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Old 16-12-2013, 10:35   #1
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Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Santa Barbara
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Aries Model IV windane rebuild

When I bought the boat it came with a self steering vane that hadn't even been uncovered for years. When we pulled the cover off the mechanism was frozen, the rudder wouldn't turn at all. I did some googling, and after figuring out what I had, I discovered the documentation available was less than thorough.

I figured I could better work on it off the boat, so I embarked on an epic saga to remove it myself, which only my paranoia prevented me from having to go diving for it.. (It was frozen on, and I just knew that when it did pop off I was going to drop it, so I tied it to the pulpit with some spare line. Sure enough, it dropped just when I didn't have a good grip on it.)

At any rate, I managed to get it off, on the dock and into the back of my truck. I've been driving around with it for a couple of weeks, planning to start taking it apart in the evenings at work. Up until last night, the time to do so hadn't present itself.

Last night I got a few spare hours, so I lugged the thing into the shop and set it up on the bench. Low and behold, it worked perfectly, smooth as silk. I smiled at my luck and put down the wrench... My best guess is that either the drop off the back or the banging around in the truck broke free whatever was frozen. I'm going to change the lube oil a couple of times and call it good.

It's a testament to the durability of a near 40 year old unit, basically sitting for years in salt water, that it still works.

Just thought I'd share some good refit news, since the only refit work I can get done right now is off-the-boat stuff...

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Old 16-12-2013, 10:56   #2
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Boat: Rafiki 37
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Re: Aries Model IV windane rebuild

An old Aries came with our current boat -- a Model III I think. It hadn't been used in 10+ years, the gears were salt-frozen, and the rudder needed rebuilding. Got it working without too much trouble though, and has been our primary self-steerer ever since. ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT, and I'm sure you will too ... once you get it re-installed. They are kinda a beast to muscle around .
Why go fast, when you can go slow.
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