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Steering Stuck

Posted: Sun May 21, 2017 5:10 pm
by Tranquilo
Last year, I always had to work the steering free at the beginning of a trip. I assumed the issue was a lube thing. Well, I got too busy and let the boat sit in the water for 7 months without moving it and now my steering is pretty stuck (got it to pull the rudder about 2 inches but thats about it)

So I'm about to dig in and wondered what I should do to start.

The first component is the little bronze part where the cable meets the wheel. Can I lube that? Take it apart? I don't see much area for maintenance.

The second area is where it meets the rudder arm. I wanted to disconnect it from the arm but it looks very rusty and worried about breaking it.

If I disconnect it from the rudder and it still doesn't turn, my issue is the rudder bearing. I see a grease nipple on it but don't know if that does what I think it would do)

If the disconnection of the rudder arm doesn't free up the steering, it would be the wheel box thing, correct?

I'm going back out tomorrow to start troubleshooting. Thanks for any input.

Re: Steering Stuck

Posted: Mon May 22, 2017 7:18 pm
by EWRice
My rudder stock was seized tight in the stuffing box. The only rotation I was getting was what the stuffing box hose would twist. :cry: not good. I thought it was the steering cable at first. Rudder would turn only a few inches each way.

Re: Steering Stuck

Posted: Mon May 22, 2017 8:07 pm
by Tranquilo
UG - Mine does something similar but I cant see if its twisting because I'm turning the wheel. I'm ordering everything now so I have it if needed because the holiday is near.

Everything is so rusted, I cant even disconnect from the lever. The rudder shaft slides up and down when I try to bang the pin out.

Does anyone have specs on what cable I need (length, etc.) and can we get new forks? (the thing at the end of the cable that grabs the rudder lever)

I may have to cut everything off :(

Re: Steering Stuck

Posted: Tue May 23, 2017 4:56 am
by Tuggle
Have you looked into converting over to hydraulic steering, that's on my radar after the engines.

Re: Steering Stuck

Posted: Tue May 23, 2017 10:11 am
by Tranquilo
I don't see the point. Its one more thing to break and its not like I usually have to struggle with the steering. Just more money :)

Good news is that my rudder is free so I just need to find the replacement cable assy (which is obsolete)

Any ideas on what I can use to replace the unit? Any sources for the parts that connect to the rudder arm?

I can't figure out how to get the cable out of my Steelflex housing. Its like its welded in or something

Re: Steering Stuck

Posted: Tue May 23, 2017 10:22 am
by Busia
Different year boats had different makes of steering. I think I had Steermaster, made in Detroit. Most makes are out of business, a few parts are available from Glen-L boat company if you check with them. Found it to be cheaper and faster and better to just replace it all. Went with Teleflex (?) steering that is used with outboards. On the shelf and about $100. Had to make an adapter for the cable end to attach the fork. Message me if you have questions, Ed

Re: Steering Stuck

Posted: Tue May 23, 2017 11:35 am
by jmonday
At the time I did mine of coarse it was on an upcoming Holiday weekend and took the Teleflex route and had to make a few things.(because the local dealer did not have all the part number to make a complete system.) They will have all the pcs needed to make it work if you order it. Last year helping a friend I did find the steermaster mark II cable for a 34 ft. I think they are making special runs and the order goes in once a year Glen-L Marine design is the place and it ran 400 bucks. At the end of the day we have a new cable on an old box that has been worked on in the past and he had extra parts. from my side after buying the Teleflex I have an off the shelf system that future owners can still get straight from local dealers with good part numbers. Cost and timing the main things to look at I guess.
Best of luck

Re: Steering Stuck

Posted: Tue May 23, 2017 11:50 am
by jralbert
"...Have you looked into converting over to hydraulic steering....

When I sold the 88 boat in 2011, the hydraulic steering was functioning quite well and needed about 15-20 minutes worth of maintenance in all those years. Not trying to spend your money but your time and effort in assembling, customizing, installing manual steering parts may be worth something.

Re: Steering Stuck

Posted: Wed May 24, 2017 8:23 am
by Tranquilo
Great feedback. I bought the Glen L Steelmaster cable so we'll see if it gets here in time. I'm also looking at the new system too. I like the new system idea much better for the same reason Jeff noted above (easy to get parts)

If I have to destroy the fork to get the old cable off, I'll simply go with the new style unit and return the stock cable.

Thankfully the rudder turns easily by hand (silver lining in spending $350)