctly called a "packing gland".

When I switched over to dripless shaft seals, I had 2 extra one installed on the shaft, just incase.
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Old 11-29-2017, 03:08 PM   #10
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Thanks everyone

Thanks fir all your advice and comments. It does look a bit mangy but that has only really appeared recently once it started leaking.
I have done some further research and established it us a Chatfield Dripless seal. I can apparently get new seals from New Zealand. It is designed to allow packing to be inserted as a temporary measure if it starts to leak.
Will heed all advice and be very careful with the bolts and recheck the alignment.
Many thanks again
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Old 11-29-2017, 05:25 PM   #11
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Well what do you know, learn something every day.

Blue Water Shaft Seal, Chatfield Marine, CEL, dripless, bronze, NZ
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Old 11-29-2017, 07:42 PM   #12
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You may have damaged the lip by moving the shaft in and out as you worked on the transmission. Only takes a little dirt, and there's plenty on either side of where the lip had been.

Those of us with the spare seals stored on the shaft can have the same problem when moving the stored seal into place. Been there, actually, still there; I'll put the replacement stored seal onto the shafts now that the boat's pulled.
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Old 11-29-2017, 07:54 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DHeckrotte View Post

Those of us with the spare seals stored on the shaft can have the same problem when moving the stored seal into place. Been there, actually, still there; I'll put the replacement stored seal onto the shafts now that the boat's pulled.
AND we can find them when we need them too.
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Old 11-30-2017, 09:51 PM   #14
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I like the brushless shaft brush
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Old 12-01-2017, 07:32 AM   #15
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"Those of us with the spare seals stored on the shaft can have the same problem when moving the stored seal into place. Been there, actually, still there; I'll put the replacement stored seal onto the shafts now that the boat's pulled."

Since it seems the unit will accept conventional packing , why not simply use Duramax , do away with the water supply , and seal failures?
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Old 12-01-2017, 07:53 PM   #16
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I want to second what Fred said about using packing, it is a much more durable and forgiving material than a carbon disc or a lip seal, and the Duraflex or other modern type Teflon impregnated packings can be entirely drip free.
If you ever get into a situation with a dripless where you must run with say a bent prop and / or shaft, or anything that would cause the drive train to vibrate, you will take on a lot of water!
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Old 12-03-2017, 05:13 AM   #17
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Thanks

My plan is to replace the seal and see how it goes. I will get some packing to gave on hand as a backup. Thanks everyone for your help and advice.
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