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Gimbal Bearing

This video shows a couple methods that may be used to remove the gimbal bearing.
There are several options. For Example, one might:
  • Use a Three Jaw Puller and a slide hammer.
  • (Get a loaner three jaw puller and slide hammer kit from auto parts store)
  • Use a bigger Slide Hammer
  • Use an Axel Bearing Puller and a slide hammer
  • Buy the Mercruiser Tool(s)
  • Buy an aftermarket solution
  • Fabricate your own tool
You can see in this video that I insisted on struggling along with what ever tools I had on hand (nothing special) and that I wanted it done TODAY. Also, this gimbal bearing was really very tight. The other bearing popped right out. If I were going to do this for a living, I would fabricate a heavy duty puller, threaded rod and steel plate that I could count on to work every time. 
In the end, I used a hacksaw blade to cut a groove into the bearing carrier. The carrier is aluminum and cuts easily. The housing cuts easily as well. So, don't cut into the step that the gimbal bearing seats against. I took a chisel and ground a sharp edge on it. I hammered the chisel into the carrier about 1/4 inch from the slot I cut. This cracked all the way through the aluminum carrier. This took all the pressure off the tolerance ring. Then the assembly could be removed.
Check Engine Alignment
I found that it was best to check the engine alignment before removing the old gimbal bearing. The gimbal bearing can point in different directions like an eyeball. When I first remove the drive, the gimbal bearing is pointing exactly to the engine coupler. The new bearing may not be. I insert the alignment tool through the new bearing and bang on the sides of the handle end with my fist to point the new bearing to the coupler and then verify the alignment again. This will also point the new gimbal bearing to the coupler so that you can re-install the drive. 
1988 Formula 29 PC
Oneida Lake
Central New York
Between Lock 22 and Lock 23 of the Erie Canal
This video is Closed Captioned for people who don't like the background music.

Remove Gimbal Bearing

Installing a new bearing requires a quality special tool. It is very important that the replacement bearing is driven all the way in. I used a caliper and straight edge to measure the distance the bearing is protruding from the housing. I bought an aftermarket installation tool that included parts to do the bellows and a hinge pin tool. I am very satisfied with the tools. I like that the alignment tool comes apart and fits in my tool drawer. I can recommend the set I found on eBay that looks like the image below.