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Damper Failure, Alignment Questions

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It looks like I have to replace the damper plate in my Response. Started it up yesterday and it made all sorts of grinding and clanging noises from the transmission area. Turned it off straight away and not going to run it again as I don't want to risk further damage. Was fine when I put the boat away after it's last run, the damper plate gremlins obviously got to it in the mean time. I do have a couple of questions, have searched the site but haven't been able to come up with the answers.

1. I've read that failure can be due to a misaligned bell housing. How do I check for this and rectify it if it is out of alignment?

2. How do I check the shaft alignment?

Have got dial gauge, feeler gauges etc.

Any help here greatly appreciated as I'm really @#$&%^ off about it, yesterday the temp was 40c and the water was like glass!!

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11 minutes ago, tvano said:

Your noise was while in neutral or in gear while strut was wet?  In gear w a dry shaft can be very noisy.

It was in neutral, I had given it a quick start in the front yard before heading to the water. It was so loud my wife heard it in the house. I intend starting work once this heatwave abates. 40c means 50c + in my shed.

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