Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Seattle, WA
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Re: PSC34 Wheel to Tiller conversion
I am still looking for the drawing I used for the machine shop (I may have hand drawn it but I do have it in storage and will post it).
In essence the piece that fits into the existing rudder tube should be a slip fit so that when through bolting it's possible to tighten the rudder tube to clamp against the piece inside. I agree that you don't want any rotational play at all between the pieces. I used a 3/8-16 SS bolt with washers and locking nut and 1/2 inch drive tools to accomplish this. I've had the rudder off twice since and it all goes back together without a problem. The section that goes into the tiller head also needs to be a tight fit into so the through-bolt there will prevent any rotational play. The machine shop turned a solid piece of SS to fit the tiller head that also fit into the tube the goes into the existing rudder stock. They then welded the two pieces together and drilled the two through holes for me. It remained for me to drill the through hole in existing rudder tube.
The main disadvantage of getting rid of the wheel is the admiral doesn't like it for a variety of reasons (binnacle, table, engine controls etc). My main push for the tiller was safety. After I adjusted the cables under the cockpit floor early on I decided that wasn't something I wanted to deal with in a seaway, at night in foul weather with Murphy looking over my shoulder. An unanticipated boon to maintenance is being able to pivot the whole cockpit sole up and out of the way for engine, transmission, h/w heater and wiring maintenance. These days I might opt for worm drive wheel steering and having half the cockpit sole removable.
Hope this is of some use.
1980 C37 Yawl