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The new stern gland packing

5.   Now this is the difficult bit. The photo shows the cap unit re-packed with new packing.

Before starting to dismantle, you should have rings of the right size ready to insert. If cutting these from continuous rope, wrap this around the exposed shaft (or other circular tube of the same diameter such as the right sized socket spanner) five or six times and then cut across the windings at an angle with a sharp knife. This is easier said than done. The ends of the rope quickly disintigrate into a furry mess!

The new stern gland packing

Slacken the lock nut and undo the compression nut and slide this and the compression spacer up the shaft towards the shaft coupling.

Remove all of the existing packing. Any packing left behind will reduce the chances of the new packing sealing properly. This task will be made easier with a proper tool that looks a bit like a corkscrew on a flexible shaft, but this isnąt essential and bent wire and pliers can also be used. However you need to be careful not to damage the shaft. Be prepared for this to take ages!

Insert the new packing, making sure the joint in each ring is offset from that in the previous ring. Re-fit the compression spacer and compression nut.

What happens next will depend on your boat. Basically you don't want the unit to be too hot (due to too much friction), or too much water dripping through (obviously).

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