Originally Posted by S/V Alchemy
I have a Beta 60 diesel
in a steel
sailboat. I have a single lever, dual-action sidemounted throttle/shifter lever on the pilothouse steering
helm. It's the kind with a neutral pull button allowing disengagement of the gear
cable and "warming up" in neutral.
I also have an aft deck "sailing helm", which, like the pilothouse helm, is hydraulic to a ram in the aft cabin
and moves a transom-hung rudder
I wish to have a second, single-lever, dual-action throttle/shifter at this second, outside helm. Looking at the Seastar Solutions catalogue, it seems I'd need their DS unit (see SeaStar Solutions
) to have two pairs of control cables (throttle/shifters 1 and 2, say) to link to single cables that directly control my engine.
Seastar Solutions seems very powerboat oriented. Are there other manufacturers who make what I'm looking for and which dual helm sailboaters might recommend? Thanks.
We have the precise set-up you describe on our ketch
. [Morse MT-3 single lever dual controls. Here is an article re: adjustment and maintenance
.] It works well.
I have not researched replacement options if the hardware
we have became unrepairable [and was no longer available...]
One decision you will need to make is whether the dual controls are [in my terms] 'live linked' [i.e., when you move a lever, the other moves as well] or 'lock-out' [if one lever is in use, the other is locked in neutral until the live lever it put into neutral.] Ours is the lock-out version.
And for reference, our dual hydraulic steering
stations are independent; meaning one wheel
does not move the other, and both wheels are live unless one helm is [optionally] locked-out [bypass lever] from the other. [e.g., We can disable the lower wheel
from the upper helm, and visa versa.] This might be useful in the (very) remote
case of undiciplined kids
(temporarily) onboard or someone grabbing a wheel as a handhold... Or in the case of a hydraulic steering
malfunction/leak in one helm...]
The trade-offs of the lock-out single lever dual engine controls include having to "transfer" control when changing helms. This can occasionally be a nuisance when underway and singlehanding- in some conditions. [i.e., To change helms, first you have to put the live control lever into neutral, then relocate to the other helm and move that control lever to re-engange engine. In the meantine you are in neutral for a few seconds, which isn't ideal in some sportier situations...] Sometimes I wish they were live linked. Other times I am grateful they are not. [e.g., Lock-out helps prevent accidental throttle adjustments at the lazy helm.]
Perhaps ideally, lock-out would be an option for live-linked levers. [An unresearched dream...] Give it some thought if you have to choose one or the other.
Also, ours is set-up so both levers must be in neutral for the engine to start. Sometimes this means fussing with one or the other to find that sweet spot in neutra where the starter will engage.
In hopes some of this may be helpful.