I've always assumed that it was 'Cutless', referring to the fact that it was water lubricated and so 'cut less' into the shaft metal. Either that or Cutless was the name given by the first manufacturers - perhaps a trade name of sorts.
Probably totally wrong on both, but there, what's new!!! /forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif
There's no cutless about it. /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif
Cutlass is a brand name that caught on much like Araldite, Biro, et al. "Cutlass" brand rubber bearings were developed in the US during WW2 due to material shortages.
Some people refer to a "Cutlass" bearing as the aftmost propeller-shaft bearing.
I always considered it was spelt Cutlass but Jerryrat & boatmike are correct according to Findings which says:
".......................Cutlass or Cutless
rubber lined outboard propeller
shaft bearing that
we use today was developed
in the 1940s by the
It was marketed as the
“Cutless” bearing because
it was less damaging to
the shaft than the commonly
used solid bronze