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Thread: Tillerbar to tiller connection

  1. #1

    Default Tillerbar to tiller connection

    Trying to decide the best way to attach the tillerbar to tiller on our Searunner catamaran. I want to do something simple and strong that will allow for a wide range of motion between the tillerbar and tiller. The tiller and tillerbar are carbon fiber and I'm sure I could loosely bolt the two together, but the previous owner had plans to lash them together which seems interesting. Thoughts?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Tillerbar to tiller connection

    Use two turnbuckle bodies with only one universally-jointed threaded end on each. Wrap the turnbuckle bodies with rubber (to serve as bushings and for a snug fit), slide them into either end of the tiller bar tube, and pin them in place. Pre-measurement between tillers should be close but not necessarily exact, as the threaded ends will help you achieve perfect alignment. Finally, bolt the turnbuckle ends on to the tillers. Much like creating tie rod ends, but marine grade! Simple, strong, and elegant.
    Last edited by Michael K; 10th September 2016 at 04:14 PM.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Tillerbar to tiller connection

    What I did was use two turnbuckle bodies with only one threaded shackle end still intact on each. You an find these at used for little money. I wrapped the turnbuckle bodies with rubber to serve as a bushing between the bodies and the tubular tiller bar; achieving a snug fit, I then slid a body into each end of the tiller bar and pinned them in place. I then bolted each of the outboard shackle ends onto its respective tiller, resulting in a stainless steel universal joint at each junction. But before securing each bolt, I took advantage of threaded ends to refine tiller and rudder alignment. Simple, elegant, and strong.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Tillerbar to tiller connection

    Thanks for the reply Michael. I've played around with the ends of a turnbuckle but found that the t-bolt jammed in the toggle when under compression. Would you have a picture of your setup you could post? Thanks again.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Tillerbar to tiller connection

    Dang, I thought my first reply was lost and so re-wrote it. Sorry about that. As for pictures, I do not have any and I sold the boat two years ago. But I can say a bit more. I had no problems with the T-bolts jamming. The turnbuckles I had on hand were older, 3/8" threads or larger, and may have worn to a more cooperative smoothness by the time I put them to this use. I remember buying some on eBay but most likely they came from Bacon's in Annapolis, back when the place was full of used parts. If you go this route, you may have to play with a variety of turnbuckles before finding ones that do the job well.

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