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Changing steering cables SX230HO in an hour?

scopeusa

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Pictures posted text did not.............
So my cables finally arrived and I checked out the forum threads about removing my fuel tank cover to access the cables beneath. Oh boy that idiot at Yamaha specified permanent thread lock on my bolts too. I ground a piece of cobalt steel square and tried that, yes with plenty of downward pressure I managed to very gradually turn the bolts which I knew were under close to shear stress. Yes after four bolts one sheared although I did not use any impact tools on any of them. I found a #4 square bit at Wera on Amazon but they wanted $11.17 whereas Lawson wanted $0.41 each https://www.lawsonproducts.com/Falcon-Tools/ScrewdriverInsert-Bit-Robertson-Square-Drive-4/FA5515.lp although I am not sure of the carriage charge. Buying one would seem to be dumb as the shear problem could happen on these. Anyway being stuck in the Caribbean with no access to purchase I thought of another idea. Go cut a 2" x 1/2" stock 6061 alloy put it in the lathe and drill it with a I size followed with a 5/16" x 24 tap. Taper one end to help prevent snagging and tap from both ends for around an 1"/1 1/4". After removing the cable nut end, the cheapest is to purchase a set of what I know as box wrenches made from tube, available at Harbor Freight for pennies. After sliding on the closest fit proceed to fit the set inside each other to create a length greater than the cable then just undo with an adjustable wrench. You don't need much torque so they work like a charm. Then its the tong in cheek with the tube slid to the nut just threaded on to hammer the cable free of the sealer. Once free thread the tapered end onto the old cable end all the way. Then align the new cable and wind the tube backwards onto the new cable about half of the thread. For good measure wrap the cable and supporting tube with some pvc tape to help stop snagging. Whip the jet port cover off and remove the two pipes that obstruct view/access to the cables. Undo the cables at the steering head. Free the cables from the split flexible conduit in the engine bay. Find a couple of helpers one at the steering head, one at the stern and you stick your head down the jet port well. Gently and slowly does it with minimal effort applied at both ends and you can feed the cable under the fuel hatch/deck cover in about two minutes. Hence you can leave those pesky hatch cover bolts to fight another day. Then I got to thinking about preventative measures create a cable gland/seal assembly for the cables which loaded with silicon grease compresses a seal against the inner rod and relies on a compression olive on the tube guide. See the pics I experimented with an end cut off an old cable. Made from 316 stainless with a rubber conical grommet to seal the rod with adjustable compression and a locking nut.
 

Bruce

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Wow, what an experience!
 

96Pirate

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I am thinking about changing mine in the off season as preventative maintenance. I never have taken my tank cover off so this might me another option.
 

TheGriz

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WOW. That sounds way harder than it should be. I simply bought a 5/16-24 coupler from mcmaster-carr for <$5 and screwed the new cable to the end of the old cable and simply pulled it through. I just did the same with the reverse-gate cables, but it was a different thread size... can't recall the exact size. It took me 30 minutes to change both cables.

Here's the coupler I used for the steering cables:
https://www.mcmaster.com/#catalog/123/3234/=195qj55

I wanted access to the fuel sender and ended up removing my bolts as well. Half of mine came out easy and the others had to be drilled. Here's a link to the actual bit if you want to get one. It is a square #4:

https://www.mcmaster.com/#catalog/123/2814/=195ql6t
 

Julian

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scopeusa

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The Grizz, if you lived in the Caribbean you would know that you do not have a mcmaster-carr that can deliver you a part without it costing you at least $100. The lathe job took me 10 minutes and the material cost less than $.025, admittedly the cable seal took a little longer and cost way more but in the overall picture if it saves the cables and messing around with removing them from the steering to lube them with an oil drain, maybe its worth the effort. After all my boat takes the most severe battering from seawater salt.
 

Julian

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The Grizz, if you lived in the Caribbean you would know that you do not have a mcmaster-carr that can deliver you a part without it costing you at least $100. The lathe job took me 10 minutes and the material cost less than $.025, admittedly the cable seal took a little longer and cost way more but in the overall picture if it saves the cables and messing around with removing them from the steering to lube them with an oil drain, maybe its worth the effort. After all my boat takes the most severe battering from seawater salt.
Will have to stop by for a drink when I'm down there in October! Need me to bring you any parts?
 

scopeusa

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That's a shame because I plan to spend most of October at my home in Georgia, riding my bike on those fantastic roads. Next year I will have completed the stand alone cottage in the grounds, so whether I am here or not give me a shout.
 

Scottintexas

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thanks scopeusa,

added to the FAQ
 

Julian

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That's a shame because I plan to spend most of October at my home in Georgia, riding my bike on those fantastic roads. Next year I will have completed the stand alone cottage in the grounds, so whether I am here or not give me a shout.
Typical! We'll be down at Beaches from 10/19-10/30....
 

scopeusa

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Julian, I would have been very pleased to meet you, I live on the eastern end of Providenciales in Leeward. I definitely planned to be in Georgia as I need to get my driving license sorted which can take a couple of weeks or more for a non US resident. Thing is the US National Hurricane Center has just reported hurricane Irma, projected to run a category 4 and kinda heading my way. God help those folks in Texas but this looks as if it could be very bad for some folks.
 

Julian

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sethman919

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I still have a ton of the bits for the fuel hatch. Willing to give them away now.
 
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