Yes, the shift linkage on a Super Quiet motor is accessed by covers on the Stbd side of the mid-section.
You first have to remove the outer cover, which is held on by (2) slotted stainless screws.
Once that cover is off, you'll see the inner cover which is held on by (2) 1/4-20 bolts. With the bolts removed, pry the cover & gasket off the mid-section and within you'll see the brass shift shaft coupler and bolts.
Move the shift lever so the bottom bolt in the shift coupler is accessible (short shaft outboard).
On a long shaft outboard, you may find a short coupler, or a very long coupler coming from below. In the case of the long brass coupler, there's only one bolt to choose from.
Finished pulling the lower unit. Found the impeller to be in better shape than I expected (still changing it). But I also found five little pieces of broken plastic at the bottom of the drive shaft tube. They're hard plastic, about a 1/4" square and from the polished condition I'd say they've been in there quite a while. The motor ran fine when I tried it last fall. Any clues what they might be?
It may be chunks of what used to be the carbon seal at the bottom of the crankshaft.
This seal might look like plastic but is actually made of a type of carbon, and is held in place by a snap ring. There is an O-ring inside this seal (aka "quad ring") which aids in sealing water out of the bottom of the crankcase.
Possible points of failure are the snap ring corroding & falling off the end of the crank; the lip on the crankshaft that holds the snap ring in place corroding away; cracking/breakage of the carbon seal due to old age/vibration/wear/mis-handling/physical damage.
Unfortunately the only way to fix that problem is to pull the powerhead and expose the bottom of the crankshaft.
With the lower unit off, you can shine a strong light up into the driveshaft cavity to see what you can of the end of the driveshaft.
The snap ring should be visible. The carbon seal is of larger diameter and if it's there you'll see it, too.
If you see a busted seal or nothing but snap ring (or just nothing at all up there but the bare end of the crankshaft) it needs to come apart. Else-wise water will be sucked up into the bottom of the engine and bearings will fail thereafter.
As you'll see in this diagram there is quite the menagerie of parts that makeup the seal assy, including a couple of washers and a spring. If any of these parts are missing the sealing ability is compromised.
Ed, i've been told that smacking the end of the crank with a hammer to help get the flywheel off will ruin that seal...any thoughts on that??
I suppose the shock might have a bad effect but in practice I've never seen that happen. Normally I use a puller and throw the impact wrench on it and most times the flywheel will pop without having to beat on it (er, I mean "mechanically agitate"!).
But anything's possible, and if those really are seal parts, you never know.
The carbon piece sounds likely, the pieces didn't look like regular plastic, but I knew they weren't metal either. I just ordered a borescope so I can get a good look without too much dismantling. Maybe I'll get lucky and find that the PO fixed it and just didn't dig out all of the pieces. (yeah, right). Thanks for your expertise.
Finally rounded up all of the parts and found time to put it back together. The carbon seal, quad ring, and o-ring were completely gone and the spring keepers were worn paper thin. Everything went together ok, and the power head is back on.