Folks, I believe I have the only outboard motor that is afraid of water! I can start it quickly ( 2 or 3 pulls) when it is out of the water, but can't start it at all when its in the water. I believe the problem is in the shifting. When it is not running and in neutral, the prop turns freely. However, when I pull the rope and it starts (out of the water of course. , the prop turns. It seems that when it's in the water, the rope is a bit harder to pull. I'm at wits end. Any help is greatly appreciated.
I pulled the lower unit and checked everything. All gears and pinion are fine. However, I can't get the lower unit back in without it locking the shift lever. If I back it off about an inch, then the shifter works. I did all the things the manual said, ( flat side of pinion to port, turn flywheel clockwise, etc. ) but the shift lever locks when I screw the bolts in. I put the lever in forward before I engaged the unit. I also tried neutral, but it still locks. Any suggestions? Thank you.