leaking non drip shaft gland - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 8 Old 05-26-2011 Thread Starter
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leaking non drip shaft gland

have a 2002 beneteau 36. It has a non drip style stern gland and it's leaking significantly. not familiure with this type. anything i can do, look at to adjust / repair. No obvious means to do anything. Sort of black coloured tapered plastic looking device.
any help anyone?
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post #2 of 8 Old 05-27-2011
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last drop?

I don't know exactly what you have, but I had a last drop fitting problem on a previous boat that turned my dripless fitting into a rotary sprinkler for the engine room.

If its like what I had, there is a bellows of some sort that wears against a donut shaped item that is attached to your shaft. The principle is that the pressure of the spring in the bellows against the donut is what stops the drip. In my case, the donut, which was held to the shaft with a set screw, had slipped forward. This caused less pressure from the bellows part, and therefore the leak.

If, and I emphasize IF, that is what happened to you, it can be corrected by pushing the donut back, and retightening the set screw. For belt and suspenders, you can also put a shaft zinc in front of the donut (between the donut and the transmission). This way if the set screw moves again, the shaft zinc might stop its forward progress preventing this failure.

DISCLAIMER: AGAIN, you've given very little information on your setup, which may be different or failing in a different way, so use caution and seek professional help if you are in doubt. The shaft log is a major hole in your boat and can sink you if it fails.
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post #3 of 8 Old 05-27-2011
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Could be several things - some that can be fixed easily, others that will probably require hauling and replacement.
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post #4 of 8 Old 05-27-2011
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Do you know that you have to purge the air from the seal everytime the boat is relaunched? We are in the midwest and our boat is hauled out each Fall. In the Spring when the boat is launched every season the seal has to be purged of air. It's simple to do. Some call it Burping the Seal. You might want to try this now.
They are easy enough to replace. but require the boat being hauled out.
Benny uses a Volvo seal and I think they are generic for most of the line. Replacements are available through Benny and Ward will be able to help you order one.
They are suggested to be replaced every 5 years or so.

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post #5 of 8 Old 05-27-2011
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Try "burping" or "milking" the seal. Basically (Not when motor is running!! And before you start the motor...) all you do is reach down to the rubber bellows of your non-drip, and compress them - normally that means pushing the non-drip gland down the shaft towards the prop. As you do this, water will squirt out. Do this a couple of times, clean up, and see it if helps.

Sometimes air or even microscopic amounts of dirt can get into the mechanism, and prevent the 'donut' from making a perfect seal, Milking it washes out any obstructions, letting it operate correctly. It fixed a very similar problem for me.

Good luck!
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post #6 of 8 Old 05-27-2011 Thread Starter
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thanks All.
No bellows. (I've had that type on other boats) This just looks like a tapered hard black plastic cone around the shaft, about 4" long. It does have a water compensation hose going to it at the end where the gland joins the hull. I will dry all up this w/e and see if i can discover where water is actually leaking in from.
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post #7 of 8 Old 05-27-2011
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It sounds like a Volvo seal. They need to be greased annually and burped on launch.

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post #8 of 8 Old 05-27-2011
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I believe Maine Sail nailed the solution. However, a picture would definitely help to verify the seal type for confirmation and action to be done to take care of the problem.
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