Steering Problem with '01 Nitro NX750

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Lee Holcomb

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Hey guys, looking for some guidance on a steering problem. I just got my first bass boat, an '01 Nitro Dual Console NX750. I've run bass boats before, mainly my dad's 20' Shadow, but I've never experienced such stiff steering with a bass boat before. The steering at both low and high speeds is a bear. I mean it takes all the strength I have to steer the boat on the trailer at the end of the day.



I greased all the fittings on the motor and steering cable and it still seems too stiff. I took the nut off of the steering link rod and moved the motor back and forth and it seems to move just fine. But as soon as I reconnect it and use the steering wheel it is still really stiff. What else can I do to loosen up the steering wheel? Is this a common problem with bass boats? I thought that an 01 would still be in good shape. Could this be a problem showing up from the previous user's abuse of the boat?



Any help would be much appreciated. I'm thinking about taking it to a marine shop for them to look at it.



Thanks,



wlfpk_guy
 

Scott R

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There is a steering cable lubricator you can buy that will make it easier to lubricate the cables (check the link below), but it would only help a small bit. You can also a lubricator and use an air compressor to force the lube down the cable sheathing. Your best bet, yet more costly, would be to replace the cables with a hydraulic system. I put a hydraulic system on my boat last year and will NEVER own another boat with cable steering.
http://www.overtons.com/modperl/pro...eering-Accessories&aID=20E&merchID=1009&r=vie
 

Mebassn

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I had a helm fail internally on a no feed back steering system and it was real hard to turn. I went through the system and disconnected the cables at the helm and gave the wheel a twist to verify it was the helm. Cost about $100 to replace. I wouldn't take it back out till it was fixed. IMHO.



Eric
 

mike chip

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dont forget most if not all. cables use an oil ti lube them, not general grease, if you use regular ole grease, over time they get stiffer and stiffer, resulting inthe replacement of the cables due to stiffness.

mike c
 

Jim B

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Id bet your cables are shot. Itas a pretty common thing the cables rust inside the jacket and get stiff. Since there is really no good way to oil them inside the cable so there really isnt much you can do to prevent it.



I would replace the cables with new ones and put a no feedback helm on while your at it then you will be all set for a long time. You could change over to a hydraulic like Scott mentioned too. They are costly and they have thier own set of unique issues. I have had both types(hydraulic currently) and i like the "feel" of cables better at high speed, hydraulic is much nicer at slow speeds and idle. Thats just my personal preference.



As far as the lube goes like Mike mentioned. I would use grease on the exposed part of the cable. Its what both Merc and Teletflex(the maker of the cables) recommends. If you use the right grease(merc 2+4C) you should never have an issue. On the part you are actually lubing you are lubing the tilt tube just as much as the cable itself. Im sure oil would work but grease is what is suggested but the folks that make it. I have have had cables freeze up on two boats and both times i cut them apart on a band saw and they were frozen up near the helm far away from anywhere you could grease or oil.
 

Lee Holcomb

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Guys, thanks for all the quick feedback. I'm gonna purchase some of the Marine 2-4 C lubricant first to see if that will relieve any of the stiffness.



I'll probably just have a local guy take a look at the whole steering system and tell me if I need to replace the cable or the entire back mount rack steering system. I checked prices on the internet from teleflex and the whole "rack" system is about $140.



We couldn't completely pull the cable out last night. It would come about 1/4 of the way out but that's as far as it would go. This being my first boat, I don't have much knowledge about steering cables. Should you be able to pull out the entire steering cable and be able to look at it for wear and tear? I couldn't see much wear and tear on the portion I was able to pull out. I could tell there was some grease where it looked like someone had tried to lubricate the cable before.



But, again thanks for the help. I'll try to provide feedback and let you know the outcome of my steering problems.



Later,



Lee "aka" wlfpk_guy
 

mike mcmenamin

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Is the steering hard to turn when the boat is out of the water? Has the cable been replaced?



There is a posibility that the cable has been replaced and was replaced with a shorter one which will cause hard steering.



A friend of mine purchased a used boat. the cable had been replaced with a shorter cable and the bend under the console was so sharp you could barely turn the wheel. Don't forget to check the steering assembly under the console.



Bill
 

Berry Lindley

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I have a 750DC and it is no problem to steer without hydraulics, good advice so far above. You have something wrong, likely cables but could be helm. I'm more likely to think lack of use than abuse. Boats like to be used. If you don't know when the impeller and lower unit fluid has been changed I'd take care of this PM now.
 
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I had the exact same problem with my 640. Steering was incredibly stiff, and even worse in the cold. To the point that I had to sit on the back of the seat to give me enough leverage to turn the wheel. I replaced the steering cable and it's awesome now. While I was taking the old cable off, I tore the outer insulation and could see the actual steering cable...what must have been the lubrication had turned an almost powdery consistency. For $140, you'll be glad you did it, especially as spring rolls around and you want to be out on the water! This is my first boat too. Replacing the cable is a pretty easy job, just take your time. Also, if you don't have a very big motor, I wouldn't invest over $1000 in hydraulic steering. It isn't necessary!
 

byron cooley

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Hell - My steering was stiff and then got real loose on my 05' 640LX/75 Optimax. I have the motor raised up so high that the cable made a real tight "S" out of the splashwell. The sharp angle wore away at the lining inside the cable jacket. My solution was Baystar hydraulic. Over time I picked up all the pieces on E-bay for a total of around $340.00 and installed it myself in a weekend. I really love the way it steers now. If you are on a budget then just get a new rack system.
 

Lee Holcomb

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I talked with a local guy that fixes boats all the time. He used to fix them after work at his house, but now he only does repairs at the Marine shop. I don't know if the boss found out or what? So I'm a little weary of the labor cost, but I want it done right so this first go round I'm gonna have him repair it at the shop.



I'm supposed to take it in Saturday morning and should have it back in time to fish next weekend. Over the phone he told me that it probably was the steering cable and that it would be a simple replacement for him. He's been repairing boats for over 30 years and he said that sometimes new motors from the factory won't even have the steering cables lubricated? I don't know if that's true, but I trust his word if he's been in the profession that long.



Anyway, just wanted to pass along many thanks for the feedback. Hopefully I won't have anymore miscues before bass fishing gets cranked up here in NC. I look forward to getting more advice from the veteran boat owners, being that this is my first boat.



Later,



Lee
 

Frank M

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I also have the steering problem on my 2000 Nitro NX882 with 150HP but it goes away depending on the speed. Is this common with this boat and HP? The steering is fine when its not moving but stiffens up as i move. I'v only owned it since July/08, so i'm just getting used to the boat, but don't feel very safe with the steering. Can I repair it or shoul i installing a hydraulic kit?

You info would be helpful.



Cheers Frank
 

hiwaystr

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i have a 2001 nx 750 on my 3rd cable now should off went hydraulic 15 years ago . but i will say its a stupid design on a nx 750 the cable always has a bend in it
 

Arjan

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Switched to hydrolic steering 5 years ago on my NX750. Never looked back again. Steering is a breeze now.
 
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I have a 2001 896 Savage and the steering was so stiff that I had to brace myself to turn the wheel. Took the plunge and got the hydraulic steering and for a giant heavy boat it is extremely nimble.
 

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