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Morse Control


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We have a Morse Teleflex MT3 that is getting very stiff to operate especially to disengage the drive to the point where  you have to pull the lever sidewise very hard instead of just gripping the shaped part at the bottom. Are these 'user serviceable' i.e. a dollop of grease or oil somewhere or am I looking at a new unit ?

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Is this Teleflex or Morse? They are not the same animal.

Stiffness in the cables is almost always for 2 reasons :

1/. They are going round too tight a curve, especially when entering the control box.

2/. When the cable was installed it was not aligned properly with the neutral position.

Look inside the box and you will see that the cable can be disconnected by a split pin, or a form of circlip, which you can undo with pliers. If the cable end does not then rest comfortably against the pin, when the box is in neutral, you can adjust this by means of the thread and locknut on the cable end. There should be no tension on the cable when the box is in neutral.

A bit of soft grease is always a good idea.

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Hi Vaughan.

Its a Morse control. Both the cables and runs are probably the originals (38 years old) and it is quite possible that they have dried out a bit over the years and could do with some oil dribbled down them or are they plastic lined in which case that is probably not a good idea. The side sliding arrangement to disconnect the drive to give throttle only is what is puzzling me. I have never taken one apart before is it just a sliding shaft with some form of dog clutch ?



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What you have, seems to be the "dashboard mount" version which is a half round casing which sticks up out of the dashboard. You may notice that it is designed to be double mounted, if you have twin engines.

When you pull the gear lever out sideways, you can rev the engine without engaging the gears. This contains a safety feature, to prevent you from changing the gears, while the engine is still at high revs! So you can only pull the lever out sideways, if the gear is in the neutral position in the control box. You will have noticed a loud click, when you change from ahead/neutral/astern. This is a "spring detent" which ensures that the lever is in the right position every time. So the cables have to be properly installed, to correspond with the neutral position. If they are not correct, you will have trouble in pulling the lever out.

The box is secured by 4 screws, which may be bolted through the dashboard, so you may need access from underneath. Those who installed it should have left enough play in the cables for you to pull the whole box out from the dashboard. Then unscrew the side plate on the opposite side from the gear lever and you will have access to the "innards".

Have a look at the positioning of the cables, as I have described before, but don't try to "bugger about" with the box itself. There should be nothing wrong with it. It is just a matter of cable adjustment.

It is just as important to adjust the speed cable, as well as the gear cable.

By the way, I have never heard of a grease nipple on a Morse 33C control cable. On some steering cables, yes.

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Thanks for your help.

Yes the control is as you describe. We have had the boat some years and on thinking about it the lever movement both forward and reverse and the sideways disconnect have been getting tighter over the past couple of years to the point that this year you have to put some force on the lever for the forward / reverse and it is almost a two person job to pull it sideways for the disconnect. As the boat is currently in a yard for some other work (for some time) I think I will ask them to have a look at it.


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