Good creativity on the tool design, etc., Dave. When I took my Bravo 3's apart a couple of years ago, I think I had a propane torch right on the thread area of the gear case to expand it enough so that the bearing carrier would break loose.
Sounds like yours may have been even more stuck than mine were.
I already scored a really nice used bearing carrier with two brand-new uninstalled seals for $125, on craigslist. Will pick it up next Tuesday. Found a Bravo 3 lower unit housing pretty cheap too. I'll try to buy it if mine proves unusable (but I am pretty sure I can repair mine).