Originally Posted by davewtsnape
I have a recurring nightmare of the steering going on my Moody 37, don't ask why, and thought it would be prudent to cobble together an emergency
tiller arrangement. Any advice on doing this? the helm
would have to stand in the aft cabin
with their head
out the hatch
unless I make some sort of through-deck fitting.
I assume from this you can get to the top of the rudder post? If so, then like ours you might be able to put a suitable through deck
fitting (ours is an older style fuel
fitting, bronze and therefore makes for a decent bearing) directly above or in alignment with the post. Ours then has a small universal joint, probably from a piece of farm machinery at a guess, which is semi permanently attached to the top of the rudder post. You simply drop a steel
pipe (1.5 inch diameter I think, about 4 feet long on our boat since it has to go all the way through the aft cabin, but very strong anyway) through the hole in the deck, into the top of the uni joint, pin it in place with a very hefty cotter pin, while another bit of pipe (About 5 feet long) goes through the T head on the top of first pipe. Works a treat, reaches all the way to the midship cockpit
and it's kind of nice to sail a big heavy boat with a tiller instead of the boring wheel
from time to time. Hard work with an unbalance rudder like ours, but yours looks to be at least partially balanced from what I could see on sailboatdata. Do it well enough and you might end up using it when racing
if that's your thing. I came up with a way of steering using a figure 8 line from the tiller and around two of the smaller cockpit winches that I felt would be sustainable over a long period of sailing, even if it was a bit of a fiddle to setup. Better than being tired out by hauling on an unbalanced tiller for what might be days and days of sailing.
The SECOND backup system we have is a pair of U bolts on the top trailing edge of the rudder to which you can attach lines to pull the rudder to either side. Have not tried this yet, but I will do as soon as I can figure out a way of not rubbing the antifouling off the boat with the lines. Thinking of using some garden hose as a sleave when the weather
is warmer. Again I would take the lines up to the smaller winches in the cockpit, but line chafe would be a problem. Very much a last resort, this system.
Can't have too many options to steer in my opinion thought none of this was my work and came with the boat when we bought her. The PO was a pretty handy guy and sailed 42,000 miles on the boat.