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CruizinLG

Uh oh....what did I just do...?

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I've been winterizing my own boats for 20+ years, and never had an issue, but maybe I'm getting too old for this stuff;   

I was cleaning / winterizing my boat when I moved the boat/trailer but forgot to raise the out drive - ugh!   What I thought was the wet brakes shuddering as I backed down my driveway, was actually the skeg scraping into the asphalt.   I stopped moving but not until the out drive had carved a shallow trench about 2' long.    When I raised the drive, it made a screeching noise for about the first 1/3 of the movement.    I was backing up which means the drive was being pressed back towards the transom.   After I parked my boat/trailer into it's winter home, I lowered the drive.   Once again, it didn't make any unusual noise until the last 1/3 of the travel.

What did I likely damage in the process?    I'm wondering if the pistons that provide the up/down movement could have been bent...?

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Me ? I would lower the drive down to a piece of 2 X 6 wood. VERY carefully.  Make sure you are in the screeching area.  Just touching the wood. Then disconnect he cylinders from the drive. Testing time.  You are very likely right.

Fully extend the cylinders. Lay a straight piece of ruler on the cylinder shafts at nigh.  Fflashlight behind the ruler. Good luck. Check around the shafts in several places.

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You can raise the outdrive all the way up and check the pistons on all sides with a straight edge. A nine inch torpedo level should work very well

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I asked if you bent the skeg because I did the same exact thing my rookie year.  I got lucky, though, only bent the skeg and I dragged it more than 2 ft.  But it's a Volvo so.....:)

I had the boat on the street in front of the house after a wicked long day of boating and was flushing the engine and hosing her down etc. Then proceeded to park it in the driveway (forgetting to raise the drive of course) and crrrrreeeeeeeekkkkkk just as I backed in.  If my driveway didnt hump up slightly off the street, i might've gotten lucky and missed it completely.  Scar is still on the driveway lol.

Only damage was the bent skeg.  Had a friend who's a welder and boater come over after I took it to the dealership and they found nothing wrong with the pistons or drive and it wasn't making any noise like you described but he slowly heated the skeg without applying too much heat and straightened it out for me.   Been fine for 5 seasons since but I do have a leaky seal on the starboard cylinder I'll be fixing soon.  But that has nothing to do with the incident.  Seals are old 10 years now and getting dry and salty so time to replace them.

Good luck, is it a Merc? Can't see sigs on my phone.  

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(But why would a bent skeg make a screeching sound when raising or lowering the drive? Sounds like bent rams.)

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I was just wondering if he bent the skeg in the process.  Not that it would have any relationship to the sound he's getting.  It was just the extent of the damage that happened to mine.   Never connected one to the other.

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……………..………………………..  You have to connect the DOTS       :lol:

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With the drive down the rams would have been retracted.Much less likely to bend this way, although not impossible.

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Drop the drive down, resting the skeg on a wood block, then remove the lifting ram rear anchor pin. Raise the drive by hand to ensure there is no binding or interference. With the rams still disconnected, actuate the trim up/trailer switch to cycle the rams upward as you observer their individual movement, and the one that lags behind is likely your bad actor. With the drive lift pin removed, you can rotate the ram pistons 360 degrees by sliding a rod into the rubber bushing hole as you measure for run-out. Easy repair if you bent a cylinder rod. There is also a rod scraper which is part of the seal assembly that can grab the shaft so hard that the trim pump has trouble moving the ram. It happens when corrosion builds up behind the ring in it's grove, pushing the metal wiper on to the shaft o.d. That too is both a cheap and easy fix but it can be a bear to get the seal cap and wiper assembly slid off of the rod.  Skeg damage is not a huge deal as it's primary purpose is prop slow speed impact protection, but if you loose enough of it's length, it will begin to affect low speed steering. W

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Thanks folks!

I’ll finally have some time to look at this today.  I appreciate the replies and the suggestions for determining the cause of the noise.  Hopefully I didn’t do too much damage and the fix isn’t too expensive....and  maybe within my abilities to tackle it myself.  I’ll post my findings.

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Get some estimates for parts & labor.   Then you can decide . Make sure they show you which parts are bad during the estimate. Specify you want the defective parts .  That provides you the reason to not pay if it still does not run smoothly with new parts.  Been there more than 1 time.....

Take me to court if you do not like me for refusing to pay you.   For not doing the job correctly.  I was never called to court.

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Quick Update.....

I went out today to address the squealing out drive, but it no longer made the noise.   I'm not sure if I dodged a bullet or if this will come back to haunt me next year.

Is it possible the stress to the hydraulics system could have caused a momentary 'hiccup' or air pocket in the lines....??   I'm just grasping here....but with the pending 'winter-like' weather that's on its way, I'll probably wait until the Spring to address this.

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7 hours ago, CruizinLG said:

Is it possible the stress to the hydraulics system could have caused a momentary 'hiccup' or air pocket in the lines....??

Sure, why not?  When I did the same thing, I raised it immediately but never got any "sound" no pun intended, just the bent skeg.  I would do what was suggested above by removing the connections at the drive only and raise and lower the cylinders a few times, 5 times at least and get that fluid working and pumping since I raise and lower my drive at least that many times each time I go in and out of shallow spots.  So it's not like you're doing anything bad to it.  If anything, it will help you discover if you have some damage to the pistons or not.

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W ingnut or Doc can verify.

The hydraulic RELIEF VALVE opened up & caused the screeching.  I tested new machinery by causing a jammed condition . Most did a screeching / loud sound. Then ran normal when restarted.

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