Originally Posted by JimN
You'll need a snap ring pliers. Whether you'll need a seal puller depends on the design. If you do, any auto parts store or Harbor Freight will have them. You may be able to work it out with a slotted screwdriver, too.
jim, thanks for you assistance. got it done and it wasn't that bad of a job with the exception of "never buy cheap snap ring pliers"!
anyway not a single drip in the bilge. also thanks to all who gave great advice.