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Discussion Starter #1
I was just informed that the bellows in my Bravo 1 need to be replaced. In addition the drive shaft and u joints are rusty. I was shocked at the initial estimate, $1,700 (+). How many hours does it take to do this job? How hard is it? Are special tools needed? A little research on the internet shows the bellows parts are about $80-$100. How much is a new shaft, bearings/seals and u-joints? Is the rest all labor? :|err

No exhaust bellows are needed, boat has thru hull exhaust.

Any info would be appreciated.
 

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Changing out the bellows is a very simple task, once you remove the drive from the boat you will see a silver ring that goes over the lip of the belows. Remove the ring and undo the hose clamp on the other side of the bellows and it comes right out. Goes in the exact same way....may take an hour tops.

The shaft and u-joints are a different story, someone can correct this if I am wrong but I think they need to be removed from the upper in order for them to be replaced properly, if this is the case there is alot of work in setting the lash on the gears when put back togther.
 

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I know that on my last servive at Absolute Aaron dicovered mine was leaking
and fixed it while being serviced. I believe it was a couple on hunded. How many hours on it and how often has the drive been serviced and realighned ?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Boat is an 1989 model. I don't know how many hours, but the two previous owners did not use the boat much and I was told it had less than 160 hours on it when I bought the boat 3 years ago. Still has the original interior in it in excellent shape. I have only used the boat about 4 to 6 weekends in each of the last three years, so if I had to guess, I would say total hours are probably around 200 or so.

I had the drive fluid changed when I bought it and was going to get into a routine of changing it every other year, so it would be due this year.
 

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you can change the u joints without disassembling the drive. The drive shaft should not have to be replaced just cleaned, the u joints are probably rusted and that is what needes to be changed. as for the bellows, around 100 or so for the parts and maybe 2-2.5hours for the bellows and u joints to be replaced. make sure to check the gimbal bearing as it will rust also.
 

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If the joints are rusted, you will want to pay close attention to the gimball bearing like Hullshot says AND the input shaft at the seal area, if that rusts and takes out the seal by abrading it, some oil can leak out of the upper and destroy the new U-joint bellows and run the drive low on oil, but you wont know unless you have an engine mounted oil reservior.

IMHO should be a $800 job unless they are doing a bunch of other stuff at the same time.

2-Joints $40
1-Bellows $95
2-3- Quarts drive oil $30 (synthetic)
1-Drive service kit $20
Parts_____________________$185_________________________

3-hours labor $???

Should get you close... check the gimball assembly for vertical play and have the engine aligned....

I was a Mercury trained tech for a number of years....If this cant be done in under 4 hours, get your boat out of there......:)devil

GT
 

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If there has been water in the bellows you will be replacing the u-joints, Bellows, and gimbal bearing. The short yoke that holds the pinion gear will have to be inspected for rust at the seal area. To do that it will have to be removed from the Driveshaft housing (upper) and the pinion gear, seal carrier, and pinion bearings removed.
This can't be done properly in less than 4 hours.
$1700.00 is out of line unless there is damage we are not aware of.

I will quote you Mercruiser retail prices for comparison only.

Gimbal bearing $104.70
U-joint bellows $109.30
U-joints (each) $56.62
U-joint seal $21.10
Yoke (if corrosion on seal surface) $183.20
Rear cap seal $9.40
gear lube $30.00
Install kit $7.00

$578.00 plus tax

approx $650.00 labor

These are prices based on a Mercruiser Premier Service Center.

Hope this helps
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I want to thank everyone who provided a response and information, I really do appreciate it. I like to be an "informed" customer before I spend any hard earned $$$, and I also hate to get burned or taken advantage of.

GT and Hullshot, and everyone who contributed, thanks for the information and the especially the parts pricing and how many hours it takes! This gives me a much better idea if a shop is being up front and honest with me.

I am going to take my boat elsewhere.

Thanks again!

AIO
 

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Changing out the bellows is a very simple task, once you remove the drive from the boat you will see a silver ring that goes over the lip of the belows. Remove the ring and undo the hose clamp on the other side of the bellows and it comes right out. Goes in the exact same way....may take an hour tops.

The shaft and u-joints are a different story, someone can correct this if I am wrong but I think they need to be removed from the upper in order for them to be replaced properly, if this is the case there is alot of work in setting the lash on the gears when put back togther.
i knew dali was the man
 
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