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Author Topic:   Trim Tabs on Nantucket
Mark426 posted 06-28-2004 06:32 PM ET (US)   Profile for Mark426   Send Email to Mark426  
Has anyone installed trim tabs on their Nantucket? Is there enough wood/phenolic or glass in the transom to support the loads generated?

I think the handling would be improved by tabs and want to install some if it’s not a big deal.


SteviLad posted 06-28-2004 07:18 PM ET (US)     Profile for SteviLad  Send Email to SteviLad     
I've put about 20 hours on my Nantucket, & I've been very happy with the performance & handling. I was thinking about putting a Dole-Fin on the Merc 150 Opti if I had a problem, but there doesn't seem to be any need. What type of handling problems have you been noticing that you think trim tabs would help? I've just noticed some resistance with the hydraulic steering until I trim the motor up when on plane.
Mark426 posted 06-28-2004 07:52 PM ET (US)     Profile for Mark426  Send Email to Mark426     
I have the 150 Opti also. It seems to ride slightly bow high unless you have quite a bit of speed up. I think the ride could be improved some in rougher conditions with tabs.

My engine is rigged as it came from the factory...3rd hole up and running a 17" pitch Mirage Plus prop.

I have noticed the resistance also, not bad but I improved it some by moving the aft edge of trim tab on the engine slightly to the right.

Beaufort, SC

Yiddil posted 06-28-2004 08:39 PM ET (US)     Profile for Yiddil  Send Email to Yiddil     
Hmmmm Ive had my Nantucket for a while such problem with a 115, gets right up on plane at2500 rpms:))and palnes well at 3500...:)No tabs needed:)
fno posted 06-28-2004 09:10 PM ET (US)     Profile for fno  Send Email to fno     
If you decide to get tabs get the Bennet M-80's
RonB posted 06-29-2004 11:07 AM ET (US)     Profile for RonB  Send Email to RonB     
Tabs make a world of difference even if you think you do not need them. I've been on a 190 Nantucket (for sale in Marketplace) belonging to another forum member (TG_190) without tabs and with tabs. He had Lenco's installed and the improvement was significant and very desirable. You could contact him back channel if you want specifics on size, cost, etc.

I can't speak for which is better, Lenco's (electric) or Bennett's (hydaulic), but I do know that the Lenco's answer more quickly to your requests when moving them up and down.

What I particularly liked was the fact that you can keep your bow down in chop, lessening any pounding and thereby improving your ride.

I will be putting tabs on my own boat later on this year and I'm looking at Bennett's at the moment.


SteviLad posted 07-08-2004 04:04 PM ET (US)     Profile for SteviLad  Send Email to SteviLad     
I recently had a call from Boston Whaler asking about my experience purchasing my Nantucket, & if I had any questions or comments.
I asked about their recommendation for trim tab installation. The Whaler rep stated that she did not think that the transom on the Nantucket provided adequate wood support for the loads generated by tabs, & also that the wood that was there was placed too high for installation of tabs.
She did say that the 18 Dauntless as well as their other models used hydraulic tabs, & she was not familiar with the Lenco electric model. Anyway, any thoughts?
SteviLad posted 07-08-2004 04:14 PM ET (US)     Profile for SteviLad  Send Email to SteviLad     
I just went thru the current Whaler catalog, & noticed several models use electric tabs vs. hydraulic. I wonder if I need to speak with a different rep! ...& I also wonder how they decide which models get electric & which get hydraulic tabs??
fno posted 07-08-2004 07:47 PM ET (US)     Profile for fno  Send Email to fno     
Seems like a throw of the dice lately. Whaler used Bennets for a long time and just within the last year or two started using the Lenco tabs. I spent some time on the Hul Truth's Tabman section and got the impression that the Lencos are more user friendly they do not hold up like the Bennets. Lot's of complaints about actuator failures after one or two years. My take is don't try to put something electrical under water for too long. It will fail. With the Bennet's they just leak or need a rebuild.
JohnJ80 posted 07-09-2004 09:58 PM ET (US)     Profile for JohnJ80  Send Email to JohnJ80     
I'm sure Whaler just bids this out and the best deal at the time for the contract period wins.

Both have their issues and both have their strengths. I researched them pretty carefully and selected Lenco because I like the idea of a jack screw instead of hydraulics. On whalers, with a center console, its easier to do the Lenco installation since you don't need to find a place to put the pump and resevoir. Too, I wasn't keen on the idea and potential mess of hyraulic oil and one more thing to check under the console.

That all being said, Bennett is known for their customer service. Lenco, from my experience, is also excellent. Both companies, IMHO, are great companies and their competition is just making them better.

I don't think you would go wrong with either. The installation on the Lenco's are much much easier (in my opinion) though.


BMR posted 07-10-2004 11:34 PM ET (US)     Profile for BMR    
The 190 Nanatucket can be ordered from the factory with Lenco trim tabs, Therefore there is wood and or whale board in the transom for them.
JohnJ80 posted 07-11-2004 08:55 AM ET (US)     Profile for JohnJ80  Send Email to JohnJ80     
The way most tabs mount is that they are screwed into the hull low down near where the transom meets the bottom of the boat. There is typically very thick glass there from the layup from the bottom.

The actuators mount higher up on the transom, where it is thinner. However, this is usually not a problem since the forces on the actuator screws are shear forces and not longitundinal on the screws. So, again there is adequate backing for the actuators.

Some whaler have portions of the transom that are foam filled inside of thick glass (thicker than normal in other places on the hull). While I haven't tried it, and never having had a problem with the tab installation on my dauntless, I think you could use the old trick of a piece of coat hanger on a drill so that you pulverize the foam behind your mounting hole. You then pump epoxy in to that void (a much, much larger area than the screw hole). The epoxy bonds to the the glass plus you have a much larger backing area. When it hardens, drill your hole and you have a solid plug behind the hole.

We do this on balsa cored sailboat decks all the time to mount things. I don't see why this wouldn't be any different for a foam cored piece - assuming you wanted to do it.

I don't think you have to do that, and Lenco and Bennett will tell you that they have seen many whaler installations where you just screw in the parts. But, you could if you wanted to.

On my Dauntless, I have jacked the boat up by the trim tabs when sitting on the jet dock and have had zero problem. I have also backed it down really hard in the water - to the point I got water over the back and had no problem. I don't think you need to worry about it on a boat the size of the Nantucket or with the size of tabs such a boat would need.

Incidentally, we were out yesterday in very choppy conditions. The tabs made the day - otherwise we wouldn't have been out. We were able to take big and consistent chop (combined wind and wakes) for 15 miles at 20-25mph by putting in the tabs to put the bow down. Significantly (very) smoothed out the ride. The wind was a off the port bow so a little bow up on port and bow down on starboard kept almost all of the spray out of the boat too.

We tried it with the tabs out (all the way up) for kicks and the fastest we could comfortably go was about 14mph - plowing along. I'd recommend tabs on almost any boat. The degree of control you get over the hull attitude is amazing - its like adding another 10' onto you boat in terms of ride without giving up the maneurverability.


Mark426 posted 07-12-2004 10:13 PM ET (US)     Profile for Mark426  Send Email to Mark426     
OK...Tabs arrived today. Lenco's.
Plan to put them on this weekend, thanks for all the info.


JohnJ80 posted 07-15-2004 11:21 PM ET (US)     Profile for JohnJ80  Send Email to JohnJ80     
Pretty easy installation (like very, if you are handy). Mine took me about 2-2.5 hours. I did it all with a Leatherman, a power screwdriver/drill, a hole saw and assorted bits, a tube of white 3M 5300, tape measure, and an electrician's fishtape. Follow the directions, they work great.

If you do it when Lenco is open, their tech support guys are great and will help you sort it all out.

Let us know what you think about performance.


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