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Please help with seized steering cable problem

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Topic author
nopeda
Posts: 9
Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2017 9:45 pm
Your Vessel Info: 43' Lazy Days houseboat
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Please help with seized steering cable problem

Unread postby nopeda » Sun May 26, 2019 12:07 am

I have an old 1968 Lazy Days Sportsman houseboat 43 ft. long 12 ft. wide with a fly bridge. It is a single engine inboard with no out drive but it has a propeller and a rudder. It hasn't been taken out for about 5 years but the last time it was used the steering worked smooth and easy. Now I'm trying to get it going again and am finding that the steering seems to be seized up. From below and above I can turn the wheels about 1/3 of a rotation and then they become so hard to move I'm afraid to push any farther. When I let go it's sort of like a slow spring action and pushes them back to about the same position they started in. I disconnected the rudder at the back and that moves very smoothly and easily. The exposed inner rod part of the cable back there had a lot of old dried out grease which I cleaned off with acetone but the rod doesn't appear to move when I turn the wheels. At this point it seems to me that the cable is probably bound up at the back and compresses or sort of stretches a bit when I turn the wheels and the long length is what makes the springy effect. Two videos I've watched seem to provide possible methods of working through this without the horrific job of trying to replace the entire cable.




The first suggests getting vice grips to turn the fitting at the and of the cable and un-seizing it that way. The second at around 4:20 suggests heating the end of the cable to soften the dried out grease. Do any of you folks have experience with this problem and recommendations on how to overcome it without replacing the entire cable?

Thank you for any suggestions!

David

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CaptForce
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Your Vessel Info: Morgan Out Island 41
Location: Lived Aboard 45 Years,- now on a chair in my walk-in closet!
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Re: Please help with seized steering cable problem

Unread postby CaptForce » Sun May 26, 2019 8:28 am

If the problem is the cable then, when you have detached both ends of the cable, you should not be able to slide the cable back and forth within it's sheath by hand. If this is the case it may be possible to regain the function of the cable with cleaning and lubrication, but this would not be my recommendation. When you consider the loss of being able to maneuver your boat as a consequence of the cable not functioning well, this would be a time when I would replace the cable. Another thought, - be sure to check that the outer sheath of the cable is well secured at a fixed point at both ends. These clamps ensure that the inner cable slides within the outer cover. Otherwise the whole cable may be moving, but not doing it's job.
Take care and joy, Aythya crew

Topic author
nopeda
Posts: 9
Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2017 9:45 pm
Your Vessel Info: 43' Lazy Days houseboat
Has Liked: 1 time

Re: Please help with seized steering cable problem

Unread postby nopeda » Sun May 26, 2019 10:50 pm

CaptForce wrote:Source of the post If the problem is the cable then, when you have detached both ends of the cable, you should not be able to slide the cable back and forth within it's sheath by hand. If this is the case it may be possible to regain the function of the cable with cleaning and lubrication, but this would not be my recommendation. When you consider the loss of being able to maneuver your boat as a consequence of the cable not functioning well, this would be a time when I would replace the cable. Another thought, - be sure to check that the outer sheath of the cable is well secured at a fixed point at both ends. These clamps ensure that the inner cable slides within the outer cover. Otherwise the whole cable may be moving, but not doing it's job.

I tried turning the cable at the rear end and it turns easily within the housing, but I can't get it to pull or push. Also can't find any writing that tells what system it is on the rectangular boxes attached to the steering column. I'd like to disconnect the flybridge from the lower console to see if it's seized up there, but don't know how to take it apart and with no writing so far don't know how to try to find out.

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