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rgrstff 09-17-2013 03:58 PM

New with a 1983 34 mainship III bad pillow block
Hi everyone
This is great I've already received help from (Jleonard), but thought that my questions here might help other people more. So everyone is up to date on my problem, I have a bad pillow block bearing and would like to change it in the water. My questions are, do I have to remove the rudder, and if so How? I can disconnect the top I just don,t know about the bottom. Is there enough room to clear the rudder with the Bronze shaft if I remove just the prop? Can I reinstall the pillow block on the trans side of the bulkhead or does it half to be on the prop side?
thanks for any replies

jleonard 09-18-2013 06:50 AM

The 1978 boats (the year mine was) had the pillow block on the tranny side of the bulkhead, so YES you can re-install yours there. It was moved to the backside of the bulkhead for won't be able to access it if you have a generator. You "may" have to drill new mounting holes as the shaft angle may not allow you to line up the oem mounting holes. If you do drill new holes you'll probably want to rotate the bearing mount 10 - 45 degrees so you can get good material around the holes.

The prop shaft will fit thru the hole in the rudder if you remove the prop first. You'll have to disconnect the rudder arm on top and manually move the rudder to 90 degrees, then the shaft will slide thru. (Some people install the rudder zinc over the hole so you may have to remove the zinc if this is the case on your boat)

The really hard part of this job may be getting the shaft to slide thru the old bearing. Clearance from bearing to shaft is very close, you will want to use sandpaper or similar to clean the shaft very good of corrosion and nicks before to even start. OR you may want to grind the bearing off that might be easier. (Mainshippers have done it both ways)

I have done this job 2 times myself on my ex 1978 so any more questions ask away.

Northern Spy 09-18-2013 09:56 AM

You could see if there is a split bearing in your size that would work. Expensive, but quick. Shouldn't be a lot of load on the bearing, so it work fine.

Which leads to the question; how did it fail?

jleonard 09-18-2013 03:26 PM

They usually disintigrate or freeze up because it is near impossible to grease them and they are in an extremely poor environment. With a length of hydraulic hose and a few fittings the grease fitting can be mounted remotely to a convenient location so it can be greased annually, then it should last forever as there is not too much load on it (unless shaft alignment is out).
Or you can add a spring loaded "grease cup", fill the cup and forget about it.

rgrstff 09-18-2013 04:51 PM

Thanks for the info guys.
I brought the boat about 6 months ago. The surveyor found a bad cutless bearing. I had the marina where it was change it. I did not know at the time that they didn't realign the shaft. Two months later it blew a trans oil line and overheated the trans and caught fire. When I pulled the trans I found the rusted shafts on the rear motor mounts. The trans shop said it was out of align pretty bad because the tail end was worn bad. So now I wonder if they even changed the cutless or the had the prop serviced. I guess I will cut and change the pillow block and see if the vibration is gone. Thanks again

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