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2004 23 LSV with Hammerhead 380 - Distributor gear broken - I assume due to Oil pump issue

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Any suggestions on disconnecting v-drive gear box from transmission? Our 2004 23 LSV with a Hammerhead 380 suddenly died on water and would not restart. Got towed back to the launch ramp by a nice Supra owner. After troubleshooting, I pulled the disturber out (didn't come out easy) and about 20% of the gear teeth were broken off. I think the oil pump locked up and that caused the teeth to break off.  It's been a trouble free boat for last 12 years I have had it with 550 hours so can't complain too much. Getting ready to pull the motor. Can't find a boat mechanic available so found an auto mechanic that has a forklift to pull the motor and try to work on it. He doesn't want to boat at his shop so I removed the engine covers and framing and figure the easiest way to make to make it a quick engine pull is to disconnect the v-drive gear box from the transmission by disconnecting the prop shaft and the union bolts between the transmission and v-drive gear box. Got the drive shaft bolts out but the union between the trans and gear box has bolts (nuts are accessible from top opening ) will loosen but start to spin since I can't get to the back. I got 1 nut out and 3 loosened and will probably get the other 3 out eventually. I found a used distributor on eBay cheap and also picked up a oil pump and timing chain (it might have caused the oil pump to go out based on a friends thoughts).  Any other suggestions/tips/concerns? 


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Can you pull the whole vdrive, transmission, block in one move? get it out where you can work on it and then separate the transmission and v drive from the engine?    You asked about concerns, Where labor is involved I don’t like to do things more than once, make sure you have a decent quality distributor and oil pump. They aren’t easy to mess with. I would be surprised to see a worn out oil pump on a low hour engine.  It should be pristine assuming regular oil changes.

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