lower unit woes Tohatsu 25 hp

Discussion in 'Bubba's Outboards' started by Bill in SC, Oct 26, 2008.

  1. Bill in SC

    Bill in SC New Member

    Messages:
    4,451
    State:
    South Caro
    Well, I'm an official idiot! :sad2: I posted a week or two ago about my 25 Tohatsu sticking in forward gear occasionally. Well, it would always eventually come loose, and I would proceed. Catoon TOLD me to check the lower unit gear oil. I have been a boat person for MANY years, and I always change the lower unit oil each year. When I bought this '94 engine last February, the FIRST thing I did was change the lower unit oil. Well, today I was on the river, DOWNSTREAM from the landing about a mile, and I heard a grinding, and then it locked up. Well, I called a rescue party, and sat for about 15 minutes. Then I cranked the engine, and engaged the lever to forward. Miraculously it was working again. I EASED it back up the river, and got back to the landing. I felt it act like it was going to seize again one time during the trip back up river. Anyhow, when I got it out of the river, I took the plugs out of the lower unit, and NO oil ran out, so obviously THAT is my problem. Dammitall, what an idiot I am! Since the unit is still working, I am hoping that I can refill the oil, and run it on the muff. Then drain that oil out as there are bound to be some filings in there. Hopefully, with a little luck, I can then refill the unit and go on without any more problems for a while. I'm SURE there must be SOME damage, but hopefully I can get a little more time out of it before I have to rebuild it. I'm sure there must be a spoonful of oil in it because it did not seize up completely. BTW: Do you HAVE to run special marine gear oil in it, or will any high pressure 90 weight work? Obviously, Tohatsu makes a very TOUGH engine, because I certainly have abused this one, certainly NOT intentionally, but just by being slack. I sure feel bad as it is SO simple to remove two plugs and add gear oil. I just wanted to let you folks know how stupid I was on this deal, so maybe someone else will benefit from my stupidity. I guess the seal in there needs replacing, as it would not have been dry in the first place. I never noticed it leaking any, and I spend lots of time around that area of the engine when loading and unloading the boat.
    Bill in SC
     
  2. Bubbakat

    Bubbakat New Member

    Messages:
    4,532
    State:
    McMinnvill
    It was most likely driving the oil out while it was engaged. You may be able to get another mile or two out of it. I would go ahead and do like you said you were gonna do but I would get some full synthetic oil for the lower unit and yes it has to be marine oil because regular 90 weight won't mix with water like marine oil will
     

  3. drpepper

    drpepper New Member

    Messages:
    6,133
    State:
    Indiana
    <BTW: Do you HAVE to run special marine gear oil in it, or will any high pressure 90 weight work?>

    Good question, I always wondered about that myself...

    I also noticed that there is a new/used Tohatsu parts dealer add at the bottom of this page:wink: (there WAS anyway)

    Lower units don't look like much fun to rebuild to me. There's a place called Indy boat salvage here, let me know if you want me to check with them for used parts or a complete unit.
     
  4. BigBird

    BigBird New Member

    Messages:
    2,104
    State:
    Charlotte, NC
    BubbaKat glad to see you back!
    Bill I didnt think of the lower end oil either.
    BK-Cant the lower end oil leak out due to impacts and dislodge seels forward of the prop shaft? I am not a mechanic but Bill and Peg do alot of rock and root dodging down there on the PD.
    Good luck Bill.
     
  5. Bill in SC

    Bill in SC New Member

    Messages:
    4,451
    State:
    South Caro
    <BK-Cant the lower end oil leak out due to impacts and dislodge seels forward of the prop shaft? I am not a mechanic but Bill and Peg do alot of rock and root dodging down there on the PD.>

    You GOT THAT RIGHT Big Bird! You comin' to the tourney this weekend?

    Willard, another person suggested this:

    <
    You might put some light weight oil in it and flush it ,drain it then wash it out with desail are varsal then refill it with the reg. lube .>

    Doesn't that sound like sound advice, to get it cleaned out good?

    BTW: My brother is a hot shot racing Mercury mechanic in his spare time. (On Lake Wylie) He does his building for a lot of people in the winter when he is not on the water. Hopefully, he can rebuild my lower end this winter. I hate to think what the parts cost, but maybe I can find some good used stuff.

    Thanks for ALL the responses!

    Bill in SC
     
  6. Bubbakat

    Bubbakat New Member

    Messages:
    4,532
    State:
    McMinnvill
    With it already trying to seize up I would opt tp flush it out good and use full synthetic oil in it because you will need the extra polymere to take up the space where the teeth are ground down. And it will be a whole lot slicker then regular oils.
     
  7. Bill in SC

    Bill in SC New Member

    Messages:
    4,451
    State:
    South Caro
    Will attend to the synthetic ASAP! Thanks BK!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Bill in SC
     
  8. Sunbird

    Sunbird New Member

    Messages:
    781
    State:
    Sandy Run,
    Bill, So sorry! I "think" once you put synthetic in it you will have to always use synthetic. Can't go back to regular oil.

    My last two trips have been crazy ones as well.:eek:oooh:
    First, my boat filled with water from rain and bilge motor locked up, I didn't know. We had to beach the backend on an island and switch out the livewell motor for the bilge motor and pump out for over an hour. :confused2:

    Second, I had installed a plug, that I was told was sufficient, for my trolling motor for ease of use. It caught on fire and I had to use my fire extinguisher :sad2::sad2::sad2: Suprisingly the damage was nill, except for the plug. I think we are all learning, don't feel bad.
     
  9. Bubbakat

    Bubbakat New Member

    Messages:
    4,532
    State:
    McMinnvill
    That is a myth about having to use synthetic oil from now on. After he gets it rebuilt he can go back to regular 90 weight lower unit oil. You don't want to mix the two. But that is the only thing on an outboard I use synthetic oil on and thats my lower units.
     
  10. Bill in SC

    Bill in SC New Member

    Messages:
    4,451
    State:
    South Caro
    Well, I hunted locally at every place I could think of. NO synthetic marine oil to be had. Lucas had a regular gear oil that was advertised as applicable for marine service, but I ended up buying a regular tube of Valvoline marine gear oil. I put some regular 90 weight in it and cranked it up. It shifted smoothly and did NOT grind any in gear. I will drain that tomorrow, and maybe repeat that process. Then, I will put the Valvoline marine gear oil in it. If it gets me through the tournament this weekend, there is a guy locally that is a pretty good hand at outboards, and I will have him rebuild it. Heck, it may not give me any more problems for a while. If that's the case, I may just get him to put the seal in it. He said he was pretty sure the bearings had to be damaged though. We'll see. I have a good feeling about it. I plan to go to Pamplico Friday and scout the river, so I can check it that day before the tourney. Thanks for all the suggestions. When I do have it rebuilt, I will definitely go with synthetic.
    Bill in SC
     
  11. Duckpoor

    Duckpoor New Member

    Messages:
    184
    State:
    Illinois
    Bill,
    Just as a suggestion and some what of an assessment tool. Try Draining the unit into a Glass container. A peanut butter jar has been on my bench for lower unit maint for ever..
    Drain and then let stand for an hour or so ( over night is better) this can be very telling about what is or isn't going on inside the lower unit.
    Water will somewhat seperate, if there is any.

    Particulate matter will settle
    and
    the rest will sorta Stratify
    giving ya a much better look at the lubricant and condition issues you might have.

    It's just an Old Racing Habit for me and thought someone might could use it too.

    rg
     
  12. Bill in SC

    Bill in SC New Member

    Messages:
    4,451
    State:
    South Caro
    Good info, DP. OK here is where I stand now. We drained the oil, and I saw a few particles come out, but it looked good overall, other than being milky looking due to the seal being torn up. We decided to go ahead and replace the seal. Well we removed the prop, and there was heavy mono filament wrapped around the shaft and it looks like that's what ate the seal out. Here is where the dilemma continues. The motor saw ALL saltwater use before I got it. We could NOT get the housing loose to slide the assembly out. I BUSTED the outer housing that holds the shaft unit in, trying to beat it out. Then after chiseling (cringe) the outer housing out, the unit STILL would NOT budge. At this point I am realizing that I wish I had just flushed it out and continued on for at least this weekend's tourney. The lower unit housing itself is not damaged, and I guess I can soak it in some sort of solvent for a month or so, and maybe then get the guts out of it. We can also make some sort of puller in the meantime to aid us getting it out. I priced a whole NEW lower unit today, and I was shocked to see that it was $930.48! :crazy: Heck I see WHOLE used engines cheaper than that. Does anyone have any links to good salvage yards? My plan now is to see if I can find a used lower unit reasonably priced. If that fails, I can continue to try and free the guts from the present unit. In the meantime, I am looking for a good USED 40 or 50 hp tiller engine. I could run that on my skiff until I get my 18 foot bass boat, catfish conversion boat up and running. Either way, I NEED to get this 25 Tohatsu up and running as it is a fine electric start engine that I have never had a minutes trouble with. I'm open for all ideas, suggestions, etc.
    Bill in SC
     
  13. Pacman

    Pacman New Member

    Messages:
    141
    State:
    South Carolina
    My last trip out I had to get back to the landing at idle speed. Prop clutch gone. I didn't hit anything that I know of, just wore out I reckon. Got the new prop UPS yesterday.

    I'm going to check my lower unit lube tomorrow. Your trouble will likely trigger a lot of BOC members to get busy and do what we already know to do.

    With the distance between landings on the Pee Dee on our section of the river, I just always go upstream. The cell phone doesn't work lots of places and I don't like the idea of a cold unplanned overnight stay on the river.

    Hope you will get your motor fixed soon. I'm hoping the bite will pick up again before really cold weather hits.
     
  14. Bill in SC

    Bill in SC New Member

    Messages:
    4,451
    State:
    South Caro
    <With the distance between landings on the Pee Dee on our section of the river, I just always go upstream.>

    Up, down, or sideways, I go wherever I please, and it seems all my holes are DOWNSTREAM from most landings I go to. :smile2: I always keep a strong engine, and never worry. That being said, things CAN go wrong, but I still don't worry. There's always a landing downstream. I ALWAYS have adequate clothing, provisions, and methods to start a fire if I get stranded. My cell gets good reception on 95% of the river I fish. I have spent MANY nights on the river, and it would just be another adventure for me! :wink:
    BB in SC
     
  15. Bubbakat

    Bubbakat New Member

    Messages:
    4,532
    State:
    McMinnvill
    Bill that mono is a good reason to start pulling that prop about twice a year and checking for fishing line and then grease the prop shaft a little. I do have a place I do business out of fla and i'll look their addy up in the morning and get it to you.
     
  16. Bill in SC

    Bill in SC New Member

    Messages:
    4,451
    State:
    South Caro
    Thank you, sir!!
    Bill in SC
     
  17. Trevor1

    Trevor1 New Member

    Messages:
    546
    State:
    oklahoma
    Were you using any type of repair manual for this job?
     
  18. Bill in SC

    Bill in SC New Member

    Messages:
    4,451
    State:
    South Caro
    No. With or without a manual, it would not have changed the fact that the housing was corroded up like it was welded. I'm sure I could have soaked it in a solvent for a LONG time, and then, just maybe it would have come loose. Peglegreb has been into a lot of lower units, and a manual was not necessary as it is actually a very simple job ordinarily. He just did a Mercury, and ran into the same thing with a unit that had seen a lot of salt water use. I am a firm believer in manuals though, but in this case, unless I miss my guess, it would not have helped.
    Bill in SC
     
  19. Bubbakat

    Bubbakat New Member

    Messages:
    4,532
    State:
    McMinnvill
    Only a lot of luck helps when they have been run in salt water.