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Old 01-21-2015, 03:36 PM   #1
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Transmission oil change question

Wanted to bounce this off experts since it will be a first time for me. My last winter maintenance item is changing transmission fluid in both my Borg Warner Velvet Drive CR2s in my GB 42. I plan to use ATF Dextron 3. My question: to drain oil, is it better to pump out of opening where dipstick goes or to drain from return line to H.E.? Or, does it really matter? Looks like it might be easier to do the pump out.
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Old 01-21-2015, 03:51 PM   #2
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We change our BW Velvet Drive ATF using a vacuum pump-out system down through the dipstick tube. The position of the transmission fluid heat exchanger means there is little to no fluid in it when the engine's not running and the fluid has drained back.
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Old 01-21-2015, 05:20 PM   #3
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Transmission Oil Change Question

Thanks Marin!
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Old 01-21-2015, 06:41 PM   #4
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I also drain mine out the dipstick tube. In my opinion it can't be good to keep removing the lower oil hose.

Dexron 3

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Old 01-21-2015, 07:26 PM   #5
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Greetings,
Along the same lines...We have a Reverso pump for engine and generator oil changes. Could one remove the transmission drain plug and put a nipple/valve arrangement on to allow easy fluid changes as well?
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Old 01-21-2015, 07:33 PM   #6
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Greetings,
Along the same lines...We have a Reverso pump for engine and generator oil changes. Could one remove the transmission drain plug and put a nipple/valve arrangement on to allow easy fluid changes as well?
Yes. Just had such an adapter made up at my local shipyard to do this on our ZF Hurth for $40.
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Old 01-21-2015, 09:19 PM   #7
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Unfortunately, Velvet drives do not have a drain plug. I suppose one could fashion a T for the lower fitting, but there may be fairly high pressure in that return line.

Ken
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Old 01-22-2015, 06:17 AM   #8
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Yes. Just had such an adapter made up at my local shipyard to do this on our ZF Hurth for $40.
Perhaps my ZF Hurth HSW 800 has a drain plug also. Please post a picture of yours.
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Old 01-22-2015, 07:32 AM   #9
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Oil pump bucket

I use one of these on my Velvet Drive 7000. The small hose gets all the fluid.
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Old 01-22-2015, 07:39 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by JESSEDIVER49 View Post
Wanted to bounce this off experts since it will be a first time for me. My last winter maintenance item is changing transmission fluid in both my Borg Warner Velvet Drive CR2s in my GB 42. I plan to use ATF Dextron 3. My question: to drain oil, is it better to pump out of opening where dipstick goes or to drain from return line to H.E.? Or, does it really matter? Looks like it might be easier to do the pump out.
Yes thru the dipstick hole.
However...let me caution you IF you plan on sending in sample for analysis....there is a magnetic plug epoxied to the bottom of the sump and IF you draw your sample from the magnet it will be overloaded with iron.
I did this inadvertently 7 years ago and was told by experts my tranny was toasted due to the iron content (it was 3500 ppm).
None of those experts even suggested that perhaps my sample came from the magnet. They were convinced my tranny was toast.
I rebuilt it myself and 7 years later it's fine.
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Old 01-22-2015, 07:56 AM   #11
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I don't have a velvet drive; have a ZF in the trawler and a Twin Disc in the charter boat. On the trawler the gear is connected to a Reverso oil pump system along with the engine and genset. On the charter boat, I remove the return line that comes from the gear cooler where it connects to the gear and simply stick it in a 5 gallon bucket and run the engine until the oil line is just spitting. The connection is a 37 degree JIC fitting on a hydraulic hose to a brass fitting. I always change gear fruid before winter layup immediately after a long run to make sure anything in the gear oil is fully suspended in the oil before I pump it out . Same for the engine oil and coolant. Have been doing this for 14 years without issue.

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Old 01-22-2015, 09:15 AM   #12
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Transmission oil change

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I use one of these on my Velvet Drive 7000. The small hose gets all the fluid.

That is a great looking approach!
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Old 01-22-2015, 10:44 AM   #13
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JesseD,
Having just changed my V/D's oil, I would like to mention that the B/W manual that came with our boat states that ATF dextron II is ok to use, but they prefer 30w motor oil. Now I
am not saying that all B/W's are this way. I just thought you might like to know, and yes,
I do pump it out of the dip stick hole.....

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Old 01-22-2015, 10:48 AM   #14
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Unfortunately, Velvet drives do not have a drain plug. I suppose one could fashion a T for the lower fitting, but there may be fairly high pressure in that return line.

Ken
Thats exactly what I did after a failed oil cooler let raw water into the transmission. The T fitting allowed multiple oil changes very easily to be done by removing the plug.
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Old 01-22-2015, 12:21 PM   #15
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Unfortunately, Velvet drives do not have a drain plug. I suppose one could fashion a T for the lower fitting, but there may be fairly high pressure in that return line.

Ken
For whatever reason, different Series 70 thru 73 Velvet Drive installations used different ports for the return line. So be sure and check your installation for a drain plug before you change your oil. If your return line goes to the top of the reduction gear case, there will be a drain plug, where many of you have your return line on the lower starboard side of the case.

I don't think they even bothered to drill and tap the return hole in the top of the reduction case on those who don't use it and it's probably not worth the hassle to do it now!!
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Old 01-22-2015, 08:14 PM   #16
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...I would like to mention that the B/W manual that came with our boat states that ATF dextron II is ok to use, but they prefer 30w motor oil...
Mine too. I've also read recommendations to go with ATF because the manual's advice is outdated.

Is there any consensus? Or am I opening a can of worms?
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Old 01-22-2015, 08:25 PM   #17
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Mine too. I've also read recommendations to go with ATF because the manual's advice is outdated.

Is there any consensus? Or am I opening a can of worms?
Mine discusses both.

30wt for slower turning engines, ATF for faster for the antifoaming.

We run 30wt in the assistance towboat (gas 454 engine) and it foams like crazy...also slam it in and out of gear and max throttle it and cavitation the cap out of the prop while trying to free grounders. No issues year after year and the fluid gets changed sometimes every other year..has gone as long as 5...gets about 40 hrs per year torture test.
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Old 01-22-2015, 08:36 PM   #18
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Mine too. I've also read recommendations to go with ATF because the manual's advice is outdated.

Is there any consensus? Or am I opening a can of worms?
My manual say,

"Type F Dexron and other hydraulic fluids which meet the Detroit Diesel Allison Division of General motors Corporation specifications for type C3 oils are recommended for use in all Velvet Drive Marine gears." and it goes on to say. . . . . SAE 30 engine oil, but not multi' viscosity oil, not to exceed 3000 RPM, blah, blah, blah. . . . .

I've always run ATF, no leak and no problems. You should be good to go!!
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Old 01-22-2015, 08:41 PM   #19
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Transmission repair folks I spoke with at the Houston Boat Show recommend ATF Dexron 3. They say definitely for transmissions at high speeds, but "recommended" even for my situation, 1800 RPM engine speed at cruise. Also, my trannys currently have the Dexron 3.
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Old 01-22-2015, 08:50 PM   #20
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Mine too. I've also read recommendations to go with ATF because the manual's advice is outdated.

Is there any consensus? Or am I opening a can of worms?
Our BW Velevet Drive manual, which dates from 1973 when the boat was built, says to use ATF only unless ATF is not available, in which case it's okay to use the same lube oil as the engine but only until the first available time it can be removed and ATF put in.

When we aquired the boat in 1998 we asked the very experienced diesel shop we use if this was the accepted "rule" and they said yes, follow the manual. They only use ATF in Velvet Drives, never engine lube oil.
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