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Locking the Prop?

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  • Locking the Prop?

    A friend that has a Henriques hit a telephone pole at the Hudson last Summer. One prop was damaged but the other was O.K. He came in on one engine. Before beginning his journey back to port, he locked the damaged prop in place from inside the boat (he was able to do this near where the shaft comes inside the boat with some type of mechanism designed for this purpose.)

    He did this since the bearing is lubricated by water (like my 2002 CC 2. He claims that the prop would still turn on its own due to the forward motion of the boat(which makes sense) but the bearing would not receive water/lubrication and therefore further damage would occur to the bearing and/or shaft.

    I looked on my CC and could not find anyway to lock the shaft in place. Can this be done on our boats?
    2002 28
    Volvo Kamd 44p's


  • #2
    Pipe wrench

    I carry a pipe wrench and a wood block. Pad the wrench with a towel; lock it to the shaft and manually rotate it against the hull and put the block between the wrench and the hull.


    • #3
      Why do you want to lock the prop I dont understand why?


      • #4
        Back in my shrimp boat days if we were ever towed in we did the same thing with a pipe wrench.

        This was to prevent damage to the transmission ("gears" or "clutch" as we called them) as the prop spinning would turn the transmission without the engine running.

        I'm not sure if this would be a problem or not but everyone did it.

        We had regular stuffing boxes (constant drip) so I don't know about the dripless box requirements.


        • #5
          2 reasons

          1-Your dripless will not be getting water flow for lubrication unless you install a crossover between the 2 cooling lines.

          2-The trans is only getting lubrication with the engine running and it will not be in this case. I suppose you could let it idle.
          Life is to short for an ugly boat

          2015 Enclosed Helm 35


          • #6
            Thanks for the feed back.


            • #7
              Now I have a use for that pipe wrench I bought three years ago and used once. Good stuff. Thanks for the explanation.
              2002 28
              Volvo Kamd 44p's



              • #8
                How long can you run without locking the prop?


                • #9
                  Interesting Topic

                  I have a 99 CC28 inboards. Last yr we lost a fuel pump 25mi out and came back in on the Starboard engine only. I did not and had no way to lock the Port shaft.

                  After we repaired the fuel pump, everything worked fine and we ran the boat for the rest of the season with no problems.

                  A friend of mine on the same dock with a Cabo had an engine problem and burned up a shaft seals after only coming back in 4 miles.

                  Was I just lucky or are the shaft seals on the CC's designed so they won't be damaged under these circumstances.

                  Bottom line, I guess it would be smart to carry the pipewrench and wood and lock the shaft in place if this happens again.

                  Any thoughts?
                  28 Carolina Classic
                  OCFC, MD.


                  • #10
                    I came in from the Resor Wreck (about 30 miles) on one engine three years ago without locking the shaft in place. I haven't had a problem with the shaft or transmission either but maybe I was lucky.
                    2002 28
                    Volvo Kamd 44p's



                    • #11
                      Locking the shaft........

                      As far as damaging the transmission......I don't think so. Here's a quote from the operating manual of my ZF 63A Hurth :

                      "When the boat moves in tow or is anchored, the propeller may turn with the water current. This represents no danger for the transmission. In a boat with two engines, the propeller of the unused transmission may idle freely. When the engine is off, the position of the shifting lever is irrelevant."

                      I'm not sure about the dripless shaft seals, but I did come in on one engine once. It took 2 hours and I've had no leaks or problems to date and that was 235 engine hours ago. It would help if we knew the manufacturer of the seals.......?


                      • #12
                        Prop spin

                        I had a 28 bertram that I docked in the Stono River year round and the props would always free spin with the incoming and outgoing current. I never had any problems with either the seals or the transmissions. It may just depend on what kind of setup you have.


                        • #13
                          I came back from Bimini 45 miles with 1 engine and no way to lock up the shaft or start the other engine. No problems so far-

                          knock on wood
                          ISLAND XPRESS


                          • #14
                            I don't know if I am just lucky also, but I now have 900 hours on my twin 250's. and Had 2 unfortunate runs back from 60 miles out in the first 300 hours and to this date have no adverse affects. And did not lock starboard motor on either trip.


                            • #15
                              locking shaft

                              I too had to come in on one engine secondary to clogged fuel filter and did not lock the shaft. Traveled about about 10 miles woth no issues. Called keith to ask about that issue and he assured me no problem would have resulted at that speed even though the dripless system was not operable with the engine off. Anyone with other experiences please comment!
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