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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Decided to change my water pump impeller on my 2004 mercury 2 stroke 60 hp. 
After completing the process (following directions from the mercury manual) specifically: placing shift lever in forward before removing lower unit, upon re-assembly the prop would only go forward. 
I assumed I had misaligned the spines on the shaft for the transmission and which in the final analysis was correct.
But in trouble shooting I learned a few things:
First it's amazing how little rotation exists in the movement from forward to reverse in this spine shaft, like 2 teeth.  Second the spine shaft on the lower unit had approximately 200° of free rotation and I thought I had broken the cam inside the lower unit. 
Upon further analysis, and encouragement from wise neighbor, by taking a pliers and rotating this spline on the lower unit past the end of its free travel I was able to shift into neutral and reverse.
You can spin the drive shaft while moving the spine on the lower unit.
I located the spline and on the lower unit fully counterclockwise and reinstalled the lower unit with the shift lever in forward and it works fine now.
I was about ready to bring it to a shop and start drinking!
But really wanted to be able to do this on my own just in case and now feel comfortable in the process.
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