I am really new to boating and need some help please. I have a Mercruiser 350 Mag MPI and Bravo 3 outdrive.
I have been counting down the days to this big boating event that I had planned on attending for almost a year now. I arrived there Friday morning along with 11 other friends to have a weekend getaway. I backed the boat off the trailer then went to shift into forward to spin around to head away from the ramp, At this point the shifter seemed stuck in reverse. Instantly I cut the engine off as to stop propelling me towards other docked boats. I manage to get control of my boat and move myself manually to a dock.
I attempt to move the shifter into neutral without any luck. I remove the pin at the engine coupler to determine whether or not the problem was towards the shifter or the outdrive. The shifter moves freely into neutral or forward/reverse now. So I assume that the problem is in the outdrive, keep in mind last fall I had to have some major work done. The clutch locked up on me and the mechanic ended up replacing the cone/upper outdrive.
I call up a local mechanic whom was very nice in helping me understand whether this could be a quick fix or not. I explained everything to him and he asked me if the shaft to the outdrive was spinning. He had to explain all this too me as I am still a novice. I climbed over the engine with the shifter in neutral and located the shaft coming off the back and it was not spinning with the engine running. He told me (sorry to tell you but you can call your plans off and hang it up, your coupler is gone).
I am trying to understand how? Why? and most importantly how much? This was a embarrassing weekend with all of my guest all ready to go boating, though they were very nice to me, trying to act like it wasn't a big deal and all we could just have fun on land instead.
So, does this sound right to you? Does the shaft spin regardless the state of the shifter? My boat is a 98 and in the 3/4 of a year I have owned it I lost the clutch and now the coupler?