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Old 27-08-2015, 12:25   #16
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Re: How do I fix my damaged rudder?

Many rudders are hollow for the top few inches of the rudder stock. A pin runs through the stock so that in an emergency, a tiller can be used to steer the boat. If you have a small deck plate or access hatch you should be able to see the top of the stock. Tie a rope through the bolt and undo the connections for the arm and hydraulics. You can then lower the rudder out of the rudder tube. Mine was almost buoyant when I did it, (although mine is a catamaran). At least then you will know what you are dealing with. (As an aside, my current walk-on mooring is very convenient but at extreme low tide the rudder rests on the bottom. So, instead of risking damage, as a temporary measure I made up a rudder out of a same diameter scaffolding tube and welded on a steel plate to it. It sure ain't pretty and wouldn't withstand heavy-weather sailing but its been there for two years now. It might be a consideration for a temporary fix until you get yours done).
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Old 27-08-2015, 13:19   #17
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Re: How do I fix my damaged rudder?

I purchased a new one. 7 days delivery for total $2000 cost.
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Old 27-08-2015, 13:29   #18
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Re: How do I fix my damaged rudder?

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Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
I think that's the west coast side of Foss Foam. From experience with their Florida location...I'd burn the boat and take up golf first. Just one man's opinion.


The guy in Canada, used to be something like "Phil's" ? is supposed to be very good.
Philbrooks. 2324 Harbour Road, Sidney, BC, V8L 2P6
Phone: (250) 656-1157 (877) 656-1157

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Old 27-08-2015, 17:01   #19
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Re: How do I fix my damaged rudder?

Actually the guy you were thinking about is Phil's Foils. CCI Competition Composites.
Phil's Foils A-Z, Sailboat Rudders, Daggerboards, and More | Competition Composites Inc.
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Old 27-08-2015, 17:30   #20
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Re: How do I fix my damaged rudder?

The video is DeepFz's link is absolutely lovely. These same techniques are used in the construction of sailplanes. But let's remember that for 20% of the buck you get 80% of the bang :-)

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Old 27-08-2015, 19:58   #21
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Re: How do I fix my damaged rudder?

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Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
I think that's the west coast side of Foss Foam. From experience with their Florida location...I'd burn the boat and take up golf first. Just one man's opinion.


The guy in Canada, used to be something like "Phil's" ? is supposed to be very good.
Philbrook's in Sidney; just north of Victoria.
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Old 28-08-2015, 13:09   #22
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Re: How do I fix my damaged rudder?

If the bend is only a few degrees, you should be able to cold straighten it. The problem is going to be how to do it. It's going to take lot of force to do it and alignment could be an issue if the rudder was bent off center.line.
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Old 28-08-2015, 15:41   #23
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Re: How do I fix my damaged rudder?

Phil's Foils, YES.


A shame they don't make 3D plasma (metal) printers in that size range yet.
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Old 28-08-2015, 16:30   #24
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Re: How do I fix my damaged rudder?

I assume that your keel hit the object before striking your rudder since your rudder is not deeper than the keel.

I suggest that you inspect your fin keel when assessing your bent rudder shaft. It you hit something hard enough to bend the robust rudder shaft, you may have also damaged the keel boss, i.e. tipped the leading edge down and the trailing edge up into the hull. This is fairly common and the keel boss/hull fractures are often hairline cracks masked by bottom paint and bedding compound. Strip away the bottom paint at the keel-to-hull and check it out. Inspect the keel bolts for cracks and leaking

Do you recall hearing/feeling TWO thunks when you struck the underwater object?

Are there damage marks on the front/bottom of the leading edge of the keel?

Good luck
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Old 28-08-2015, 17:42   #25
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Re: How do I fix my damaged rudder?

You need an arbor press (many auto machine shop/ mechanics have one) However, they may not have a big enough one for your large stock. You need two support blocks (V blocks would be better). You need a flat steel table or better a granite surface plate. You need to overbend with the arbor press until you figure out how much bend stays in the shaft. then work up on getting it straight slowly with multiple attempts.
The trouble is that the bend is likely right close to the rudder itself. So it may not be easy to do or even possible. With a skil saw you can cut the rudder blade fiberglass shell off the shaft assembly, get a new rudder stock and fix it... reusing the old blade or shell.
A lot of work for sure, but doable if you can find a welder to have the support blades put on the new shaft.
Laminate the ruder blade back around the shaft assembly. Core a couple holes near the top and fill it with castable epoxy with lightweight filler. It'll never fill with water that way.
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Old 29-08-2015, 09:22   #26
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Re: How do I fix my damaged rudder?

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Hi Ed:

I have never done this but I have read about it so take it with a grain of salt. A spade rudder is supposed to be neutrally buoyant.
NEW rudders MAY be. Old rudders are unlikely to be! When ours fatigued & broke off it went straight down with the post still in the boat.

The 'tube' is probably a solid bar, especially on an old boat. It is bent and not generally reparable. You will need to find a suitable rudder or commission a new one.
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Old 29-08-2015, 09:51   #27
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Re: How do I fix my damaged rudder?

I don't think the weight of the rudder is a big deal... within reason. Most rudders will sink if they have a SS shaft..... there isn't enough foam in them to counteract the weight. And, I would bet that a high percentage of rudders over 10 years old are filled with water anyway. (if they are built with a shaft) If you fill a rudder with epoxy /lightweight filler it might avoid this and the epoxy really doesn't weigh much submerged in water anyway.
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Old 03-09-2015, 16:25   #28
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Re: How do I fix my damaged rudder?

Many thanks, all. I have been overwhelmed by all the help. It is truly appreciated!

I believe the best way to go is to turn it into an insurance claim. That'll be my next thread/cry for help!

Thanks all!!

Ed
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Old 03-09-2015, 16:29   #29
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Re: How do I fix my damaged rudder?

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Originally Posted by rdowall View Post
I assume that your keel hit the object before striking your rudder since your rudder is not deeper than the keel.

I suggest that you inspect your fin keel when assessing your bent rudder shaft. It you hit something hard enough to bend the robust rudder shaft, you may have also damaged the keel boss, i.e. tipped the leading edge down and the trailing edge up into the hull. This is fairly common and the keel boss/hull fractures are often hairline cracks masked by bottom paint and bedding compound. Strip away the bottom paint at the keel-to-hull and check it out. Inspect the keel bolts for cracks and leaking

Do you recall hearing/feeling TWO thunks when you struck the underwater object?

Are there damage marks on the front/bottom of the leading edge of the keel?

Good luck
Yes, there were two thunks when I hit the log. Hadn't thought that about damaging the keel as well. I was doing about 6 knots when I hit the log and had assumed that the reason the rudder got bent was that it was off center (i.e., in a slight left turn). I'll take your advice and eyeball the keel, too.
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Old 03-09-2015, 17:52   #30
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Re: How do I fix my damaged rudder?

Had the same issue with my Columbia 26. The shaft was bent by ~10 degrees or so. I dropped the rudder, then I worked with a guy at a boatyard to rig up a hefty table with clamps and wood to evenly support the rudder along the whole leading edge. Then we took an old mast that was lying around, slipped it over the shaft, and with both of us pushing against that ~25' lever arm we were able to straighten the shaft. But then the problem was slight crimping of the tube at the bend. We put it on a big hydraulic press and squeezed the crimp down to being approximately round again. A couple swipes with a die grinder had it perfectly round and it fit right back into the bearings.

With all that stress at the bend I was concerned about the lost strength in the shaft. I got another hunk of smaller diameter SS shaft that just slipped right into the rudder shaft, then potted the entire thing in epoxy. I'm pretty sure it's now considerably stronger than it was originally ... which I suppose could be a problem next time the rudder hits something at speed. It will probably rip the transom off the boat rather than bend the shaft again!

Anyway, that's how I fixed mine a few years ago and all has been well since.
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