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rbyham 05-11-2013 12:23 AM

Stuffing box question
As can be seen in my other posts, I am learning the sailing ropes as I also learn the ins and outs a new to me 1966 Hinterhoeller 28. Today I was rest running the A4 in gear at my slip. I had made some fuel systems adjustments. I ran about mid throttle for 15 minutes. Going below immediately following shutdown I reached in to feel the prop shat, stuffing box, and gland. All appears to be fairly old so I have been wondering. However everything was cool to the touch. Upon restart I looked again for dripping but saw nothing. Bilge and engine area are dry. Upon further look, I noticed a grease cap on top of stuffing box. It looks just like the cap on the A4 water pump. So I tightened it a1/4 turn and all seems fine. My question is how unusual is it to have a grease cap? Also does the presence of grease somehow negate the need to dripping? I see zero dripping at this. What do you think

Chartreuse 05-11-2013 01:08 AM

Re: Stuffing box question
Admittedly, my knowledge of inboards is limited, but I have seen my friend tinker with his stuffing box on a 1920's 42' double ender. He used this web site as a reference.

Re-Packing A Traditional Stuffing Box Photo Gallery by Compass Marine at

Also, supply some pics as they may give some more inboard savvy sail netters a better understanding of what it is you are discussing.

CalebD 05-11-2013 01:56 AM

Re: Stuffing box question
But a traditional stuffing box does not usually have a grease fitting attached to it.
This pops up from time to time as there are a few packing glands set up with a grease fitting. I'd guess it is a slightly older/different style (as if packing gland technology weren't already ~ 100 years old).
Keep refilling the grease cap.

TropicCat 05-11-2013 06:36 AM

Re: Stuffing box question

Originally Posted by rbyham (Post 1028536)
...My question is how unusual is it to have a grease cap? Also does the presence of grease somehow negate the need to dripping? I see zero dripping at this. What do you think

You have a dripless stuffing box. The grease doesn't replace the packing, it lubricates it and helps "seal the deal".

If it ain't broke, don't fix it!

rbyham 05-11-2013 08:09 AM

Re: Stuffing box question
TC... That's what I was thinking. Seeing the grease cap left me wondering if it isn't some early version of a dripless box. Chock up another reason to think that this boat was a good buy. Yep I have refilled the grease cap and turn her half a turn about every 10 hours ago of running. Thanks folks.

copacabana 05-11-2013 09:02 AM

Re: Stuffing box question
I have the same setup (stuffing box with a hose connected to a grease gun mounted on the bulkhead in the engine compartment). The grease allows you to run dripless and lubricates the shaft. I believe you should apply a little quarter turn for every 6 hours of engine running or enough to keep it from dripping. On mine I know it has enough grease when I start to see a little grease finding its way out from around the shaft. Although uncommon on sailboats, most fishing boats here have the same setup and it seems to go a long way towards preserving the shaft and stuffing (fishing boats get heavy use and abuse).

sony2000 05-11-2013 11:07 AM

Re: Stuffing box question
It is also said, to turn the grease cap until you meet a good resistance, at your regular intervals.

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