Transmission Neutral Detent

Apr 5, 2019
44
Catalina 310 323 Brooklyn, NY
The neutral detent seems harder to find than it should. Sometimes resulting in starting in gear or uncommanded Forward/Reverse when undocking/docking.
Is this common? Cable adjustment perhaps?

Sean
 
Oct 22, 2014
16,409
CAL 35 Cruiser moored EVERETT WA
Unlikely a cable adjustment. More likely an indent on the gear shift arm housing. I would first check your transmission and see how it is attached. Some have you moving a lever that has an detent (sometimes a hole where a dimple in the armature sends a feed back to the gear shift). This may wear down over the years or the linkage may become loose with wear and the dimple is no longer fitting into the hole.
If not on the engine it may be in your binnacle housing.
Good luck Sean.
 
Nov 6, 2006
9,245
Hunter 34 Mandeville Louisiana
I agree with John, in addition :
Sticky cable can also do this.. results in overshooting the detent in both directions.. Ya can check by removing the cable connection at the transmission and working the transmission lever by hand.. If the detent feels good, then with the cable still detached, move the control lever and see how much resistance there is.. Sometimes a stiff cable can be lubricated, and sometimes ya have to change it.. (PITA)
 
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JRT

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Feb 14, 2017
1,970
Catalina 310 211 Lake Guntersville, AL
I have to let the rpms come down to make finding it easier. If they are too high seems to stick and then over shoot.
 
Oct 22, 2014
16,409
CAL 35 Cruiser moored EVERETT WA
then over shoot.
Do you mean it throws you into forward or reverse? That is hard on the transmission. Not to say if you attempt the maneuver in a tight environ you might be meeting new neighbors in a compromising manner.
 

JRT

.
Feb 14, 2017
1,970
Catalina 310 211 Lake Guntersville, AL
For me it is probably just a learning curve. I'm pretty good now, but last week I was teaching my wife and she was missing neutral, it seems to sit well enough in there and I've so far had no issues underway for several hours of motoring. We aren't very high stress on the lake so that probably helps.
 
Apr 5, 2019
44
Catalina 310 323 Brooklyn, NY
I manually operated the lever (see pic) on the transmission with the cable attached. It moves smoothly but has approximately 3/8” of play in neutral. I’m thinking it’s the lever detent?
Where is the lever detent located?
I did not go inside the binnacle yet...
 

Attachments

Apr 8, 2010
1,637
Ericson Yachts Olson 34 28400 Portland OR
Lots of good advice here about checking on the transmission shifting end. Also, remember that your throttle and shift cables are "consumables" and do have to be replaced every so often. The internal cable structure and original lubricant will fade away with use. They do have a relatively long life, but it is finite. Getting 20 years out of a set is not unusual, but past that you are into the 'twilight zone' of maintenance.
We replaced both about 10 years ago (1988 boat) -- immediate difference in how slick the movement was, and yet would still hold position without slipping. Still good today.
 
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Apr 5, 2019
44
Catalina 310 323 Brooklyn, NY
Spoke with Edson today. 12 year old cables may cause this as most of you have said. How big of a PITA is this?
 

JRT

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Feb 14, 2017
1,970
Catalina 310 211 Lake Guntersville, AL
I'd like to know too, I'm considering this as preventative maintenance because of this thread. Catalina Direct shows 2 lengths for the C310.
 
Feb 8, 2014
1,300
Columbia 36 Muskegon
If the cables were installed "by the book", they'll be secured every couple feet with cable clamps or zip ties. That's the PITA. If they're just routed and not tied down down, replacing should be easy. Disconnect both ends, tape the new to the old, and pull it through.
 
Nov 16, 2012
1,002
Catalina 310, 2000, #31 31 Santa Cruz
Spoke with Edson today. 12 year old cables may cause this as most of you have said. How big of a PITA is this?
Access isn’t too bad for the C310. You’ve reminded me that I should consider doing this myself.
 
Apr 5, 2019
44
Catalina 310 323 Brooklyn, NY
Paulj,

I noticed you used 13’ for the transmission.
Catalina direct recommended 12’, how did 13’ work out?
 
Apr 5, 2019
44
Catalina 310 323 Brooklyn, NY
Paulj,
What I should of asked was “what length were the original cables you removed?”

sjsflyer