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Author Topic:   Steering Cable Pulley Problem (Classic 13')
Bloxham posted 07-26-2003 08:44 PM ET (US)   Profile for Bloxham   Send Email to Bloxham  
I just discovered that the port side steering cable pulley is busted on my 1968 13'. I called a Whaler distributer and he told me to replace the whole system with the "newer" style steering system (teleflex, I presume). Says my boat is an accident waiting to happen. I emailed Whaler but have not heard back. I looked through this site but didn't find a definitive answer. Also, are the newer systems relatively easy to install. My mechanical abilities are somewhere between by father's (rebuilt an anonymous outboard that was submerged some time in saltwater) and my wife's (assume the other end of the spectrum). Why shouldn't I just buy a pulley from Home Depot and go fishing? Thanks for your help.
Dick E posted 07-27-2003 08:26 PM ET (US)     Profile for Dick E  Send Email to Dick E     
I have a strong opinion on this and agree with the Whaler dealer.
Go ahead and change to the telflex style and get rid of the pulley system.

Here is a case and point.
A couple of years ago a man, his wife and child went out for a cruise all wearing life jackets etc, on a local lake.

The cable broke, when this happened the engine will immedistely turn to one side, this action ejected all passengers out of the boat .
The boat circled and ran over the guy's wife when he and his son watched in Horror .

A dead man switch would of killed the engine.
Some people will disgree with me; but if they were that safe they would be installing them today. ,
Almost all dealers would not install the pulley/cable system.

Bloxham posted 07-27-2003 09:44 PM ET (US)     Profile for Bloxham  Send Email to Bloxham     
Thank You! The pulley is out of the running. Any ideas as to the specs, brand, ect. of replacement? Do you think I could install it myself? I truly appreciate your comments.
CarlRobert posted 07-27-2003 11:31 PM ET (US)     Profile for CarlRobert    
I replaced the pulley steering on my 1962 13 Sport with Teleflex steering several years ago. It was an easy installation that required hand tools and a drill. Here are my recommendations:

-Install the Teleflex No Feedback with the rotary helm. The "rack" system Teleflex offers probably won't fit your console.
-Measure carefully for your cable length. Distances seem to vary from transom to console on older 13 Sports. Mine required a 9' cable that was not offered in a boxed kit. My local boat shop graciously replaced the stock 10' cable with a 9' cable.
-If you have the original white steering wheel with the chrome bezel, it may not fit the Teleflex helm. I had to replace both.
-If you have a 15" shaft OB mounted on the transom, you will probably have to mount standoff brackets(available from Westmarine). These are not needed if you have a 20" shaft OB installed using lift plates.

The installation took only a few hours. I had to drill several holes in the top and starboard side of the wooden console to accomodate the Teleflex helm and cable. I love the steering system and have had no problems with it.


Bloxham posted 07-28-2003 07:14 AM ET (US)     Profile for Bloxham  Send Email to Bloxham     
Thanks. Exactly what I needed.
chuckecheese posted 10-07-2005 06:04 PM ET (US)     Profile for chuckecheese  Send Email to chuckecheese     
I am also attempting to replace a drum/cable/pulley system with a Teleflex rack. Got the helm set up no problem. Any suggestions on anchoring cable in transom and to outboard? Thanks.
Binkie posted 10-08-2005 05:00 AM ET (US)     Profile for Binkie  Send Email to Binkie     
If a cable and pulley steering system is maintained, it is no more dangerous, than Teleflex type steering. These cables can also break if not maintained. Thats why dual cable helms are recommended for boats over 50mph. Stock outboard race boats use cable and pulley steering, and some are capable of over 100mph, although they don`t buy their pulleys at Home Depot. The cable covering is clear, and you can see if there is any corrosion on the cable itself. I wouldn`t decide which system to use based on safety alone. Most Marinas don`t carry parts for cable and pulley installations, because there is very little demand. Race boat suppliers carry them, but they are more expensive than Teleflex. Cable and pulley systems give you better steering control.
I`m not going to use cable and pulley steering on my `61 13 footer, that I`m rebuilding, because I built a larger Nauset style mahogany side console, and I`m not going for the original look, My restored DeSilva class F Racing runabout, (about 75mph) has cable and pulley steering of course.

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