I have a 40 hp 4 stroke Merc on a Boston Whaler on the foredeck and a couple of times in the past I have had to un-stick the steering after a winter layup. This spring, there was no way it was going to get unstuck. In fact, I ultimately had to take a Sawzall to it after working on it for a couple of hours. What I learned from this debacle was that if you have a Merc, the cable drive arm that slides in and out of the hollow tilt tube is too close in its external diameter to the inside of the tube's inside diameter. The result is that the slightest corrosion inside the tilt tube will weld these pieces together and they will not come undone. I certainly didn't help by storing the engine with the rod retracted into the tilt tube. My suggestion to prevent this is to do the opposite of what the owner's manual tells you and liberally grease the drive arm, as well as lay it up with that rod fully extended, not retracted.