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Old 04-05-2010, 12:15 PM
seth25 seth25 is offline
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Boat: 2005 X45
Location: Rocky Mtns.
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Steering Cable--Replace It!!

I bought a 2000 Maristar 230 last month. Boat only has 165 hrs, but steering was very tight. Almost like an old car that doesn't have power steering. Did some research on here, and everyone says it is the steering cable. Only problem, V drive boats are a pain to replace the cable due to location of cable, fuel tank, etc. Dealership wanted $300 labor to change it, so I decided to due it myself. I followed advice on here and removed the drivers seat to help with access under the wheel, unscrewed the floor section above the gas tank, loosened the rear seating as I was anticipating having to raise the fuel tank to get the cable out. I tied a string to the end of the cable and gave it a shot. The thing came right out, just hung up a little on the footwell at the very end. Fed the new one in and it went right in!! It would have taken me about 30 minutes had I not loosened everything up.

Anyway, the point is if your steering it tight at all, replace the cable!!! Night and day difference!! My wife was actually saying that she was not going to drive the boat because of how hard it was to turn, now it is barely one hand steering. Cable cost me $200 at the local dealership. Best $200 I ever spent!!
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  #2  
Old 04-05-2010, 12:33 PM
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BriEOD BriEOD is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2004
Boat: 2000 MasterCraft ProStar 205 DD
Location: Severn River, MD
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Good to hear.

I actually replaced the cable in my 2000 PS 205 a few weeks ago as well. I also had to remove the floor panels and unbolt and remove the frame for my back seat/trunk. While doing it I damaged my flexible blower hose (dry rotted) and had to pull the gas tank forward to access the attachment point for replacement. All that said, it was a fairly easy job and what a difference!

Must be a 10 year shelf life on them!
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  #3  
Old 04-05-2010, 02:59 PM
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Richnes Richnes is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2009
Boat: Shopping for XStar SS
Location: Miami Beach, Florida
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Seems like I might be having similar issues... I bought a 2005 Xstar with only 180hrs but the steering is really tough... I ride in a pretty narrow lake/canal and almost ran aground this weekend coming around for a double up. Anyway, I thought I needed to add power steering or something since the boat's only 5 years old but now I'm thinking it might be the cable. i'm wondering:

1) is it common to have power steering for these boats? I haven't been able to find anything on the web that mentions it...
2) is there a way of re-greasing/cleaning an old cable or is the only option to replace it?
3) how do I find out what replacement cable and size to buy? should I just contact Mastercraft?

thanks!
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  #4  
Old 04-05-2010, 03:04 PM
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CruisinGA CruisinGA is offline
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Boat: '01 X9 330HP
Location: Georgia
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1. You shouldn't need power steering.

2. I've only heard of people replacing, but I'm no expert.

3. www.skidim.com Give em a call, really helpful, good people w/ good prices.
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  #5  
Old 04-05-2010, 04:25 PM
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Wake2004 Wake2004 is offline
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Boat: 2004 Mastercraft Prostar 205v MCX
Location: Rockies
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I could probably drive with one finger of I wanted to. Not sure about being able to add lube.
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  #6  
Old 04-05-2010, 05:13 PM
seth25 seth25 is offline
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Boat: 2005 X45
Location: Rocky Mtns.
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Sounds like you need to replace the cable. First unhook the cable from the rudder and make sure that the rudder moves freely. There is no power steering on these boats. If the cable is working as it should, it will feel like power steering. There are only two grease points: one on the rudder and one about a foot from where the cable meets the rudder. I guess that it wouldn't hurt to grease first. There is a part number stamped about a foot from the end of the cable where the black cable sheathing begins. This will tell you what cable you need. The last two digits of this number tell you the length of the cable. My cable was 21'. Also, my local dealer was cheaper than www.skidim and without shipping costs.

This is the reason why I started this thread....replace the cable and it will be like a new boat!!!
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  #7  
Old 04-05-2010, 05:22 PM
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Richnes Richnes is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2009
Boat: Shopping for XStar SS
Location: Miami Beach, Florida
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Awesome.. thanks everyone... I'll try the lube and report back... in any event $200 for a "like new" ride is not too bad...
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  #8  
Old 04-05-2010, 07:18 PM
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ahhudgins ahhudgins is offline
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IMO, if greasing it at the grease fitting doesn't help, replace the cable. I could see that the grease in my cable had gotten thick, so I thought it would be a good idea to remove the cable and try to squirt a little WD-40 into the cable to loosen it up. What should have been a 2 hour job turned into a 2 evening job. My cable wouldn't come out from under the tank even after I removed the floor panel and the entire middle seat. I eventually pulled up the gas tank to discover that all of the wires and cables had be bound together with a plastic wire tie. Lubed up the cable, put everything back together, and it only helped a little. Still can't steer with one finger like my past Mastercrafts. I'm replacing my cable and suspect that I can do it in an hour without that 15 cent wire tie!!!
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  #9  
Old 04-05-2010, 07:25 PM
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Chicago190 Chicago190 is offline
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Generally, once the cable starts to stick, it must be replaced to fix the problem. Proper lubrication prevents bilge water from getting into the cable and corroding the metal cable, which is what causes it to stick. Once the corrosion has occurred, lubrication will probably only marginally improve steering.
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  #10  
Old 05-25-2010, 04:51 PM
DBrown2 DBrown2 is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2007
Boat: 2005 MC X Star, PP
Location: Southeast
Posts: 526
Bringing back... When I bought the boat, and test drove it... it would turn easy the short quarter turns, but if you are going to mack a u turn... it gets stiff, but really seems to be stiff only one way.

When I say easy... its easy like my old PS, like 1 finger, type..

Still the cable guys?? can I get a little more instructions on grease fitting locations?? MS210
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