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Author Topic:   Fly By Wire
stlawrence posted 12-03-2002 10:26 AM ET (US)   Profile for stlawrence   Send Email to stlawrence  
Will 2003 models [of Whalers? of Mercury outboards?] have the fly-by-wire controls instead of cables for the throttle and shift?
captbone posted 12-03-2002 03:43 PM ET (US)     Profile for captbone  Send Email to captbone     
Yes, they still make them. The Teleflex I6000 is shown in the last month's Saltwater Sportsman [magazine] on a 36 Yellowfin with 3 225-HP Honda's.
BMR posted 12-05-2002 10:08 PM ET (US)     Profile for BMR    
Mercury has a system just coming on the market called DTS ( digital throttle and shift) It is a system integrated on the engine. Reports are that it improves throttle response and performance. It is a true drive by wire system. This is compared to the Teleflex system that uses actuators mounted in the boat that actuate cables that are run to the engine. The new Merc system has no cables.
Clark Roberts posted 12-06-2002 07:21 AM ET (US)     Profile for Clark Roberts  Send Email to Clark Roberts     
Remember the electric shift OMC's? I had a 1968 Evinrude Triumph 55hp, 3 cyl looper with electric shift... no cable just a wire to motor and pushbuttons on control box. Once it got hung up in reverse and I had to back home. Those engines required a special lube oil for lower unit because of the solenoids located there and could be very expensive to repair (water in lower unit could not be tolerated)...
I have always preferred a more "direct connection" like "four on the floor"... Happy Whalin'.. Clark.. SCN
jimh posted 12-06-2002 09:10 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
I doubt that in one model year change over that Mercury (or any other outboard engine maker) would implement an across the board change to "fly-by-wire" controls.

The hybrid solution of remote electrical controls which operate mechanical actuators located closer to the engine does not seem particularly elegant, and it is very expensive.

An engine initially designed for remote electrical controls would be nice. The technology seems to be well tested in military aircraft.

stlawrence posted 12-17-2002 02:59 AM ET (US)     Profile for stlawrence  Send Email to stlawrence     
Anyone know what models of Whalers, or what Merc engines, the fly by wire controls will be available on?

We're buying a 2003 Ventura 210, and I wondered if this was going to be available.


bsmotril posted 12-17-2002 02:26 PM ET (US)     Profile for bsmotril  Send Email to bsmotril     
With an engine already controlled by a cpu, I would think that electronic controls would be cheaper and simpler than any type of mechanical linkage. Using a data port on the CPU, anywhere from 2-6 wires, and either a resistive or optical encoder at the throttle, you could eliminate all the mechanical under hood linkage and control cables. I would bet the throttle unit could be built for much less cost than a mechanical one. You would likley just need to change the firmware of the CPU to accomodate this.
captbone posted 12-17-2002 02:32 PM ET (US)     Profile for captbone  Send Email to captbone     
no matter how good electronics get, water and them dont get alone, especially saltwater.
BW23 posted 12-17-2002 03:18 PM ET (US)     Profile for BW23  Send Email to BW23     
Do any of you have a newer Ford or Chevy 4wd which engages its 4 wd with a push button on the dash ? How many times has it failed?? When used very hard ?
I prefer a good reliable mechanical/adjustable linkage. Even if the cables break , just pull the bonnet and you can engage / dis-engage fwd / reverse by hand (or w/hand tools). Been there had to do that.
lhg posted 12-17-2002 03:44 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
Mercury's version of the Yamaha 225 4-stroke has these controls. So Whalers that have this engine will have them, at least as an option I would imagine. It's all tied into Mercury's "Smart" technology. They are saying it's more responsive and smoother than cables, and simplifies rigging. Sounds interesting to me. I would assume there is some kind of "fail safe" backup system of manual operation.
j_h_nimrod posted 12-18-2002 01:36 AM ET (US)     Profile for j_h_nimrod  Send Email to j_h_nimrod     
I am sure these things are great when they work, but mechanical is so much simpler and reliable. Over engineering (or should I say over complication?) is nice to a point, but when you need a laptop to repair the damn thing when it breaks that is going a little too far. Then again in todays society most people take all these things for granted and just expect them to work, and when they dont they call the mechanic or Sea Tow, etc. My point is that things work much better when they are kept simple and basic. I am sure I could say more but that is my sermon for now.
captbone posted 12-18-2002 08:47 AM ET (US)     Profile for captbone  Send Email to captbone     
The USCG 47 ft MLB has DDEC electronic controls and then has mechanical as a back up, the only I would have electronic controls would be this way. How many computer problems have you guys had in your lifetime, I do not want a computer problem 40 miles offshore when its getting dark and the winds kicking up!
VMG posted 12-18-2002 09:22 AM ET (US)     Profile for VMG  Send Email to VMG     
Digital electronic fuel controls have worked well in aircraft engines for many years. In the case of the one that I flew, DECS was introduced 15 years ago. There are manual backups built into the system. The DECS provided many advantages to the older hydromechanical system, among them, diagnostics. However, there is a developmental learning curve with any new system (as demonstrated with the Ficht intro) so we would hope the engine manufacturers have learned to pay the "developmental costs fiddler" up front this time.
lhg posted 12-18-2002 04:26 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
We are all running EFI systems in our autos with greatly improved reliability over the old carb systems, and the same goes for my EFI outboards. I've got to say that I really don't worry about an EFI breakdown when far offshore, and the benefits of all of the sensing characteristics greatly outweigh the risk of failure. Most people with EFI 2 or 4 stroke outboards swear by them. So why not electronic controls? Sounds good to me.
captbone posted 12-20-2002 09:09 AM ET (US)     Profile for captbone  Send Email to captbone     
The same reason that almost all working diesels have a mechanical shut down, when you first get a new diesel, it has a nice stop button that works an actuator that pulls a chain to shut the engine down. After 3 month that actuator dies and you have to find the shut down lever. For same reason the actuators alway die, and then people hook up their own mechanical shut down with a cable. The electric moving part are not as reliable as fixed electronics such as EFI and they are not as reliable as mechanical
Mark Gallagher posted 12-20-2002 09:53 PM ET (US)     Profile for Mark Gallagher  Send Email to Mark Gallagher     
I work in the automotive field and in the last few years we've employed drive by wire on a few of our models. The system uses numerous sensors and an electric motor assembly to open the throttle shaft. The entire system has dual circuits as a redundant safe guard. My wife's car uses drive by wire and a 5 speed manual and it is amazingly responsive. I haven't seen one problem in the field yet. It did make me skeptical though at first knowing how elctronics can sometimes behave. I know extensive R&D was used because this is a sensitive application. I think it will be a welcome addition on marine applications.


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