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· Senior Smart Aleck
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I spent the month of August 2014 working on the rudder on my '77 Pearson 28-1, which had developed a twitch/vibration. After my most recent trip to Cape May, I decided I would rather haul and miss August sailing so I could sail throughout the rest of the year.

Photos:

https://plus.google.com/photos/101935788163929897438/albums/6045893622335987249

Here is a list of the items repaired/replaced/addressed:

1. Replaced missing(!) lower rudder bushing with custom-machined bronze bushing pressed into heel/shoe;
2. Drained, dried and sealed rudder with Interprotect 2000e epoxy paint;
3. Replaced improper, dry-rotted rudder stuffing box hose with new Buck Algonquin and new double hose clamps;
4. Grinded, sanded and cleaned partial skeg rudder housing and laid new fiberglass;
5. Sanded and painted bottom with ablative paint;
6. Re-painted new black hull stripe;
7. Cleaned scuff marks off hull with Fiberglass Solvent Wash;
8. Replaced flax in rudder post stuffing box;
9. Added thimbles to wire rope on eye bolts.

Removing the rudder drive wheel was a beotch. After trying PB Blaster, boiling water, a propane torch, and an impact wrench. I finally cut through the bolts with a grinder. While I wanted to switch to a tiller, my wife prevailed upon me to keep the wheel. My machinist did a great job of repairing the damage.

Upcoming fall/winter repair jobs: replacing wire rope in steering system and replacing cockpit drain hoses.

The boat is ready to splash!
 

· Senior Smart Aleck
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
It is gratifying to finish the job and to try to do it right. Every time I work on the boat I learn more about particular systems: this time it was primarily the steering system, but I also learned more about wire rope and fasteners, metals, barrier coating, metal corrosion and freeing bolts, and fiberglass work.
 

· Senior Smart Aleck
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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Kindly explain exactly what you mean by 'rudder vibration'.

NACA 63A010 AIRFOIL (n63010a-il)
The wheel wants to turn one way, then the other, repeatedly, back and forth, with a small motion. This was not the normal keel/rudder hum that is enjoyable at top speeds in certain conditions. The boat was fine before several incidents, as described below:

I ran into a poorly-marked gill net adjoining the channel on the Rappahannock this past Spring and was caught for about 45 minutes, before finally cutting myself loose. My wheel pedestal brake broke halfway through the season (a guest manhandling it). Later in the season, I tried an impromptu man overboard exercise to retrieve my son's hat, which fell overboard. The boat backed down on its rudder hard to one side in some chop. After this incident, the vibration became more pronounced. Finally, my boat receives a fair amount of wake from powerboats on the beam in its current slip, so there is more frequent sideways motion and pitching, putting more stress on the rudder fixtures.

When the boat was hauled, I was able to move the bottom of the rudder sideways about 1/8 inch in each direction. The bronze skeg heel/shoe was loose and allowing some rotation. I was surprised by how easy it was to remove the skeg screws and nuts - they were hardly tightened. As you can see from the photo, they are located about a foot deep in the partial skeg - I had to buy an extra long socket extension to each them. It is possible the last person to work on it simply tightened them as best possible by hand, due to their inaccessibility.
 
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