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    Lubricating steering actuator

    New power boat owner and trying to learn all the mechanical stuff, so I'm likely to ask lots of dumb questions. You've been warned!


    I've got a 5L Mercruiser A1 sterndrive. Wanted to lubricate the steering actuator valve like my manual and Seloc tell me to. Found the zirc fitting. Hooked up my hand grease gun, and figured I'd put in a squeeze or two before I'd see the movement or grease coming out of the big pile of old grease in the vicinity of where the diagram said the relief hole would be.


    After 4 squeezes and no sign of anything, I stopped, worried I was about to blow a seal somewhere.


    I cleaned up the old grease that was covering everything, and discovered a little rubber thing in the area where the diagram said there'd be a relief hole and at the top if it, it seemed to have a rubber nipple, or hole. The rubber thing seemed squishy like a half-filled water balloon.


    SO, my questions are, 1) what's that rubber thing? Is the hole/nipple at the top the relief hole? and 2) Who knows when the previous owner last lubbed this. Is it possible that it would take more than 4 pumps of my gun handle? Should I keep going until I see grease come out of the relief wherever it is?


    Other hints?
    1991 Bayliner 2052 Cuddy

    #2
    Not gonna be much help here but I've put 8-12 maybe more pumps into that grease zerk and never saw the rubber boot around the actuator stem expand or expel any grease anywhere.
    Can you post a pic of your manuals description of that process? My Mercruiser installation manual doesn't even mention that zerk fitting
    Dave
    Edmonds, WA
    "THE FIX"
    '93 2556 5.7 Bravo II 2.0:1 18 1/4x19 P
    (.030 over-Vortec top end-part closed cooled)
    The rebuild of my 2556 https://www.baylinerownersclub.org/f...76?view=thread
    Misc. projects thread
    https://www.baylinerownersclub.org/f...56-gctid789773

    Comment


      #3
      My mercruiser manual doesn't mention it either. But my Seloc does. Attached.
      1991 Bayliner 2052 Cuddy

      Comment


        #4
        And thanks for the reply/help. Good to know there might be room for more grease in there after 4 pumps.
        1991 Bayliner 2052 Cuddy

        Comment


          #5
          Alpha gen 1 maybe ?
          Be good, be happy, for tomorrow is promised to no man !

          1994 2452, 5.0l, Alpha gen. 2 drive. Sold ! Sold ! Sold !

          '86 / 19' Citation cuddy, Merc. 3.0L / 140 hp 86' , stringer drive. Sold ! Sold ! Sold !

          Manalapan N.J

          Comment


          • builderdude
            builderdude commented
            Editing a comment
            PA cylinder

          #6
          Chief is there a difference in the PA cylinder actuator for an gen1? Looks like op has the older style PA cylinder with the zerk fitting.
          Dave
          Edmonds, WA
          "THE FIX"
          '93 2556 5.7 Bravo II 2.0:1 18 1/4x19 P
          (.030 over-Vortec top end-part closed cooled)
          The rebuild of my 2556 https://www.baylinerownersclub.org/f...76?view=thread
          Misc. projects thread
          https://www.baylinerownersclub.org/f...56-gctid789773

          Comment


            #7
            I think the grease travels into the steering cable based on where the zerk fitting is located.
            1997 Maxum 2400 SCR 5.7LX Bravo II

            Mike

            Comment


              #8
              Originally posted by Nauti_Mike View Post
              I think the grease travels into the steering cable based on where the zerk fitting is located.
              It would have to travel through the actuators stem into and through the adaptor block to get there but that does sound like a reasonable possibility.
              My installation manual shows a separate zerk on the steering cable itself but of course there is no zerk(s) present on my actual cables
              Click image for larger version

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              Dave
              Edmonds, WA
              "THE FIX"
              '93 2556 5.7 Bravo II 2.0:1 18 1/4x19 P
              (.030 over-Vortec top end-part closed cooled)
              The rebuild of my 2556 https://www.baylinerownersclub.org/f...76?view=thread
              Misc. projects thread
              https://www.baylinerownersclub.org/f...56-gctid789773

              Comment


                #9
                Could be he has the alpha gen 1 on the transom . 91' boat not uncommon to have the year before or 2 year old drives and engines in them.

                I think pump the byatch 10 times call it a day, is there a problem with the operation of the actuator ?

                If no ... don't fix something that ain't broke say's I .
                Be good, be happy, for tomorrow is promised to no man !

                1994 2452, 5.0l, Alpha gen. 2 drive. Sold ! Sold ! Sold !

                '86 / 19' Citation cuddy, Merc. 3.0L / 140 hp 86' , stringer drive. Sold ! Sold ! Sold !

                Manalapan N.J

                Comment


                  #10
                  I found this (attached) info regarding the cable maint. in my (later model) Mercruiser 5.7L maintenance manual.
                  Attached Files
                  1998 BL Ciera 2655 Sunbridge LX (Special Edition)
                  "Sea Flights"
                  5.7L 2bbl w/Thunderbolt Ignition
                  Alpha I Gen II Sterndrive with raw water cooling
                  MFG Extra's - A/C, Fresh Water Engine Flush port, HWH and Windlass
                  Docks @ Punta Gorda, Florida

                  Comment


                    #11
                    Originally posted by builderdude View Post

                    It would have to travel through the actuators stem into and through the adaptor block to get there but that does sound like a reasonable possibility.
                    My installation manual shows a separate zerk on the steering cable itself but of course there is no zerk(s) present on my actual cables
                    Click image for larger version

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                    My previous post was based on where your manual shows the fitting, right at the steering cable.
                    1997 Maxum 2400 SCR 5.7LX Bravo II

                    Mike

                    Comment


                      #12
                      The steering assit unit is a sealed item and gets lubricated internally by the power steering fluid.
                      1997 Maxum 2400 SCR 5.7LX Bravo II

                      Mike

                      Comment


                        #13
                        Originally posted by Nauti_Mike View Post
                        The steering assit unit is a sealed item and gets lubricated internally by the power steering fluid.
                        But op's seloc manual says the actuator gets lubed via the grease fitting at the aft portion of the unit.
                        Zerk can be seen here.
                        Click image for larger version

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                        Dave
                        Edmonds, WA
                        "THE FIX"
                        '93 2556 5.7 Bravo II 2.0:1 18 1/4x19 P
                        (.030 over-Vortec top end-part closed cooled)
                        The rebuild of my 2556 https://www.baylinerownersclub.org/f...76?view=thread
                        Misc. projects thread
                        https://www.baylinerownersclub.org/f...56-gctid789773

                        Comment


                        • Nauti_Mike
                          Nauti_Mike commented
                          Editing a comment
                          Interesting, don’t know what to say as I have seen a zerk fitting at this location.

                        #14
                        My zerk is definitely exactly where the Seloc says it is. Looks just like it. I have that mercruiser manual too that shows one by the cable, but my cable definitely does not have one there. Not currently having problems with the actuator, but trying to keep the maint. up on my old boat so I avoid as many as I can. Discovered some things on the boat that "looked" maintained by the previous owner until I scratched the surface. Trying to scratch lots of surfaces. My guess is that little rubber boot is part of the greasing system and the nipple at the top is the relief valve. Just haven't seen a relief made of rubber before. I'll watch how taut that rubber boot gets as a gauge of when I might be putting too much grease in. Thanks for all the replies.
                        1991 Bayliner 2052 Cuddy

                        Comment


                          #15
                          Ok, for posterity and those searching who follow me.....I put a another pump or two into the fitting watching that little rubber boot and it did flex when I pumped grease into the fitting. When the boot looked getting full, I stopped, so as not to blow it out. When I pushed gently on it with my finger, grease did in fact come out of that little nipple, so that rubber nipple IS the relief for it. So I think all's well, and those are the details I've learned and will file away.....

                          p.s. Did you know that you can screw the grease fitting on your hose on or off and it makes it easier or harder to put the fitting on the zerk or get it off? WHY ISN'T THAT PRINTED IN THE GREASE GUN MANUAL for us newbies!!!??!?!? About tore everything apart until I figured there was a trick and googled around for an hour....finally one of the bazillion grease-your-hub videos mentioned backing the fitting off the hose a bit to open it up and VOILA! it popped right off the zirk real easy......Life's hard being a newbie....
                          1991 Bayliner 2052 Cuddy

                          Comment


                          • builderdude
                            builderdude commented
                            Editing a comment
                            Yea it's kind of like a drill chuck
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