Sunday, January the 7th 2018

More repairs – part 1

As it seems, I had not enough by just repairing the rudder this winter and so I opened up a few more jobs. There is the cutlass bearing that I will replace and also the Volvo shaft seal but some other problems showed up too.

The HR 352 has a very classical type of cutlass bearing housing. It can be unscrewed with the help of a large pipe wrench and some effort after removing the two locking screws.

A polyurethane sealant (Sikaflex 291i?) was used most likely for sealing the bearing housing against the hull but it was also applied on the thread.

The Centa-coupling needs to be disassembled if the Volvo shaft seal is to be replaced. When I started I realized that the water that had entered the boat in Gibraltar in 2015 had led to some corrosion at these parts although I had washed everything with fresh water as soon as I could. It took me about 4 hours to remove the 6 screws fixing the rubber parts to the flanges. One of the 6 screws that hold the rubber parts on the connecting tube wouldn’t let go from the rubber element and so I had to destroy it. That is another EUR 120 for a new rubber element on this season’s list :-)

These screws gave me a hard time…

The coupling is out…

…and so is the propeller shaft from the coupling flange as well as the Volvo shaft seal.

When I detached the bearing of the Centa-Coupling from the bulkhead, I found another problem.

In the mounting instruction, the bulkhead A is supposed to be a solid part, either metal or solid GRP but not plywood. When the bearing was installed on Matilda’s plywood bulkhead which was added when the engine was replaced, the installer should have used big washers on both sides of the bulkhead. Since that wasn’t done, the bushes 1.17 were pressed into the plywood resulting in a loose connection (Centa is specifying a tightening torque of 79 Nm for these screws).

The Centa coupling was taken apart and cleaned piece by piece and is now ready for reassembly.

There has been a small leakage at the ruder shaft tube (between the tube and the GRP) from the time I bought the boat back in 2014. Nothing serious, but since the rudder is off now, I will address this too.

This is how the area looks around the rudder shaft tube after removing some putty.

The picture shows the rudder shaft tube with the stuffing box housing inside the boat. Hallberg Rassy had used silicone for sealing this end. I had poured a few liters of fresh water around the stuffing box and let them leak through to the outside in order to wash out the salt that may have accumulated along the leakage path.

…to be continued in part 2

6 Replies to “Sunday, January the 7th 2018”

  1. Fantastic. Having a 352 myself I follow your writings regularly. It looks we are tackling the same job this winter. Today I removed the volvo seal and this weekend I will try to remove the cutlass bearing. If you have any more tips they would be much appreciated. Keep up the good work.
    Kind regards,

    1. Hi Jeffrey, haha that’s funny. There is another HR352 next to me and he also replaced the cutlass bearing 2 weeks ago. I am actually doing it first time and so I am on a learning curve :-) The cutlass bearing housing came off quite easily by the way, I am not sure it will be the same with pushing the bearing out of the housing. There is one thing that I don’t know and you can probably give me some advice. I noticed that there was sealing compound on the threads of the housing (can also be seen on my pictures in the blog). Now, someone told me that I shouldn’t apply sealant there because the housing will be very difficult to unscrew again. I believe that I have to seal the thread because I don’t want the water to drip out and into the area between the prop shaft and the GRP. I thought of applying some SikaFlex 291i at the last third of the thread. What is your experience? The other 352 owner can’t remember what he did last time :-)

  2. We decided to postpone the replacement of the bearing till next winter. Our bearing is in relative good shape said a befriended surveyor. When inspecting we noticed there are no bolts to be seen/found. The holes are filled with epoxy so our fear is they installed the bronze unit with epoxy. Will have a better look/fight next year. I would apply some sika when re-installing. A little heat could do wonders if you want to unscrew later.

  3. Hi Jeffrey, thanks for your reply. Indeed, a little heat can be very helpful. Good luck with your maintenance work and always fair winds!

  4. Just discovered your site. Thanks for the useful information regarding the removal of the cutlass-bearing housing. Any chance you still have the old portlights and would be willing to sell them? I’m looking for spares.

    1. Hi Gilbert, welcome to my blog! I have not replaced the whole portlights, just replaced the plexiglass. So I am afraid there is nothing I could sell to you.

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