Mud Motor Throttle Adjustment
Throttle lever adjustment on a small engine. This could be a small engine on a go-cart, BUT at JTgatoring its all about mud motors. (how I chose my mud motor)
So this will be about adjusting the throttle connection from your throttle lever to your engine that is used for a mud motor.
Throttle Lever & Cable
Now, there are MANY throttle levers out there, with most of them being bicycle levers. The problem with a bicycle lever is that they don’t have enough travel/throw/cable pull.
For example; say the distance from idle to full throttle on your engine’s carburetor is 1.75 inches. That little push lever on the engine that is used to control the throttle may travel 1.75 inches from idle to full throttle. Most bicycle levers may only travel 1.5 inches.
To be clear, I do not know the exact measurement but most throttle levers end up short and don’t pull enough cable AND this happens with stock engines. When people upgrade their carb and start getting performance parts, you may end up pulling even more cable.
Solution: The Duck Bill Throttle Lever – This has been the only throttle lever that has been able to pull enough cable and more. With the video I made on YouTube I show you how I adjusted it to make it work for me.
Before I get to explaining, the small engine that I use is a stock 13hp Predator Engine from Harbor Freight. This will also work with a 6.5hp Predator because I also own one of those also.
In general, the was the way it worked for my Predator brand engine, and it may vary a little from engine manufacturer to engine manufacturer, but as long as you understand the main concept of what is needed to be done, you’ll make it work.
First – Make sure the engine is off and all the other fun stuff about safety.
Get your throttle lever where you want it on the tiller handle and make sure it feels comfortable to operate. Go ahead and get in the boat, feel it out, and then mount it on the tiller handle.
Take the actual metal throttle cable out of the plastic housing.
Route the throttle cable housing from the lever to the engine. I ran mine through the tiller handle, out the back, and around the left side of the motor. Take note of where/how you want to mount the cable to the engine. There are normally two places to do it on the engine so you two options. Pick one.
Now that you have the cable routed and you have chosen the mounting place on the engine, go ahead and secure the outer housing of the throttle cable in place. (if you loosen or tighten and screws/bolts use Loctite so they don’t rattle loose)
Now lubricate the metal throttle cable with WD-40 or white lithium grease and feed it through the housing starting from the throttle lever. You should end up with the ball end at the throttle lever. This ball end goes into the throttle lever.
Now find a 1/4 inch spacer (could be wood, rubber, anything that’s 1/4 inch thick) put it in between the lever and handle and tie the throttle lever to the tiller handle with the spacer in between the two (like you were squeezing the lever with your hand)
For this step, you may need to remove your air filter and loosen the carburetor to access this area as I did in my video. If you haven’t done this already, you need to loosen the nut on top of the throttle assembly on the motor so that it returns to idle by itself. All I did was loosen it just enough so it would spring back to idle and then I put loctite on it so it wouldn’t vibrate loose.
Next, on the engine, move the throttle that is located on the engine to full throttle (wide-open = which was all the way to the left for me). Hold it there. Now loosen the screw that the metal throttle cable goes through, feed the metal throttle cable through, and pull tight.
Put Loctite on that screw and tighten it down while you’re holding tension on the throttle cable while the engine’s throttle is at full throttle.
Aaaaand now you’re done.
Finished – Tips/Tricks/Conclusion
You’ve now conquered your throttle lever.
This is the way I recommend people to do it.
One issue I had when I first set this whole thing up was installing everything in the “idle” position instead of the “full throttle” position.
When I had everything in the “idle” position, when I would go to squeeze the throttle lever to get full throttle, the duckbill lever had too much cable pull so I had about one inch of a gap from the lever to the grip on the tiller handle because I was already at full throttle; the engine had no more throttle to give me.
This would cause me to continually keep squeezing the two together, putting a lot of stress on the connection at the engine. Eventually, I ended up pulling the metal throttle cable out of the engine so I had to fumble with it out on the water.
So setting it up in the “full throttle” position will prevent that from happening again.
Other than that, the duckbill is stainless steel, the throttle cable is stainless steel and the proper length, so I should be all good in that department.
If there are any other tips I come up with, I’ll put them below! Thank you for reading and supporting JTgatoring!
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