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  Topic Review (Newest First)
12-06-2009 10:15 PM
NICHOLSON58 Interesting reading. I'm building my own new rudder this winter. The post at the bearing is 4" solid SS and is machined tapered to 2-1/2 inch at the lower bearing. (skeg mount). The blade is 36 x 72 and 6 inches thick at the lead edge. The shaft has three welded on SS ribs to transmit load tothe skin. Thie old glass was water blistered and the foam core was wet. All together the shaft is about 9 feet long. It took a fork truck to put it in my truck. (400 # plus) Its stripped down in my basement now. I love the smell of resin curing.

My plan will be to build up glass over the ribs and fair the lines over the ribs. Next I will cast HD foam all around and then sand it fair, leaving the glass on the ribs exposed. It will then hang shaft horizontal from the basement ceiling while I form Graphite skin around it.

I found that the designers had arranged a lifting eye on the mizzen boom directly over the emergency rudder access cover on the deck. The mizzen vang drops neatly through and lits me winch it back into position.

I'd love to move the center of effort aft a bit but the skeg mount eliminates this option.
10-26-2006 02:59 PM
sailingdog I fully agree with you... and it doesn't take much to just say, "Yeah, we got your message, and I'm sorry but we've been swamped/out of town/in the hospital/whatever, but this is the first chance I've gotten to get back to you..." which goes a long way to making things much better.
10-26-2006 02:12 PM
hellosailor SD-
Yeah, that's about the way I figure. In this day and age, telephones can always be forwarded. Answering machines (even at the telco exchange) can always give a message. Someone can always pick up a phone and say "I'm flying to Ganjou for a funeral, we've closing the shop for ten days."
Or, I'd be equally content to hear someone say "Yeah, we were at sea, went racing and had some gear failures, couldn't get back to you till we made land."

Of course, considering what it costs to ship a rudder, and what it costs to keep a boat on the hard because you can't sail WITHOUT THE RUDDER...I'd expect more than flowers in the morning after I'd been sent a wrong rudder.

But that's just me, I'm a hard customer.
10-26-2006 01:53 PM
sailingdog Life is too short to deal with companies with bad customer service... if they don't want my business...I will happily take it elsewhere.
10-26-2006 01:34 PM
hellosailor Be careful with, which is Foss Foam. They're one of the few 'rudder shops' at all and my friend used them after getting great reccomendations. But first they shipped (ka-ching) a rudder built to the wrong dimensions, then they lost weeks reshipping it (didn't pick up on time, didn't ship on time) and there were some weeks when no one answered the phone at all. No excuse ever given.

This wasn't an all-custom rudder, he only wanted a "notch" on it changed to match his hull profile. What shipped simply had been changed to the wrong dimensions, not the ones they were given.

If they have a stock replacement on hand for your stock rudder and all they need to do is ship it...and answer their might work out OK.

The new rudder has been OK so far, but would my friend use them again? Preferably not, they simply dropped the ball too many times. The product seemed OK, the service sadly unfocussed.
10-26-2006 12:03 PM
IslandOne Building a new rudder sounds like an interesting and instructive project..if you don't have the time and/or inclination go to and search their database for available rudders...I purchased one from them and was very pleased.
10-21-2006 07:20 AM
sailingdog One thing to be aware of—Composite Rudder Posts can fail catastrophically without any real warning... it's happened on some production and custom boats in the last couple of years, so... YMMV.
10-16-2006 07:23 PM
Flamingoboy Hi, it is now 2006. My stainless steel rudder post has some corrosion due to electrolysis due to DPO. It is missing about a knuckle to thumb tip of material. It was puddle welded prior to some blue water cruising and seemed to be ok. But I always worry about what is going on cause it still leaks and results in standing water.

So, I am considering having the post replaced. It is on a 46 foot sailboat, and skeg hung. Any ideas? Cut it out and replace? Replace with carbon fiber and a tube? What could be done to make it lighter?

On the list for 2006 winter.

12-13-2004 12:46 PM
Building a New Ruuder


Thanks for sharing the detailed info on the rudder rebuild. Very interesting!

2 questions;
1) as it looks like you had just 1 chance to get the rudder post lined up just right (with foam that dense I canít imagine how you could re-do the work once the first pouring of the foam hardened) how did you hold the post and shell in place to eliminate any movement, and how did you make measurements to ensure they were lined up perfectly?

2) how did you keep the walls of the shell from losing their shape as the foam expanded - were the walls of the shell so thick that when the foam expanded it only expanded upward toward the opening without pushing hard enough to deform the foil shape?
12-12-2004 06:18 PM
Building a New Ruuder

We all have our ideas this was my idea and it worked very good. I found the shape I wanted a long tapered foil took the old stainless shaft cleaned it up and had it trued for twenty bucks at a machine shop. The next step was the local salvage yard and I found a piece of 3/16th plate four feet long and ten inches wide. The welding shop cut a slot in plate and welded it using the piece they cut out to make gussets and I had a stainless core to end all cores. I could have sailed the boat with what I had. then I took plywood and cut templates in the foil halfs shape and built a mould with two X 4 and the two parts were lined with formica and it was glued to the foil tenplates. Next it was coated with seperator and using triaxle cloth three layers were layed on, one coat of mat was the last layer On each half. Now the shaft was set into place and high dinsity foam two part stuff poured in and after it cured the top of the mold was glassed in and the mold seperated and removed and what we had was a smooth as a babys butt rudder which only required an hour to fair with glass tape and a a little more resin and another hour to primer and another to bottom paint. All this for $500. Beats $3000 any day.
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