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Old 22-02-2018, 21:12   #1
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Selden Rod kicker gas strut replacement

I bought the Rodkicker around 10 years ago and it has been installed on the boat since. Never needed it. Last week I had to remove the Lazyjacks and boom bag for replacement as the stitching had failed (but that is another story). It was necessary to remove the topping lift to get the boom cover off and as i did that the rodkicker just compressed to its shortest length. Obviously the gas strut had failed. Probably best that it failed during maintenance on the mooring rather than in the middle of a stressed reefing!
Went back to the boat today to dismantle the rodkicker and check out what was wrong. There are a couple of very useful videos on Utube
on replacing the gas struts, and while the job is straight forward, the videos helped.
On removing the gas strut it was compressed to its full extent and there was oil leaking from the piston, obviously dead.
Bit more online research finds the Australian distributor. Call them, they have no idea about the part number, wholesale only, and they tell me that I will need to get a rigger and order through them. Lousy customer service and poor attitude there.
Not good enough, so more internet research, find a gas strut specialist in Sydney, "enquiries@gasstrutaustralia.com.au" place an email to them and get called back within minutes, quick and easy identification of the appropriate part, $80.00 plus delivery, rather than $300 plus with lousy service from the exclusive distributors.
The part is a drop in replacement, simple 20 minute job.

Lessons learnt
Shop around, but check things like rodkickers that don't get used frequently and make sure that when you need them they will work
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Old 23-02-2018, 01:49   #2
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Re: Selden Rod kicker gas strut replacement

Well done, Inspector! If more folks did this sort of "shopping" instead of caving in to the approved repair folks Aussies wouldn't have the abysmal customer service and extortionate pricing that run amok here. A good example for us all to emulate!

Jim
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Old 02-04-2019, 21:10   #3
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Re: Selden Rod kicker gas strut replacement

Dear Inspectr, great video thanks! I noted the part number of the 2500N Danish gas stut you used but does the gas strut differ from one boat to another? Mine is a Beneteau Sense 55 and oil is leaking from the Selden Rodkicker. It looks identical to yours but should i take the old one out to get the part no before ordering a new one? Robert
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Old 03-04-2019, 01:06   #4
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Re: Selden Rod kicker gas strut replacement

I presume that a 55 footer would have higher loads than my humble little 35 foot Dufour.
My gas strut was clearly labeled with the rated capacity and the supplier was able to match it.
The video (thanks to the producers) was very helpful and raised my confidence enough to tackle what ended up as an easy job.
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Old 03-04-2019, 01:59   #5
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Re: Selden Rod kicker gas strut replacement

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Robert.
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Old 04-04-2019, 20:49   #6
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Re: Selden Rod kicker gas strut replacement

You were right Inspectr. It is a 5000N strut. Many thanks for the advice
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Old 04-04-2019, 22:45   #7
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Re: Selden Rod kicker gas strut replacement

Check the model of your rod kicker, whether it’s a 10, 20, or 30. The beneteau 55 should be a rod kicker 30, like mine. They come standard with 2500N struts and can be ordered with heavy-duty 5000N ones, but you might find that’s overkill. I ordered an adjustable 3500N for mine from the UK, which you can “wind down’’ on installation. You only need enough power in the strut to hold up the boom and sail plus a little more. I found 2500N was plenty on mine (it will depend on the angle of your installation). Having one bigger than necessary will only increase your vang tension and make it harder for you to flatten the sail.
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Old 05-04-2019, 07:11   #8
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Re: Selden Rod kicker gas strut replacement

Dear Tillsbury, many thanks for your advice. My gas strut is a Aratron G40-300-5000N-02. Agree that 5000N seems like an overkill.

I tried to identify the equivalent Danish FJE model (same as from Inspectr) and it is rather tricky so i asked FJE to tell me if they have an equivalent model.

Hope to hear from them next week.

Robert

PS: I'm leaving Singapore for the Falklands to cross the South Atlantic to Capetown so you may not hear from me for a while
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