With full credit to Dave Skinson who originally posted this guide on here
Hi,new to the forum. Had a 23 for 5 years now, Aquarius is moored onWindermere.
Not had many problems with her. This week I noticed a severe leak from the bell housing area, as a time served Ford mechanic I knew what the problem was. I don't know if it's been posted before but I thought I might run you through how I replaced the rear core plug.
1. Remove exhaust from hose to manifold. 2 hose clips, 2 -1/2" nuts.
2. Remove 3 prop flange bolts/nuts. (1/2")
3. Remove 2 starter motor bolts/nuts (9/16") remove starter and lay in bilge, if clean.
4. Remove 5 bell housing bolts (9/16"). Leaving one top bolt in situ.
5. Mark position of gear lever with paint etc, and remove pinch bolt 1/2". Remove lever.
6. Remove 2 gearbox mounting bolts 5/8". Check for shims.
7. Prize propshaft back 1/2" (easily done).
8. Now, lift the g/box/ engine as high as possible and pack wooden blocks under sump to keep it there. I used a rope around the g/box.
9. Remove last bell housing bolt 9/16".
10. You can now wiggle g/box sternwards and lift away. ( You will lose some g/box oil).
11. You now have access to the core plug behind the flywheel.
12. You can either remove core plug using suitable drift with the flywheel in situ. Or, remove 6- 1/2" nuts and shake proof washers & remove flywheel first ( my option).
13. Fit new core plug (1"5/8") using either levers or a socket depending onwhether you removed flywheel or not.
14. Refitting gearbox is just the reverse of removal. Make sure you have the keyway on the g/box input shaft & the key on the crankshaft at 12:00.
15. Continue to refit all bell housing bolts, starter motor bolts etc.
16. Remove packings from under sump, lower g/box/engine, and refit g/box mounting bolts.
17. Refit propshaft bolts.
18. Refit gear lever
19. Refit exhaust pipe.
20. top gearbox up with sae 30 oil.
21. Adjust your quadrant throttle lever before attempting to start engine as it will be at full throttle due to lifting engine.
22. JOB DONE
It took me and a friend ( both very old Ford mechanics) 2 hours start to finish. It could be done on your own apart from needing someone to pack under the sump.