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Pogo Junior

Drive Trim

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Hello everyone, 

I have a 2004 Sig 330 with Penta Duo outdrives. When I work on the trim adjustments at the shifter, both drives seems to go up and down. The port side drive trim indicator at dash seems to work, but the starboard side is stuck at 12 o’clock. What can you suggest I do to get the drives on the same level, at least while I get someone to fix it? I can hardly see the drives under the water.

Also, what is the difference between drive trim adjustment and the trim tab adjustment? When do you use one over the other.

Thanks.

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7 hours ago, Pogo Junior said:

I have a 2004 Sig 330 with Penta Duo outdrives. When I work on the trim adjustments at the shifter, both drives seems to go up and down. The port side drive trim indicator at dash seems to work, but the starboard side is stuck at 12 o’clock. What can you suggest I do to get the drives on the same level, at least while I get someone to fix it? I can hardly see the drives under the water.

Just the starboard light indicator is out, correct?  So what I would do is a couple of things to get both drives on the same plane (in unison).

1) Have someone at the swim platform to listen to the pistons as you trim up each drive (in this case, do the port one first).  He/she can hear the cylinders being actuated they make a mechanical noise like an electric motor working and it's a bit faint when underwater, but definitely can be heard.  As the drive reaches its maximum trim up, that sound begins to strain.  The difference is very noticeable from the normal actuating noise to the straining and that's when you will know the drive is all the way up.  Makes sure you stop trimming up as soon as he/she calls the straining noise. 

2) Do the same to the starboard drive.  Now both drives will be all the way up.

3) Then lower both drives simultaneously while watching the portside indicator until you're down straight or wherever you want to be and they should be at the same level together.  Unless one operates faster than the other, but even so, they should be very close.

4) You can also easily unscrew the trim indicator from the dash and look at the back of it to be sure the wires are snug and tight to the connection.  That might just be all it is. 

7 hours ago, Pogo Junior said:

Also, what is the difference between drive trim adjustment and the trim tab adjustment? When do you use one over the other.

Your boat might act differently than mine, but I'll tell you what I do and use that for what it's worth.  Raising and lowering the outdrives affects the way the bow reacts, but I mostly use it only when in shallow water to pick it up and not get the skeg grounded in sand or whatever.  Trim tabs do the same exact thing but they essentially separate that function of controlling the bow pitch from the outdrives.  So let's say when you're stopped and ready to cruise and get on plane, you push the throttle slowly until the boat gets on plane and let's say that happens at 20mph (just for example).  At that speed, with the drives down at 0 you might find the bow to be too high which affects your planning since the power of the drives pushes the stern down into the water so the boat somewhat struggles to get on plane.  So you drop your trim tabs (which basically act almost exactly like flaps on airplane wings) and as they drop, they push the stern up while lowering the bow.  So now you're essentially planning (skimming) on the water and that reduces drag and creates better fuel efficiency.  Some people will actuate the trim tabs before they get on plane, that's fine also.  And some will also trim up the outdrives just a little bit along with the trim tabs to find that perfectly sweet spot.  That's something you need to find yourself, but that is pretty much how they both work in a nutshell.

I usually push the throttle, get up to about 15mph and then drop my trim tabs about 1/4 of the way until I get to about 20mph and then I find that halfway down on the trim tabs gets me that perfect sweet spot of planning and skimming the water.  Once I increase speed and reach closer to 30mph, I raise the drive just a tiny bit (maybe push the button for 3 seconds) and that's enough to assist the trim tabs in raisiing the bow a bit more for that perfect and comfortable planing spot.

And of course, you use the trim tabs to offset any uneven weight to the boat, usually caused by more people on one side than the other.  When you need to do that, then you can work the trim on the outdrive to compensate a bit for the loss of the trim tabs.  I hope this helps and I didn't complicate things more lol. 

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