Dufour 38 Classic - Rudder stiffness
My rudder has become harder to turn - the steering wheel has to be forced around. I suspect that crustations have wormed their way up into the bottom rudder bearing. When looking through the owners manual it mentions that the bearings are self adjustable but gives no further details of what they are and you can not see from the diagram that accompanies it.
Anyone had to drop their rudder to clean out, lubricate or replace one of these bearings. We are currently in the caribbean and I would like to avoid lifting the boat out if at all possible.
Could it be something else?
So far I have disconnected the steering rod from the rudder and then the wheel turns fine. I have also disconnected the autopilot (ST 5000) - they do not seem to be the problem which leads me to think that something is wrong with the bottom bearing just above where the rudder stops (and the shaft goes into the boat)
Any thoughts and advice on tackling the problem - the steering is slightly stiff but by no means seized.