Remote outboard controls or tiller conversion? - SailNet Community

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Old 02-24-2012
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Remote outboard controls or tiller conversion?

I have a 22' sailboat and am planning on putting a 9.9 outboard on it. If I have an 85 evinrude with remote throttle and steering controls, is there a way to convert it to tiller controlled? If so, how easy is it?

If not, has anyone tried to use an outboard without steering? I'm sure i could steer using the rudder under way, but at low speed how responsive would it be?

What options do I have?
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Old 02-25-2012
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make a linkage to the rudder from the out board so you only have to use the 1 tiller, have a good sail.
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Old 02-25-2012
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You don't need to turn the motor at all, the boat's tiller and rudder is all you need, period. If the motor still has the tiller arm on it, then just disconnect the shift and throttle cables. If it doesn't, then it's a big project. Also, a 9.9 is really overkill for a 22' boat. A 6hp 2 stroke, or 5hp 4 stroke would be more than adequate and a lot lighter.
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Old 02-25-2012
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I used a 8hp 4 stroke on a 40 foot ketch ... if you use the motor for steering when comeing into a dock you get better steerage ... rest of the time leave it locked in place and use the rudder or tiller for steerage ... it is not as good but seems to work fine ...
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Old 02-25-2012
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I'm thinking about getting a small sailboat with an adjustable outboard bracket and would like to be able to approach a dock under power and be able to steer via the outboard rather than rudder for better control as a previous poster noted. Plus I wonder if there is a tiller extension to allow not only control from futher in the boat but to allow FNR without hanging over the stern as the boat approaches the dock.
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Old 02-25-2012
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A piece of PVC pipe will work as a extension, You may want to split the one end for the engine about 8" so that it will fit over the handle and secure with a hose clamp. I use one on my zodiac dinghy so I can be forward.
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Old 02-25-2012
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I used a 9.9 on my old Grampian 26, which had a nice transom cutout to accommodate the outboard. When underway, I never touched the tiller. When docking, having unimpaired access to the tiller with throttle made maneuvering a piece of cake. I usually docked stern in, because all I had to do was spin the boat around and get the stern pointed in the general direction of the slip.

From that point on, I'd have the boat's tiller in my left hand and the motor tiller in my right, and I turned them in the same direction as if they were linked. All I had to do was point the propeller in the direction I wanted to go and apply power. Ridiculously easy. I got positive comments on my amazing docking ability.

BUT....as I moved up to a 31 footer with an inboard, I had to join the real world, where props are in a fixed position, and turning is done with the tiller or wheel, "prop walk", and the action of wind and current.

Point is, having your outboard in a fixed position on your stern is no different than what all the guys with inboards are experiencing. In fact, you still have an advantage in that your boat is often smaller relative to the size of the slip or waterway, and you can easily fend off a 22 footer.

Bottom line is, just put the motor on the transom and lock it in place, and make sure the throttle is easily accessible while you have a hand on the boat's tiller. As others have suggested, your 9.9 is a little large for you boat. A six would be fine, but would probably only save you 30 pounds or so. Sometimes you just go with what you've got.
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Old 02-25-2012
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Several manufacturers offer 9.9hp motors with remote throttle & transmission control. Tohatsu, Nissan, & Mercury at least; The 8hp is built on the same frame so it would seem like the remote would work for them as well, but I'm not sure.

Both opinions are correct; once the boat has a little headway, the rudder all you need; when maneuvering into a slip, it would be nice to turn the outboard as well. I haven't cracked that nut yet, but I've got some ideas.
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Old 02-25-2012
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The 9.9 HP is ok if you throttle it back; otherwise, lots of wasted gasoline. You want the bow wave to come back and lift the stern so the boat is not going uphill wasting fuel. A 4 cycle will not foul the spark plugs liked a 2 cycle could. Also, a 4 cycle will get considerably better fuel economy at part throttle. At part throttle the smaller 2 cycle with carburetor uses twice as much fuel per horsepower than at wide open throttle, very inefficient.

I have a 17 foot dinghy with a 1.2 HP outboard and plastic prop. The outboard swivels completely around and find this quite useful when docking. Just flip it around for reverse or any other direction to move the stern about. The only problem is forgetting where the rudder and prop are so that the prop hits the rudder. Not a problem with plastic prop, but would recommend a bolt on finger to the cavitation plate that keeps the rudder from contacting the prop.
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Old 02-25-2012
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If you have a transom mounted rudder and an offset outboard, Mobius' suggestion above for a link between the back edge of the rudder to the motor so it turns with your tiller is a great idea.

If you've got to put up with the eyesore than any transom mounted outboard represents, there's not much point in giving up the added advantage of maneuverability from being able to direct the propwash to help with turning.

The other issue with using just the rudder, is that it is not working in the propwash (as it does with inboards and some in-well-mounted outboards) and is therefore less effective, esp at low speeds. The straight-ahead push of the prop wash when in gear might even reduce the effectiveness of the rudder as well.

A tiller connected outboard and conventional in-cockpit remote controls will probably be easiest to use. So often we see people draped over the transom trying to find reverse or change gears as they approach a dock they can no longer see....

btw I also think 9.9 is overkill for a 22 footer (unless it's a Lyle Hess Cutter..) esp if you're not doing frequent long haul deliveries against wind and current.
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Last edited by Faster; 02-25-2012 at 01:18 PM.
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