How long does it take for a stern tube seal replacement service to be completed?

As with many things, this depends on the situation. If everything is organized well and planned properly, an overhaul of AFT ad FWD seals by bonding method, will take 3 days.

But with many variables and parties involved, perfect planning and organization can be difficult.

Before a service job we will send a preparation document that can function as a checklist for your planning.

Things to consider and discus with the project manager from the shipyard:

  • does the propeller have to come of the shaft?
  • how long will washing and blasting of the vessel take?
  • will the painting of the vessel interfere with the bonding of the AFT seals?
  • how long will the shipyard need to build a staging for work on the AFT seal?

And even when all this is taken into consideration, unforeseen situations can happen that cause a delay.

For example: a regular bonding job is planned without taking the propeller off the shaft. During the cleaning and inspection of the AFT seal housing, metal flakes are found in the stern tube next to the AFT bearing. Also, the AFT wear down readings give reason for concern. In this case, the shaft needs to be pulled and the bearings need to be inspected and most likely they need to be repaired or replaced. In a case like this our office staff, together with the service engineer will be in close communication with the superintendent on side, to reschedule and decide on the new planning.

How long does it take for a stern tube seal replacement service to be completed?

As with many things, this depends on the situation. If everything is organized well and planned properly, an overhaul of AFT ad FWD seals by bonding method, will take 3 days.

But with many variables and parties involved, perfect planning and organization can be difficult.

Before a service job we will send a preparation document that can function as a checklist for your planning.

Things to consider and discus with the project manager from the shipyard:

  • does the propeller have to come of the shaft?
  • how long will washing and blasting of the vessel take?
  • will the painting of the vessel interfere with the bonding of the AFT seals?
  • how long will the shipyard need to build a staging for work on the AFT seal?

And even when all this is taken into consideration, unforeseen situations can happen that cause a delay.

For example: a regular bonding job is planned without taking the propeller off the shaft. During the cleaning and inspection of the AFT seal housing, metal flakes are found in the stern tube next to the AFT bearing. Also, the AFT wear down readings give reason for concern. In this case, the shaft needs to be pulled and the bearings need to be inspected and most likely they need to be repaired or replaced. In a case like this our office staff, together with the service engineer will be in close communication with the superintendent on side, to reschedule and decide on the new planning.

Where do you offer your stern tube seal service?

Everywhere our service engineers can travel visa free or where we can organize a visa with the help of our customer, there we offer stern tube seal overhaul service. North Korea might be a tough one 🙂

We have engineers based in:

  • Tallinn, Estonia
  • Shanghai, China
  • Cuidad Panama, Panama Rep.
  • Hoorn, The Netherlands
Is going into drydock mandatory for a stern tube seal service?
No, going into drydock is not necessarily needed for a stern tube seal service.

It is the preferred location for an overhaul. But sometimes circumstances require otherwise. We can also perform afloat repairs or assist with an underwater repair.

Drydock or afloat repair?
A vessel does not necessarily need to go into drydock for our service engineers to perform an overhaul service. Some vessels are able to be trimmed, which weights down the FWD side and lifts the AFT side out of the water.

In order to perform an afloat repair of the AFT seals, the stern tube has to be trimmed +/1,30mtr out of the water. The vessel should be in calm water preferable without swell or waves from passing boats.

FWD seals can be replaced with minimal trim or even without trimming the stern tube out of the water. (in that case you want to be 100% sure the AFT seals are not leaking).

Is an afloat repair possible for my vessel?

The crew of a vessel and the technical department will be able to calculate if it is possible to trim a vessel far enough to do an afloat repair. In some cases, pumps are required to provide for cooling water if the sea chests are trimmed out of the water.

Many tankers and bulk carriers will be able to trim enough for an afloat repair. For container vessels it is less common.

I have discovered a leakage, what now?

The crew should always check the makers manual if questions about the functioning of the stern tube system arise.

But when issues come up, we know that not everyone will sit down and take the time to read a bulky manual. And because we know almost all manuals by head, you can always contact RM Propulsion (by email or phone) with questions. It doesn’t matter if we worked on that system or not, we are always welcome to help. In many cases, we can guide your crew through the right procedures to manage the situation. In case we cannot, we can give well founded recommendations on what your next step should be. All based on years of field experience.

Do you offer a warranty on your products?

We give a 1-year warranty on service and spare parts if original or our own spare parts are used.

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