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Old 01 July 2022, 16:30   #1
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Wheel Removal

So this year the RIB has developed a weep from the Baystar steering at the helm. Iíve identified that itís coming from the wheel shaft. Itís not been causing any issues, other than oil running down the console and onto the floor. Steering is still very smooth and light.

Iíve found the replacement O ring and I know how to replace.

I thought Iíd take a look at the wheel nut today, thinking about removal so that I can get to the 3 screws on the hub plate. I found it caked in salt deposit (2007 boat wheel has never been removed).

Any recommendations for removal. I havenít tried anything yet but starting to think about how to tackle it. Iím thinking of soaking with white vinegar to break down the salt deposits, then some WD40 to start to loosen the nut. Hopefully after this a BIG bar will get the nut moving.

Iím also feeling a puller is probably then the best bet to get the wheel off.

Changing then O ring Iím thinking will be the easy part of this job.

Anyone tackles this or had a similar winning formula??

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Old 01 July 2022, 18:38   #2
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There is no guaranteed way. Go as you think. Hot water might help. When you get to pulling the wheel leave the bolt on the last couple of threads it will save you hitting ur self

Good luck horrible job
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Old 01 July 2022, 19:22   #3
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You might find Plus Gas or similar is better than WD-40. Other than that what Neil has said.
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Old 01 July 2022, 19:44   #4
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Use Plus Gas. WD40 has it's uses but penetrating oil isn't one of them.
Ordinary diesel isn't bad either.
Puller if all else fails - done that on my own boat.

And if you're going to try wiggling & pulling by hand take neil's advice about leaving the nut on!
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Old 02 July 2022, 08:26   #5
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Hi just done this job used puller to get steering wheel off. The problem was the three small screws on the round plate that holds the seal in place penetrating oil hot water and a lot of patience got it in the end and new seal stopped small leak.
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Old 02 July 2022, 10:15   #6
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Same for me a while ago ,good pullers on hand ,plus gas ,diesel ......failed miserably ,
New wheel for me (which i neeeded anyway) .......drilled a couple of holes adjacent to steel taper/key in the ally to release ,job done ,but wheel will cost you £75 ish ,but yours looks knackered like mine !!

Alternatively iirc you will need to protect where the puller legs sit with something substantial or you will rip the black plastic moulded area of the wheel away
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Old 02 July 2022, 11:13   #7
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Yup that looks like a challenge. A others have said, lots of plus gas / diesel / WD40, tea patience and a long breaker bar ought to get the nut off (wire brush the threads clean too)
If you have micro blow-torch you could try a little heat on the nut.
I can't tell from the photo if your wheel hub is plastic or cast Ali. If cast Ali you're in with a good shot of getting the wheel off with a good puller and some heat. If plastic, use puller but you may have a struggle and need to cut the wheel off.
Dont be tempted to use the automotive technique of walloping the shaft with a hammer as you'll probably wreck your helm pump. Good luck!
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Old 02 July 2022, 11:18   #8
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Upgraded from mechanical to hydraulic steering when our boat was about three years old. Wheel wouldnít budge despite not a hint of corrosion so ended up bodging a makeshift puller. Worked fine, didnít mark wheel and now part of the tool kit.
Good luck.

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Old 02 July 2022, 12:36   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chipko View Post
Upgraded from mechanical to hydraulic steering when our boat was about three years old. Wheel wouldnít budge despite not a hint of corrosion so ended up bodging a makeshift puller. Worked fine, didnít mark wheel and now part of the tool kit.
Good luck.

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Old 02 July 2022, 19:22   #10
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Thanks everyone for your advice so far.

Update: used white vinegar and WD40 (all I had to hand) and let it soak for a few hours. After that most of the salt had dissolved and with a big bar on the nut it shifted quite easily. I was really surprised.

Anyway, now for the fun part of removing the wheel. I think itís going to need a puller to get it shifted. Iím not worried about what happens to the wheel as it needs replacing anyway once itís off.
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Old 09 July 2022, 20:45   #11
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Update:

The wheel is off!! Thank you again for everyoneís suggestions.

Iím case anyone else comes up against the same problem this is what I did.

White vinegar and WD40 left to soak the nut for 5/6 hours to break down the salt. A large wrench then shifted the nut. Soak the shaft in WD40 over a few days then used a puller to break the seal between the wheel and the shaft. Popped straight off in a matter of minutes!

I was really surprised how easy the wheel popped off after 15 years. It has never been removed and was some serious salt corrosion!
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