stuck/seized rudder on grampian 26 - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 04-29-2008
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stuck/seized rudder on grampian 26

I just got this sailboat a week ago and have been doing some work on it. one problem i am having is that the rudder is stuck and will not budge. it had been sitting in the water for at least 6 months without being used. I have been squirting penetrating oil at the top where the head attaches and on the bushings for the past three days but do not seem to be getting anywhere. from the picture of the bushings, below the bolt down to where it looks all greasy right under the green ring, that part will slide up and down out of the black rubber piece (see picture). how can i further disassemble these components? any recommendations for getting the rudder unstuck?
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Old 04-29-2008
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Welcome to Sailnet, llaar. The brass part with the nut is called a stuffing box. As it is free, you will have to get oil inside the rubber tube and continue to let it soak. Hitting the shaft with a brass or lead hammer may help. You might also try putting some pressure on the rudder from outside the boat. A jack under the rudder might help. Basically I'm telling you to "worry" the thing till it breaks loose. You're on the right track, and it will free up, with luck. I haven't personally had to free one, so this is just my speculation. Shortly someone who has done this will show up,, I'm sure.
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I had been wondering how to search up what that was (stuffing box), thanks. And I have been told to put a piece of wood on the top to protect the metal then bang on it with a hammar while someone down below trys to wiggle the rudder. The jack idea is interesting, hadnt thought of putting pressure the other way like that. So since i loosened that stuffing box it *should* be completely free to fall down right? If anyone has any other ideas let me know
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Old 04-29-2008
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LLar...

In the third picture, loosen the lowest hose clamp until it falls away.

Take the key out of the keyway in the first picture so that it can be driven down.

Send a man down to wiggle the rudder. Look closely at where the twist is building on the shaft. If the shaft is not twisting in the last picture, then the siezure is likely to be there.

If not so, send a man inside the hull, and look where the twist is stopping. Use the twist to steer you as to where the shaft is jammed.

When you see where it is jammed, squirt your releasing agent into that area.

Wiggle and wiggle and hammer and hammer. Do not hammer too hard or you will split the GRP.
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Old 04-29-2008
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Grampian used a bushing for the rudder in the stuffing box. Mine was bent (don't ask) which made it rather difficult to remove. Involved the use of a sledge, as bad as that sounds. Pulling the two nuts on top of the box will free the rudder to drop out. I replaced the bushing with a cutlass bearing I machined and set. Mine wasn't seized, but what T&K34 said sounds right. I can send you info on how to do the bearing mod, but I'm away from the boat (and all my notes) until mid-June. Let me know if you need anything else.
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rockter:
"In the third picture, loosen the lowest hose clamp until it falls away."
-its completely loose, even though it looks like its on there

"Take the key out of the keyway in the first picture so that it can be driven down."
key/keyway? if you mean that little metal piece that looks like its bending outward a bit, its only like 2 inches long and a straight little rod... it does look like it could have broken off of something though... is there more to it than just a rod?

as for twisting, any amount of pressure so far doesnt budge it at all

b30:
those 2 nuts when i pull on them they do move up the pic was taken with it pulled up as high as it goes. i did figure that loosening that would allow the rudder to be dropped out as i guess tightening it, tightens the bushing to the rod that holds the rudder and that it sits in the stuffing box which is what keeps the rudder in place and from just falling out. though maybe that key/keyway needs something done to it as well and is also holding the rudder in.
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Old 04-29-2008
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It looks to me like the rudder is trying to drop loose, but the key in the first picture may be frozen into the keyway, which is now jammed into the top of the rudder tube (the fiberglass tube the rudder shaft is going through). I would bet that if you jack the rudder up, which will unjam the key from the fiberglass, it will turn. Once you remove that key I think it should drop out.
FYI, if you look at your tiller where it attaches to the rudder post, I bet you will see a notch in it that fits over the key. This would be what enables the tiller to turn the rudder without slipping on the rudder shaft.
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I agree, the key needs to come out. Mine is wheel steering, so after removing the two nuts and quadrant mine dropped, with persuasion.
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Old 08-18-2008
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Stuck Rudder

Did you ever get the rudder to move? Was it the key holding the tube in place?
I see from the pics originally posted that your rudder tube appears to have been cut off at the top and bottom and a seal/bearing installed . Looking at my rudder tube under the cockpit floor it is one sealed up tube made from fiberglass and appears stock. I pulled my rudder out last winter and the stainless shaft was just one solid piece from the rudder up to the keyed slot were the tiller head installs. Does anyone know if the seal/bearing was a mod?
Thanks
Phil
76 Grampian 26
Irish Mist
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