Going gung-ho on the yaught

I feel good being rather more gung-ho about boating. Replacing an engine using the main mast and main sheet block, and, today, jumping into the marina water to remove a prop shaft...well, lets say that not everyone does things this way. John and I (well, mostly John) did it this way. It's good.

The cool part about it all is feeling less trepidation about things. Most boaters are vaguely uncomfortable with the true innards of their boats: the through-hulls, the packing glands, the ball valves, the bilges. The thinking is that if you ignore it, and nothing goes wrong, then you're fine. If someone tells you something is wrong on haul-out then you just pay them to fix it.

It's a little different for a restoration. I know what a packing gland is because I've removed one. I know exactly how much water will come into the boat if you take it off, because I've seen it. I know what a cutlass bearing is because it's a pain in the ass to pull a prop shaft through one. I know how zinc is mounted to a prop shaft because I've been underwater holding my breath to disassemble one. I know how sharp a prop is because I've had to manhandle one to get the prop shaft out.

And now I have to figure out a way to replace a cutlass bearing underwater. Based on info from the internet, I don't think it can be done. But it doesn't mean I'm not gonna try. I don't see why those instructions can't be executed underwater - with the exception of the dremel tool, which can easily be substituted.

I just need one of those hull cleaner's machines that forces water down to the diver. Or maybe I can build one myself. How hard could it be? Just need a regulator and an air pump.

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