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Author Topic: 14' Jon boat tiller to steering wheel  (Read 23979 times)

Offline evansjoem

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14' Jon boat tiller to steering wheel
« on: February 07, 2017, 07:43:52 PM »
I have a 1985 15hp Evinrude.  I want to switch to a steering wheel instead of the tiller.  What do I need to accomplish this task?


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Offline evansjoem

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Re: 14' Jon boat tiller to steering wheel
« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2017, 07:55:03 PM »
im gonna build a console on the right side of boat


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Offline Curt

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Re: 14' Jon boat tiller to steering wheel
« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2017, 04:50:22 AM »
@evansjoem  Once the console is built, you'll need to buy a steering wheel and a set of controls to run the outboard.

If I'm not mistaken, you will also need to make some changes to the outboard itself to accommodate being run from the console, instead of being run by a tiller.

It's unlikely that you will be able to buy these items new in light of the age of the outboard. So you'll need to do some digging online to find what you need.

Maybe some of the other guys here can shed some light on the best place to get these kinds of items.

By the way, welcome to the site  :nod:

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Offline frugalangler

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Re: 14' Jon boat tiller to steering wheel
« Reply #3 on: February 08, 2017, 12:03:53 PM »
Curt is correct, the parts will be scarce. Converting an old tiller to remote is not difficult from the aspect of controlling steering, but the throttle/shift linkage is where the scarce parts come in to play.

Generally, most  will advise unless you can find a donor remote control motor, the juice is not worth the squeeze, meaning you're gonna struggle to find parts, the economics of the cost, the work to retrofit the motor (unless you're a marine mechanic) my recommendation would be either:
  • Stay with the tiller, if it ain't broke don't fix it.
  • eBay/Craigs List the old motor and buy a new Tohatsu (or other, but Merc's are made by Tohatsu as are Nisan) remote steer capable

If you go with #2, that leaves only acquiring the steering wheel, the control cables, the shift/throttle pod, and fabricating the console and side mount for the shift/throttle pod.

I have a similar pair of boats, and I chose to stay tiller, even though I have a complete shop it came down to not wanting to waist the space the console consumed, they simply get in the way on a small boat.

Probably not the kind words you wanted to hear, but been there, didn't do it. Just wasn't worth the effort.
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Offline evansjoem

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Re: 14' Jon boat tiller to steering wheel
« Reply #4 on: February 08, 2017, 01:23:39 PM »
This guy says it is a 93 Evinrude 15hp but is identical to mine


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Offline frugalangler

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Re: 14' Jon boat tiller to steering wheel
« Reply #5 on: February 08, 2017, 01:42:00 PM »
that's the steering components, if I'm seeing the picture correct, but what about shift/throttle linkage, I don't see those in the picture
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Offline Curt

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Re: 14' Jon boat tiller to steering wheel
« Reply #6 on: February 08, 2017, 03:03:44 PM »
that's the steering components, if I'm seeing the picture correct, but what about shift/throttle linkage, I don't see those in the picture

Those were my thoughts exactly. I don't see the cable for the shifting, throttle, etc. Only see the steering mechanism.

And I tend to agree with @frugalangler when it comes to the work and cost involved vs. the benefits of the conversion. But, it's your boat, your time and your money, so the final decision is really up to you.

Oh, and keep in mind also that adding a console and all of the stuff that would go with the steering and throttle conversion (mostly the console) will add some weight to the boat, which might adversely affect your boat's performance. Just some food for thought  (hmm)

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Offline evansjoem

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Re: 14' Jon boat tiller to steering wheel
« Reply #7 on: February 08, 2017, 03:44:22 PM »
Ya I have some aluminum scrap that I'm going to tig together.  Not too concerned with weight yet


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Offline evansjoem

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Re: 14' Jon boat tiller to steering wheel
« Reply #8 on: February 08, 2017, 03:45:01 PM »
I can fabricate my own levers if need be


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Offline frugalangler

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Re: 14' Jon boat tiller to steering wheel
« Reply #9 on: February 08, 2017, 04:53:26 PM »
I can fabricate my own levers if need be

I respect your ability for fabrication, but I caution (not knowing fully your ability) to keep safety in mind when doing this, as a broken throttle mechanism when at speed that doesn't shut down properly spells TROUBLE in a hurry.

If you do pull this off, document your build with photos and post back as a thread to the modification forum for all to see and learn from, that's what this community is all about!

So, back to your original question, I think you've located part of the equation, the steering linkage for the motor. Beyond that, a helm mount that will couple with that steering cable (it's a single cable setup), the shift linkage and lever, throttle linkage and lever, and connecting cables - all of which will be dependent on your motor for one end, the other you will need to fabricate your lever connectors based on what cable ends come on the cables. And, one VERY critical piece:

DO NOT FORGET a safety dead-man switch that has a cable to attach to the driver, a run-away boat is not a good thing, seen them and they scare the XXXX out of ya, go check some you-tube videos! An ignition switch would be the other item.

good luck with your build
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Offline Curt

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Re: 14' Jon boat tiller to steering wheel
« Reply #10 on: February 08, 2017, 09:04:54 PM »
If you can fabricate all of the necessary hard-to-find or missing items, then by all means give it a go. But as Frugal suggested, please get photos and videos to document the process so we can all see it!

I hope for your sake that you can make it happen.

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Offline evansjoem

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Re: 14' Jon boat tiller to steering wheel
« Reply #11 on: February 08, 2017, 11:07:36 PM »
I will be working on it shortly


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Offline Curt

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Re: 14' Jon boat tiller to steering wheel
« Reply #12 on: February 09, 2017, 11:44:11 AM »
I will be working on it shortly


Excellent. Looking forward to watching it come together.

When you get ready to post pics, be sire to do it here: http://www.bassboatboards.com/index.php/board,54.0.html

Just create a new thread so we can follow you from start to finish!  :nod:

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Offline evansjoem

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Re: 14' Jon boat tiller to steering wheel
« Reply #13 on: February 13, 2017, 05:34:51 PM »
Cut out face of console and made cardboard stencils


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Offline Curt

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Re: 14' Jon boat tiller to steering wheel
« Reply #14 on: February 14, 2017, 04:57:06 PM »
@evansjoem Looking good! Thanks for the updates :)

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