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Hi all.
I replaced the packing in my PSC 34 and used the special lube in it.
Getting the nut set to the right tension is proving frustrating.
With the nut set to give the target 2~3 drips/min in forward, it will drip a lot when not turning.
With the nut set to not drip when the shaft is not turning, I get no drips when in forward. Leaving it like this and doing a 1.5 hour engine run, the gland did not get hot but still no drips and it is squeeking at the end of this run when turning at ~2k/min rpm.
The difference in nut tension between the two states described is less then 1/2 a turn. Also the gland seems to drip a lot in reverse.
Should I leave it as is? Back off to get some drips and live with the leakage when the shaft is stopped? Thanks for any advise.
Regards, David
 

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What was the special lube? Perhaps going back to standard would work better?

Sent from my NookColor using Tapatalk
 

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As long as it's not getting hot, you're not doing any damage. I say tighten her down a bit. I have had similar issues in the past and they were due to the shaft being out of alignment. If it's not perfectly in the center of the log, it'll never work right. Make sure you're aligned and that your cutlass bearing(s) are still viable.

MedSailor
 

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I remembered reading this post a bit ago and appreciated the information. The yard at Sail Harbor in Savannah replace my packing with the new teflon packing. On the trip down to Florida, I noticed steady dripping when running in forward and nothing when stopped. I was satisfied with the rate and figured it would improve.

I checked the drip rate the other day and found that I was not getting any drip whatsoever. I immediately felt the shaft and found it to be cool to the touch and I did not notice any unusual sounds.

Should I just be thankful or should I back off the packing nut an 1/8 of a turn and see what happens. I do not want to have the shaft scored or damaged from not having the proper amount of coolant. Thanks.
 

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Be thankful. The mechanism of damage is friction which wears away at the shaft and creates a groove. No/little friction = no/little heat. I've used the teflon stuff before with no drips and had no issues. It is intrinsically a lower friction material, so it relies much less on the water for lubrication and cooling.

MedSailor
 

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Hello to all. I am a recent new owner of a 1987 psc 34 (hull 89 Athenry) and am in the process of replacing the packing material. I went with the Teflon ptfe packing. Today I removed 2 rings of 1/4 inch goretex packing. Raindog and others use 3/16 inch. It's a 1 inch shaft. Should I try for three rings of 3/16 inch or stay with two rings of 1/4? I have both available but am unclear as to what is optimal. Many thanks, Nate
 

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Hello to all. I am a recent new owner of a 1987 psc 34 (hull 89 Athenry) and am in the process of replacing the packing material. I went with the Teflon ptfe packing. Today I removed 2 rings of 1/4 inch goretex packing. Raindog and others use 3/16 inch. It's a 1 inch shaft. Should I try for three rings of 3/16 inch or stay with two rings of 1/4? I have both available but am unclear as to what is optimal. Many thanks, Nate
You absolutely MUST use the correct size. Otherwise bad things will happen.

From my experience and research I believe in old fashioned flax packing.

1: Graphite packing (black in color) is to galvanically active and will destroy your shaft while sitting at the doc unless you allow it to constantly drip at the dock.

2: PTFE packing (white in color) has the advantage of keeping things cooler BUT IF IT EVER GETS HOT the PTFE expands significantly in size and will wear rings in your shaft. Heat expansion is a big problem with this stuff.

3: Flax packing doesn't have the expansion or galvanic problems and works well. As a bonus it's the cheapest and easiest to find.

MedSailor
 

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You absolutely MUST use the correct size. Otherwise bad things will happen.

From my experience and research I believe in old fashioned flax packing.

1: Graphite packing (black in color) is to galvanically active and will destroy your shaft while sitting at the doc unless you allow it to constantly drip at the dock.

2: PTFE packing (white in color) has the advantage of keeping things cooler BUT IF IT EVER GETS HOT the PTFE expands significantly in size and will wear rings in your shaft. Heat expansion is a big problem with this stuff.

3: Flax packing doesn't have the expansion or galvanic problems and works well. As a bonus it's the cheapest and easiest to find.

MedSailor
In order to expand a PTFE product enough to cause damage you'd have to be so far out of adjustment that it is not even realistic.... Most "PTFE" marine packing products are not made actually from PTFE extrusion yarns, they are acrylic/PTFE impregnated or flax/PTFE impregnated. Remember despite whta the glossy ads suggests all traditional packing boxes are water lubricated even if they don't drip noticeably.

The Gore stuff is 100% a PTFE base that is extruded with graphite in the PTFE mix into PTFE/graphite yarns. IMHO there is no real need for the graphite and it only serves to create galvanic issues and shorter zinc life. They really could have achieved the same means with a true PTFE packing not a PTFE impregnated acrylic or PTFE impregnated flax...
 

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Thanks to both of your replies. Mainesail, It is your very helpful article that I have been following on pbase to accomplish this task. Your articles are spot on and much appreciated. Thanks.
 

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Nateinmaine,
We have an '87, PSC 34, and changed the packing a couple of years ago. I originally thought the size was 1/4", but that did not fit so we went with 3/16" and that work well. I later saw in the PCS 34 manual that the correct size was 3/16".
Good luck
Steve
 

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Thanks Steve,
I hadn't been able to find that info in the manual. I have both sizes, and have been waiting to get some of the Sytef lubricant to complete this task. My next step will be to double check the size by measuring the inside diameter of the packing nut and subtract the diameter of the shaft... I can just barely get one ring of the ptfe flax packing to fit with the 1/4". I wonder if the po may have put in the wrong size packing and that's why it dripped excessively? At any rate, at least these winter projects keep me thinking of the upcoming spring..
 

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In order to expand a PTFE product enough to cause damage you'd have to be so far out of adjustment that it is not even realistic.... Most "PTFE" marine packing products are not made actually from PTFE extrusion yarns, they are acrylic/PTFE impregnated or flax/PTFE impregnated. Remember despite whta the glossy ads suggests all traditional packing boxes are water lubricated even if they don't drip noticeably.

The Gore stuff is 100% a PTFE base that is extruded with graphite in the PTFE mix into PTFE/graphite yarns. IMHO there is no real need for the graphite and it only serves to create galvanic issues and shorter zinc life. They really could have achieved the same means with a true PTFE packing not a PTFE impregnated acrylic or PTFE impregnated flax...
Does the PTFE impregnated stuff offer any advantage over flax in your opinion?

MedSailor

P.S. I also experimented with PTFE impregnated kevlar packing for my specialized application, but that's a story for another day.
 

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Does the PTFE impregnated stuff offer any advantage over flax in your opinion?

MedSailor

P.S. I also experimented with PTFE impregnated kevlar packing for my specialized application, but that's a story for another day.
Absolutely.. Does not swell, less scoring, better lubrication, does not rot and lasts a lot longer. More of a set and forget when compared to flax based or acrylic, which eventually wets out.

The biggest problems with marine packings are the companies who sell them as drip-less and the folks who expect that to be true.

For a while now I have been field & lab testing a new marine packing I am developing. Testing has been underway now for almost three years. It has comparable performance & thermal conductivity properties of graphite based packing yet is 100% galvanically inert. It is a true high performance packing without any galvanic issues..

Unfortunately there is only one manufacturer in the world that can extrude this PTFE based yarn, with the proprietary lube, so getting cost where I need/want it has been the biggest hurdle. I want to be able to compete price wise with graphite based packings but at this point it is just not doable because everyone in their uncle is extruding graphite/PTFE these days and it is dirt cheap to make..
 

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Absolutely.. Does not swell, less scoring, better lubrication, does not rot and lasts a lot longer. More of a set and forget when compared to flax based or acrylic, which eventually wets out.

The biggest problems with marine packings are the companies who sell them as drip-less and the folks who expect that to be true.

For a while now I have been field & lab testing a new marine packing I am developing. Testing has been underway now for almost three years. It has comparable performance & thermal conductivity properties of graphite based packing yet is 100% galvanically inert. It is a true high performance packing without any galvanic issues..

Unfortunately there is only one manufacturer in the world that can extrude this PTFE based yarn, with the proprietary lube, so getting cost where I need/want it has been the biggest hurdle. I want to be able to compete price wise with graphite based packings but at this point it is just not doable because everyone in their uncle is extruding graphite/PTFE these days and it is dirt cheap to make..
Sounds great! When you're ready to stress test it, find a Formosa owner. My 1975 formosa had a standard looking packing gland, except that it took 12 (yes TWELVE) rings of packing. Even with the nut completely loose it wouldn't allow enough water in to keep it from getting hot with flax packing. Indeed the PTFE stuff kept it cool, but based on the bad experiences of the guys who used to run the Bayliner yard, we went with the Kevlar PTFE packing.

MedSailor
 

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Thanks wsmurdoch,
I'm guessing the manual changed somewhere from 1987 to 1988. I don't have that note in my manual, but I have a copy of a 1989 model manual and I see what you're referring to on page 46. It seems to follow that I likely should use the 3/16".
Nate
 

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I say go to a dripless seal like the PSS, which does not wear against the shaft itself. Very smart. Runs a few bucks, but having no water in the bilge, no tightening/loosening, etc, is well worth it in my opinion. It's like going from a carburetor with a manual choke to electronic fuel injection. You'll never go back.
 
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