So how often should i top off the gear oil in my bowl? will i find water in it or should it stay pretty clean like engine oil?
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Good maintenance would be fill it everytime you take the boat out. Doesn't cost much and it will prevent problems.
Depends...the two bushings found the the Berk Bowl stabilize the shaft. If their loose the shaft will wobble and no matter how new the seal is it wont "seal". Also if the shaft (like mine) has a groove in it from the seal again it won't seal very well.
With that being said. I check my oil every other time out because I know it gets milky after a few days. Big deal, I take off both plugs and flush out the milky oil till it turns clean. Also...no "gears" inside, just a shaft and two bushings (Berk style)...so no need for high-dollar super-duper "gear Lube". Heck I now use straight 50 wt motor oil.
You can also install a plug and a grease zerk. Lube with marine grease until it comes out the other side, just like gear oil, but more water friendly......Ray
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To properly support and center the shaft the clearance between the pump shaft and the 2-tail bushings is somewhat close. I don't see "grease" making it's way between the two to actually do anything. If it did as soon as the shaft spins the grease gets pushed aside and there it stays. Also keep in mind, normal 'wheel' bearing grease is designed to liquify/flow as the bearing/wheel assembly gets hot...no way does the pump shaft or the tail part of the bowl get hot enough to get grease flowing.
Just my two cents worth
As i understood it the newer jets use grease but the older ones used oil... I didnt think it really mattered one way or the other.. Then again WTF do i know.. this is my first jet :-). I just replaced all my seals and bushings so ill continue to use oil until it wont hold it any longer.
well whats better oil or grease????..... I picked up a split bowl that has been used with grease........but not sure if I should go grease or clean it out and go to gear oil...Sorry Im on my first jet boat also.
I want to say the older boats used oil but the new ones use grease.. I could be wrong.. A pro will speak up im sure. I used grease before my rebuild, at the suggestion of a pro, as my seal was all jacked up and it seemed to work fine for a season. however after my rebuild with a new grease seal i have gone back to gear oil as that is what the OEM called for and my seal is now funcional.
The only two jet drives that used gear oil for the tail bearings are the Berkeley and the Legend Jet drive. In my opinion oil is a much better lubricant in this case. The Berk bowl has a large cavity for the oil bath and in most cases the grease won't get to the bearings. If you pump too much grease into the bowl you can pop out the seal because it is not made for grease and has no ring clip holding it in place. Jets that use grease are designed for that purpose and have retaining clips and smaller bearing cavities. In my opinion the oil bath does a better job of displacing sand particles that my get into the bearing cavity and is also a much better lubricant when running on the trailer.. I believe that oil baths lube better than grease anyway. Jim