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slipacre 04-04-2004 01:19 PM

Emergency steering hole in rodder for rope?
Am thinking that drilling a small hole in toop aft corner of my rudder might make sense as an additional way to rig emergency steering. Have center cockpit and while the top of the rudder post can be accessed under the aft berth using it would be difficult.
thanks Todd V

Jeff_H 04-05-2004 04:15 AM

Emergency steering hole in rodder for rope?
Very few rudders are strong enough that you can drill a whole and tie a steering line anywhere near the trailing edge. In anything other then comparatively calm seas you can expect tremendous stress on that line and the likelihood of tearing off a chuck of rudder. The difficulty in rigging an emergency tiller is just one reason that I personally am so opposed to center cockpits for offshore use.


chuckg 04-05-2004 09:39 AM

Emergency steering hole in rodder for rope?
Rudders such as those from Island Packet have holes drilled on the aft upper corner specifically for that reason. I can suggest that to provide steering redundancy, you use a linear drive auto pilot to use if you have a steering gear failure. The tiller arm for the autopilot would be independant of your steering cables and thus could be operated electronically without an operational steering pedestal. This wouldn''t help in an emergency where you have both a broken steering system AND no electricity but situations such as that rarely occur in anything short of a rollover( or if Murphy''s Law is working overtime).

gaurre3 04-05-2004 11:20 AM

Emergency steering hole in rodder for rope?
While sailing in the leeward islands, i had my rudder post shear from the internal webbing in the rudder. Obviously, the emergeny tiller, nor the autopilot had to effect in steerage at this point. Mother being the necessity of invention, i dove overboard in a choppy 3-4 ft sea with a 30 ft legnth of line. From the middle of the legnth, I wrapped it from in front of the rudder, around to the back of the rudder and criss crossed it. I then led the lines up stern and to the jib wenches and tightened down on both sides. It wasn''t a perfect, but with alittle adjustments on the wenches, i could hold a course to about 30 deg, which was close enough to get into port, where i could get assistance from shore.
s/v Temptation

paulk 04-05-2004 06:57 PM

Emergency steering hole in rodder for rope?
In light of what Jeff mentions, a hole in the trailing edge of the rudder on some boats may be to rig a retrieving line through, rather than a pair of control lines. Gaurre seems to have spread the load sufficiently by wrapping the blade forward/aft and criss-crossing his control lines.

slipacre 04-05-2004 07:08 PM

Emergency steering hole in rodder for rope?
Yes the rudder wrap makes more sense. Thank you all for your input. Just wanted to have one project that was going to cost less than ten dollars.

Todd V

elhanley 07-11-2004 03:55 PM

Emergency steering hole in rodder for rope?
Back when rudders, like the rest of the boat, were built of wood, that hole, or a steel tang with a hole, was a standard feature. I''ve seen some outboard rudders with chains rigged to that point and led up to the quarters to make going for a swim unnecessary.

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