From the diagram [img];topic=815.0;attach=479[/img]

allow acceleration =0

sum F = 0

upthrust = weight

Row[sub]water[/sub]*g*Volume[sub]displaced[/sub]= mass*g

64*g*[V - 0.5 ] = 1600*g

V = 25.5 ft^3 = Volume of solid (bear)

My assessment of your question:
[quote author=luv2cris link=topic=815.msg3081#msg3081 date=1228850019]
Now, what I did was take  mass = density X  volume    and I got v = 25 cubic feet.[/quote]
So you are saying the Volume bear is 25 ?
your mistakes are:
1. assume density of bear as density of water
2. use of formula mass = density*volume without the correct context

[quote author=luv2cris link=topic=815.msg3081#msg3081 date=1228850019]
If I put an 8 cubic foot block into water or hold it above in the air, the volume doesnt change.  It's still going to be 8 cubic feet.  right?
your mistake is
1. lack of a diagram to help you visual and understand the problem

look at the way i solve the problem, do you see why i use
[V - 0.5 ] = Volume[sub]displaced[/sub] ?