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Anyone find the new Bayliner Element XL awfully difficult to steer?-gctid814991

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    Anyone find the new Bayliner Element XL awfully difficult to steer?-gctid814991

    Hello, I am a new member to your forum, (Ron in Havelock NC). We just bought a new 2017 Bayliner Element XL In New Bern NC. (This is the first boat we have ever purchased, although we grew up around boats.) On the test drive with the salesman i was impressed with the overall comfort, looks, and smooth ride of the XL, but I found the steering to be very "tight" to the point where I felt like i was fighting to veer it right or left, either on-plane or or off plane. By the time we had returned to dock, my arms felt like i had been in a fight all day. It was even tougher for my wife to handle. I actually decided against buying it for this very reason but changed our minds the next day after my wife said she still wanted it and after the salesman tried to assure us that the steering would get looser in time. He said I was the "only one" "ever" to complain about "any boat's" steering in his 14 years of selling boats. He said "all boats" steer kinda tight for good reason. I have driven boats in the past and I know all boats do NOT steer as tight as this one. The salesman said he could put me a hydraulic system, in for $1300 but could not guarantee it would steer to my satisfaction.

    So now we have a $26,000 new boat that my wife really wanted that I "hope" steers better upon out first "solo" run together later this week.

    So any suggestions?

    My question is do you agree with the dealers assessment that:

    I am being too picky and that "all" boats are tough to steer and shut up and have fun regardless

    The boat steering will improve in time as he said

    The hydraulic system he mentioned is a 50/50 shot on any improvement

    2 new boat owners

    Ron and Donna

    #2
    "rocknronnie1952" post=814991 wrote:
    Hello, I am a new member to your forum, (Ron in Havelock NC). We just bought a new 2017 Bayliner Element XL In New Bern NC. (This is the first boat we have ever purchased, although we grew up around boats.) On the test drive with the salesman i was impressed with the overall comfort, looks, and smooth ride of the XL, but I found the steering to be very "tight" to the point where I felt like i was fighting to veer it right or left, either on-plane or or off plane. By the time we had returned to dock, my arms felt like i had been in a fight all day. It was even tougher for my wife to handle. I actually decided against buying it for this very reason but changed our minds the next day after my wife said she still wanted it and after the salesman tried to assure us that the steering would get looser in time. He said I was the "only one" "ever" to complain about "any boat's" steering in his 14 years of selling boats. He said "all boats" steer kinda tight for good reason. I have driven boats in the past and I know all boats do NOT steer as tight as this one. The salesman said he could put me a hydraulic system, in for $1300 but could not guarantee it would steer to my satisfaction.

    So now we have a $26,000 new boat that my wife really wanted that I "hope" steers better upon out first "solo" run together later this week.

    So any suggestions?

    My question is do you agree with the dealers assessment that:

    I am being too picky and that "all" boats are tough to steer and shut up and have fun regardless

    The boat steering will improve in time as he said

    The hydraulic system he mentioned is a 50/50 shot on any improvement

    2 new boat owners

    Ron and Donna
    It's a merc 115 (or 90) with a steering cable. Same setup as any other boat with a Merc 115. If it feels like it is binding, grease the steering tube and shaft a little. Also oil the pivot points for good measure. And it also might loosen over time. I wouldn't waste the money on hydraulics.

    EDIT: I should add that "all boats" certainly do not have tight steering; boats with power steering are as effortless as cars (though some I/O's have massive amounts of slop). However, manual steering-equipped outboards can be tight. My Yamaha 300 is manual steering, but hydraulic (Sea Star). That takes some effort. My e18 also requires some effort, probably as must or more than my Yam 300; but, the steering wheel is smaller, too, which reduces leverage. I greased is up after a couple of weeks...it is marginally better but still tight. But not so tight as to wear out my arms. About 30 hours on it so far.....can't tell if it's loosening....

    Comment


      #3
      If the dealer if feeding you a line like that then you should contact Bayliner HO directly-the steering should not be that difficult especially at slow speeds.
      John
      2005 Bayliner 285
      6.2 Mercury Bravo 3

      Comment


        #4
        First time posting as well. I took possession of the same boat on Friday. I also thought the steering was a little tight but after a few hours on the water I found you get use to it and it was quite responsive even at 40 mph+

        It's merely a case of getting used to its steering trajectory. Hope this helps.

        Comment


          #5
          It's definitely harder than the same size with power steering. I find mine turns appreciably easier to the right than the left but not enough to be concerned. Frankly the prop cavitates so easily on tight turns that I rarely feel the need to crank the wheel at speed, I probably have 15 hours on mine and haven't felt the steering loosen up in the slightest.

          Comment


            #6
            We recently bought a 1750 Capri without power steering. Our previous 2655 had power steering. The first time I drove the 1750 without power steering I thought there was something wrong with it as it was very heavy. Now we have had it for few weeks and we are getting used to it, it is not that noticeable.
            David
            1999 Bayliner 1750 Capri. 3l Mercruiser Alpha

            2014 Yamaha VX Cruiser

            Comment


              #7
              Trim, trim trim. These boat are really affected by trim. Trim up until it porpoises, then bump the button down 2 or 3 times. I though the same thing when I bought mine.

              Comment


                #8
                I had a new pontoon that had a 60 HP Mercury on it and the steering was very stiff - turned out the steering cable was kinked, I 'unkinked' the cable by routing it into a loop and the steering was much easier. Don't know if this is your problem but it could be a possibility.
                Ron

                2016 VR5 - 4.5 Mercruiser

                2017 Ram Crew Cab - 4X4 - 5.7 Hemi

                Comment

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