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Code Blue – Getting the Right Size Stuffing Box Material 1/4 Inch November 6, 2016

Posted by steveandjudy in Code Blue 2016.
Installed - No Leaks

Installed – No Leaks

Things are going pretty good, boat wise, finally. Our stuffing box, this is a hose and bronze Pipe thing that stops water from coming in the boat via the propeller shaft. There is stuffing box material, Brits & Fiji folks call packing gland material. I bought some in the USA and brought with me but I find out it is 5/16″ instead of 1/4″ which is what the boat needs. Finally I figured out why my stuffing box was overheating, I managed to jam 5/16″ material into 1/4″ stuffing box space. Not good.

Finally I looked in past purchases and noticed I used 1/4″ many times before. Everything is metric here but I found 6mm stuff at a Hydralic Hose place, which measures right about 1/4″ (.24 inches, so very close to 1/4″.) This took several hours and $50 FJD for Taxi so we picked up provisions on the way. Finally got it in like normal, three layers, vs I could only get 2 layers of 5/16″ in and then when we did test runs of 4 to 6 miles per hour we got normal temperatures with the 1/4″ stuff instead of 130F readings we were getting with the 5/16″ and had to go way slower. Great! We were in a nice sandy bay here called Saweni Bay not far from Vuda (Vunda) Point Marina. Bottom at the bay was muddy for super holding power. This morning there were three boats in the area. We’re headed back to Vuda Pt for check out soon, maybe Tues., and crossing to NZ to Opua, about 8-10 days crossing. 50 FJD equals about $25 USD so not too bad.


This is like ours


Steve and Judy
s/v Code Blue

Blog svcodeblue.wordpress.com
Vuda Point Marina, Fiji



1. captnmike - November 6, 2016

yes – beating a 5/16 packing into a 1/4 inch packing gland (stuffing box) is not so good – – if you do it right with the correct oversize packing (or just tighten the packing too tight) you can set the packing on fire!

Seen that done a few times when I worked in the canneries way back when.

That little bit of water is recommended for standard packing for a reason. I have used a Teflon paste stuff and got zero leakage with no damage to the shaft, but still caution was required

Glad you got things fixed correctly

2. Marie & Greg - November 6, 2016

Thanks for the updates. Marie

3. Rita and Richard - November 6, 2016

Always enjoy reading about where you are and what you are doing. Hope you have a great thanksgiving in the coming days.

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