Replacing propellor in the water? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 31 Old 07-08-2013 Thread Starter
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Replacing propellor in the water?

My boat should finally be repaired this week, and will hopefully splash before the weekend. I would love to add a Campbel Sailor prop, but the repair bill is currently a huge question mark and I can't exceed my budget. If it comes in under budget (which is possible), then I could justify the expense. Of course, I won't know all of this until the boat is back in the water. So, how hard is it to swap a prop while the boat is in the water?

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post #2 of 31 Old 07-08-2013
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Re: Replacing propellor in the water?

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So, how hard is it to swap a prop while the boat is in the water?
Typically it is fairly easy, providing you have the right tools. A prop puller, for instance.
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post #3 of 31 Old 07-08-2013
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Re: Replacing propellor in the water?

The only difference between being on the hard and in the sea is you have to use a line to tie the prop to the boat. After extraction the prop will be too heavy to handle and most probably fall to the sea bed and get lost.
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post #4 of 31 Old 07-08-2013
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Re: Replacing propellor in the water?

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After extraction the prop will be too heavy to handle...
On a 31-foot sailboat? I don't think so.
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post #5 of 31 Old 07-08-2013
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Re: Replacing propellor in the water?

If you have the gear and tools to do the job under water yourself, then wait and do it later. If you will have to pay a diver to do it, you are just adding to the cost of the prop. If that is the case the most cost effective thing would be to replace it while the boat is out of the water.
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post #6 of 31 Old 07-08-2013 Thread Starter
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Re: Replacing propellor in the water?

Thanks guys, that's what I was afraid would be your response! It was worth a try, though.

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post #7 of 31 Old 07-08-2013
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Re: Replacing propellor in the water?

There is no reason you could not do this in stages with a mask if you have a prop puller. Have some extra nuts and key stock ready in case you manage to drop one. Put them in a pocket you can easily access. Tie everything up to the rails so you can't lose anything: wrenches, puller, hammer, pliers, prop. Hang new prop with enough slack to re-install so you can easily get it from in the water. Loosen/remove nuts (see if prop wants to come off easily by tapping on SIDE of prop), set prop puller, tighten it to remove prop. (I'd just leave the key in place if it looked ok.) Check shaft for corrosion or electrolysis on taper, clean up with an abrasive pad. Install new prop, tighten nuts, put in cotter pin. I'd experiment with some kind of weight to keep you down just enough so you're not fighting buoyancy. I'd also tie the tools to the shaft to keep them within easy reach. It's easy to do this kind of stuff if you just break it into 1 breath stages. Be mindful of hyperventilation. No SCUBA gear required.

Visibility is important. You really can't accomplish much if visibility isn't around 5' or so.

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post #8 of 31 Old 07-08-2013
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Re: Replacing propellor in the water?

The one thing you cannot do when installing the prop while the boat is in the water is properly lap the propeller and shaft so that you get a good mate between the shaft and prop. Check out Mainesail's video tutorial on this here......Lap Fitting A Propeller To A Shaft Photo Gallery by Compass Marine at pbase.com

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post #9 of 31 Old 07-08-2013
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Re: Replacing propellor in the water?

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There is no reason you could not do this in stages with a mask if you have a prop puller. No SCUBA gear required.
Having done many dozens of prop R&Rs underwater, I can't say that doing it without air would be much fun.

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You really can't accomplish much if visibility isn't around 5' or so.
And this simply isn't the case.
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post #10 of 31 Old 07-08-2013 Thread Starter
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Re: Replacing propellor in the water?

My visibility is likely to be 2-3', if I'm lucky.

- Jim
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