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Is using the wedge hard on steering?


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Just bought a 2000 Sunsetter LXI. Coming from a ‘92 Ski Nautique. Being new to the idea of a wedge, I am curious if using the wedge is hard on steering components or the engine. I mostly slalom so not sure if I will be using it anyway, but wondered about others experience with the wedge. Thanks!

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I expect that your year model wedge has two screws on each side of the foil rather than three.  I would recommend that you check those because they may not be secure enough to hold the foil on.  Make sure that the screws tighten all the way so that the heads bear against the foil and don't allow any play (I think that some of the screws were slightly too long for the tapped holes).  It might also make sense to either check them regularly or use blue threadlocker.

To answer your question directly, the steering is independent of the wedge and is not affected by use of the wedge.  It is a good idea to hit the grease zerk on the rudder with one or two shots of grease to make sure that it is lubricated properly.  Resist the urge to use more grease since it will only blow out your seal and cause problems.  Also be aware that your steering cable should last a lifetime if you keep water out of it.  That means don't ever allow water to build up in your bilge for any reason.

The engine will be under more load when using the wedge, but you can try different prop pitches to help balance your use.  Basically a boat engine is under full load whenever you use it, so as long as you aren't lugging the engine badly for a long time it won't cause any more problems than the usual load.

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Malibu has been using the wedge for 20 years, if it had an affect on your steering they would have stopped using it by now.

 

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