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Jason, Marine Mechanic
Category: Boat
Satisfied Customers: 16206
Experience:  Degree in Marine Technology. Gas and diesel marine mechanic.
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Shifting problems with DPS-A 1.95 Volvo Penta outdrive. After

Resolved Question:

Shifting problems with DPS-A 1.95 Volvo Penta outdrive. After 0nly 100 hrs of operation the outdrive would not go into forward gear at the normal low rpm (700+/-) Had to push throddle forward and then it would "clunk" into gear at the higher rpm. Volvo Penta rep checked linkage which was OK. Then he replace the "cone" (sliding Sleeve part #(NNN) NNN-NNNN which fixed the problem. After another 300 hrs of operation, same problem has developed again. Will not go into foward gear unless rpm is well above 700 rpm. Outdrive gear oil has been changed every 100 or less hrs and using the recommended 75/90 synthetic gear oil. Gear oil has always been clean and no metal filings. Any sugestions on how to fix for this re-occuring problem?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Boat
Expert:  Jason replied 6 years ago.

My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will be helping you today. Most questions will involve troubleshooting, and usually take many posts back and forth.


How black and stinky and thin is the gear oil when you do drain it?


What we've found working with various marinas, and dealing with various volvo tech reps is that on the DP drives behind diesels, especially behind bigger boats, it really heat ups the gear oil, thins it out, and cause all sorts of shifting problems.

What happens is the oil gets burnt and gets to thin, and the clutch starts to slip when you shift it, and after a while it wears the clutch just enough that it either will not shift at low rpms, or slips at low rpms.


Some things that will help;


Think about changing the service interval on the gear lube to every 50 hours instead of every 100, that will help tremendously. Especially if you operate the boat on long hauls where you steam out for a couple of hours at a time on plane.


Drive showers do help, as it helps keep the oil cool. Changing the lube over to Mercury Marines High Performance gear lube really helps as well, as its quite a bit better than the Mobil 1 synthetic. I have a friend of mine that is a retired Volvo Diesel Master Tech, and he worked for years up in Ketchikan AK where the seawater is ice cold all year round. And he has seen this same thing since the 290DP drives behind diesels, and especially on bigger boats. If the boat is either semi-planing, or full planing. When the back of the boat comes up, the top of the sterndrive is out of the water, and it really does not cool all that well. So if you do run for extended periods at higher speed. Drop the boat back down for 5 to 10 minutes and let the oil cool a bit before pushing the throttles forward. That and everything else above will help keep you from having to do it a 3rd time over.


Post back with questions

Good luck!



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Customer: replied 6 years ago.
The D3-190A-C engine with the DPS-A1.95 outdrive is on a light weight (2000#) 21 ft boat. I am in Hawaii where water temp is 76 to 80 degrees. The upper portion of the outdrive is out of the water when we are trolling, 7 - 10 knots. The gear oil is alway clear and clean when it it changed. We have changed it about ever 50 to 100 hrs. Reverse always works. We are using 75/90W valvoline that meets Volvo specs. Would recommend a heavier (staight 90W) or a lighter weight (straight 75W) gear oil?
Expert:  Jason replied 6 years ago.
Heavier gear oil. Mercury makes 2 gear oils. 1 is called premium, the other is called high performance. The Mercury high performance is the best gear oil on the market, and its a 90W lube. Thats the good stuff, and what you want to run.
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