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Boat Mechanical Steering Maintenance

Boat Mechanical Steering Maintenance – Video Transcript

This program is about mechanical steering maintenance. By keeping your boats steering system in proper working order you can ensure that you have safety and proper control of the boat at all times. Corrosion, salt and dirt are the major contributors to stiff steering and in some extreme cases, cable seizure. In order to prevent that you have to do annual or biannual inspections.

If you're in freshwater you should inspect your system at least once a year. If you're in salt water two times a year. To properly maintain the steering system on this boat you're going to have to remove the steering cable from the engine. In order to do that you're first going to have to remove the nylon locknut that attaches the steering cable end to the drag link. On the other side of the tilt tube you're going to have to back off on this nut completely. Once you've done that go ahead and pull the steering cable out of the tilt tube.

Now you want to go in and clean the tilt tube. Make sure it's clean on the inside and then take white lithium grease and apply it liberally throughout the tilt tube. Now we've got the cable detached from the engine. Go ahead and pull the end of the cable forward exposing this portion of the cable. This is the area where you'll get salt, corrosion and dirt build-up. So, you want to make sure this is clean. Same holds true for this end of the cable make sure it's clean, it's free from dirt and that there's no scratches, no corrosion.

Once these areas are clean, go ahead and use liberal amounts of white lithium grease to put a new coating on there. The next step is to reattach the cable to the engine. So, now we're ready to reinsert the steering cable back into the tilt tube on the engine. So, go ahead and do that and once you've got the cable all the way through, go ahead and secure the drag link back on to the cable end. Make sure you use a new marine grade nylon locknut. Don't use the old one. On the other end of the tilt tube, make sure that this nut is securely reattached or screwed back on to the tilt tube. If you don't have it on completely and securely you'll have some loose play in your steering.