Outboard Towing Magic

Installing TurboSwing to tow skiers behind an outboard-powered boat is one-person simple.

I have a cuddy cabin boat powered by an Evinrude G2 300 hp outboard, and while I usually take it out in the ocean to fish, I also like to visit local freshwater lakes with my family and go wakeboarding or tubing. For several seasons, I clipped a tow harness to the transom with a float to keep the rope from sinking into the prop, which wasn’t ideal because when I turned the boat, the rope would get very close to the motor. Another drawback: the tie-downs on the transom were relatively close to the waterline, so the rope rode very low, which wasn’t ideal for wakeboarding.

The TurboSwing seemed to address two major problems: mounting point and rope height. The device’s mounting point for the tow rope is farther away from the motor, and the rope is elevated, for easier handling during wakeboarding. I discovered an added bonus after installing it: It provides protection from hitting the motor against docks or other boats.

To find the correct size, I went to TurboSwing.com where an online configurator provides buyers with the correct TurboSwing model for their boat and motor. For my Evinrude G2 300 hp, I needed the Giant. To order, put it in your cart, hit pay and the TurboSwing is on the way.


Tools Needed

Before getting started, ensure the following tools and supplies are on hand:

  • Drill
  • Half-inch drill bit
  • Three-quarter-inch wrenches to remove motor mount bolts and tighten bracket bolts
  • 13mm wrench for trim adjustment bolts
  • Pliers or channel locks
  • Grease
  • High-quality marine silicone

Installation

When my TurboSwing arrived, I immediately noticed they did a great job packing it for shipping. Most of the time when I get oversized or oddly shaped packages delivered, there is always a little damage in shipping, but not in this case.

Remove all the packing material and inspect the TurboSwing for any damage. I was happy to see that there wasn’t a scratch anywhere on my new TurboSwing. I then read the directions and went through the parts list to ensure everything was present . 1. The directions mentioned greasing two of the bolts but didn’t specify what type of grease, so I got the waterproof grease I use for wheel bearings, which should do the trick. Other tools I needed were a drill and a half-inch drill bit to drill a hole for bolts that secure the TurboSwing bracket. My boat has a three-foot dive/swim platform on it, which made installation a little easier and less stressful, because I didn’t have to drill into my transom, but also cost me a trip to the hardware store for some different length bolts.

Time to mount the TurboSwing brackets to the motor bracket on the boat. Drilling comes into play. I did one side at a time to ensure that nothing would move or shift. I removed the nut on the motor bracket 2. and put the TurboSwing bracket there and realized that I was going to need longer bolts to accommodate the thicker bracket. I drilled a hole for the second bracket bolt 3., so the TurboSwing bracket locks in place. This is when I realized I needed shorter bolts than TurboSwing supplied. The bolts they sent were very long and will be great for anyone attaching this to the transom. I discovered, however, that they were too long for the swim platform. I bought some three-and-a-half-inch stainless steel bolts, washers and locknuts that worked for both holes on both sides. and used a good silicone to seal the bolt holes 4., to prevent water from entering the platform or boat. After bolting on the main bracket 5., there is a large plastic washer and another bracket that bolts together with a bolt, locknut and the grease mentioned earlier. There is a smaller bolt and a round piece called a trim lock that also gets installed here that helps you prevent over-trimming the outboard and hitting the hoop. The other side was the same procedure and was easier after I became a pro on the first side.

Once the brackets were in place, the next step was putting on the main TurboSwing hoop. Be sure to install the pulley system before putting the hoop in the brackets 6., unless you want to see how easy it is to remove when you aren’t using it.

A critical step is to position the TurboSwing to ensure the motor doesn’t hit it when the motor is being trimmed or turned. After about five minutes of turning and trimming, I was able to position the TurboSwing in a location where the motor was clear at every position, which meant it was time to tighten the trim lock (smaller bolt) on the bracket 7.

Once the positioning was solid, I put stops on the Turbo Swing hoop to prevent the pulley from going too far and potentially hitting the motor when it is turned. The clips the manufacturer provided are very good, and I used a pair of pliers to lock them in place 8.

The final step is to install the supplied clips (or bolts) that keep the TurboSwing from popping out of the bracket 9.

I opted for the bolts because I figured the clips would rattle and possibly make me wonder if something was wrong.

During the first test, I was really pleased with how well the TurboSwing worked. It had a really smooth action when a skier made a cut, and I could tell it’s really sturdy. I even had several people come over and admire it and ask questions about it.

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