View Full Version : steering wheel adjustment

10-08-2009, 11:35 AM
this just may be the dumbest question ever but it is bugging me so i will go to those in the know. i cannot get my steering wheel to 'line up right' when the rudder is straight. i have taken the nut off on steering column, made sure rudder was straight adjusted steering wheel and retightened. Go to the lake and steering wheel is a 1/4 off. Not a big deal but my wife wants to know that the boat is going to go straight when she pulls me up. And if i want her to keep driving, i do to! any thoughts. :cool:

Miss Rita
10-08-2009, 12:00 PM
So why don't you take the wheel off and re-install it in the right position?:confused:

10-08-2009, 12:20 PM
On my S&S (not sure if the newer boats work the same) I had to remove the steering box from behind the wheel and rotate the wheel/post to align the splines to a different orientation then reinstall the steering box and test drive. It was a trial and error method, but its pretty close now. I have found though through this that steering wheel position depends greatly on speed and load of the boat. I had never noticed it before I started playing with the alignment...

10-08-2009, 12:38 PM
Most of the MCs have some pre-load on the rudder, by design, such that to go straight you need to pull the wheel to the left some, i.e. it will turn to the right if you let go of the wheel. This was designed to hold the driver's left hand up with the right hand on the throttle; and to keep a very straight line in the course. I always have to turn a little to the left when starting out to pull up straight. If you are aligning the wheel to the rudder in center position on the trailer, it may be a little off when under way because of this pre-load condition. you will need to adjust with some trial and error but I think the rudder should be to the left a little when the wheel is straight when on the trailer. try it and let us know.

10-08-2009, 12:39 PM
I asked the same question several months ago, for the exact same reason. Since I received every answer possible, I called a dealer.

In 5 minutes, you can align your steering wheel and rudder. Under the dash, the steering wheel column and steering cable connect in a square assembly, held together by 4 bolts. Loosen the bolts, drop the cable, move the wheel, and re-insert the bolts. Hardest part is fitting under the dash.

You'll have to find "straight" before doing the adjustment. I just put a piece of tape on my steering wheel to define straight, and turned the wheel to that point when I removed the 4 bolts.

Keep in mind, as you increase speed, "straight" on your steering changes due to the prop rotation and natural pull of the boat. i.e., straight at 5 mph will likely end up in a slow turn if you hold the wheel tight and run up to 36. I set mine for straight at slow speeds for docking and initial pulls.

10-08-2009, 05:34 PM
As others have said the wheel will never be straight 100% of the time you're driving straight. IT's designed that way. Just let her go by feel. It's much better that way. My wife was the same way when I originally started teaching her how to drive the boat way back when. Repetition is the best way. she should have the boat straightened while the rope is tightening up and have a good idea of her path.

But yes the easiest adjustment is t remove the "black box" on the back of the wheel . Just loosen up the 4 bolts you dont have to take them all the way out if I recall correctly and then adjust the wheel 1 tooth at a time depending how far you are off.

10-08-2009, 06:09 PM
Ours is straight on the trailer with the rudder, but the steering wheel has distinct port rotation at trickski speeds of 15.5 to 17 mph, but it all but goes away and returns to center once you are pulling someone at slalom speeds of 34 to 36 mph and is totally gone at WOT of 43 to 44 mph. Weight distribution onboard for symmetrical wake and the prop force against the rudder at different speeds is the cause. I just got used to it and I never pay any attention to it anymore.

88 PS190
10-08-2009, 07:07 PM
Not a big deal but my wife wants to know that the boat is going to go straight when she pulls me up. And if i want her to keep driving, i do to! any thoughts. :cool:

This used to be a big concern for me, then I purposefully got used to taking pulls from different angles to the boat, I actually like getting pulled up at an angle to the boat, makes sure the driver doesn't just rip your arms off as only some of the boats acceleration is in the direction of straight from the skier, atleast at first.

10-08-2009, 08:29 PM
appreciate the feedback! why must i go to the box underneath instead of removing the center cap on the steering wheel, loosen the nut, adjust and retighten?

10-09-2009, 11:05 AM
Mine varies based on speed.

It will be straight at idle speed, but a little off with load on the rudder.

I would run at a certain speed, check the allignment of the wheel. bring the boat to a stop. remove wheel, move it over a couple of splines, then off you go again to see it still is off. keep doing that whil on water until you have a happy medium.

You can do this by removing the nut and pulling the wheel. I wouldn't go to all the trouble with the box under the dash...