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Controls and Cables FAQ’s

 
What kind of control cables go on my boat? The boat has a [brand name] engine.
There are several ways to determine this information by noting:
a. appearance of the cable
b. part number of the cable
c. engine(s) and controls on which cable is used

Take a look at the existing cable.

Usually the part number is stamped in white on the existing cable’s plastic outer casing.
If you can’t locate it or read the part number, check to see what brand of control and brand/year of engine is on the boat now.

With this information, you can determine which cable you need from identification/application charts in this catalog. These charts will help you identify cables by appearance, part number, control type and engine brand/type.

In most cases, SeaStar Solutions offers three performance grades, called Standard, Midrange and Premium.

For maximum performance, we recommend our Premium xtreme_thumb cables.

Once the part number of the replacement control cable is known, measure the one you have now if at all possible.

Please see “How to Measure Control Cables” in this catalog and take special note of how measurements are made. The most frequent reason for the return of a new cable is that the incorrect length was ordered.

Can I use a dual function control in a dual station boat?
Yes, If you use the DS units shown on pages 167 and 168 of our catalog.

If you do not use the DS units the controls will bind up.
Instead, use one single function dual lever control per engine at each station. We have several from which to choose, but recommend the CH5600P —
a state-of-the-art mechanical control specifically designed to work smoothly in twin station boats.

Single function controls for twin stations are set up with the cables “in series”. This means that each cable is run from one lever of an upper station control to the corresponding lever of the lower station control. Another cable is then run from the lower station control to the engine. When the cables are properly connected, moving the levers at one station will move the levers at the other station in addition to actuating throttle and shift.

Shift detents should be used in the lower station control(s) (closest to the engine) only. Do not install shift detents in the second station control.

When mechanical controls are used in two stations, we always recommend cables, which are also specifically designed to work smoothly in twin station applications. When combined with CH5600
controls, these cables give you superior smoothness and response. Because of their unique contruction,
these cables have very little backlash, so a high-quality synchronization of the control head lever position and feel at each station (including shift detents) is possible.

If a mechanical control system cannot deliver acceptable feel or response, upgrade to an electronic control system. SeaStar Solutions has several options, ranging from the relatively simple KE-4a system to the fully featured i6000 family of controls.

I have a SeaStar Solutions control from 1989 and I need internal parts. Are any available?
We do not make available internal repair parts for any of our control components.

Proper field repair of these components is not possible.

The only service parts offered are those listed in this catalog on the page with each control.

Generally speaking, these are cable attachment/ hardware kits, neutral safety switches, handle knobs and other optional accessories.

For some control models, we do offer additional service parts.

If the repairs your control needs cannot be made, please replace it for safety reasons.

SeaStar Solutions offers the most comprehensive line of marine controls available — it is likely we have one that is a drop-in replacement (or very close to one).

An overview of our controls line and specifics on each model are shown earlier in this section.

I want to add a station to my boat. What do I need to do?
First determine the type of control system on your boat now. That will help you identify the options available to you.

Measure the distance between stations and approximately how you would route the cables from one station to another.

This will give you a starting point as to which components you may need and how long any cables might be.

Generally speaking, if the run between stations is relatively short and uncomplicated, mechanical controls will do.

(Please see previous FAQ for information about which kind of control is recommended and general installation parameters).

If the run between stations is long or complex or there are more than two stations on the boat, mechanical controls are not recommended.

Use an electronic control system instead.

(Please see previous FAQ for options.)

When adding a station, a substantial amount of components will be required no matter which types of systems are selected.

If the boat has mechanical steering and controls, this is a good time to consider upgrading to SeaStar hydraulic steering and the KE or i6000 family of electronic controls.

My control used to work fine, but now one lever is hard to move. What should I do to fix this?
First determine where the problem lies. There are three possible trouble areas: the control, the cable, and the throttle or transmission connection. By isolating these one at a time, you will find the problem. Engine(s) must be OFF when performing these checks:

a. Disconnect the cable at the throttle or transmission attachment point. Move the throttle or transmission arm through its arc to be certain there is no restriction or binding. If the arm is stiff or binding, clean and lubricate moving parts. If this does not solve the problem, make the appropriate repairs. Generally, the force required to move a throttle or shift arm should be no more than 5-10 pounds.

b. With the cable disconnected at the engine end, try to move the control lever. If it moves freely, the problem was the throttle/transmission arm. If the control handle is still hard to operate, disconnect the cable from the control. If the lever operates smoothly, the control cable needs replacement. If the lever is still hard to move, lubricate the lever pivot point in the control with penetrating oil and a light grease.

c. If the problem is with a throttle lever, you may have a cable brake installed to limit cable feedback to the handle. If this is the case, loosen or remove the brake. If throttle lever creep back is a problem on the boat, you should consider installing a SeaStar Solutions CH5600P SLT control. This unit will stop cable creep without sacrificing a smooth feel.

How does the CH5600 Work?
Each control lever has both a self-locking and direct drive lever arm. The cable from the engine throttle directly to the control should be connected to the control’s self-locking lever arm. The cable from the transmission should only be connected to the control’s direct-drive lever arm. Cables between stations should only be connected to the direct drive lever arms of those controls.

CH5600P SLT-two types of lever arms:

Direct Drive Lever Arm:

When a cable from the transmission or a “slave station” is connected to the direct-drive arm, it will allow the control lever to be moved from another station. Cables from the main station to any additional stations must be attached to direct drive arms on those stations.

Self-Locking Lever Arm:

When a cable from the throttle is connected to the self-locking arm (black in color), it will only move if the lever is moved; engine vibration and return spring feedback will not move the control lever. Only throttle cables routed directly from the engine to the control should be connected to self-locking lever arms.

Inside the CH5600P:

This exploded view diagram shows key components and features of the SLT top mount control. The SLT can be configured as throttle/shift, throttle/throttle, or shift/shift.

This control is designed to work well with virtually any 3300/33C type universal cable. For superior results, use SeaStar Solutions xtreme_thumb cables.

How do I Set-up the CH5600?
Throttle/Shift Configuration:

Each SLT can be configured for Throttle and Shift, Twin Throttle or Twin Shift, simply by screwing in the appropriate throttle stops, detents and knobs that come with the control. Shift cables must always be connected to the direct drive arm, regardless of which control station.

Single & Dual Station Use:

The SLT can be used in Single or Twin Station applications. Dual station setups must only utilize the Self- Locking feature, shift detents and throttle stops for throttle at the station whose cables are directly connected to the engine. All cables from the “master” control to the other station(s) must be connected to the direct drive arms of secondary control(s), which must not have active throttle friction or shift detents. Multiple stations require that the controls be hooked in series if the Self-Locking feature is used.

How do I know which control cable I need?
In order to determine that, you need to know what brand(s) of engine and control head are on the boat. Mercury/Mariner/Force and OMC/Johnson/Evinrude engines usually require an “OEM type” cable when using those engine makers’ control heads. OEM type cables have special end fittings designed to connect to the control and engine with minimal hardware. Generally, all other engines and controls use a “universal” 3300/33C type control cable. Universal cables have 10-32 threaded ends and often require extra hardware to connect to the engine and control. Contact the engine manufacturer if you need details on the hookup. Diesels and twin station vessels may use larger diameter (4300/43 or 6400/64 type) universal cables; 4300/43 type cables have 1/4-28 threaded ends and 6400/64 cables have 5/16-24 threaded ends. Refer to the “Control Cables” section of this catalog for more information.
How do I know which control cable length I need?
This depends on two things:

a. Are you doing a first-time control cable installation?

Outboards: Measure from control along unobstructed cable routing to center of outboard. Add four feet to allow for loop which provides unrestricted engine movement. Round up to next whole foot and order that length cable(s).

Stern Drives and Inboards: Measure from control along unobstructed cable routing to shift and/or throttle connection. Round this dimension off to the next whole foot and order that length cable(s).

b. Are you replacing an existing cable?

Measure the Existing Cable as Follows: Measure the cable from tip to tip in inches, and round up to next even foot. Order that length cable.

What kind of ongoing maintenance do cables need? Can they be repaired?
We suggest the following periodic maintenance be performed at least twice a season:

a. Check overall operation for proper gear engagement, full and idle throttle, and overall feel.

b. Visually inspect control head, cable as well as engine and transmission cable attachment points for proper tightness of fasteners, correct operation of all moving parts, worn or broken items, cable chafing or misalignment, etc.

c. Do not lubricate core wire (moving wire inside the casing). If the cable operates stiffly, replace it.

d. Keep cable ends dirt and corrosion free.

e. Lubricate pivot points and sliding parts of the cable with a good quality water-resistant grease.

When to replace a cable or connection hardware:

a. Excessive free play felt at the control even after all cable connections have been verified as in good working order.

b. Visual inspection shows chafing, breakage or bent, loose or worn parts.

Never attempt to repair a cable. Always replace a malfunctioning cable. A cable cannot be properly repaired in the field and must always be replaced as an assembly. Attempting to repair a cable can result in control system failure, leading to personal injury and/or property damage.

 

KE4+ Electronic Control

 

For boats with mechanical throttle and mechanical shift, the KE-4+ is a perfect answer to smooth and easy shift and throttle control suitable for most applications. Modern styling, various color/finish control head options, single to quad engine capability. Designed specifically to meet the performance, reliability endurance and aesthetic requirements of today’s modern boats.

Features

• Designed for new installation or retrofit
• A new level of control performance for inboard, outboard or stern-drive engines; gas or diesel, 12V/24VDC common mode.
• Up to 4 stations
• Various color/finish control head options.
• Synchronization standard, 1 lever/2 lever selection
• Neutral warm up function
• Complete self diagnostic system
• Optional mechanical backup
• Adjustable shift pause and throttle delay
• Start in gear protection
• Optional trolling system
• Remote hand held control optional. A great docking accessory
• Idle control option
• Optional outboard levers with trim & tilt control
• Settings tool option via external PC
• Single to quad engine capability

KE4+ Controls video

 

KE5/6 Electronic Control

 

KE-5/6 electronic controls continue the high standards set by the popular KE-4 control system. Modern styling, various color/finish control head options, single or twin engine versions. KE-5 – Suitable for full electronic engine/gearbox combinations. KE-6 – Suitable for electronic throttle and mechanical gearboxes.

Features

• Easy installation
• Single-lever dual function control.
• KE-5 up to 5 stations, KE-6 up to 4 stations
• Control head with built-in station select switch
• Easy station transfer
• Neutral warm-up provision
• Self diagnosis system
• Plug in connectors
• Visual system failure alarm (audio optional)
• Trolling system option available for KE-5 (current output only)
• Hand held control option available
• Engine synchronization option available

i6300 Electronic Control

 

The new i6300 delivers precise control of a boat’s shift and throttle functions, thanks to Teleflex’s responsive and robust shift and throttle actuators. Works on 12v or 24v systems. The actuators are linked to the control head with a single 1/4” CANbus cable — for easy routing and installation. With a single small cable connecting all control stations to the smart actuators, there is no longer a need for heavy, complex wiring harnesses associated with other electronic control systems. All i6300 system kits come with all components needed for an installation, including power cables, power module, and network cable.

Applications

• Suitable for all engines with mechanical shift and mechanical throttle
• Single, Twin, Triple and Quad engine combinations
• Inboards, IO’s and Outboards
• Unlimited additional stations

Features

• Optional trim switch(es)
• Drag and detent adjustment standard
• Works on 12v and 24v systems
• Up to four engine capability
• Light coded diagnostic information
• Utilizes standard 33c type control cables – TFXtreme type recommended
• Full power train synchronization standard on multi-engine applications
• Built-in start in-gear protection
• Neutral warm-up
• Mechanical override “get home” feature
• Meets or exceeds all applicable standards

i6300 Controls video

 

CH1700 Side Mount

 

The ergonomics and features of our CH1700 controls are advanced beyond those of any other control on the market. A shapely, balanced handle design provides an incredibly smooth yet positive feel, neutral interlock, throttle warm-up, and start-in-gear protection features are standard on all CH1700 models, with power trim/tilt, emergency cut off switches offered as an option.

In addition the cosmetics of these controls can be configured to suit many tastes. For a starboard gunwale mount control. CH1700 controls are suitable for use both universal (3300 type) or OEM type control cables without adaptation.

Features

• All controls include start in gear protection
• Designed for use with both universal and OEM shift and throttle cables
• Suitable for most single engine, single station boats
• Dual action lever (throttle and shift control on one handle)
• Neutral Interlock standard on all CH1700 controls
• Trim, Tilt, options available
• All controls include cut off switch (inboard and outboard versions)
• Drag adjustment on all models
• Easy installation and set up
• Neutral “warm up” button for throttle only operation
• Can be used in a dual station application with the DS unit and TFXTREME control cables

CH2600P/2700P Side Mount

 

Outboard Side Mount Control. This economical single lever, dual function control features positive shift detents, an optional engine trim switch in the handle and easy installation. (Mounts to gunwale surface — no hole cutout required.) It’s an excellent replacement for both outboard and stern drive controls using universal (3300/33C type) cables only.

APPLICATIONS
Dual-function control — each lever controls throttle AND shift. Virtually all single-station outboards and stern drives with mechanical transmissions. Single lever, dual action design controls throttle and shift with one lever. Utilizes 3300/33C type “universal” engine control cables only. Not suitable for use with Mercuryฎ and OMCฎ OEM type control cables.

Features

• Single lever, dual action for throttle & shift.
• Surface mount design for quick, tidy installation.
• Includes neutral warm up capability.
• Includes hardware for two 3300/33 control cables.
• Positive shift detents and neutral lock- out.
• Optional engine trim switch in handle. (CH2700P)
• Optional neutral safety switch.
• Weather resistant exterior, rugged die cast frame.
• Meets/exceeds all applicable industry standards.

CH7500 Top Mount

 

The ergonomics and features of our CH7500 controls are advanced beyond those of any other control on the market. A shapely, balanced handle design provides an incredibly smooth yet positive feel, throttle warm-up and start-in-gear protection features are standard on all CH7500 models, with neutral interlock and power trim/tilt offered as an option. In addition the cosmetics of these controls can be configured to many tastes.CH7500 controls are suitable for use with both universal type (3300) or OEM type control cables without the need for adaptation.

Features

• All controls include start in gear protectiont
• Designed for use with both universal and OEM shift and throttle cable connections
• Suitable for most single engine/single station combinations
• Dual action lever (throttle and shift control on one handle)
• Optional neutral interlock available
• Trim, Tilt, options available
• Drag adjustment on all models
• Easy installation and set up
• Neutral “warm up” button for throttle only operation
• Can be used in a dual station application with the DS unit and TFXTREME control cables

CH7800 Top Mount

 

The ergonomics and features of our Osprey Series controls are the most advanced available and are suitable for most kinds of boat/dual engine applications. The shapely, balanced handle provides a very comfortable feel and the state of the art mechanism guarantees a smooth yet solid action, assuring you have maximum control at all times. This control is designed for twin engine applications. CH7800 series of controls are suitable for use with both universal type (3300) or OEM type control cables without the need for adaptation.

Features

• All controls include start in gear protection
• Designed for use with both universal and OEM shift and throttle cable connections
• Suitable for most boat/dual engine combinations
• Dual action levers (throttle and shift control in each handle)
• Trim, Tilt, options available
• Drag adjustment on all models
• Easy installation and set up
• Includes both chrome and black cover inserts that allow a choice of styling to ensure a perfect asthetic fit in every application
• Can be used in a dual station application with the DS unit and TFXTREME control cables

MV-3 Side Mount

 

The MV-3 dual function, single lever control is the choice of competitive ski boat drivers and jet boat enthusiasts. Suits 33C type control cables. Models available for Berkeley Jet and Mercury 175 hp Sport Jet with 43 series cables.

Features

• Fits all popoular out-boards, inboards and stern drives
• Emergency cut-off feature available
• Ergonomically designed handgrip for maximum comfort and convenience
• Crisp, positive detents
• Built in friction drag to reduce throttle creep
• Neutral interlock feature to prevent accidental shifting
• New non-corrosive cover/housing
• Standard control suits 33C type cables
• Neutral safety switches available for many MV3 models
• Neutral throttle warm-up
• Can be used in a dual station application with the DS unit and TFXTREME control cables

MT-3 Top Mount

 

World’s most popular classic design, dual action, top mount controls. Chrome finish, available in single or twin engine versions.

Features

• Dual action (throttle and shift in one lever)
• Sturdy control provides one-handed positive engine control
• Neutral warm-up is done by pulling out the hand levers in the neutral position
• Built-in friction drag helps reduce slippage and throttle creep while underway
• Includes hardware for 3300/33C control cables
• Single Lever may use 4300 series control cable with hardware kit 308742
• Can be used in a dual station application with the DS unit and TFXTREME control cables

 

Ski/Jet Boat CH2200P/2300P

 

For ski boat and jet boat applications, these controls feature superior styling, a compact design, positive lockout with a smooth feel, allowing for precise throttle control. Dual action design (one lever to control both shift and throttle functions). Waterproof neutral safety switch standard on jet unit (optional on ski model). Uses 33C type cables.

Features

• Single lever, dual action for throttle and shift
• Superior neutral engine warm-up control (ski version)
• Jet version – Jet boats powered by Mercury sport Jet and OMC turbo jet
• Ski version – suits most ski boats
• Flush mount design for quick, tidy installation
• Includes hardware for two 33C type cables
• Neutral safety switches:
- Optional for ski version
- Waterproof type included with jet version

• Weatherproof exterior, rugged diecast frame
• Can be used in a dual station application with the DS unit and TFXTREME control cables

Please note that while the CH2200P and the CH2300P are similar in appearance, they have different neutral safety switches and internal mechanisms.  They are NOT interchangeable.  Do not substitute CH2200P for CH2300P or vice-versa.

SL3 Side Mount

 

Modern styling, dual action, top and side mount controls. Black satin finish available in single or twin engine versions, with or without trim and/or tilt switches. Suits 33C, OMC and Merc cables.

Features

• Dual action (throttle and shift in one lever)s
• Start in gear protection standard
• Neutral interlock prevents accidental engaging of gear (side mount only)
• Push button for neutral engine warm up
• Use 33C series type cables or Johnson Evinrude/BRP/ OMC/Mercury OEM style cables
• Adjustable throttle damper
• Available with or without trim and/or tilt
• Firm yet effortless shift and throttle motion
• Port or starboard installation with various cable entry angles
• Easily adapted to push or pull cable actuation
• Entire gear mechanism is enclosed
• Side mount available with engine cut-off switch
• Can be used in a dual station application with the DS unit and TFXTREME control cables

Installation Manuals:

Controls – Electronic


 
ELECTRONIC CONTROLS
KE HANDHELD ELECTRONIC CONTROLS – M000110 Rev 5E - (321K)
KE4a ELECTRONIC CONTROLS- (460K)
KE4+ ELECTRONIC CONTROLS – (450k)
KE-5a ELECTRONIC CONTROLS – (550K)
KE4+ TROLLING MODULE – (350k)
KE6 ELECTRONIC CONTROL SYSTEM – (624k)
i6300 INSTALLATION MANUAL – (3700K)
i6300 SINGLE CONTROL – (2700K)
i6300 DUAL CONTROL – (2700k)

 

Controls – Mechanical Dual Action


 
MECHANICAL DUAL ACTION CONTROLS
CH2100 – (1200K)
CH1700/7500/7600 – (4320K)
CH7800 – (1700k)
MV3 – (550K)
MV3-E – (2100k)
MV2 SIDE MOUNT CONTROL (no longer available) – (400k)
MV2 NEUTRAL START SWITCH
MT-3 – (400k)
MT3/43C HEAVY DUTY – (540k)
CH2200/2300 – (400k)
CH2100/2200/2600/2700 NEUTRAL START SWITCH – (400k)
CH2600 – CH2700 – (623k)
700 SO SIDE MOUNT – (624k)
700 SERIES SIDE/TOP MOUNT – (810k)
DC CONTROL – (1800k)
SAIL BOAT FLUSH/SIDE MOUNT CONTROL (700 SS) – (1200k)

 

Controls – Mechanical Single Action


 
MECHANICAL SINGLE ACTION
CH5600 – (460K)
CH4400 – (460K)
CH4400/5600 HEAVY DUTY CONNECTION – (460K)
CH4400 NEUTRAL START SWITCH – (260K)
MJB – (660K)
MJB NEUTRAL SAFETY SWITCH – (251K)
S AND TWIN S – (370K)
S AND TWIN S THROTTLE CONTROL – (460K)
SR ADAPTOR KIT – (386K)
SR NEUTRAL SAFETY SWITCH – (483K)