Sunday, January 23, 2011

Steering Linkage

     I took a picture of the steering linkage as soon as I pulled it from the boat:
     As you can see, it was quite corroded and rusted. The factory connects the tiller arms to the tie bar with short, 1/2" hex head cap screws. This system works well enough, at first, and allows for a quick assembly at the factory. However, over time, the threads of the bolt slowly wear into the bronze forks, and play develops in the steering linkage. In order to eliminate any clearance, I bored both tiller arms, and both forks, to 9/16". Next, I fabricated two new pivot pins from stainless steel bar stock, as shown below:
     These new pins are .001" smaller in diameter than the bored holes in the tiller arms and forks, resulting in a freely rotating joint with no play, and just enough clearance around the pins for lubricant. Close-ups of the finished fork, and the finished steering linkage, are below:

     The tie bar was sandblasted, primed, and painted gray. The tiller arms and forks were blasted, then clear coated.
     I have quite a few new pictures, so there should be a couple more updates later this week.


  1. "I have quite a few new pictures, so there should be a couple more updates later this week."

    Let's have them! If you have half as much snow as we do you should have plenty of time to post some more excellent examples of your fine work.

    Can't wait to go for a cruise propelled by twin BBC's. Aluminum heads or remo's? Decide yet?


  2. Unfortunately, a bout with kidney stones left me out of commission last week. I'll get caught up soon. And you'll get your ride, as long as you pay for gas....