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Another new guy question...

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Old 05-22-2008, 05:18 AM
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Default Another new guy question...

What kind of maintenance do drives need? Also, how often does it need to be done?
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Old 05-22-2008, 09:10 AM
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Most guys on here pull the drives once a year to make sure seals, u-joints, and splines are functioning "properly".

I change my drive lube once a year or every 50 hours - last year coincidentally I put about 50 hours on it. I would probably change it more often but I RARELY run the boat more than about 3500 RPM and the majority of my 50 hours are spent idling.

General maintenance includes the greasing of the spline and U-joints, and the changing of the gear lube.

Regardless of whether you are handy or not - you can do it yourself.

I have bravos. Judging from the boats you seem to be looking at you should either have Bravo's or TRS drives....
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Old 05-22-2008, 10:04 AM
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They should be opened up, re-sealed and re-shimmed on an interval basis. It cost a few bucks but alot less than buying Mercruiser parts- especially NLA parts. Proper clearances will keep them alive for a long time.

Proper use is one of the keys here. If you want to do dragrace starts, buy a Sanger V-drive flatbottom. A TRS or Bravo on a heavy boat isn't going to hold up to hammer-down holeshots. Jumping is hard too. Mostly it's throttle mistakes on re-entry. landing flat/throttles closed puts a tremendous strain on the drive, as does winging them.
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Old 05-22-2008, 12:34 PM
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It all depnds on how you run the boat.
The harder you push it the more maintenence it requires.

I don't run mine very hard. And I only have a 350 Mercruiser engine.
I change my drive fluid once a year. But check the fluid level and condition (looking for water and metal debris) several times throughout the season.
Pull the drive off and grease the coupler and input shaft splines yearly.
Pull the prop off and grease the splines yearly.
All grease fittings on the transom and gimbal assemblies get greased three to four times a season.
I check the drive shaft and shift cable bellows prior to launching it every time. I also store the boat with the drive lowered to take the strain off the two bellows.
Since my water pump impellor is inside the Alpha drive it only gets changed once a year. Drive has to disassembled to gain access.
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