Cutless bearing

“What” I hear you ask, “is a cutless bearing?”
Well it’s nothing to do with pirates of the Caribbean, that’s for sure.

The propeller¬†shaft passes through the hull somewhere between the engine and the propeller – the engine being INSIDE the boat and the propeller being OUTSIDE. The propeller shaft spins round and would flap about in the water if it wasn’t held in place. Where it passes through the hull there is a plastic bearing which is kept lubricated by seawater. This plastic tube (the cutless bearing) has a number of grooves in it (ours are full of mud) which allow water to enter the shaft and this helps to keep the bearing cool as well as providing a degree of lubrication.

While we have the boat out of the water we have an ideal opportunity to replace said bearing with a new one. So JOB 1 was to remove the propellor shaft which was done last weekend. This was surprisingly easy although time consuming and required some small amount of hitting hard with a hammer and levering things with a wrench followed by a screwdriver.



Checking out YouTube suggests that removing the cutless bearing is EASY.

Not so. I have concluded after much grinding and prodding that the bearing is bonded into the hull. It should not be as it should be removable. There should be a separate ‘stern tube’ made of metal into which the bearing fits. That way whenever the bearing is changed (every ten years or so) the propeller shaft always aligns correctly.

In Anne Marie’s case that bearing is bonded into the hull and I run the risk that if I changed the bearing it would not go back into the correct location and alignment causing excess wear, vibration and leakage.

So I have decided at the moment to leave well alone and put the shaft back without changing the bearing. This might be a mistake but then that’s how we learn and improve our knowledge.

It just keeps on going

Anchor tube and extra shelving in front cabin. 

Front locker and decks in place although locker lid is a work in progress. 

The anchor windlass mounting block is in place waiting to be fixed. The hole in it is the top of the anchor tube.

Fore hatch installed and useable. 

More progress

I was wrong. There is plenty more that can come out!

The light is because the cockpit locker is open. 

Cockpit floor ready for decking

From this:

and this:

to this:

Getting there.


Is there going to be any of Anne Marie’s interior left?  Now the galley has gone to make way for a larger dining table and new quarter berth. 

Also now the engine is inside I am measuring for new engine mountings as of course the old ones don’t fit!  Unfortunately I am playing this by ear as I have no idea what I am doing! As usual. 

A trip to Portland Bill

Ahaar!  400 mile round trip to collect sails from Moatt Sails. Followed by a visit to MCP Marine of Emsworth to collect TekDek samples. 

Just one day but a combined cost of almost £10,000!

Internal carpentry back on

The front cabin is being reshape (again) to provide a five foot double bed, a dressing table, hanging space, shelves, cupboards and a sail locker. All in a 10ft by 9ft area.