Malo 45' loses rudder, pulls an All is Lost - Page 4 - SailNet Community
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post #31 of 47 Old 07-01-2014
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Re: Malo 45' loses rudder, pulls an All is Lost

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I'm following this thread because a Malo is going to be our next boat. I read their blog from the beginning, when they started out from Sweden in 2007. They had autopilot problems that delayed their start and had autopilot problems periodically over the next several years.

What I think you're saying (correct me if it's wrong), is that the autopilot forced the rudder to keep functioning even after there may have been a problem with the rudder, so that what might have been a small issue and easy to fix (maybe, maybe not) became what it did because it wasn't fixed and wasn't noticed?
My thought was that as the rudder stock started to break and twist and break the rudder collar and packing gland the auto pilot kept crunching it as it did not know it was doing damage. A person hand steering may have noticed a change in the feed back and take a look before too much damage had been done. A hydraulic ram or even an electric motor with a good bit of leverage can give quite a bit of torque.

Not sure but I don't think a wind vane would have exerted as much pressure. But I don't think they work well in confused seas anyway do they?
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post #32 of 47 Old 07-01-2014
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Re: Malo 45' loses rudder, pulls an All is Lost

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Not sure but I don't think a wind vane would have exerted as much pressure. But I don't think they work well in confused seas anyway do they?
I guess it would depend on how confused the seas were. If the boat is actually moving a wind vane should provide the standard feedback to the wheel. If the boat is just sitting there and bobbing (or bouncing) around the vane won't work. If the waves throw the boat really badly of course the vane will turn its maximum until the apparent wind on the vane changes. I would think that a powerful AP would be doing its best to get the boat back on course which of course isn't going to happen if the sails are not providing some drive. I assume these folks turned off the AP as soon as they discovered the problem, but at that point AP, vane, hand steering are not going to do much to help the situation with the lower part of the rudder banging around.

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post #33 of 47 Old 07-03-2014
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Re: Malo 45' loses rudder, pulls an All is Lost

Of course, TD Wombat Esq. has a Malo - and, in all my years of sailing, I've not been on a better designed or built cruising boat, ever, really, seriously - and I'm a tad surprised he hasn't piped up here yet.

FWIW, I can't see they did anything wrong in this case and think that they certainly would have had a better chance to save the boat if the rudder had simply fallen off - which it, unfortunately, didn't. Certainly, if the '43 is anything like the '39, securing the rudder in any kind of sea would be a very dangerous exercise and probably fruitless also - it's the wrong shape, in the wrong place and with the wrong mountings for any of that.

I will say I don't remember there being a lot of helm 'feel' on TD's Malo (it's not a racing yacht), so it could be tricky for someone who was a guest on board (their guest was apparently on watch when the incident started) to notice anything wrong even if the AP wasn't in control.

I'm starting to appreciate my keel-hung outboard rudder more and more!
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post #34 of 47 Old 07-03-2014
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Re: Malo 45' loses rudder, pulls an All is Lost

Yep. Sometimes, things just break, and there's not much you can do about it.

It makes me think of what is referred to as the "Jesus" nut in a helicopter (it holds the main rotor blades on). If it fails, only Jesus is going to save you.

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post #35 of 47 Old 07-03-2014
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Re: Malo 45' loses rudder, pulls an All is Lost

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Of course, TD Wombat Esq. has a Malo - and, in all my years of sailing, I've not been on a better designed or built cruising boat, ever, really, seriously - and I'm a tad surprised he hasn't piped up here yet.

FWIW, I can't see they did anything wrong in this case and think that they certainly would have had a better chance to save the boat if the rudder had simply fallen off - which it, unfortunately, didn't. Certainly, if the '43 is anything like the '39, securing the rudder in any kind of sea would be a very dangerous exercise and probably fruitless also - it's the wrong shape, in the wrong place and with the wrong mountings for any of that.

I will say I don't remember there being a lot of helm 'feel' on TD's Malo (it's not a racing yacht), so it could be tricky for someone who was a guest on board (their guest was apparently on watch when the incident started) to notice anything wrong even if the AP wasn't in control.

I'm starting to appreciate my keel-hung outboard rudder more and more!
The owner of a Malo 41 has chimed in over on CSBB...

Interesting...

Hadn't heard about it, quite a story, I can add to speculation
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post #36 of 47 Old 07-03-2014
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Re: Malo 45' loses rudder, pulls an All is Lost

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The owner of a Malo 41 has chimed in over on CSBB...

Interesting...

Hadn't heard about it, quite a story, I can add to speculation
Interesting indeed.. having bits of your boat underwater fall off without notice is pretty scary, really!!

A little armchair-thinking here, but perhaps people setting off on serious cruising adventures would be well advised to go over all possible failure scenarios and other peoples' reported failures and work out back at the dock if there's anything they could do to mitigate it? I know from their books that faulty rudders and rudder-repair-underway is something that both the RKJ and the Hiscocks countenanced - and had to carry out at one point - and it seemed to me that both selected keel-hung outboard rudders for this reason.

...but it's true that you can't cover everything.. and Murphy's Law is no respecter of persons.

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Last edited by Classic30; 07-03-2014 at 09:04 PM.
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post #37 of 47 Old 07-04-2014
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Re: Malo 45' loses rudder, pulls an All is Lost

if thats the way the shoe is attached you can count on vibrations being it...wow

I dont disagree with that method but like bolts and nuts on motorcycle engines and parts especially exterior ones loctite is your friend.

that is a mighy small skeg there too!

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post #38 of 47 Old 07-04-2014
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Re: Malo 45' loses rudder, pulls an All is Lost

Oh my. Sorry folks but the Wombet and I are in the process of moving house, ergo my absence. I have couple of thoughts on this, we dropped our rudder out this year cos I thought it felt and sounded a bit odd but will have to wait until we are settled for more detail.

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post #39 of 47 Old 07-04-2014
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Re: Malo 45' loses rudder, pulls an All is Lost

Quick PS ... just read the CSBO post and I'm thinking he is on the money.

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post #40 of 47 Old 07-06-2014
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Re: Malo 45' loses rudder, pulls an All is Lost

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Originally Posted by Classic30 View Post
Interesting indeed.. having bits of your boat underwater fall off without notice is pretty scary, really!!

A little armchair-thinking here, but perhaps people setting off on serious cruising adventures would be well advised to go over all possible failure scenarios and other peoples' reported failures and work out back at the dock if there's anything they could do to mitigate it? I know from their books that faulty rudders and rudder-repair-underway is something that both the RKJ and the Hiscocks countenanced - and had to carry out at one point - and it seemed to me that both selected keel-hung outboard rudders for this reason.

...but it's true that you can't cover everything.. and Murphy's Law is no respecter of persons.
May I suggest a book? Very good technical breakdowns of the errr... breakdowns that happened in the book. My copy was drowned recently and is a "total loss". Fitting eh?

Total Loss: A Collection of 45 First-hand Accounts of Yacht Losses at Sea with a Summary of the Lessons to be Learned: Jack Coote: 9781574091465: Amazon.com: Books Total Loss: A Collection of 45 First-hand Accounts of Yacht Losses at Sea with a Summary of the Lessons to be Learned: Jack Coote: 9781574091465: Amazon.com: Books


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