Steering cable fell off!

May 28, 2021
3
catalina Catalina34 Henderson Harbor
We had a bit of an adventure yesterday- about 1/2 mile out from our mooring we suddenly lost all steering. A few minutes frantic searching turned up the emergency tiller and we got her safely back to the mooring.

I’m very grateful that it happened when and where it did, under power and close to home, I can’t imagine what that’s like under sail!

Is this common? How do I prevent it from happening again? What parts need to be inspected for wear?

obviously I will tension the cable, it was so lose I got it back in the groove with little problem. It feels as though there is only one nut on the tensioning rod. All the systems I work on as a field engineer would have two to lock them in place so I’ll be adding those.

this will definitely go on my list of things to inspect regularly.
 

dmax

.
Jul 29, 2018
508
O'Day 35 Buzzards Bay
Tighten everything up and lubricate the cable (30W oil) - the nuts used to tension the cable should have a lock nut as you figured. Also check for brass pins in the idler pulleys, they can wear out: Edson steering idler pulley pins
 
May 17, 2004
2,032
Other Catalina 30 Tucson, AZ
We had a bit of an adventure yesterday- about 1/2 mile out from our mooring we suddenly lost all steering. A few minutes frantic searching turned up the emergency tiller and we got her safely back to the mooring.

I’m very grateful that it happened when and where it did, under power and close to home, I can’t imagine what that’s like under sail!

Is this common? How do I prevent it from happening again? What parts need to be inspected for wear?

obviously I will tension the cable, it was so lose I got it back in the groove with little problem. It feels as though there is only one nut on the tensioning rod. All the systems I work on as a field engineer would have two to lock them in place so I’ll be adding those.

this will definitely go on my list of things to inspect regularly.
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