View Full Version : v drive removal

05-03-2010, 02:01 PM
hya, has anyone got a rough idea how long it takes to remove a v drive gearbox from a 2004 x2 ? got a rattle on my drive plate..so im thinking of checking it out ..

05-03-2010, 05:29 PM
I have an 02 X30, and I replaced my drive plate early last year. I think it takes me longer than most to complete a job on my boat. So, if you count taking out the back seat, floor cover over the gas tank, motor access cover behind the seat, supporting the motor for tranny removal, prop shaft and the connections to the trans itself it took me about 4 hours. I replaced the plate with an aftermarket damper that greatly improved shift smoothness along with noise reduction and less vibration. It was an amazing upgrade that I would highly recommend to anyone pulling a transmission. I also replaced seals while I had it out. I have pics of the process.

05-03-2010, 08:39 PM
hya, has anyone got a rough idea how long it takes to remove a v drive gearbox from a 2004 x2 ? got a rattle on my drive plate..so im thinking of checking it out ..

Give yourself a good 8-10 hours for removal and reinstall if you have never done it before


05-03-2010, 10:53 PM
notnowgus - As someone who is anticipating having to replace my drive plate in the near future, I would love to see those pics. I think there are many others on the board who would also.


05-03-2010, 11:28 PM
8 solid hours with some air tools, closer to 10 if your doing it all by hand.

05-04-2010, 09:49 PM
Here is a little background on this project. The only way that I could ever afford to own a boat is to do my own maintenance. It takes me a lot longer, and most of time I make mistakes but the end result is the same, plus I save a few bucks and have the satisfaction of knowing I successfully completed a job that keeps me owning a boat. So, one day last year I arrived at my garage space to find the floor covered with transmission fluid, obviously from the boat. After some investigating I discovered that the lower output seal on the transmission was bad. This seal is all the way at the bottom and out of sight. At that point, I decided to change all of the seals, install a new damper plate and Globe Drive Saver. Thinking if I do it all now, Ill save a lot of time later on.

I didnt take pictures of the removal of the seats and surrounding fiberglass because this part of the process is fairly simple.

Next, after the seats were out I went to Lowes and bought a roll of self sticking carpet protector and put a double layer on all carpeted surfaces, front to back. I knew at some point I would have a mishap and Id have transmission fluid everywhere.

05-04-2010, 09:53 PM
Here is a shot of the engine compartment before any work started. By this time I had already pulled the prop.

05-04-2010, 10:00 PM
The next step was to remove the prop shaft from the transmission. You can see that there was very little room to work. I was able to slide the gas tank forward far enough to work on it. Removed the nut from the shaft and started looking for a puller to get the shaft out of the coupling.

05-04-2010, 10:08 PM
I own an assortment of pullers but none of them would work, mostly too big. So I decided I needed to make one. Went to NAPA, bought a steering wheel puller and started chopping.

05-04-2010, 10:17 PM
I cut the puller center bolt almost in half then ground it to a point to ride in the center of the prop shaft. The main body of the puller was too short to span the distance of the coupling holes so I made a brace that would reach the pattern. It was from a scrap piece of 1/4 inch steel which I drilled three holes in to match the coupling and centerline of the puller.

05-04-2010, 10:28 PM
I applied a little grease to the end of the shaft where the puller bolt makes contact so it would turn with less friction. I assembled the puller on the coupler and started tightening the center bolt. I used a wrench and got it as tight as I could by hand and the shaft would not come out. So I took a block of oak wood, held it over the end of the shaft on the prop side and whacked it with a hammer. After about the third whack it popped out!

05-05-2010, 01:07 AM
Love it, keep this story coming!

05-05-2010, 04:12 AM
hi again, and many thanks for all the information.. ill just get stuck in and get it sorted then ..all the info much appreceated thanks glenn

05-06-2010, 07:52 PM
Sorry it took so long to post more pictures.

You can tell by looking at the center bolt on the puller that it deformed to match the shape of the end of the prop shaft. There was a lot of tightening going on trying to get the shaft to come out.

I would like to offer this puller to anyone on TeamTalk that would like to use it. It can be passed around to whomever as long as we keep it in rotation and fix it if we break it or make it better somehow. I would like to use it again in the future to replace my cutlass bushings. If each person that gets it pays for shipping to the next user it should be a fairly simple deal!

05-06-2010, 10:07 PM
Having never removed a boat transmission before I had no idea what would happen when I disconnected the transmission from the mounts. So I took a Sharpie and marked the location of each on on the support so I'd know approximately where it would need to go back when I put it back in. I disconnected the battery, gas lines, cooling lines, electrical connections and moved everything out of the way and tied up anything that didn't want to stay back. I had some very hard dense shipping foam that I used to stuff under the transmission to support it so that if there was a mishap the tranny wouldn't touch the bottom. In the last pic the transmission is ready to be unbolted.

05-06-2010, 10:23 PM
Removing any transmission is pretty boring stuff so I didn't take pictures of that. Unbolt the starter, remove the inspection plate on the lower bell housing, unbolt the bell housing and mark each bolt or have a marked storage container for each bolt to return it to it's proper location. I usually like to do things by myself but I needed help getting that thing out due to it being so low in the boat. I used a pry tool to slowly work the transmission off of the alignment pins then off the flywheel, it lifted right out with no problems. It only weighs about 65 pounds. The first shot is the of the flywheel with OEM damper plate still attached.

05-06-2010, 10:27 PM
The friend that helped me remove the transmission reminded me that I used a ratchet strap to support the motor once the trans mounts were removed. I ran this strap around the exhaust manifolds and up to the aluminum sundeck supports on each side. You can see the greenish parts of the strap in the left and right upper portion of the picture. Here is the transmission compartment all cleaned up with the damper plate removed and ready for transmission re-installation.

05-06-2010, 10:40 PM
Here is the front and back of the factory damper plate. It shows no visible signs of damage and seemed to work perfectly well when I took it out.

05-06-2010, 10:40 PM
Love this thread! Could you tell what was rattling when you saw the damper plate? Thx

05-06-2010, 10:48 PM
The problem with my transmission was a bad seal, no noise. But from the research I've done, when the springs that you see get weak or break the rattle comes from the springs no longer providing the correct amount of tension. Thus causing the outer portion of the damper to slap around on the inner portion of the damper, if that makes any sense.

05-06-2010, 10:56 PM
Very good information and a lot of good pictures! For the life of me I couldn't figure out how your prop shaft went thru the gear box. My 95 Maristar has the 1.5/1 and my coupling is on the opposite of the gear box, just like a direct drive....very hard to get to.

05-06-2010, 11:15 PM
The hardest part of the project was the work performed on the transmission itself but I'll save that for later and move on to installing the new damper plate.

I did tons of research on the various types of damper plates available for my V-drive. Basically what I came up with were three options. There may be more but these were the about the only plates I could find at the time.

Option 1) A factory damper - I had no interest in the stock plate, knew there were better aftermarket parts out there. About $99 online and around $200 at a local dealer.

Option 2) R & D Marine damper plate - This was my first choice! Nice piece, about $400 online.

Option 3) Centa damper plate - Skidim, Discount Inboard Marine, $220. Now we're talkin'!

05-06-2010, 11:21 PM
This is an R & D damper.

05-07-2010, 01:46 AM
No visible sign of damage? :confused:
You appear to be missing a chunk between the springs, at the 2 o'clock position.

Mine was missing a smaller chunk next to one of the springs, but had multiple hairline fractures between them.
I cannot tell from your picture, but if you look real close, you may see little stress lines at the corners of the boxes that hold the springs.

This is what I replaced in my '98 Maristar, via SkiDim (I think this is the #3, above):


I was told that the original one was too flimsy, and would crack & break (really?) ... this is supposed to be the beefier replacement...
I have not ran the boat yet, but this replacement dampner weights about 3x more that the original, seems real stout.
The other side has 8 good sized bumpers, half are some sort of hard polymer, the other 4 are hard rubber (but does some cushioning)... No springs!

I was told that since this is thicker than the stock one, the bolt heads stick up a bit higher, and may scrape on the inside of the bell housing...
I think I lucked out, mine seems to rotate without hitting anything.

05-07-2010, 06:33 AM
Sunlight and shadows! If you look closely at the picture you will see that the paint has peeled up over the rivet, and the way the sun is shining on the plate it looks like part of it is missing. Here is a better shot. This one only has about 160 hours on it so it was still in pretty good condition.

05-07-2010, 09:36 AM
a little paint peeling up, casting a shadow... I see it now...
looked like a chunk missing! :uglyhammer:

05-07-2010, 12:01 PM
Here we have the stock plate and the Centa plate. I got it from Discount Inboard Marine, http://www.skidim.com/prodinfo.asp?number=R140019, $220 then. The new damper uses rubber bumpers as the cushion mechanism instead of springs, so technically there is no metal to metal contact when damper is engaged, at least not like the stock plate. This plate also has an anti-catastrophic failure feature built in, which means if the rubber ever fails the damper continues to work and stays together.

05-07-2010, 12:14 PM
After inspecting the new damper it looked to me like there might be some bare metal. Not being able to leave well enough alone, I took a can of gray primer and sprayed the parts that l thought might be prone to rust.

05-07-2010, 12:20 PM
So now the new damper is installed, all of the bolts are torqued correctly and the transmission is ready to be bolted back in!

05-08-2010, 11:59 AM
i have been told that indmar do a better drive plate, its got springs that are encapsulated
in rubber for quiter operation part number S885203.
does anyone have any experience of these or know of the cost? thanks glenn

03-14-2011, 10:48 PM
notnowgus, Great thread! Thanks for all the info.

But, did you ever get around to posting the pics/procedure on the transmission work? I tried searching without any luck. :confused:

03-15-2011, 11:48 AM
I am amazed you all can do this type of work. I need my 9 year old boy to change the line in the weed trimmer... well done.

09-24-2011, 08:33 PM

Hows the centa plate working??
I'm doing a major motor overhaul and am going to replace my damper plate.
Also thanks for the pics of the puller you made.I had to make one today to get my prop shaft out