Today we pulled the shaft from our boat, F/V Potential. Pulling the shaft is a job I’ve put off for five years. Here are the steps to the job: First you take off the rudder shoe. Next remove the rudder, propeller, engine coupling and then the bearings. After that’s all done you can pull the shaft out.
The cutlass bearing is at the stern of the boat. It keeps the boat’s shaft spinning smoothly and the propeller turning. Mine was way over due for a replacement and it couldn’t be put off longer. They are very hard to pull out from the bearing housing. Most people end up cutting them out. Here is a picture of the new one and the old one.
I found out today that every bearing size has a different woman's name. Our cutlass bearing was Glenda (1¾”) and the rudder bearing was Eva (1½”). Both are lovely and will hopefully slide right into place.
The shaft repairs will take a couple of days at the Mechanic’s shop. He’ll weld it and then very precisely machine the extra metal off to the perfect diameter. It is a fair bit of work to pull the shaft and you always feel relieved when your boat is back in one piece. Boats float better that way.