SailNet Community banner
1 - 2 of 2 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,106 Posts
Sara, Help me out as I'm a little confused as to what is going on in this thread. So, the rudder is jammed- stuck in the hard over position in the first photo? The tiller cap is through bolted to the shaft? Have you unscrewed the cover ring on the cockpit floor to see what is underneath? I'd expect to see some sort of retaining clip/upper bearing there. Usually there is something to keep the rudder from falling out as well as holding the rudder shaft in alignment. The interior photo suggests there is something there as the tube flares out a bit where it is mated to the underside of the cockpit. If there isn't anything wedged in between the rudder and the hull, then something must have fallen down from the upper bearing to jam the rudder. A bent rudder shaft is a more remote possibility as the shafts are usually pretty strong and you would feel the effects immediately after an "event". An "event" would be something like a hit (you didn't whack Anita Rock did you? Any whale collisions lately?- don't laugh, it happen to a J105 out in the Gulf of the Farallones a couple of years ago). Or did your rudder go hard over when you were in reverse?

<O:p</O:pIf you think that you may have lost the "spacers' between rudder and hull, you should be able to test for this by checking the play by pulling up on the rudder head. Spacers could be acting as a rudder bearing so you might not have a smooth surface to rotate the rudder on.

<O:p</O:pIf you are thinking you have a bent shaft or a chewed up bearing, this is really an out of water repair. The foam core part of the rudder may be less dense than water, but the metal skeletal structure and shaft are not so don't be too surprised if it sinks when you drop it. There should be something you can tie a safety line to just in case. You don't want a bent shaft as this is a pretty major repair most likely requiring you to be out of the water. A bad bearing is almost as bad. Think pure thoughts!

<O:p</O:pMy boat is over at <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com
Marina</st1:placeName> <st1:placeName w:st="on">Village</st1:placeName> in <st1:City w:st="on"><ST1:pAlameda</ST1:p</st1:City>, where is yours located? If you want, perhaps I can see your problem in person. Be thankful that your problem happened close to your slip. We started to develop upper rudder bearing problems about 400NM off shore during the Pacific Cup last year. Mid-ocean rudder repairs are not easy (especially when you are racing!)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,106 Posts
Sara, I'm encouraged that it would be highly improbable that you have a bent rudder shaft. I'm hoping that it is nothing more than a stuck bearing (remember that bushings are bearings too!). Try wiggling both the rudder head and the rudder itself when you dive. Any "play" at all would be a sign that a bushing is shot. Also pull up on the rudder head, if the upper bushing is shot, then the rudder could have dropped a quarter inch or so. With the heat wave this weekend, diving your boat might even be refreshing. Oyster/Sierra Point is on the wrong side of the Bay for me so you will be repairing unencumbered by any dockside supervision (at least from me!)

<O:p</O:pSteering gear problems at sea isn't fun. Fortunately, we generally kept up our speed and missed finishing in first by only three hours. Heck, we never even took the spinnaker down. If you post pictures of your repairs, I'll post mine. It turns out that the first place boat, a Wylie 38, also had rudder problems when their tiller delaminated and disintegrated. They wound up putting a hose clamp every two inches or so along the tiller to hold it together.
 
1 - 2 of 2 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top