SAIL DRIVE SEALING GASKET ?

mica

New member
Joined
2 Jun 2001
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157
Location
Kent and Solent U.K.
Has anyone had any experience in changing the sealing gasket on a sail drive ?

The boat is 10 years old this next year and we understand that it is recommended that the gasket is changed every 7 years. So far we have had no problem with it, but are we pushing our luck to delay the replacement? Or is the consensus of opinion to leave well alone until it shows obvious signs of needing re- newing ???

How difficult is it to do and does anyone have any information on how to go about it? Any information of the subject will be gratefully received.

MICA
 

tony_brighton

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Joined
16 May 2001
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804
My last boat was getting on a bit when I sold it; the engine was 8 yrs old with a sail drive. I sought a professional opinion from Volvo to see if it should be replaced. The official line was (then) to change every 7 yrs. However, the engineer said that they have had no reports of catastrophic failure of a sail drive seal - ever. His personal advice was to leave it until it showed signs of leaking and then change it at next lift out.
 

Will_M

Member
Joined
26 Jul 2001
Messages
994
Location
GBR
At a random guess you have a Volvo Penta Saildrive engine combination of some kind?

Assuming this, to change the ‘through hull’ seal is not a real hardship if alittle time consuming!

You will need to disconnect the engine from the gearbox and slid the engine forward to clear the male shaft from the gearbox out of the bell housing of the engine. For this you will need to have disconnected the engine mounts and allow for some support under the rear of the engine as the rear mount is slung of the back of the SD unit. At the same time you need to allow some sort of support for the SD unit which at this point would only be supported by the rear mount and to some extent the through hull seal.

Firstly remove the clamp which holds the seal in place on top of the GRP engine bed. Dependent on space inside the hull you may be able to draw the entire SD unit up inside the boat, although this is unlikely. So, you need to split the gearbox from the leg, there are six or so bolts you will see from the underside of the gearbox, this will allow you to remove SD unit in two from the boat. Bear in mind that the SD should normally be full of oil, so best to drain it first!

The seal slides up the SD leg and is clamped between the gearbox and leg.

To reinstall simply reverse the process! Simple right?

If the clamp inside the boat is rusty at all, clean it & re coat or replace as now is the ideal time, also it may not seat correctly and seal back on the new through hull seal if the mating surfaces are not clean.

To answer should you or shouldn’t you do all this work????? Well remember that this seal is all that keeps the water where it should be and you dry!!

Again assuming you have a VP SD unit, you will want at least the following for either a 100S or 120S..

3856597 ‘through hull’ seal kit. RRP £ 159.93 + Vat
854932 external seal/cover. RRP £ 17.22 + Vat


Enjoy.. Will.
 

billmacfarlane

Active member
Joined
16 May 2001
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1,722
Location
Brighton
I've just taken delivery of a boat with a Volvo 120 Saildrive Unit. I asked about the seal and the engineer's reply was that the official line was it would need replaced every 7 years but in reality they last much longer. He told me to check for signs of leakage round the seal and that when it started failing, it was usually with a small seepage.
 
G

Guest

Guest
Hi, I changed my own one about 3 years ago and the old one was perfect. I saw a 20 year old one that a friend had when he took his saildrive out it too was good and he put the same one back in! His boat was still afloat yesterday...

PBO did a feature on the diaphragm change two or three years ago and on of the 'other' periodicals did one in July this year.

Volvo diaphragm is supplied with fitting instructions. It's not a difficult job.

Good luck,

KCA
 

Danny

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Joined
23 Oct 2003
Messages
955
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Me: St Albans. Boat: Portsmouth
I have changed the seal on my last boat. I was able to lift the whole unit out from the top. Like anything on a boat you will have to be 2 foot high have the stength of an ox and also be 8 foot tall at the same time have hands on 4 foot arms and tiny fingers. It can be done! If you choose not to change as the opinion seems to be then if you did lose the boat through the seal failing your insurance will ask for proof of age of gasket and will not pay out if it is more than 7 years. Probably they get a kick back from Volvo for every seal sold, would explain the high cost of a piece of rubber.
 

mica

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Joined
2 Jun 2001
Messages
157
Location
Kent and Solent U.K.
Many thanks for all the replies. What a wonderful site this is, beginning to wonder how we managed before we discovered it. It seems that whatever the problem, there is always someone that has encountered it before and it is great to find you all here on the site.

Thanks very much for your postings.

MICA
 
G

Guest

Guest
Sailing Today ran a comprehensive step by step guide not long ago. They will probably have back copies for sale


Peter
 

Artimes

New member
Joined
8 Oct 2001
Messages
61
Location
Dublin
It was neccessary to scrap my 120S saildrive one month after fitting a new gasket. Prehaps you would like the almost new gasket, with all the instructions,new price £170 for say £50 ex postage from Ireland...let me know arg@sunbeam.ie
 
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