View Full Version : Stuffing box heating up

07-21-2001, 10:45 AM
Need some input, I replaced the stuffing on my CC Cavelier (1961 with 283 eng.)with 5/16 conventional flax, and the box was heating up even with the nut backed off. So I replaced it with 1/4" flax and Syn-Tef lub. It still gets warm at low speed and still hot at full throttle ?????

07-21-2001, 11:40 AM
Out here on the prairie, we use tallow when the wagon wheel hubs begin to heat up.

But then you might also check out this:


Scroll down the Engines, then to "Drive Train Tune-Up Part 1 2/34/99" and see it that suggests an alternative.


[This message has been edited by NormMessinger (edited 07-21-2001).]

07-21-2001, 01:16 PM
Gotta be friction.Friction will be from packing or bearings.
Since you seem to have accounted for the packing,bearings must be the heat source.That could mean allignment or the bearing.
A long shot ...is your trans.heating and radiating the heat to the shaft?

07-21-2001, 01:19 PM
How hot?

07-21-2001, 01:35 PM
With the packing installed (correctly)and the packing gland set just hand tight do you get water dripping past the gland or nut into your bilge? hopefully yes. Check the wet side of your stern tube/stuffing box to make sure that it's not fouled by line or debris. That would impede water flow thru the stuffing box. Run the boat for awhile ocassionally stopping and tightening down the packing gland or nut (engine off, gear in neutral) until it drips approx. once every few seconds. Feel the heat of the stuffing box, if it's still hot after you're able to get water to move freely thru it then you may have an alignment problem. With the engine off and the gear in neutral take a large screw driver or small pry bar, carefully jamb the screw driver or bar between the shaft coupling bolts and the body of the coupling. Without screwing up any bolts or the coupling roll the shaft over multiple times. DON'T use a pipe wrench. Get a feeling for how it spins in the stuffing box. It should spin quite easily, you should be able to "throw" it over as opposed to prying it over. It should also rotate evenly besides freely, it shouldn't feel like it has "lumps" in it as you spin it. If the shaft is hard to roll over,then it may be binding in the stuffing box (engine misalignment), if it rotates easily but feels like it has lumps in it then you may have a bent shaft. That's doubtful since you don't complain about bad vibrations. Is the tailshaft supported by an aft strut? Did the boat suffer an impact event of any kind? Have a reputable marine mechanic check and possibly realign your engine. Be available when this is done if you haven't already witnessed it, it's a good thing to watch and get an understanding of. Good luck

[This message has been edited by RGM (edited 07-21-2001).]

Allen Foote
07-22-2001, 10:13 AM
After using RGM's method....if it is still running hot, then your shaft may be bent and it is rubbing (causing friction) at the packing gland and/or if the shaft is straight....then the engine may be out of alignment and the straight shaft is rubbing (causing friction) at the packing gland.

[This message has been edited by Allen Foote (edited 07-22-2001).]

Dale Harvey
07-23-2001, 08:27 AM
Are you just winding in a length of packing, or are you doing it the proper way, by cutting individual rings of the correct size with 45 degree overlapping ends? Cut them wrapped on a dowel of the same diameter as the shaft with a razor sharp knife for best results. Stagger the overlaps in the nut. should have at least three rings, with a fourth added later after the inital packing has taken a "set". After the fourth ring has taken up adjustment should only be neccessary once a year or so, and it will leak 3-4 drips per min. only when running.

donald branscom
12-01-2006, 07:12 PM
The tube between the inside packing gland and the water cooled bearing at the prop can just be pumped full of poly propylene grease.
Add a zirk fitting. water won't even get in the tube.
I had 3 other friends do the same thing-no more problems.
Yes, the boat was in the salt water all the time.

My shaft never leaked even one drop in 5 years. The packing nut was almost completely backed off.

12-01-2006, 09:07 PM
Pack it and forget it using Goretex packing!


Used by US Navy and Coast Guard. I use it and it is really good. It really works runs cool does not wear out either.

It is black braided and oh so slippery.

12-01-2006, 09:11 PM

Someone else likes it here

What is really nice about this product is you dont need that weird PSS shaft seal with the rubber boot that has to be burbed.
You can just use your tried and true packing gland and get a vastly superior result.

Jay Greer
12-01-2006, 09:27 PM
Just skimming the comments does not show anyone recommeding checking the alignment of the engine to the drive shaft. Loosening the coupling bolts between the two drive shaft flanges should allow for inserting feeler gauges to check this. If things are out by .0312" or more, you might think of re-eligning you engine.

Rick Starr
12-02-2006, 08:57 AM
Wow, Norm, Darryl and Dale in one thread.

Pleasant memories.


12-02-2006, 09:37 AM
On mine I have small water inlets on the cutlass bearing. Ocassionally they get blocked and the water can't cool the shaft. May be worth a check if you have that arrangement.

Thad Van Gilder
12-04-2006, 09:39 AM
we jest went through this on my friend's irwin. we injected water into the stuffings box from the engine cooling water. to assure enough water is in the stern tube.