Hello from the Great Pacific Northwest of USA! I just joined the BOA.
My lovely “Escape” is on the hard for maintenance and I’m mitigating the lower bearing issue. I’ve dealt with this since 2006. I haven’t found that “swelling” was an issue, rather the housing is aluminum and pits, this pushes the bearing off alignment (binding it) but what is worse it allows salt to get trapped between the bushing and housing. Every haul out I drop the rudder, pull bushing and polish the housing by wet sanding. Then primer the alum and put back together. This has served me well but I’m gonna try using olive oil between haul outs as someone else does.
Fair winds to y’all!