View Full Version : Going to replace shaft on OUtback... What all do I need?

07-23-2007, 09:23 PM
After a little research and a trip to the repair shop, I have determined the my continued vibration after the stump incidence, I have a Slight bend on the upper end of my shaft. I have an '04 Outback DDrive with 310 hp.
Can anyone tell me what Additional parts I will need to complete the task? I am going to go ahead and change the bearing/bushing in the strut while the shaft is out. I am assuming I will need new Rope packing. Pardon my lack of knowledge on the subject, but I have seen posts regarding dripless seals... I assume this replaces (is an upgrade to) the rope packing???

I have a co worker who is an old nautique guy who has replaced his shaft before and we are going to tackle... I was quoted approx $1000 by my repair guy...

Looks like I can get a shaft on www.skidim.com for about $325...

Any help and suggestions will be greatly appreciated... Kinda gettin broke after the prop and now this... (Oh, and a $100 rope that got eaten this weekend by the prop!UGGHH)

Thanks and ride safe..

Madison, MS

07-24-2007, 06:09 AM
Are you planning to hoist the engine out?

07-24-2007, 05:32 PM
not at all..
Understand it unbolts at the transmission.. Pull floor behind engine....

07-25-2007, 06:40 AM
Sounds like you got a good handle on it. If you do go with the dripless gland, you won't need the rope.

07-25-2007, 08:01 AM
Thanks Butta...

07-25-2007, 08:48 AM
btw, don't forget the beer!

07-26-2007, 10:57 PM
Anybody know the specs on the shaft for an '04 Outback? I called SkiDim and they said pull it out an measure it... I kinda was hoping to do it all in one day... I know it is a 1" shaft. I ran accross Elbert's website www.elberts.com and Cecil Elbert says he thinks in it 45.7"Tip to tip He thinks that was what an '03 Outback used...... .. Also, on SkiDim.com, they have a 4" and 5" coupling option...

Thanks... tryin to save a buck...

08-03-2007, 05:33 PM
Shaft is 45.7" 1" diameter and 4" Coupling. I got it from Elberts.com (a division of A.R.E.) Mr. Elbert answers the phone and shipped out same day. Great folks. Sends directions with the parts. Got needed tools and parts from him. Great operation.


Wish me luck this weekend.

08-05-2007, 10:15 PM
I DID IT!!!!
It took ALL DAY Saturday and 30 minutes this am (I left the rope packing at my office friday). I learned a ton along the way. Got a little phone help from Grant at Lee County Inboards and lots of tips from Cecil at Elbers.com The new shaft and strut bearings made a huge difference in vibration and even some performance improvements (back to pre-problem levels). i think I will need to tighten up the shaft packing log a little as I seemed to be getting a Little water in the bilge today.

Very much worth the effort. Would love to have had a dealer do the job... I was quoted approx $1000 for the job.. Parts were just over $400. Worth the Saturday investment. Probably a 6-8 Beer job.. I started at 7 am so I did not get into the beer until lunch...

Hope all are having good rides...

08-06-2007, 04:45 AM
Outstanding...glad to hear you're back in business!!

08-15-2007, 09:40 PM
BW, what steps did you follow to do this? Time for me to do it.

08-15-2007, 10:49 PM
If you don't have parts, order from Cecil at Elberts.com Great help. Their website has a PDF Download that details the info. He also sends a copy with your order. He has several tools that are VERY helpful. Not sure which boat you have, but assuming it is a DD, the two tools he suggests are: 1. Retaining nut socket (shallow 1 1/4" socket..hard to find locally) and Coupling Wrench.. Both are worth their small cost. Also, the socket should fit your prop nut. Make sure you replace the Strut bearings while doing this. He sells them too.
1. Remove motorcover clamshell (there are two screws at the back of the motor cover that screw into the floor...You'll need a helper to remove the cover with the floor piece attached.

Follow all the directions on this link:

Here are the things that aren't in the instructions: After you have unbolted the coupling and removed the 1 1/4" nut, the Moomba Dealer service tech gave me this tip: leave the nut threaded on the tip of the shaft. Take a smaller socket 3/4 or so, and place tightly between the shaft and the coupling on the transmission. I pushed the coupling/shaft back tightly up to the trans coupling and lightly held the socket (a pair of vise grips might come in handy here) . Take a rubber Mallet and knock on the coupling connected to the shaft. This should break the coupling free from the shaft (this is a compression fit and was my first stopping point). Once you have knocked it loose, you can remove the nut and coupling..there will be a keyway key that falls out.

At this point, you'll realize that even with the prop off, the shaft will not slide out of the back of the strut due to the rudder being in the way.
I determined that it was easier to remove the strut than the rudder (rudder bolts are under the gas tank) This will take two people too. You'll need one under the boat holding the Allen screws in the strut and another in the boat taking the nuts off. The nuts/screws as well as the strut are sealed with marine sealant. Make sure you have waterproof marine sealant available before reinstalling the strut...this is the messy part.....

Once you have removed all 6 screws, the shaft will slide out. Be gentle as it is sliding through the rope packing/coupling. (you'll need to order rope packing to as you need to replace it while you are in there.)

At this point, you have the shaft out and the strut off. Here is the next stonewall....getting the strut bearings out.. There are two options: 1. Get the $120 tool or get a hacksaw...Get the type of hacksaw that is only connected to the handle (in other words, you can slide the saw into the strut bearing. If you'll cut all the way through one side of the strut bearing, but being careful not to go too far into the strut. Once you get each bearing cut, you can slide a long thin screwdriver under the bearing at the cut and bend it out... This will take about 30 minutes and 2 beers.

Getting the bearings back in will be difficult too as it is as tight a fitting as you'll ever find. Might want to put a little liquid wrench inside the strut before sliding in.. RUBBER MALLET and block of wood to gently tap this in... has to go in slowly and evenly.

Once you have done this, slide new shaft back in and reinstall the strut bearing. I set a couple of screws enough to hold the shaft/strut for me and then focused on getting sealant in place.

At this point, I did not have any additional troubles. Engine alignment is important. Mine was still aligned good, but make sure you do this.
I got all the parts, accessories from Cecil for about $425.. I spent a little more as I had to next day the parts.

PM and I'll get you a phone number if you have any troubles. I took all day to do it, but knowing how to resolve a couple of issues and making sure I had all tools, supplies mentioned above, would have saved 3-4 hours of running to tool store.


08-18-2007, 08:37 PM
Congrats, glad to hear thingw went well, have been reading your posts. All very interesting and educational, what were the special tools needed? How was replacing the bearing on the strut?

08-18-2007, 09:18 PM
Only two special tools were Retaining nut socket (shallow 1 1/4" socket..) and Coupling Wrench. They sell several tools that would be worth it if you did this a bunch. one of those is a tool to remove the bearings!~
I used a small hack saw that has the blade only connected to the handle... It is one of those things that are more difficult because you feel like you will cut through too much and cut the strut... You will nick it some in the process but does not affect performance. I tried with a standard hacksaw by unbolting the blade and feeding it through the bearings... did not cut evenly. Finally after cutting on it til I broke through some, I tapped a small flat head screwdriver in and turned until I bent it enough to change the diameter... then no troubles..
Truly a learning experience. Worth the time to save $500 in labor!
Fortunately, my engine was still aligned after all this.. I might have had a little trouble with that..