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stiff seacocks (no pun intended)

Discussion in 'Technical Discussion' started by Beau, Apr 14, 2019 at 7:05 PM.

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  1. Beau

    Beau Senior Member

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    Both seacocks to my Mans take a pry bar to move. I don't know the model. But can these generally be serviced and loosened, or should I expect to change them out
  2. MBevins

    MBevins Senior Member

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    First thing is frequently exercising them is a big maintenance item. Probably opening and closing every couple of months does wonders.
    Have you tried this at least a half dozen times to see if they loosen up.
  3. Beau

    Beau Senior Member

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    I am definitely at fault on the "exercising" Once a year I open them and then close them - for 20 years. This last season they took a gigantic effort to close. I short haul every other year so I intend to work on them this haul out. Just wondering, when they get this tight are they salvageable?
  4. cleanslate

    cleanslate Member

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    I'm not sure about them . Maybe one of the Capts' will chime in. There are a few different kind of seacocks .what kind do you have as they are all a little different to service, if they can be serviced at all. Maybe your favorite penetrating oil sprayed on it a few times will help loosen it up over a couple days time.
  5. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    Send some pictures and help us determine whack sea cock you have. Some are serviceable, some not worth the effort.
    Also, Does the sea cock bolt to the hull directly?
  6. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    Work the hell out of them every couple of weeks and see what happens. On the yachts I manage, I work the seacocks monthly.
  7. justold

    justold Member

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    Grease them . remove the drain plug and install a zerk fitting . Place the valve in a 3/4 open position , give it three or four shots of grease . When greasing make sure the valve is NOT in the fully open or fully closed position , you will damage the inner seals .
  8. Beau

    Beau Senior Member

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    Thanks. I'll try those zerks.
  9. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    Use lithium grease, if you do that.
  10. Beau

    Beau Senior Member

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    Will do. Teach me, why lithium rather than the red water "resistant" grease. BTY, my seacocks are bolted to the hull.
  11. Beau

    Beau Senior Member

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    I can barely get to them over the battery cabinet, and toward the outside....but I'll try. I don't even have room to put a good size bar on them. I may have to hire someone with big arms and a small waist.
  12. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    I was hoping for pictures to quickly determine if the were tapered plugs and/or what brand.
    If you could do the plug/Zerk trick or what service could be available.
    Bolted down, one-piece cocks helps determine that they are not easily replaced.
    ,rc
  13. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    I have made helper tools my self from PVC pipe;
    https://www.topshelfmarine.com/product/sea-cock-ball-valve-helper/
    Above is an example, not supporting that vendor.

    Some cock handles have a 1/2" square hole to accept a tool ratchet or pull bar.

    It's amazing where sea cocks end up and how hard they are to operate just from the personal angle of arm leverage. From another direction, they could be moved freely.
  14. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    Lithium is water resistant grease and a light weight, so it should get in all of the crevices inside the seacock easier. Red is lithium also (should be) if it's waterproof but it probably a higher viscosity. It should work also, if that's what you already have in your grease gun.
  15. Beau

    Beau Senior Member

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    Pictures probably next week end. To top it off the valve to hose measurement is 2 7/8. Try to find that ! Gotta be metric
  16. Beau

    Beau Senior Member

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    Suppose I put a little heat to it ….helpful to disperse the grease? Water temp is around 44F right now
  17. d_meister

    d_meister Senior Member

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    That would probably create unintended consequences. First, the amount of heat to be applied would be considerable because the heat would dissipate in the water. Second, enough heat could damage the nylon seals in a ball-type valve (if that's what you have). Third, significant heat could soften the bedding compound possibly causing a water leak at the base. I'm with Capt J, exercise the things to loosen them up. Always be careful with the amount of force you apply to something that covers a large hole in the hull. In the event that the bonding system hasn't always been up to snuff, the bronze can be weakened by electrolytic action to the point where something important snaps off :(
  18. Beau

    Beau Senior Member

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    All good points
  19. cleanslate

    cleanslate Member

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    No heat !! You're asking for real trouble !
    There must be an older kid on the dock that's willing to go down there for a few bucks and give it a whirl.....
    I like the grease idea that the others have mentioned. That's new to me also.
    I snapped the handle off at the stud on mine two years ago flush with the seacock in the closed position in the fall had to haul out the following spring and cut the old one out in sections with a Sawzall and install a new one...
  20. Beau

    Beau Senior Member

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    I wasn't talking about getting it cherry red, just warm. I'm going to use a space heater or hair dryer to do that, not a torch - 42 degree grease doesn't spread so easily. Another option is to just get them open and then work on them during my short haul this year. Maybe take the hoses off to get at the insides

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