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View Full Version : Basic Steering Wheel Alignment Question


Archimedes
04-18-2007, 02:12 PM
This may be a really dumb question, but is the process of aligning my steering wheel as simple as loosening the center bolt under the center cap on the steering wheel, realigning the wheel and then retightening?

When I did my water test on my new boat last fall, the steering wheel was way off. I asked the dealer to fix it before I left their lot and their tech spent a lot of time under the dash with wrenches adjusting it. Surprise, when I got it to the lake the first time it was still way off (by about 90 degrees). I took my boat in for an oil change and some other work today and couldn't remember which way it was off, so couldn't tell them what to do. Then I notice my center cap had fallen off and I saw the bolt underneath. Is that the adjustment bolt? If so, I'll just adjust it the next time on on the water.

Note, I'm aware that I need to pressure the wheel to get the boat to go straight. This is way beyond that.

Now the other question is, how do you get that center cap to stay on? Mine's obviously compressed and it won't go stay on.

Jesus_Freak
04-18-2007, 02:28 PM
I think the steering wheel is keyed to the shaft; otherwise if it inadvertently loosens up you have no control....not sure.

captain planet
04-18-2007, 02:34 PM
The steering wheel on my 98 is splined. It was slightly off when I bought the boat. A quick wrenching job with a large socket and move the wheel to the desired position. Takes about 5 minutes. It's better to line it up in the water because I was never able to get it perfect while on the trailer.

Hope this helps.

2QWICK
04-18-2007, 02:44 PM
They're splined and very easy to adjust. I've actually taken mine off while underway in the hopes of getting it centered. After a few failed attempts I realized that it will never be like a car. There are many more factors to keeping a boat stright then on a car (wind, current, waves, people, ballast) so I gave up. Maybe that is why "normal" boats have round helms rather then F1 style steering wheels.

Love the look... just cant get OCD on the placement... trust me been there done that.

Archimedes
04-18-2007, 03:40 PM
So do you adjust it by taking the center bolt off, pulling the steering wheel off and resetting it on the shaft and retightening, or is the adjustment from underneath? I've looked at the connections underneath and can't for the life of me figure out what the heck the dealer tech was doing down there to try to get the wheel straight.

Jesus_Freak
04-18-2007, 03:55 PM
So do you adjust it by taking the center bolt off, pulling the steering wheel off and resetting it on the shaft and retightening, or is the adjustment from underneath?

Yes: pull, rotate to something near correct, reassemble.

I've looked at the connections underneath and can't for the life of me figure out what the heck the dealer tech was doing down there to try to get the wheel straight.

????

captain planet
04-18-2007, 03:57 PM
So do you adjust it by taking the center bolt off, pulling the steering wheel off and resetting it on the shaft and retightening,
Yup. That's what you need to do on my boat. Yours is 8 years newer than mine, but I don't think much has changed.

Archimedes
04-18-2007, 04:05 PM
????

My thoughts exactly. I think he was adjusting the linkage in some way, rather than just moving the wheel.

Knowing the dealer I bought it from, it doesn't surprise me in the least. They originally told me over the phone that the RTP-1 was a carbuereted motor...

2QWICK
04-18-2007, 04:14 PM
Yeah just yank it off... should take like 30 seconds.