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Tech Tip #101: Hurth Gear Shift Position: A Warning

Help keep from being stuck at sea by following this simple guide

In previous Tech Tips, we have written about the care and maintenance of ZF/Hurth transmissions. These Dr Diesel Tips have focused on the correct lube oil to use, our innovative stainless steel oil coolers, damper plates etc. See, for example:

We have also written about ZF marine gears in our more informal Tech Tip Series. See, for example,

But this Tech Tip is different. It offers a note of caution.


When sailing or when being towed never leave your Hurth mechanical transmission in the “Forward” position. This puts an unacceptable strain on your Hurth marine transmission. Transmission damage will result. To avoid this you can lock the propeller by putting the gear shift lever in the “Reverse” position or leave it in the “Neutral” position and it will free wheel.