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Deanhamel
08-18-2011, 04:30 PM
I recently re-installed the shaft log into the hull of my 1984 S&S (Powerslot). I had been living for two years with a slow leak from two small cracks on either side of the log until two weeks ago when the leak got noticeably worse. Visions of a complete failure/breakdown in that part of the hull inspired me to do the fix. I wanted to share details and photos for anyone else who might encounter this project. The most difficult part was the removal of the shaft coupler. Otherwise it was mostly straight-forward. Pictures of the procedure follow.

Once the coupler and the stuffing box were removed I cut the log out of the hull using a pneumatic cut-off saw. When I pulled the log out, I found the old adhesive on the hull to be all wet and moldy. I also discovered that the driveshaft had been rubbing slightly on the inside of the log and had worn a shallow grove in the bottom of the log itself. No perceptible damage to the drive shaft here.

I decided to do my best to remove the original fiberglass from the log and with only a little effort it easily peeled off the log revealing more dampness and mold covering the aluminum log (no photos of this sorry). Clearly the failure of the original bond and the leaking were more extensive than it appeared.

I cleaned the log completely with a wire brush on a power drill. I used a pneumatic grinder to remove all of the old adhesive. Any thoughts on what this pink stuff was? I roughed up the surrounding hull with 60-grit paper. I decided to use West Systems G/flex Epoxy for the entire repair - seems like incredible stuff. I set a bed of epoxy in the original hole and positioned the log as to center the driveshaft through the opening. Once this epoxy was dry I ultimately set 3 layers of fiberglass fabric wet out with G/flex, allowing the epoxy to dry in between layers. The final coat is gray Marine-Tex. This was done mostly for cosmetics - the boat is gray and black. It was way more cost-effective than gel coat and added yet another layer of strength.

I replaced the rope in the stuffing box with the newer GFO Gor-tex rope from SkiDim. I replace the hose connecting the stuffing box to the log with standard 1 hose from a local auto part store. I have read differing opinions on the need for a more robust hose, such as what is sold by SkiDim. Any thoughts or feedback on the use of this hose would be appreciated.

Happy to share any advice or assistance to anyone who might be faced with a similar project. It took me about a week to do with 1-2 hours of time for it each day. 2 days were devoted entirely to removing the shaft coupler. Removing the cotter pin and the castle nut with 2.5 inches of clearance between the couplers was a b*tch!

Cloaked
08-18-2011, 04:46 PM
The hose is fine. The graphite impregnated packing is also the best bet. You do not need any seepage for that packing (thus the graphite). My hull is dry.

Thanks for the pics. I can foesee having to do the same thing sooner or later as I come across these era boats.

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