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Author Topic:   Montauk steering
sage posted 01-14-2004 07:19 PM ET (US)   Profile for sage   Send Email to sage  

I just purchased a 1985 Montauk w/ 1990 90 HP Merc. Boat & engine are in fine condition. When I sea trialed, I noticed the steering veered to st'bd. The higher the speed the more it did so. Adjusting the power tilt trim helped reduce this about 50% depending on the speed. You still had to hold the helm and concentrate on compensating for the st'bt veering.

I was told that there is a steering kit available that changes the mechanics from "direct" to "indirect" steering" that corrects the problem and works quite well.

Any thoughts on this? Cost? Effectiveness? Who sells them?

Looking forward your input.


jimh posted 01-14-2004 07:38 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     

for much information on their steering devices.

whalersman posted 01-14-2004 07:57 PM ET (US)     Profile for whalersman  Send Email to whalersman     

I assume you have the Safe-T helm steering system.
No matter what you do the engine will always want to turn one direction or the other if you let go of the wheel momentarily.
You can adjust the trim tab of the engine so the pressure to turn the steering wheel would be the same in each direction.

An alternative is to go to the website jimh listed above and check out the No Feedback steering system. This way you could let go of the wheel and the boat would still go straight.

I have changed out the old steering system on a friends Montauk with the newer No Feedback system and it works very nicely..

The steering cable should be 17' or 18' feet depending on how much of a loop you need at the rear footwell..


sage posted 01-14-2004 08:51 PM ET (US)     Profile for sage  Send Email to sage     
What is the approx cost of the No Feed Back kit + installation based on your experience?
whalersman posted 01-14-2004 09:34 PM ET (US)     Profile for whalersman  Send Email to whalersman     

He purchased this through Surplus Unlimited which seems to have the lowest prices we could find.. $149.99.. Everything you need except the steering wheel which you already have.

You will have to click on Steering/Cable systems and then go to the Model #SS132.

He purchased the 18' cable and it works out great. If you would like some photos of the 17' cable installation compared to the 18' cable installation, just let me know..

It was very easy to put in... If you can use a wrench and a screwdriver, you shouldn't have any problems.. I put this unit in for him and it was straight forward...


sage posted 01-14-2004 10:01 PM ET (US)     Profile for sage  Send Email to sage     

Thanks I'll contact them. Might need some help later. Thanks for your input.

jimh posted 01-14-2004 11:24 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Here is a hyperlink to a better starting point for Teleflex steering information:

whalersman posted 01-15-2004 06:02 PM ET (US)     Profile for whalersman  Send Email to whalersman     

jim's link above gave me another idea on Montauk steering and that is the Baystar Hydraulic system.. A friend of mine installed this on his 1988 Montauk and love's it. I have not had the opportunity to try it out as he lives a distance away.

Although the Baystar Hyrdaulic system is much more expensive, it might be worth it if you intend on keeping the boat. Just a thought.

4whalers12345 posted 01-16-2004 03:13 PM ET (US)     Profile for 4whalers12345  Send Email to 4whalers12345     
Whalersman, could I take you up on your offer of pics for the 17 vs 18' teleflex steering. I also have a 1975 Montalk and am trying to decide on the correct replacement lenght for the Teleflex Safe T II NFB Steering System. Thanks
whalersman posted 01-16-2004 05:06 PM ET (US)     Profile for whalersman  Send Email to whalersman     
Kevin (4whalers12345),

I just sent you an email with the photos..

The 1977 Montauk with the 18' cable has the Teleflex NFB system. I installed this for a buddy and it was much easier then I thought it was going to be. The most difficult thing was making a spacer that was used between the new NFB helm and the console. His boat had the Big-T helm which had an oblong base. What I did is make an oblong base out of Black Starboard (1" thick) to go under the new NFB black helm. The whole unit now looks almost like an original Big-T helm.. The boat is put away for the winter so I don't have photos of the finished project but I do have a photo of the helm installation before the oval starboard spacer was installed..

If you have any further questions, feel free to ask them here or send me an email.


PSW posted 01-17-2004 02:34 AM ET (US)     Profile for PSW  Send Email to PSW     
I have the Baystar Hydraulic steering and it is very nice. I have had a Montauk with the no feedback and another with the hydraulic. I can steer with one finger. How about doing 30 mph and walking to the back of the boat to grab something without needing to worry about the boat diving right. I know the old timers will talk about it being crazy to leave the wheel, which it is, but it is nice to be able to do.


dogfish2 posted 01-19-2004 04:24 PM ET (US)     Profile for dogfish2  Send Email to dogfish2     
The best way to go on the steering system is to switch to the Baystar Hydraulic Steering. It is a little more expensive, but well worth the money. The hydraulic steering will eliminate most, if not all, of the problems you are encountering. I installed one of these units on my Montauk/115 4s, and it works beautifully.
Royce posted 01-25-2004 09:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for Royce  Send Email to Royce     
Ditto on the Baystar system. I installed it on my 1986 Montauk this year when I re-powered--what a difference! If you are keeping the boat it will be worth it in the long run--no more frozen cables and no feed back.
Tim Ehlers posted 01-26-2004 05:17 PM ET (US)     Profile for Tim Ehlers  Send Email to Tim Ehlers     
I have the Teleflex NFB helm in my '72 Katama with 120HP Tohatsu. It works great. I could let go and walk to the back no problem if I was crazy enough. It steers easily both ways. I swithced from the Safe-T quick connect helm and used the old cable. I originally bought the new helm with a 17 or 18 ft cable to reroute the cable through the tunnel. Since I learned I had to remove (lift out of way of transom) the engine to remove the tiller end I sloffed off and never put in the longer cable. I also never ran the boat with the Safe-T helm as I dismantled the interior right after buying it. I got the new cable and helm on Ebay for $60. If you watch Ebay, you can probably just pick up a new NFB helm and do the same thing. The hydraulic may be the best, but it would cost a lot more. Tim

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