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 Removing Shafts

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T O P I C    R E V I E W
WALSHIE Posted - May 10 2011 : 05:30:25
I'm putting this in the SOC instead of general engines forum because it pertains to my particular model.

I'm faced with having to remove a shaft or two (to replace cutlass bearing). After removing the prop, the big challenge is removing the transmission coupler. I've read you have to use a slide-hammer like tool. However, in my 330 sport bridge, there is access from the salon to the rear of the engines/transmissions. I'm thinking I can disconnect the couplers and simply pull the shaft through the salon side, take it to the bench and remove the transmission coupler.

Has anyone tried this? If it's true, it will make the job much easier than sitting on the ground with a slide hammer.

I'm not sure how many other v-drive owners have this option so I figured I would ask.
24   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
WALSHIE Posted - May 23 2011 : 14:15:53
Just to wrap this up...
I ordered the new bearing last Monday morning from Boatfix. It showed up 5pm Friday (phew!). I put it in the freezer right away. Saturday at 7am, I pulled her out, put in ziplock with ice (I felt like I had a kidney transplant) and headed to do surgery. She pressed right in. By 7:30, I was adding the shaft zinc and painting the running gear, put plug in, etc. Launched at 9:30 am Saturday!

All's well that ends well!
WALSHIE Posted - May 16 2011 : 09:07:41
I added pics and started a new thread over in Engines forum:
WALSHIE Posted - May 15 2011 : 21:00:53
Thanks Jonathan - it wasn't the money as much as the time. However, there's noting like the satisfaction of doing it yourself!
Also, I found the set screws on both shafts were loose. They did have the wire to keep them in but I will be re-installing with loctite.
I don't mind worrying about MY work but in reality, we should worry more about OTHERS work.

As a post-mordem, myself and the crew at CYC agree the reason for my trouble was...barnacles! Due to the warm weather last summer and the remarkable low usage, I had an exceptional amount of the little buggers on my running gear. They most likely cut water flow causing the rubber of the cutlass bearings to heat up and break the bond with the brass sleeve.

Robyns Nest Posted - May 15 2011 : 19:36:09
Glad you came to you senses Chris and did it the right way.

Freeze the bearing and keep it in a cooler with ice packs. Freezing it shrinks it and makes it easier to install.

Have fun, you are saving yourself a boatload of money.
WALSHIE Posted - May 15 2011 : 18:51:44
Thanks Mike, but too late. I built my own tool and pressed out the cutlass bearing this morning...when soccer was cancelled, I took it as a sign from above.
I will be pressing in the new cutlass bearing as soon as BoatFix sends it....minutes after I order.

Pics to follow.

HOGAN Posted - May 15 2011 : 08:42:06
walterv Posted - May 14 2011 : 15:02:20
My boat has straight through shafts, when I changed my "dripless" seal it only took a little whack(on 4 sides) with a mini sledge hammer. The coupler easily separated from the shaft. Once separated, The shaft easily moved. Thinking back though, because my shafts are so long (straight through), I am not sure the way the boat was blocked I could have pulled them completely out.

I think you should change the seals, and as mentioned get a carrier and spare seal for each shaft. Not sure if you ever did this but I can tell you it is very easy to do. My seals had a very small leak after 6 seasons, others that had my boat experienced the same. The cost of the seals IMHO, is cheap insurance. I hate to see you need a short hall in the middle of the season.

Could be wrong, but if the cutlass bearings need replacing you could have uneven wear on the seals. Once the bearings are replaced and the shafts are aligned you may have a leak. Not sure, but just giving you a heads up.

Best of luck

WALSHIE Posted - May 14 2011 : 11:45:40
Mechanic no-show. Removed prop and set screws...looking for a place with the tool that I can hire to come here and use or rent. Mike, HOGAN, who was the mechanic on your side that had the tool? I tried Zoller, Westerly, luck.

Anyone know where I can rent via mail? I really don't want to mess with the dripless seal, and I will have to remove the rudder. That's the main reason I am not taking my shafts out.
KiDa Posted - May 13 2011 : 09:43:21
Originally posted by WALSHIE

Meeting mechanic at 7am tomorrow morning to discuss options.

Thanks everyone fro the responses.

fro the responses!?!

First you ask for help with your boat now you want help with your hair? DAMMIT MAN; are you never satisfied!

Just kidding. Couldn't resist!
WALSHIE Posted - May 13 2011 : 08:50:43
Meeting mechanic at 7am tomorrow morning to discuss options.

Thanks everyone fro the responses.
Gregory S Posted - May 12 2011 : 22:27:35
Helped a friend remove a bent shaft last year. We could not get the coupler off the shaft even with a slide hammer. Hope you hav better luck. we ended up cutting the shaft. Can you remove the strut?
boatbum Posted - May 10 2011 : 15:08:16
Dripless. PITA. We had our shafts pulled to have new seals put in. Long story short the shafts were bent by a bad lay up. The port side dripless is driping like a regular packing seal now and we are at Warderick Wells in the Exumas. If you think I am going to risk swapping out the seal here, you are more than crazy.
The point is that shaft came in and out of the boat three effin times before they got it right and even though the seal protection was used that seal must have been damaged.

So if you are using dripless, make sure new seals go in. And make sure at least one spare is on each shaft. Two would be better. We saw this coming and that shaft has two on it.

Also, clean the shafts if you think you can pull them out that way. Odds are if they are not completely burr, barnacle and other crud free they could jam up in the gear box and wow won't that be fun? There may be much more clearance than that but check into this aspect.

Can I watch and take sound included videos so the language comes across?

mintregila Posted - May 10 2011 : 13:40:18
IMHO you are opening a can of worms here.

I would not want to screw around with the dripless seal. If you do go this route, make sure you place a spare seal on the shaft in case the one in place fails while under way. I've read that in some cases a spare can be slid into place without having to haul the boat.

Once you break the coupling, it will become apparent if you are at all out of alignment. Not a bad thing to correct but something you should be aware of.

If at all possible, I would try to get it done from the outside.
KiDa Posted - May 10 2011 : 13:19:28
AH-SO. I have the same style transmission. First thing I have to ask is how long is the shaft and what is the clearance both length and height given the angle of shaft entry to the transmission. Don't forget to include the length of the transmission itself in the calculation.

Either way you are going to be smacking on the shaft to move it. I have never seen it done the way you describe. What you are describing to me seems like a recipe for disaster. You are running "X" feet of heavy stainless steel through a very expensive transmission and running the risk of destroying the bearings or other components should the weight of the shaft go off center once it clears shaft alley. Your alignment seems more prone to being knocked way off going the way you describe as opposed to something less drastic removing the shaft the conventional way.

Finally, you have to get the shaft back in. Do they make a tool to pull it through the new cutless bearing? I was taught any time a shaft is removed, the shaft seals should be replaced. The seals themselves (vice the entire housings) are not that expensive.

Personally I would not risk it. The potential for damage seems too great.

I'm wondering if you cannot rent a bearing puller, would you be better off financially ordering one of those cutless bearing pullers and doing it yourself. The sunk costs are going to be a couple of bearings either way. Beyond that, you are out labor for pulling 2 shafts, cutting out the old bearing, new DSS seals, 2 shaft installs, 2 engine alignments, etc.....

I'll save my snide arse comment about how "violating the dripless shaft seal" can often lead to unwanted pregnancy for another post.

WALSHIE Posted - May 10 2011 : 12:32:41
I have been looking for the right picture but cannot find one with the shaft installed. Here is a v-drive transmission setup similar to what I have. The shaft comes from the left (stern), THROUGH the transmission and the coupler is on the right or toward the bow of the boat. What the pic does not show is the coupler on on the shaft, bolted to the shiny coupler shown here.

So, without a prop, I think I can un-bolt the couplers from eachother (one on tranny, one on shaft) and remove the shaft with the coupler in place. My only point of concern is not violating with the dripless shaft seal.

In the end, I'm not sure I will do this, If the mechanic can get to it soon, I would rather let him take care of it. I want to be in the water before Memorial Day.
KiDa Posted - May 10 2011 : 12:01:20
Originally posted by WALSHIE

Getting back to my original question...has anyone tried to remove the shaft by leaving it attached to the transmission coupler and pulling it into the boat?

Sorry. I was part of the hijack

Your plan makes no logical sense to me. If the shaft is in alignment with the transmission and is coupled to the transmission via a coupler, then the shaft would have to be flexible or it's mounting points and through hulls moveable to get it out of the way of the transmission for removal.

Add to that once it comes out, are you not dealing with stuffing box issues and or dripless shaft seal replacement issues?

Maybe you have a rental place near you where you can rent one of the removal units as Robyns Nest posted.
WALSHIE Posted - May 10 2011 : 10:56:41
Getting back to my original question...has anyone tried to remove the shaft by leaving it attached to the transmission coupler and pulling it into the boat?
Robyns Nest Posted - May 10 2011 : 09:17:48
You can use the strut pro underwater. I good diver can make it happen.
KiDa Posted - May 10 2011 : 08:59:44
Originally posted by Robyns Nest

The more expensive tool that slip the bearing out are hydraulic and take them out very easily and quickly.

The Strut Pro is the poor mans version of the tool.

I think you can rent them too.

The "nines" would be one that allowed the entire procedure to take place under water.
Robyns Nest Posted - May 10 2011 : 08:41:12
The more expensive tool that slip the bearing out are hydraulic and take them out very easily and quickly.

The Strut Pro is the poor mans version of the tool.

I think you can rent them too.

KiDa Posted - May 10 2011 : 08:02:45
Originally posted by Robyns Nest

You don't always have to remove the shaft.

If you have access to the top of the strut you can remove the strut and do it that way,
or with a toll like this.

I always wondered how they did that without removing the shafts.

That thing would be worth it's weight in gold for any mech, DIY or Pro. IMO it would also be a great investment for a working yacht club.
Robyns Nest Posted - May 10 2011 : 07:05:54
You don't always have to remove the shaft.

If you have access to the top of the strut you can remove the strut and do it that way,
or with a toll like this.

HOGAN Posted - May 10 2011 : 06:42:53
When I had my cutlass bearings replaced last year, they did it without removing the shaft.
wciparchia Posted - May 10 2011 : 06:19:23
I have a 37C. I simply disconnect the cupplers get some longer bolts with full threads, place a nut (Large as possible) inside on the shaft, re-connect the longer bolts and as you tighten the bolts it pushes the cuppler right off.

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