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Old 10-28-2015, 09:18 AM   #1
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PSS Seal Leak

We have a slow drip at the PSS shaft seal and talking to the good folks at PYI they suggested opening the bellows enough to slip in a folded piece of 600 grit wet/dry sandpaper and rotating the shaft by hand 15-20 times.

The bellows appear to be in good shape and according to the maintenance records of the P.O. a maintenance kit was installed in 2014. During the move from the Cheseapeake to NC the boat got plenty of running and none of my routine checks revealed a leak. The boat sat for about 6 weeks with no use and now we have the leak.

Any suggestions or cautions? Deliberately opening the seal faces with the boat in the water is not a task i look forward to.

Thanks,

Gene
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Old 10-28-2015, 09:37 AM   #2
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Don't worry about opening the seal. The amount of water that will come in is actually very small compared to the volume of your boat. Your pumps will easily stay ahead of it. It's just unsettling to see any water entering your boat. It's not really dangerous.
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Old 10-28-2015, 09:47 PM   #3
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I did what they told you to do and it did stop the leak. Be sure to use wet/dry sand paper.
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Old 10-28-2015, 10:39 PM   #4
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I had a problem with mine too. The set screws (stacked two per) had come free. Initial install, the guy only put one in each side rather than two. It worked, until it didn't.

That was unnerving.
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Old 10-28-2015, 11:03 PM   #5
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Janice: I checked my own PSS seal right after you posted that. These are good seals, but only as good as their installation.
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Old 10-28-2015, 11:45 PM   #6
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Too true. I've got the bellows and metal ring from mine I'll offer up here soon. 1.25" shaft however I went back to standard packing gland. I still have a half dozen of the 1/4" set screws. You tighten them with an allen wrench. I found one in the bilge when I had the flood.

And I paid perfectly good money for that install.

P.S. - The solar panels are on and bolted through with 3/8" bolts. It took 5" to go through the over head and with some slack. I wanted an extra inch outbound so that if I want to attach anything I've got the extra threads to do so.

And there's room (someday/maybe) for a rooftop RV AC unit. Planned ahead and brought the new panels out to the edge, just in case... I want to get by the hardware store and pick up 10' of 10 gauge to bring them down to the bus bar.

Just a couple days ago I placed an order with Defender and forgot completely the wire.
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Old 10-29-2015, 02:32 AM   #7
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Slosail,
Do you do a fresh water flush after using the boat?
If the boat sits for a while with salt water in the bellows, it can corrode the shaft.
This is true for all types of packing, and especially if there is a long stern tube that pretty much eliminates any chance of water circulation in the seal area unless the boat is exercised.
I have had to purchase a longer piece of tubing to move the seal to a "fresh" spot on the shaft, which works, but leaves the already corroded spot in a wet, vulnerable location.
Make sure your shaft Zincs are in good shape and correctly attached too.
A grease zerk behind the packing is cheap insurance!
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Old 10-29-2015, 07:40 AM   #8
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Most times just pulling the seal surface apart and letting it snap bacl will remove the deposit that is the leak.

A wipe with your finger on both surfaces may cure it with out the sandpaper.
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Old 10-29-2015, 07:46 AM   #9
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FF has it right (IMO). One grain of sand is all it takes for a leak. Just a 'flush' by pulling the seals apart will cure the problem 90% of the time.
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Old 10-29-2015, 07:57 AM   #10
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Kapnd - No, we do not flush after using the boat. We are in brackish water. I have been following another message string regarding the wisdom of a fresh water flush and there seems to be a divided opinion on it.

Gene
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Old 10-29-2015, 08:49 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by janice142 View Post
I had a problem with mine too. The set screws (stacked two per) had come free. Initial install, the guy only put one in each side rather than two. It worked, until it didn't.

That was unnerving.
In addition to the set screws, I have a hose clamp up against the collar, and run a bead or calking around the collor in case the collar slips and the O rings inside the collar leak. Make sure the bellows are tight for a good seal.

As far the leak might trying running the boat in gear at the dock. They do leak a bit when the shaft turns, buy should stop when shaft is not turning.
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Old 10-30-2015, 12:45 AM   #12
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On my shaft in front of the stuffing box are my spare shaft zincs. They are there not as part of the bonding system, but instead to prevent the shaft from moving aft. I know that "shouldn't happen" and hasn't. Those zincs give me peace of mind.



Part Two: I always know where my zincs are when the diver says it's time to replace same.
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Old 10-30-2015, 12:56 AM   #13
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Janice, good idea, I like it.
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Old 10-30-2015, 01:29 AM   #14
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It's not my idea HopCar -- I swiped it from a powercat.
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Old 10-30-2015, 07:08 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by janice142 View Post
On my shaft in front of the stuffing box are my spare shaft zincs. They are there not as part of the bonding system, but instead to prevent the shaft from moving aft. I know that "shouldn't happen" and hasn't. Those zincs give me peace of mind.



Part Two: I always know where my zincs are when the diver says it's time to replace same.
If I am looking at the engine raw water intake hose, I am surprised and concerned that your hose is not wire reinforced. As your strainer fills with crud your raw water pump will be able to collapse your transparent hose line.
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Old 11-10-2015, 11:26 PM   #16
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You're correct. That's an old picture -- looked for one with the zincs showing. That's the BOB engine and you're quite correct. Those are the wrong hoses for the application. Good catch Ptitug.
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