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Newbie questions.

Jun 4, 2020
24
Hunter 26.5 Cheney Reservoir
Looking to purchase 1996 Oceanis 281 and have some questions: there is a on/off valve in area of prop shaft called the "stern tube". I cannot find a reference to what this is. The marine head has an intake valve. Does this mean it uses outside water for operation? Boat is 25 years old. Should I replace any/all lines and hoses related to the engine? Seems odd that v berth foam has no covering similar to salon cushions. Is this the norm? Is there a heat exchanger in the engine that can heat the water in the hot water heater if offshore? My diesel truck takes forever to warm up, same issue here? Thanks.
 
Feb 21, 2013
3,638
Hunter 46 Point Richmond, CA
Great questions!!...........keep them coming, you will find the the forum pretty helpful.

There is a on/off valve in area of prop shaft called the "stern tube". Never heard of that, others might have some insight on this
The marine head has an intake valve. Does this mean it uses outside water for operation? Probably a raw vs. fresh water toilet
Boat is 25 years old. Should I replace any/all lines and hoses related to the engine? Good PM plan and that would be proactive
Seems odd that v berth foam has no covering similar to salon cushions. Is this the norm? Probably not, I would cover it
Is there a heat exchanger in the engine that can heat the water in the hot water heater if offshore? Should be when the motor is operating.
 
Jan 7, 2011
2,836
Oday 322 East Chicago, IN
The toilet will have a thruhull for water to flush...

There could also be a valve in that area for an engine cooling water intake.

Cant help the the v-berth cushion question...maybe the PO threw some memory foam up thre.

Many boats can use the engine coolant system to heat water in the HW tank...look at the engine or the WH fir a set of hoses running to/from the engine...shouldn’t be too hard to spot.

Greg
 
Jun 10, 2019
38
Beneteau First 36.7 Marina Village, Alameda
Stern tube carries the prop shaft in a shaft-drive auxiliary power. Cooling water for the shaft packing is supplied from the raw-water pump. This valve would be used to cut the backflow of water from the tube if the line needs maintenance.
 
Last edited:

DougM

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Jul 24, 2005
2,169
Beneteau 323 Manistee, MI
Stern tube carries the prop shaft in a shaft-drive auxiliary power. Cooling water for the shaft packing is supplied from the raw-water pump. This valve would be used to cut the backflow of water from the tube if the line needs maintenance.
Different setup from my 323... The ”cooling” water is not supplied from the raw water pump. It is supplied from a thru hull adjacent to the shaft log to the shaft and exits through the cutlass bearing. I would think that the 36.7 would be the same. The achilles heel of the system is the tiny pipe nipple at the top of the shaft log. Its prone to snapping off if hit, especially as it ages. It should be bronze but the original is actually brass.
 
Aug 20, 2013
164
Beneteau 311 Port Clinton, OH (Lake Erie)
Xstream, I concur with Doug that the water line to the top of the shaft seal is probably for lubricating the "dripless seal" with water. When the boat is launched, it is helpful to bend back the elastic/rubber part slightly to "burp" the air out of the seal and fill it with water before starting the engine or at least before putting it in gear.

Yes, heads normally use outside water for flushing.

It is good to look at all the hoses around the engine and at the thru hulls to check the hose condition and to make sure they are properly clamped (two clamps per fitting). Make sure the clamps haven't loosened up, and look for cracked, bulging, cut, or burnt hoses. They often crack first at the fittings. You should also feel all the hoses to make sure they are still somewhat flexible and not cracked. If you are new at this and not sure what to look for, getting some help is money and/or time well spent. A cracked or disconnected hose can sink the boat while your are away.

While you are checking all the hose fittings, examine all the thru hull fittings, and turn each of the valves closed and open to make sure they work. It is best to have a soft, wooden, tapered plug available for each thru hull to hammer into the fitting if the valve or hose breaks off. Even better, have one stored at each fitting with a string tied to something nearby so you have it when you need at the location of the thru hull.

Also inspect the exhaust fittings where the engine exhaust mixes with outside water. The metal parts can erode at the corners and bends and cause an engine exhaust leak inside the boat.

Many hot water heaters have a hose running to and from the engine to circulate hot engine coolant through the how water heater (thru an heat exchanger). If the boat has been idle and at location that freezes, the lines for engine coolant and the potable water may be disconnected and the hot water heater drained and/or filled with antifreeze. If so, do not turn on the electricity to the hot water heater if there is no water in it; the electric heating element will burn out (put a piece of tape of something over the breaker as a warning).

Yes, normally the V-berth cushions match the rest of the boat. Maybe the originals are sitting in an attic somewhere or were damaged.

A diesel engine that is idling and not under load will take a long while to warm up, but it does not have to be hot to leave the dock. Just start it up a minute or two before you need it and once it is running smoothly and you can see cooling water coming out with the exhaust, you are ready to go.
 
Jun 4, 2020
24
Hunter 26.5 Cheney Reservoir
Thanks to everyone. I am finding more out each time I visit the boat. It has an interesting type of mainsheet system: it uses three bails near the middle of the boom. Apparently one end of the sheet ties to the middle bail, runs down to a block attached to a pad eye on one side of the cabin top, back up to another block attached to the next bail, then down to the other side of the cabin top to another block, back up to the bail closest to the mast and down to another block at the mast base, over to a turning sheave and finally ends up at a rope clutch. Seems like the long way around the barn, to me. This is one system. The other system uses an end of the boom block down to an eye in front of the wheel steering. Admittedly it does keep the mainsheet out of the cockpit and that is worth something, but a cabintop traveler seems to me to be a better solution since it also allows one to travel the boom in or out.
 

arf145

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Nov 4, 2010
431
Beneteau 331 Deale, MD
Re: the toilet intake. Most marine heads have this but you don't have to use it--I don't. I flush with fresh water to cut down on any smells that might originate with organic matter in raw water.
 
Jan 22, 2008
8,050
Beneteau 323 Annapolis MD
Different setup from my 323... The ”cooling” water is not supplied from the raw water pump. It is supplied from a thru hull adjacent to the shaft log to the shaft and exits through the cutlass bearing. I would think that the 36.7 would be the same. The achilles heel of the system is the tiny pipe nipple at the top of the shaft log. Its prone to snapping o:plus:ff if hit, especially as it ages. It should be bronze but the original is actually brass.
:plus:
 
Jun 4, 2020
24
Hunter 26.5 Cheney Reservoir
Re: the toilet intake. Most marine heads have this but you don't have to use it--I don't. I flush with fresh water to cut down on any smells that might originate with organic matter in raw water.
I received similar advice about our lake water. This sailor takes several one gallon jugs to flush with instead of messing with his fresh water tank.
Thanks.