Cutless bearing on a 382.

Discussion in 'Main Morgan 38 Sailboat Forum' started by Nth, Feb 2, 2020.

  1. Nth

    Nth New Member

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    This is my first time replacing a cutless and want to verify what is what and how the bearing is retained. There's a 1.5" long white tube and out of that sticks an 1" long copper tube. The copper tube is the bear right? Also is there anything retaining it? I've read about bolts or set screws but can't find any on my 382. Thanks.
     

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  2. jimcleary

    jimcleary James M. Cleary

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    The bronze race you see sticking out of the "shaft log", the fiberglass tube, is the cutlass bearing. the bearing is 5" long by 1 1/4" inside diameter by 2" outside diameter. The bearing on my 1978 382, hull # 53, did not have any set screws holding in in the shaft log. What held it in was knurling, cross hatch machining, on the outside of the bearing. That machining raised the surface of the bronze making for a tight fit. Any prop shop will have the ability to do the knurling. When putting the new bearing back into place, just smear the knurling with a caulking and push in in place. Do not use 5200 to coat the bearing.

    To remove the old bearing, as long as you can see the bronze sticking out, just grab it with a large channellock pliers and start rotating. It should break free and start moving out. Am I right in assuming that you have dropped the rudder or moved the engine forward to remove the shaft?

    Jim
     
  3. BJoslin

    BJoslin New Member

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    Yes the smaller copper tube(I believe it’s brass or bronze) is the bearing. The tube that it is inserted in is your shaft tube. I think they call it shaft log. It is fiberglass. From what I have researched it seams that every boat is a little different in how far the shaft tube sticks out. Or maybe it’s just that many have been modified by owners. Mine does not extend out as far. As far as what secures the cutlass bearing, it seams pretty standard that you should have a set screw on both sides. Mine was pretty obvious in the location and when I replaced it I purposely left it noticeable when I faired over it after replacing.
     

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  4. Nth

    Nth New Member

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    So set screws are hit or miss. I didn't see any obvious spots but I'll sand the paint off the shaft log (thanks for the name) to check.

    :( The yard I'm at is adamant I can't dig a hole to drop the rudder. So far I've gotten everything off; prop, stuffing box, the big rubber hose thing and shaft coupling without removing the rudder or moving the engine. If I get the cutless out I think I can wiggle out the shaft. Sliding the motor forward is plan 'b'.

    While we're on the subject of moving the motor, have either of you replaced your motor mounts? I'm not sure how long they last.

    Thanks for the info.
     
  5. BJoslin

    BJoslin New Member

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    I have not replaced motor mounts. Yet... that’s on the short list of projects. How high is your boat blocked up? I got lucky and was blocked up just high enough to drop the rudder with no digging. Here are a couple pics showing measurements from the ground to the bottom of the keel and bottom or rudder/skeg.
     

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  6. jimcleary

    jimcleary James M. Cleary

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    The 5" long cutlass bearing cannot be removed without either the rudder being removed or the engine being moved forward enough to pull the aft end of the shaft into the boat. If the boatyard won't help you, it's time to find a new boatyard.

    Regarding your motor mounts, there are many styles of mounts found on the Morgans. It depends alot on which engine you have, the Perkins or the Yanmar. The Yanmar mounts are a round style that can be replaced by lifting the engine up in its space. The forward mount on the stud side is highly prone to early failure because of diesel fuel dripping on it when changing the on engine fuel filter element.

    Jim
     
  7. Nth

    Nth New Member

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    She has the fresh water cooled Yanmar. Changing yards isn't an option. How do you recommend moving the motor forward? I'm guessing remove the screws from the mounts to the engine bed and a come along or blocks to the mast with a couple 2x4's to spread the load? Could put some aluminium flat stock under each motor mount to help it slide.
     
  8. jimcleary

    jimcleary James M. Cleary

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    To slide the engine forward the distance enough to clear the shaft clear of the propeller bight to remove the bearing, I would build extensions, with 2x4's, on the engine bed rails. Then remove fuel lines and cables that would prohibit the move. Remove the lag bolts (8) that hold the motor mounts down. Put a strong webbing strap around the mast near the cabin table. Then use a come-a-long to slowly pull the engine forward. Remember it only has to travel enough to allow the 5" bearing to be wiggled free from the prop bight. You will have to loosen the shaft gland but not the shaft coupling.

    Let me know if this make sense to you as I wrote it.

    Jim
     
  9. jimcleary

    jimcleary James M. Cleary

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    You can also just lift the forward end of the engine with a chain fall which will allow you to move it forward without having to extend the engine bed rails. To do that you would need to rig a support at the main hatch to bear the weight. By the way, the Yanmar weights 630lb. Years ago I rigged up two 2" galvanized pipes from the main hatch to the hatch over the main cabin table. That allowed me to move the engine into the main cabin with two 1/2ton chain falls. I was able to degrease, clean and paint the engine and clean and paint the engine compartment. I photographed the process and would gladly send you those photos if it would help you.

    Jim
     
  10. struell

    struell Stephen Ruell

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    Maybe you could get the boatyard to lift your boat up with a hydraulic trailer or a travel lift? That's what they do at our yard in Maine, makes dropping the rudder pretty easy then. Course you have to pay for that service.

    Regarding engine mounts don't ignore those. I strongly recommend that you inspect and/or replace yours based on our experience. We had the Yanmar 3QM30 when we bought our 1978 M382 and vibration was bad but we thought it was the nature of the early diesel. Then we had recurring trouble because the shaft wouldn't stay in place- the prop shaft wore out the inside of the coupling so it was loose. After a lot of attempts to figure it out we replaced the engine. Turned out that three of the four motor mounts were broken off. Probably if I was smarter I would have thought of that before replacing the engine.

    The vertical threaded stud sheared off just under the engine foot where you could not see it. The weight of the engine and the other hose and shaft holds it in place so you have to look hard with a pry bar to find out if it is intact. Yanmar apparently recommends a replacement interval of only a few years, that probably depends upon the engine hours, but certainly they are not going to say you should get 40 years out of them.
    Steve
     
  11. Nth

    Nth New Member

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    Thanks for all the information. I've already got the shaft out of the coupler so I won't need as much movement from the engine. I tried twisting the bearing free with large channel locks and it laughed at me. Tomorrow I'll try with a large pipe wrench and hope it moves. Once it's free I'll be able to see how much I need to move the engine. I'm hoping to do this without pulling the shaft.

    The yard I'm at only has a traveling lift and they don't allow anyone on the boats when on the lift. I'll replace the mounts just for peace of mind. I do have some excess vibrations which is why I asked. :)
     
  12. Tony Aragon

    Tony Aragon New Member

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    This is a photo on my boat (384)
     

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  13. Nth

    Nth New Member

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    The set screws are in the skeg? I thought they'd be in the shaft log. How do you find them if they've been faired and painted over?
     
  14. Travis

    Travis Member

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    A few comments - our cutless bearing was bonded in with 3M 5200 so we cut it in half with a sawzall, then used a vice grips to collapse the two halves toward each other. A pull/peel load on the bond line takes a lot less force than a sheer load using the contact area of a pipe wrench, if that makes any sense...
    Also, you might have an easier time getting the pieces past the rudder. Doesn’t help you get the new one in though...

    We ran in to the same issue with the travelift restrictions. They ended up just adding more blocks under the keel and using taller boat stands....I agree with Jim - if the boat yard won’t let you dig a hole, and can’t offer another way to drop a rudder, what purpose do they serve? Certainly not the repair of sailboats.

    Mine are on the shaft log where it protrudes from the skeg. I’ve never seen them like Tony has them...kinda neat. Either way should work just fine.

    At any rate, if they were faired and painted over, you'd still be able to tell where they are after a year from the little microcracks that appear around the set screw from repeated thermal expansion and contraction. A little neodymium magnet will find them too, if you really can’t tell where they are.
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2020
  15. jnoble

    jnoble John Noble

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    I replaced the cutless bearing twice on my M-384 with Perkins and did not have to drop the rudder or move the engine. Can you remove the transmission? Would be a lot easier than moving the engine. I have two 1/4 in. by 1/2 in. bolts as set screws, threaded through the stern tube and into the brass of the bearing. I drilled and trapped the bearing for installation.
     
  16. Nth

    Nth New Member

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    Update, I've unscrewed the rear mounts and blocked up the back of the engine about 4 inches allowing the prop shaft to slide under the transmission enough that I believe I can swap the bearing if I can get it free. On my Yanmar the rear engine mounts are on the saildrive so removing the transmission would require supporting the rear of the engine somehow. I'm going back tomorrow with a 24" pipe wrench, long helper bar and a prayer. I like the idea of 1/4" bolts tapped into the bearing to retain it. I'll hopefully be doing that later this week.
     
  17. jimcleary

    jimcleary James M. Cleary

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    If you grind away a bit of the paint and fairing on both sides of the skeg at the shaft log, you may find evidence of set screws. If you don't find that, you may have a bearing that was set with 5200. That would not be a good thing. Let us know what you find.

    Jim
     
  18. Nth

    Nth New Member

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    The pipe wrench couldn't get a good bite on the bearing to twist it out. It'd just shave off copper bits. I ended up raising the back of the motor up more and taking the shaft out. Once out a sawzall and pliers made quick work of the bearing.

    For anyone wondering raising the saildrive 3" got enough space to get the prop and bearing (if it wasn't so stubborn) out and ~5" to get the shaft out. I took the rear mounts lags all the way out and unscrewed the forward mounts lags about 3" to give the motor room to tip. A large claw hammer under the starboard engine mount and some blocks of wood was all I needed to raise it up.

    When I put the new bearing in I'd like to set it deeper so I can put a standard zinc on the shaft. I was thinking of cutting back the shaft log too. Not sure how much yet. Does anyone see a problem with this idea?

    Cheers!
     

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  19. terry_thatcher

    terry_thatcher Terence Thatcher

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    It is hard for me to interpret your pictures. But if I understand, your shaft log differs from mine. Mine juts out from the stern post some. Looks as if yours is flush. My set screws are on the protruding shaft log.
     
  20. jimcleary

    jimcleary James M. Cleary

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    Looking at your photo of the removed bearing, I see the outer race was knurled. Curious to know if there were any set screws. Maybe your difficulties in removing the bearing were because of the use of 5200. Now you need to carefully inspect the inside of the shaft log to detect any damage from the sawing operation. Any breach of the fiberglass tube will allow water to enter the skeg and possibly into the bilge.

    The shaft log on our boat is flush with the skeg. The cutlass bearing protrudes 3/8" out of the log so that the bearing can be grabbed and removed with a wrench.

    Another way to get more space between the prop and the bearing is to add a "Drivesaver" between the halves of the shaft coupling. That will add 1" to the length of the shaft, moving it aft. You might also be aware of the distance between the outboard end of the shaft and the rudder. To remove the prop without removing the shaft, you need at least the thickness of the prop hub between the shaft and the rudder. Having a Drivesaver will give you that additional 1" of play in the measurement.

    Jim
     
  21. Nth

    Nth New Member

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    Here's a better picture of the log.
    IMG_20200205_141241491m.jpg
    It sticks out ~1.75" and the bearing stuck out an additional 1". There were no set screws and besides a few scraps at the end of the tube it looks good.
    IMG_20200205_141157910m.jpg
    Current plan is to cut the tube down to 1" and drill a couple holes in it for set bolts as jnoble did.

    Here is what it looked like before. No room for zincs.
    IMG_20171103_145600211c.jpg
     
  22. jimcleary

    jimcleary James M. Cleary

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    There is no reason you can't cut the shaft log off flush with the skeg. Then leaving just enough of the bearing showing to be able to grab it with a wrench. If you have the bearings outside surface knurled at a machine shop or prop shop there will be no need for set screws. Remember any set screw you install will only be threaded into fiberglass which is not strong enough to hold threads. Your boat is about 40 years old and the cutlass bearings have been held in place properly all that time with just the knurling. Just don't use 5200.

    Look into adding a drivesaver to your coupling. In addition to giving you an additional 1" of space on the shaft, it also isolates the shaft from the engine electrically and acts as a failsafe for the transmission in the case of something wrapping around the prop and shaft and stopping the shaft abruptly. The Drivesaver bolts will shear before the tranny will be damaged.

    Jim
     
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2020
  23. jose santin

    jose santin Member

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    Nth,
    Drill the holes to secure the cutlass bearing, before you tap the thread, use a drill to mark the cutlass bearing. The remove the bearing and carefully drill two holes that do not go completely though the brass sleeve. Then tap the holes in the fiberglass and install the bearing and the set screws. The set screws will keep the bearing in place without having to tighten them to the point of breaking the fiberglass.
     

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