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post #1 of 6 Old 07-10-2006 Thread Starter
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Dual station, single-lever engine controls

I've just bought a 42' steel pilothouse cutter as the biggest piece of a planned-for-2009 five-year circumnavigation. The engine is a low-hours Westerbeke W52 (boat was custom-built in 1988 but has never seen salt) and I have a single-lever gearshift/throttle in the pilothouse. There is a second "sailing" wheel on deck, on the same Marol hydraulic steering actuator. Both work well, and this can be deactivated to permit tiller steering on a transom-hung rudder.

But I digress.

The "sailing" steering wheel on the aft deck is on a square pedestal, but without a second throttle/shift control. While more exposed, visibility is superior in this spot for docking under power. With power off and sails up, we stay outside.

My question is: What is the best way and the best product to duplicate the pilothouse single-lever throttle/shifter on a Westerbeke of this vintage? I have full access, and this is a priority. Getting a hard bimini or a robust arch-style frame over the sailing steering is a close second.

TIA.
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post #2 of 6 Old 07-10-2006
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Try here

http://www.glendinningprods.com/complete_controls.html

and Google will reveal lots of other possibilities
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post #3 of 6 Old 07-10-2006
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Dual Station mechanical controls are common

Dual Station mechanical controls are common, but I had little luck googling around to see just how they work. Anyway, every marina has many boats with flybridges that also have lower control station, so the technology exists and it is only a matter of running some cables and providing the yet undefined "dual station kit/adapter".

Seems to me that mechanical (morse teleflex type push/pull cables) would be the way to go. Other wise you are likely to spend $6K to $12K for an electronic control system and then the first nearby lightning strike in mid ocean will leave you w/o engine controls, not to mention the inevitable salt water leak/drip right on the terminal strip for the control/signal cables that will over time cause erratic behavior and then after 10 hours of searching and head scratching at $60/hr the yard electrician will find the corroded connection.

I love electronics ( have an MSEE degree ) but am hesitant to trust my life to them. It is becoming that way in autos but ... OH Well. Can't just call AAA during your 'round the world' from the middle of Timbucktoo.

Last edited by sailandoar; 07-10-2006 at 09:26 PM.
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post #4 of 6 Old 07-10-2006
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I'd definitely use mechanical controls in an exposed position like that. As Sailandoar has pointed out, electronics are not yet to the point where they are reliable enough in such an electronics-hostile environment that they would be trustworthy. Having a electronic gremlin in your boat's engine control system is definitely not what you want.

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post #5 of 6 Old 07-10-2006
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The product you need is sold right here at sailnet in the engine controls section!!

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post #6 of 6 Old 07-16-2006 Thread Starter
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Thanks for all responses. I think I can parallel a second Morse cable and shifter assembly up through the binnacle, but I'll have to remove some of the aft cabin woodwork to figure it out.

I definitely favour mechanical here. Come to think of it, I own two sextants. Can't be too careful.
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