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Thread: Stern Gland

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    Home - Sothampton, Boat - Gosport
    Posts
    10,566

    Default Stern Gland

    I currently have a traditional stuffing gland on Jissel and it's leaking badly. I replaced the stuffing several years ago and it's never been really satisfactory, always leaking a good bit more than a drip a minute under power. It's now got to the point that the bilge pump runs a few times a day. I've tried to adjust the gland, but it's seized and generous use of my Birmingham screwdriver won't shift it in situ.

    Once out of the water, I'll be able to remove it and put it in a vice to dismantle, but is it worth it? I'd really like to have the dusty dry engine compartment that means things don't rust before my eyes. Would I really get that with a "dripless" seal? If so, what would you recommend?

    Jissel's on a drying mooring, so I'd rather not have to burp the seal every time it dries out. I'm drawn to a face seal, rather than a lip seal, as I don't yet know what condition that bit of my propshaft is in, but it's for a 50 year old Snapdragon, so the budget is limited. It's a 28HP motor driving a 25mm shaft. Milady requires that the boat remains level, and wants to get there, so we do tend to motor a fair bit.

    Any thoughts or recommendations, please?
    Steve
    Never believe anything until it has been officially denied.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    UK East Coast
    Posts
    37,002

    Default Re: Stern Gland

    Take a look at the Radice Shaft Seal; this is similar to the famous Volvo Penta seal, but has a vent pipe so it doesn't need burping after drying out. Sillette sell them in the UK - https://www.sillette.co.uk/shafts_se...ubes_list.html

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Milton Keynes, Bucks, UK
    Posts
    602

    Default Re: Stern Gland

    +1 for the radice seal. Inject grease through the capped fitting once per year and that is it. No leaks no burping.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    6,983

    Default Re: Stern Gland

    I have great faith in conventional packing glands. Packed properly, and adjusted properly, they give no problems. Once you have the boat out of the water, get ALL the old packing out, and repack with the correct size of packing, getting experienced assistance if required.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Chichester
    Posts
    828

    Default Re: Stern Gland

    +1 for the conventional seal - also for grease lubricated bearings - one turn of the greaser at the beginning of the day and off you go! no drips, either.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Essex
    Posts
    23,089

    Default Re: Stern Gland

    +1 for the Volvo type. I have a saildrive now but when I changed to a Volvo seal on my last boat it was brillant, and no more worries. Burping was no problem but I'm sure a vent is an improvement.
    Far away is near at hand in images of elsewhere

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2019
    Location
    Lowestoft
    Posts
    823

    Default Re: Stern Gland

    My yacht's trad grease stuffing stern tube is 60 yrs old and doesn't leak at all. My sailing barge's trad grease stuffing stern tube seized up recently, it's about 100 yrs old and needs a little tlc..the bilges are bone dry though.
    I genuinely don't understand why boat owners choose patent rubber seals which demand expensive maintenance, and offer the possibility of sudden failure and sinking.
    "Now shall the gentleman haul and draw with the mariner"
    John Hawkins

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    UK East Coast
    Posts
    37,002

    Default Re: Stern Gland

    Quote Originally Posted by Ohlin Karcher View Post
    I genuinely don't understand why boat owners choose patent rubber seals which demand expensive maintenance, and offer the possibility of sudden failure and sinking.
    They don't need expensive maintenance, and they really are not prone to "sudden failure and sinking"! When you've actually experienced one, come back and tell people how good they are.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    South Oxfordshire, Gosport and Wellington New Zealand.
    Posts
    8,339

    Default Re: Stern Gland

    Quote Originally Posted by pvb View Post
    They don't need expensive maintenance, and they really are not prone to "sudden failure and sinking"! When you've actually experienced one, come back and tell people how good they are.
    +1!

    Victorian engineering is fine in it's place.

    It's place is not on my boat.

    Three seasons ago we had a conventional stuffing box, a high quality USA made one in real bronze.

    Due to the hull shape and it's position in our long keeler it was impossible to adjust or service. I purchased expensive special tools but to no avail.

    I fitted an Orbitrade Volvo type seal on an 800mm extension tube. Vent pipe, no burping, annual greasing - whats not to like?

    By the way, since fitting the bilge under the propshaft is as dry as a nun's crutch!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2018
    Location
    A Member State of the European Union
    Posts
    7,213

    Default Re: Stern Gland

    Quote Originally Posted by pvb View Post
    They don't need expensive maintenance, and they really are not prone to "sudden failure and sinking"! When you've actually experienced one, come back and tell people how good they are.
    A friend of mine set off for France from Gosport.

    South of the isle of Wight he found his patent seal had started leaking badly. He had to return to Gosport and be lifted out immediately.

    My boat has had a traditional packed gland for 20 years. The packed gland has never given the slightest trouble. There would be no advantage whatsoever in me replacing it with a patent seal; a pointless waste of money.
    Last edited by Poignard; 28-09-19 at 17:48.
    "Brexit: like watching a library being burned down by people who can't read"

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