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  1. #11

    Re: freeing stuck seacock

    I agree with the percussion method of breaking them loose. however no one has mentioned the fact that seacocks are a normal maintenance item. if yours are as bad as you say disassemble the whole thing and get some valve lapping compound, reassemble with the compound in place and proceed to operate the plug to clean up/true up the fit between the body and the plug. when your happy with the condition of the meeting faces, disassemble, clean everything thoroughly and reassemble, liberally greasing it with 3M silicone paste. tighten until you have to apply moderate pressure to move the plug. but don't forget they have to be greased every year.

  2. Re: freeing stuck seacock

    Uh, on the maintenance thing, that depends on the seacock.

    There are two types - "taper" ones which are as you describe, and the newer style (which are on most Hatts from the 80s and almost anything newer) which are a stainless ball riding in a teflon seat.

    The latter MUST NEVER have lapping compound put in them or they will NEVER seal again. They are ball valves internally.

    What usually screws up the latter type are "things" growing in there, not corrosion.

    Note that the newer ones, once the sealing surface is damaged, will always leak when closed from that point forward. Some can be disassembled but whether you can realistically fix them is another matter; the usual "fix" is replacement.
    http://www.denninger.net - Home page with blog links and more
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  3. #13

    Re: freeing stuck seacock

    after reading your reply to my "maintenance'' reply i realized the thread was about ball valves and not bronze on bronze tapered plug type valves. i will still maintain that even ball valves need servicing though, and that is frequent exercising of the valve through simply operating the valve. thanks for making me aware i was going off on my own little tangent.

  4. #14

    Re: freeing stuck seacock

    My engine seacocks are 2.5 " Magnizium bronze with Stainless steel balls and a teflon bearing. They were frozen. Used a medium hammer to tap on the housing and a 30" pipe to gently free em up. Worked well. Does anyone have any suggestions on what to lube them with? Thanks!
    J Dickson

  5. #15

    Re: freeing stuck seacock

    Both of my port and starboard sea cocks were frozen solid when I purchased my 53MY. I tried and tried to free them by hand with no luck. I was reluctant to get in there with a hammer or mallet and it is real cumbersome to get a pipe on it. In the end I decided to add this to “the list” of fixes that I plan to do when I haul the boat for a pressure washing and bottom paint. As winter set in I started growing more concerned about those stuck sea cocks. So I decided to try one more time, would you believe it a 5 year old could turn both of them with 2 fingers! I can only assume it was the cold!? After all it was December and the water temperature at the time was very close to freezing.

    For what it’s worth, you might be able to place a few bags of ice around a stuck or frozen seacock and call it a day.
    Rich Johnson
    Washington, DC
    53' MY M/V Lady Elizabeth

  6. Re: freeing stuck seacock

    Genesis post # 12 is right on.

    In addition, there is little reason to fret about seacocks that don't close for a season or two..as long as you are NOT in a freezing climate in the water during the winter......the chances of anything going wrong that would happen to be 'cured" by closing a seacock handle are miniscule.

    Depending on your boat and the depth below sea level of the intakes, a typical intake hose stuck straight up inside will not admit water...if it does, keep some wooden plugs of various sizes available....you can always cut off an intake hose a foot above a seacock and stick a wooden plug in to seal it temporarily although I can't think of anything likely that might happen to require such a fix. Another alternative: keep a length of hose available to "extend" an intake hose up higher if desired...find a size PVC that fits inside...you can even use a reducer style PVC, or makea PVC "cap" to seal off a hose if you like. (I don't recommend any of these as necessary, but if you sleep better, go for it.)

    For TAPER type seacocks, loosen the nut (If I recall there may be a nut and a locknut, so loosen both) on the opposite side of the seacock from the handle...the smaller diameter end of the taper plug is by the nut...tap the nut lightly toward the handle to push the plug from its stuck position...if it's stubborn, tap on a piece of wood to prevent burling the nut on the thread and making later disassembly difficult...then snug up just enough to stop a dripping....
    turn the handle to healp seat the plug....next time you are hauled out, remove the taper plug and use one of the greases mentioned already... waterpump grease is one suitable type...

    When hauled out: As a last resort, after loosening the nut, applying some heat with a propane torch to expand the seacock and help break the corrosion bond can also help...the idea is the heat the seacock housing a bit and cause it to expand slightly...I'm NOT talking cherry red here, that is WAAAAAAAY too much....

    Waterpump grease should be safe to use with any type underwater seacocks. Anywater water resistant ,thick lubricant, which will tend to stay in place should be ok....
    Rob Brueckner
    former 1972 48ft YF, 'Lazy Days'
    Boating isn't a matter of life and death: it's more important than that.

  7. #17

    Re: freeing stuck seacock

    Seacocks that do close but don't seal all the way can be a problem when you have to winterize. Depending on you get antifreeze in there, it will blow out the seacock end if not closed and/or sealed all the way. That is why I am replacing mine this year.

  8. #18

    Re: freeing stuck seacock

    I've got a few big sea cocks that are real difficult to open or close and one in particular that has a hose in the way. I've got this cool little tool that works really well. It's got slots so you can leverege the handle from two positions. I just store the tool on the valve handle. Can't remember where I got it but if you google "seacock helper" it should turn up. Pretty handy for little money. thanks.

  9. #19

    Re: freeing stuck seacock

    1980 58MY "Sanctuary"

  10. #20

    Re: freeing stuck seacock

    I called the manufacturer after I replaced one of my main engine seacocks with a brand new one and it was damn near impossible to move! I finally got hold of someone there, who admitted, that when they assemble them, if the guy tightens up the guts too much, it will never loosen up. So before you buy, check it out if possible.

    I just use the hammer and the cheater bar, but now it won't shut off the water all the way.

    Disclaimer: The writer does not represent any organization, employer, entity or other individual. The views expressed are those only of the writer. In the case of a sarcastic, facetious, nonsensical, stirring-the-pot, controversial or devil's advocate-type post, the views expressed may not even reflect those of the writer.

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