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Greetings to all. It is severely cold in Michigan, how many days til spring? I have a quick question(s). I have include pictures of my 1973 Oshawa. The previous owner has the tiller hooked up to the outboard. Can I get rid of this system? If it is advantageous to keep it, and how do I secure the system better (the bolts and nuts unscrewed while motoring)? Must the outboard be secured in a certain position? Thanks to all for your help!
 

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It's kind of a neat idea, being able to 'steer' the motor and the rudder together should work quite well, actually.

It is a bit of a Rube Goldberg setup, though. Could probably be improved with a couple of turnbuckles on the cables to provide tension, and maybe a redesign to use the forward bracket originally intended for steering systems on the outboard.
 

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Maybe a spring or springs in the cable system with the turnbuckles to keep tight, but allow some give before it would break.
 

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I think it's nice to have them tied together. It saves you from having to reach back over the transom to steer when the boat is in use, yet it gives you the additional control afforded by having the thrust angle from the engine change. It's rare that you'd want the tiller and the motor to move in anything but a common path, so I like the idea of tying them together. I agree with the comments above that what you show is not the best way to do it, but I think I'd look at improving it (or replacing it), rather than just removing it.
 

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Yes you can get rid of that setup and simply lock your engine in place and steer with just your rudder. I see no advantage to this setup other than possibly a smaller turning radius under power. On our Catalina 27 we have the outboard locked in center position and use only the tiller to steer. We never need to turn the motor and lift it out of the water when under sail. In my mind that is just another setup that will go wrong at some point. Keep it simple.
 

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Remember you're a womble
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I witnessed a C&C25 across from me trying to leave their slip at the weekend. Had they of had a steering outboard it would have been a snap. However they didn't, all they did was crab sideways as they had nowhere near enough speed for their rudder to work, and the bursts of throttle from their outboard just kept pushing their stern. After they fended off from a few boats they made it, but a steering outboard would have allowed them to just back out and pivot the bow. In summary, being able to direct thrust from the engine is a fantastic thing.
 

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Yeah.. the only real negative I can see is that you do lose the ability to oversteer with the outboard for a really sharp (in a boatlength or less) turn, but that also usually requires two people or some impressive gymnastics to pull off.

I'd just like to see something that doesn't look like some clothesline and an old piece of angle iron... ;)
 
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