Islander 28 - Atomic 4 - Cutlass bearing - SailNet Community

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Old 10-13-2011
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Islander 28 - Atomic 4 - Cutlass bearing

How much play if any is OK for a cutlass bearing? My old 1978 I28 has a "bit" of play now that it is out of the water for winter and was wondering about what is acceptable. I saw from other threads that the shaft, rudder and prop have to be removed to replace the bearing. Anyone completed it themselves or is this best left to a shop?
Are all cutless bearing materials the same or is there a variety of materials used? Any advice is appreciated.

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Old 10-13-2011
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Ideally the shaft should be tight or fairly tight in the Cutlass bearing. A bit of play up to or over 1/16" is a candidate for replacment as it will only wear away faster with the 'play' in play.
There is not that much variety in the construction of most Cutlass bearings so I would go with one that closely resembles the one in your boat now (Naval Brass vs. non-metallic).

DIY instructions for strut mounted bearings: Cutless-Bearing Replacement

Cheap webstite for buying replacement Cutlass bearings: Cutless Bearings for Sale. Buy Johnson Duramax Cutless Bearings today.
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Old 10-14-2011
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Cutlass Bearing Replacement - Advice

Thanks for the information and I will have a good look at it again in the spring. I am reluctant to remove the shaft, but will have a good look while it is on the hard. I suppose it might be a good idea to look at the stuffing box at the same time.
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Old 10-14-2011
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Don't let it go on too long. I learned that the hard way. Our I-28 had a worn cutlass bearing. One of the symptoms we experienced was excessive vibration of the motor while motoring. The motor vibrated to such a degree, that we kept breaking alternator mounting bolts. When we replaced the cutlass bearing, we ended up replacing the shaft as well. It's my recollection that we had to drop the rudder to get the shaft out. We didn't find that out until the boat was on jack stands, but we lucked out, as the boatyard wasn't paved, so I just dug a hole under the rudder to get it out.

Good luck. We really liked our Islander 28. It was a good boat.
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