Replacing The Cutlass Bearing
This can be a very time consuming task and also frustrating. If you are lucky, your bearing sticks out of the tube a little bit and you can get a visegrip on it and turn it out. Remember that there are one or two set screws (sometimes hidden under paint or fiberglass) holding the cutlass in the shaft tube and they must be taken out before the bearing can be removed.
If, on the other hand, you have a reluctant bearing as I did, you must cut it out and wrestle with it. I have heard reports that some owners have been able to insert a small piece of pipe in the engine side of the shaft and force the bearing out by hammering on it; that didn't work for me, either. I also tried fashioning a tool using threaded rod, a washer that fit inside the tube, a collar of pipe outside the tube, and a washer on that end, and then tightening the nut on the threaded rod to force the bearing out; this, too, didn't work. I later found out that there was a slight lip inside the stern tube and the washer wouldn't fit in far enough to drive out the bearing.
Finally, I took the advice I'd been given and cut it out. To do this you need to make a couple of cuts with a hacksaw or sazall from the inside of the bearing, being careful to not ruin the shaft tube. This caused me a lot of trouble as I was perhaps too careful in cutting and refused to believe that I hadn't cut all the way through the old bearing. After a lot of pounding with a hammer and screw driver, during which time I managed to chip away at the bearing, I finally sawed some more until the old bearing parted and could be removed quite easily.
Replacing the bearing is now a fairly simple matter of slipping the new one in the shaft tube, using a punch to make dimples for the set screws, and putting the set screws back (sometimes the holes for the set screws need to be filled in with epoxy and then drilled and tapped for the set screws). It can be helpful to put the new cutlass bearing in your freezer over night so that it shrinks a bit before putting it in the tube.
If your propeller shaft is 7/8"(original), the dimension of the bearing should be 7/8" x 1 3/8" x 3 1/2" long