Stiff rudder on Beneteau First 285 - SailNet Community

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Old 01-10-2008
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Stiff rudder on Beneteau First 285

I have a First 285 with a stiff rudder. Any ideas how to free it? Is it easy to replace the bearings if need be? Please
note this is tiller steering
Many thanks
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Old 01-10-2008
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Mine was very stiff. Spray some wd 40 or LanoCote on the cables that go around the pulley. LanoCote would be better to use. But I did use both on mine and it works very smoothly now. If possible have someone move the wheel & rudder as you do this to spread the lubricant around the cables.
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Freesail-

THis boat is tiller steered... and it is more likely that the rudder post or bearing is seizing. Spraying the rudder post area with WD40 might work as a stop gap, but disassembly and inspection is really what is required.

I don't know how much it would cost to replace or what disassembling the rudder/tiller entails.
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Changing the bearing/bushing is going to require dropping the rudder (for the bottom one anyway). Depending on rudder draft and cradle height this could involve digging a hole or raising the boat on the hard.

It may be possible to ream the lower bearing if it has swollen and that is what is causing this problem. You might also try to ensure that the stock has not bent for some reason, this too could cause some binding and stiffness.

But dropping the rudder, flushing things out and having a look is a good place to start.
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Thanks for all your help. I think I will try the WD40 route as dropping the rudder would be very difficult. I keep my boat overwinter in a small lakeside boatyard without cranage facilities (The Lke District UK) and I don't think the owner would take kindly to excavating a hole to drop the rudder
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