Propeller shaft mystery solved.



The other problem we decided to have addressed was a small dipping leak behind the dripless shaft seal.

Not shown in these photos is the bronze casting that fits in the open stern tube.  A sheave assembly for steering fits over the whole thing so getting access meant taking lots apart. 

Originally the dripless shaft seal attached to a large nipple on this casting.  After figuring out how to get the casting out (at my insistence)  it was found that it housed a second very worn cutlass bearing and the four stainless machine screws were loosely encased in fiberglass.  It was leaking around this casting.

The solution was to cut the nipple off the casting, install a new cutlass bearing, remount the machine screws, and cover the whole assembly with a much, much larger dripless shaft seal mounted around the five  inch stern tube  Not a cheap fix ...