The new power for my '59 Dorsett Catalina is a 2004 Yamaha 90 (two-stroke). Along with the motor, I also purchased all the controls and wiring, so installation should be a snap. My problem is the steering. When I got it, the boat had a single-cable system that was driven by a gearbox with no name on it (see photos). It does have the number "2103" stamped on it, along with the letters DJ set inside a small circle (first photo). This gearbox drove a cable that was secured on the aft end with a transom-mounted clamp.
The entire assembly still works smoothly, with no slop or binding. The problem is the attachment point on the motor. I need to change from the old transom mount to the newer through-the-tilt-tube system.
My question is twofold: One, are all the cables of a standard type? Will a newer modern cable be likely to fit my old no-name gearbox? Second, are the tilt tubes a standard diameter and length? In other words, will a cable that fits a Mercury also work for a Yamaha, Honda, Johnson, etc? If the answer to these two questions is yes, that saves me the hassle (and expense) of replacing the entire system.
Any thoughts or comments are much appreciated.
Simple but complicated questions.
I don't know about the female part of your 2004 Yamaha, I never had a motor that new
The steering box is pretty reliable and simple. If memory serves me, which usually dosn't, it's just a simple worm gear. Should be taken apart and the old grease removed and repacked. The tilt tubes in my experance are pretty much standard. I think they are 3/4 inch pipe thread. If you have an old pipe nipple check and see if it screws on easily to the motor end. The hitch in the hookup is getting the cable connected to the motor. With the older bracket that was attached to the transom it's probably a direct connection, cable to motor on the starboard side with some type of swivel to allow the motor to tilt up. With the cable running through the tilt tube you'll still need the swivel connection but also a "L" shaped connecting rod because you'll be connecting to the motor from the port side. (Reverse my words if you helm is on the port side)
Have to also mention that when you install the motor/cable combo it helps to insert the cable through the motor tube before you set the motor on the transom.
Here's some pictures of my old Evinrude setup. You can see what I try to describe as the "L" shaped bar.
Also generously grease that bar running through the tube before you install it. Experience is that it will get gummed up over time.
I answered my own questions by ordering a new steering cable and have some good news and some bad news. The attachment system for the motor seems to be universal. I ordered a Seastar SSC61/62/72 cable and the end slides right into the tilt tube on the motor and the cap screws onto the threaded end just like it should. Nowhere during the ordering process did they ask me what kind of motor I had, so I assume one size fits all.
But not so much luck with my no-name gear box. The cable goes into the unit like it should and you can start to draw it in more by turning the steering shaft, but it quickly binds up. Obviously, the gear did not mesh with the "threads" on the cable, so I ordered a new Seastar box.
"63sabre", thanks for your response. I was able to find that L-shaped bar you mentioned used on eBay, so now when my new gearbox arrives I will have everything I need for the steering.