Steady Bearing

Pamlico

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Recently got a SISU 22 that had a rusty old bearing about mid shaft. It was a ball of rust and it's Babbitt had long since melted to the bilge. I got the original flyer that came with the boat and SISU called it a "steady bearing". My thoughts were they put it there for a reason, so I ordered and installed a replacement this week.

My question is, how often do I grease this thing?
 

Toolate

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Like this-



I wonder if this is really needed. Obviously not going to remove it since Sisu put it in but seems like there are plenty of boats without them. 1 1/2 shaft.

image.jpg
 

Pamlico

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Yep that's the beast. I wondered if it was needed, but being new to the boat I figured it was there for a reason. So there is a pretty new Dodge bearing there now. My shaft is 1-1/8".
How often do you grease it? Is it something I need to do each trip? 10, 25, 50, hours?
The old one looks to have got hot and melted the Babbitt. I found hunks of it in the bilge. I assume the previous owner was not greasing it.
 

Toolate

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Your guess is as good as mine. New to my boat too.
 

pugsley

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used to grease mine every couple of days, just a squirt or two.

i would wonder about the alignment if it melted like that.
 

captainlarry84

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It depends on the length of your shaft. The bearing is in place to prevent shaft whipping.
 

Lion's Paw

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That is not uncommon with a long shaft to have a bearing set up like that. My 35 Henriques had something similar to keep the shaft whip under control. I found that a shot of grease every four or five trips out was all that was needed. It never exceed warm to the touch underway.

My bet would be it melted because it was never lubed and seized up.
 

Brooksie

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The main problem with these babbit lined bearings is that when the shaft starts to rattle in them (due to wear) it pounds the babbit out of them in short order. So, as it wears, and you can shake the shaft, remove a shim or shims to keep it from getting too loose however it should have some clearance and not be tight of course. If your shaft has wear from the old one, the new one may seem to loosen up quickly as it takes on the same wear pattern as the shaft, then it should settle down.

The are primitive but the alternatives are very expensive.

PS: See if you can find a grease cup off an old piece of machinery (like a furnace blower) and install it, then you only need give it a 1/4 turn instead of finding your grease gun and cleaning the fitting every time.
 
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Pamlico

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Brooksie,
I like the grease cup idea. I took care to line up the new bearing when installing it. I took her out today for a trial run and the bearing (well greased) felt "to" warm for me. I'm hoping its a because it's new and just needs a break in period. The shaft spins freely by hand.
 

Toolate

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What alternatives are you thinking of Brooksie?
 

pugsley

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Brooksie,
I like the grease cup idea. I took care to line up the new bearing when installing it. I took her out today for a trial run and the bearing (well greased) felt "to" warm for me. I'm hoping its a because it's new and just needs a break in period. The shaft spins freely by hand.


probably just what you said, just needs to wear in a little.

the one we put on last year was oilite.
 

Beamie

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When you put the new bearing in how did it seem to fit when you tightened the cap? If a bit out of alignment may need to loosen the mounting feet and shim with ss shims (if low). If too high then more of a project. And by warm what do you mean. How long could you hold it?
 

WC1966

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Brooksie,
I like the grease cup idea. I took care to line up the new bearing when installing it. I took her out today for a trial run and the bearing (well greased) felt "to" warm for me. I'm hoping its a because it's new and just needs a break in period. The shaft spins freely by hand.
Pick up a hand held infrared thermometer, they are dirt cheep today, and reliable,1 nine volt battery lasted 5 years.
Most any auto parts store will have them. Eliminated the guess work for me.
Amazon.com: infrared thermometer
 

morgan1727

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I remember seeing in a commercial boating newspaper, there is a company that makes a ball bearing setup that breaks in half similar to your setup, but I'm not sure they make it in that small a shaft size. Maybe something to look into.
 

Brooksie

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What alternatives are you thinking of Brooksie?

The splt bearings, roller or ball, are very expensive. A regular pillow block is good but the shaft must be pulled to get it on and they don't take thrust.

Island Seeker 06-07 198.jpg

Island Seeker 06-07 200.jpg
 

Pamlico

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When installing the bearing it was low, I made a teak block to get the bearing to fit the shaft. I sanded the block until I got the right height so the shaft fit in the bearing and turned freely with the cap tight, took care to make sure the shaft did not flex when tighten. I did shoot it with a IR thermometer after a hard run and it was 155 degrees.

image.jpg
 

Toolate

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I have no idea what that is Brooksie. Where can I go and reasearch some of these bearings? Who sells them?

155 is hot Pamlico. Probably too hot to keep the grease in it for long.
 

Keelboater

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Brooksie,
I like the grease cup idea. I took care to line up the new bearing when installing it. I took her out today for a trial run and the bearing (well greased) felt "to" warm for me. I'm hoping its a because it's new and just needs a break in period. The shaft spins freely by hand.


Is this a babbit type bearing or a pillow block ball bearing? Too much grease in a ball bearing will contribute to higher operating temperature (as explained in more detail in most bearing manufacturers handbooks). This is usually not the case, but it does happen.
 
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