Thanx for your kind support guys. I believe I'm in trouble with the insurance aspect as my agent told me that I would be insured against damage caused by hitting flotsam. Of course I could twat it with an appropriate piece of oak but with no obvious marks on the hull I'm not sure. In any case I think that's a no.
Andy, I had seen that motor. I'm way down the merc/mariner line at the moment with spares, workshop books, props etc. It does have me thinking though........ Flippin huge motor though eh?
May have had a stroke of luck for the moment - the old Mariner 150 efi which came off this boat won't release it's leg to me but I expect it will let me have the gearbox easy enuff. Gregg at GB watersports has suggested that I can use the leg extension on its way from Madrid and discard the extension shafts. Then the gearbox off the Mariner c/w shafts should go right on! Jeez I hope so!
I'll keep ya all posted. Thanx again folks!