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Shaft alignment tolerance - V-Drive

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I recently had a new boat owner mishap and 10k in repairs.

I just got the boat back and noticed something and I am looking for some guidance.

When look at the shaft between the v-drive coupling and the hull bearing, I can see lateral movement when the shaft is spinning. Using the bolt at the end of the hull bearing as a guide, I see about an 1/8" lateral movement left and up. Hand turning the prop, it forms a rounded off triangle. On the engine, it is a clearly visible wobble. I know the new bearings have a lot of tolerance, but I don't know what excessive looks like.

Does anyone have any guidance?

Thanks for your patience with a newbie boat owner.

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If I am visualizing your description properly it sounds like a bent shaft. Was the shaft replaced?? There should a be no movement other than spinning. No wobble, no slop, period.

The shaft is one of the things replaced...


I added a picture link to be clearer.

Edited by Dsingram
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Did they replace the strut? Do you feel pretty confident about the alignment? Was it a Malibu dealer with some experience?

Is there any vibration while operating? Did servicing tech test drive? It might be interesting to talk to the tech and get his thoughts. The arrow is pointing to the packing nut, is the nut actually moving??

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I am not sure if they replaced the strut, and at this point, no I guess I am not confident in the alignment... It was not the dealer, which is part of my concern. The dealer is a long haul from me.

The nut is definitely moving... I am guessing that is bad?

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Yes that is bad. I keep trying to decide how to make this next statement without sounding bad but I haven't thought of a better way to do it other than ask that you don't be offended. Just curious how the decision was made to do $10K in work by a non dealer and not be assured that EVERY drive train component was replaced and aligned to 100%. You can fix a LOT OF STUFF for 10K.

Pretty simple rule is that if a shaft moves enough to bend it's very likely gonna bend the strut. The cost of a strut is less than the labor to pull everything apart and put it back together. Do you have any pre repair pics OR a list of what WAS replaced?

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What year is your boat? I'd check the shaft alignment first. Should be less than 0.003" between the two surfaces of the coupling all around.

The engine manual recommends checking it annually. There is a good picture of how to do it in the engine activation after winter lay-up section. If you don't have your manual, you can see an electronic copy in the resources section of the site.

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The nut you are pointing to is the packing gland and will wobble if it's not tight. I would think it would be leaking if it's wobbling that much.

The .003 that Dexter is talking about is the coupling that attaches the shaft to the v-drive.

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