Canal Boat - - Back Cabin -

Non-charg­ing bat­ter­ies, bow thrusters, stern glands, en­gine power prob­lems – what­ever the is­sue we’ll help you fix it

Q I have had no prob­lems with my nar­row­boat’s stern gland in eight years and only ad­justed it a cou­ple of times. I do ex­pe­ri­ence a lit­tle drip but a few turns on the greaser each night keep it un­der con­trol. I am tak­ing the boat out of the water: should I take ad­van­tage of the op­por­tu­nity to change the pack­ing due to its age, or leave it alone?

NIGEL WILSHAW, via email TONY REPLIES: Con­ven­tion has it that A stern glands should drip one to two drips a minute and seal when the greaser is used, so yours seems fine. As long as you have plenty of ad­just­ment left I would not repack it be­cause the pack­ing can be dif­fi­cult to cut to the ex­act length, tends to fray at the cut, and repack­ing can cause more leaks than it cures.

If you do repack, re­mem­ber to keep check­ing it and run­ning in ahead and astern as soon as it goes back in the water to help seat the new pack­ing and en­sure it is not leak­ing. Re­mem­ber you should be able to turn the shaft by hand and the gland can run a lit­tle warm, but never hot.

Repack­ing can be tricky

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