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Old 22-05-2014, 14:54   #1
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swing keel stuck in trunk

I'm working on pulling a very shy swing keel down from the trunk (for function, not for overall removal) where it has been happily living for probably 7 or 8 years. The boat is a sweet little 1968 Morgan 25. The swing keel pennant and block and tackle arrangement seem all to be fine and there are no obvious obstructions that can be seen in the trunk, but the sucker will not drop. The boat is on stands for the next month. Any ideas from you swing keel guys out there? Thanks!!
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Old 22-05-2014, 17:25   #2
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Re: swing keel stuck in trunk

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Originally Posted by Perdiddle View Post
I'm working on pulling a very shy swing keel down from the trunk (for function, not for overall removal) where it has been happily living for probably 7 or 8 years. The boat is a sweet little 1968 Morgan 25. The swing keel pennant and block and tackle arrangement seem all to be fine and there are no obvious obstructions that can be seen in the trunk, but the sucker will not drop. The boat is on stands for the next month. Any ideas from you swing keel guys out there? Thanks!!
I had the same problem with my 17ft Clipper II . it had jammed in side ways ,or should I say it had twisted itself in a clockwise rotation in the up position . I ended up taking the boat off the trailer , rolling it half over , than hitting it with a sledge hammer . this jarred it out of the trunk. it has worked properly ever since .

good luck

jimmy
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Old 22-05-2014, 17:37   #3
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Re: swing keel stuck in trunk

Those were iron centerboards and they rust such that they swell against the sides of the trunk. They can be very difficult to get down when they do this. It certainly won't drop by itself. You will need to get some type of grip on it and pull it down - most likely with help of levers or hydraulics. If you can't get a grip, see if you can drill a hole in the edge and tap it to take a bolt. Bolt a loop of chain onto the board and use a lever to pull down on it. Use a hydraulic jack to push down on it if necessary.

When it is out, you will need to grind the rust sheets off of it and decide if it is salvageable or necessary to make a new one.

BTW, that is a sweet little boat.

Mark
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Old 22-05-2014, 17:52   #4
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Re: swing keel stuck in trunk

If rust is the trouble, I wonder if pouring some phosphoric or muriatic acid on it would help bust off the worst of it. Maybe multiple treatments over several days. Or just spray a few cans of PB Blaster in there. . . ?
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Old 22-05-2014, 18:01   #5
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Re: swing keel stuck in trunk

Someone who has the same boat as me was able to knock it down from the top-as said rig up a lever system with a long arm going towards the stern out the hatch. Get some movement winching up and levering down. Some lube should help.
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Old 22-05-2014, 18:57   #6
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Re: swing keel stuck in trunk

However you choose to free it - chock it so it can't fall more than an inch or two at a time
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Old 23-05-2014, 11:53   #7
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Re: swing keel stuck in trunk

Also, if the boat has been on a trailer or on stands a long time the hull might be deformed just enough to squeeze the centerboard trunk and hold the centerboard in place. Sometimes just putting the boat in the water for awhile will relax the hull so that it'll work again.
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Old 23-05-2014, 12:19   #8
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Re: swing keel stuck in trunk

Can you access the top of the trunk? a big rod and heavy hammer come to mind......
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Old 23-05-2014, 13:37   #9
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Not sure if this helps but I had a 17 foot daysailor with a swing keel and I drilled a hole through the aft part of the trunk, used a metal rod to push the centerboard down when it became incrusted with growth
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Old 25-05-2014, 15:58   #10
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Re: swing keel stuck in trunk

Thanks to all who responded to my request re: lowering a stuck swing keel in a Morgan 25. I've got some work to do, but the combination of generously contributed wisdom has that obstinate keel shaking in its boots.
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Old 25-05-2014, 17:38   #11
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Re: swing keel stuck in trunk

Let us know how it goes. We all love a good project -- especially one done by someone else. . . .
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Old 25-05-2014, 19:43   #12
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Re: swing keel stuck in trunk

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I've got some work to do, but the combination of generously contributed wisdom has that obstinate keel shaking in its boots.
That alone may be enough to free it.
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