Join Date: Sep 2006
Thanked 11 Times in 11 Posts
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emergency steering position....
My olde Union 36 has no emergency steering position, and it troubles me occasionally. The steering is a worm gear, with the worm passing over the TOP of the rudder post, and two worm followers on opposite threads fore and aft. The followers are linked to the rudder head.
The rudder post terminates in thin air, perhaps 2 ft below the deck, and it would be very difficult to extend the rudder post up until it meets the deck in the more orthodox emergency steering arrangement.
I had thought of fitting a torque arm to the rudder post (it's about 3" diameter) and linking a double acting piston to a quick-connect torque arm, in classical hydraulic steering style. The problem is the power source. I looked at one of those hydraulic pumps that normally reside behind the steering wheel of a powerboat, and somehow having the "business end" of that looking up at me on the floor of the cockpit, or on the cockpit seating just to the right of the helmsman, with a wee cover on it to keep the seawater out, and met by a simple crank.
I can work out the forces and stuff and should be able to get the "gearing" right for that.
I wanted to avoid a formal electrical power source for it. I would just about die if the electrical pump failed me at a time like that, or a fuse blew or something, so it needs to be orthodox.
I was attracted to hydraulics as the alignment of gears, chains and cables would be more difficult, and its use would be rare, I hope.