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Old 11-09-2019, 01:13   #1
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Rudder punctures hull

Saw this yesterday filmed by Delos https://youtu.be/zT9epsRGnE4?t=182

Rudder punctured the hull inaccessibly under the engine.

Seems to be an obvious possibility and weakness leading to rapid flooding. All be it in shallow water

Options?
Lagoon style composite glass rudder post?
Metal stainless plate above rudder to bend and add resiliency to fibreglass
Other ideas?
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Old 11-09-2019, 01:27   #2
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Re: Rudder punctures hull

Quote:
Originally Posted by nfbr View Post
Saw this yesterday filmed by Delos https://youtu.be/zT9epsRGnE4?t=182

Rudder punctured the hull inaccessibly under the engine.

Seems to be an obvious possibility and weakness leading to rapid flooding. All be it in shallow water

Options?
Lagoon style composite glass rudder post?
Metal stainless plate above rudder to bend and add resiliency to fibreglass
Other ideas?
Nothing would work.
You have the mini keels in front, that get the first impact and somewhat protect the rudder and the sail drive, but if you reverse and hit something, the saildrives and the rudder woud wreck the compartment bottom and/or the sealing.

There are 4 ball vents in the bilge that watertight the 4 crashboxes on a lagoon, the two forward locker with bulkheads and the 2 engine rooms.usually open to allow the condensation water to drain to the bilges. Make sur they are not rusted. You may wreck the engine but you will not sink.
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Old 11-09-2019, 04:57   #3
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Re: Rudder punctures hull

Certainly seems like the underwater epoxy placed from the outside would have been a really effective help in this case.

Also a VERY good example of why you would want to strong, high volume crash pump already in place in each engine bay.

These unfortunate accidents are also great opportunities to learn, AND reinforce the importance of being ultra careful in shallow waters.
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Old 11-09-2019, 05:10   #4
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Re: Rudder punctures hull

Has anyone tried the Flex Tape / Seal / Shot products? They are advertised quite a bit in the US and are supposed to work under water too.

I am surprised how big the gash was and that cut-up dishtowel made the difference between the pump loosing or gaining.
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Old 11-09-2019, 06:20   #5
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Re: Rudder punctures hull

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Has anyone tried the Flex Tape / Seal / Shot products? They are advertised quite a bit in the US and are supposed to work under water too.

I am surprised how big the gash was and that cut-up dishtowel made the difference between the pump loosing or gaining.
I'd love to try flex tape, but I don't want to be in the position to try flex tape

I was surprised by the towel approach as well. If anything, I would have started from under the boat so that the water pressure would help push it into the crack. Apparently that's not even necessary.
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Old 11-09-2019, 06:31   #6
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Re: Rudder punctures hull

The Flex Tape looks like it would be great for something like this. Certainly worth having some on-board for the price. Even comes in really wide widths. Pretty reasonably priced.

I agree I don't WANT to be in a position to need it. In water like that I would have certainly started on the outside.
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Old 11-09-2019, 07:15   #7
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Re: Rudder punctures hull

If you have the option to choose your design of boat: one choice could be skegged rudders attached below isolated bulk headed locker, with a shaft drive. This moves the engine weight more forward and results in better access to potential rudder issues. Unfortunately, this does impact production costs. In the end, backing into something is never good for a rudder. I am sorry for their troubles.
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Old 11-09-2019, 07:30   #8
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Re: Rudder punctures hull

The compartment above could be built to avoid flooding - dams, foam filler, etc.


Alternatively build the hull stronger in this area.



One extra coat of kevlar/twaron/spectra shield would add some amt of protection to point punctures.



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Old 11-09-2019, 07:31   #9
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Re: Rudder punctures hull

and doesn't always work. Same thing happened on a boat I was on 20 years ago - big skeg hung rudder. We dragged and the rudder impacted on a rock. Skeg was fine but the rudder was also driven into the hull. No leak but a lot of damage and no steering.


Watertight compartments are great through - big believer in them.


Quote:
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If you have the option to choose your design of boat: one choice could be skegged rudders attached below isolated bulk headed locker, with a shaft drive. This moves the engine weight more forward and results in better access to potential rudder issues. Unfortunately, this does impact production costs. In the end, backing into something is never good for a rudder. I am sorry for their troubles.
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Old 11-09-2019, 07:43   #10
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Re: Rudder punctures hull

I realise it might not suit everyone, but my choice for a future boat will be a Wharram Tiki 38 or 46. Some of the advantages in relation to this thread are:

- Transom hung rudders with protective skegs
- Twin outboards in retractable pods
- No centreboards

With this type of design there are very little to no external appendages in the water and the ones that are do not have any through hull penetrations.

Food for thought
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Old 11-09-2019, 07:44   #11
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Re: Rudder punctures hull

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Originally Posted by kevinof View Post
and doesn't always work. Same thing happened on a boat I was on 20 years ago - big skeg hung rudder. We dragged and the rudder impacted on a rock. Skeg was fine but the rudder was also driven into the hull. No leak but a lot of damage and no steering.
The skeg may have kept your instance from cracking/puncturing the hull like the video?
Additional thoughts on skegged rudders:
https://catamaranconcepts.com/2014/01/23/rudders/
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Old 11-09-2019, 08:27   #12
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Re: Rudder punctures hull

I think the only reason it didn't pierce the hull was that the hull was just too strong (very old big Nicholson boat) and we managed to get it off the rock quickly. The tip of the rudder was embedded into the hull about 2cm's.




Quote:
Originally Posted by Perfect Ride View Post
The skeg may have kept your instance from cracking/puncturing the hull like the video?
Additional thoughts on skegged rudders:
https://catamaranconcepts.com/2014/01/23/rudders/
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Old 11-09-2019, 08:40   #13
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Re: Rudder punctures hull

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Originally Posted by kevinof View Post
I think the only reason it didn't pierce the hull was that the hull was just too strong (very old big Nicholson boat) and we managed to get it off the rock quickly. The tip of the rudder was embedded into the hull about 2cm's.
You were fortunate, indeed. The skeg is a key part of overall rudder post strength. Of course the protection going forward is somewhat greater then when backing into or on top of something. Given an option for skegged or non-skegged rudders, I still would always recoimmend the former in any angle of impact.
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Old 11-09-2019, 08:43   #14
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Re: Rudder punctures hull

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Originally Posted by LoudMusic View Post
I'd love to try flex tape, but I don't want to be in the position to try flex tape

I was surprised by the towel approach as well. If anything, I would have started from under the boat so that the water pressure would help push it into the crack. Apparently that's not even necessary.
anything placed in the hole to slow the ingress of water will work great .also it doesn't matter from inside or outside the pressure difference is negligible you are less than 2 feet below the waterline.

Yes the wide flex tape would work applied from the outside to get you to the haulout .

As I said anything that slows the water ingress is a good thing,
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Old 11-09-2019, 08:51   #15
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Re: Rudder punctures hull

I once had something similar happen from an unmarked rock in Maine. Stay-afloat plugged the leak completely. I couldn't see the crack but was able to just squish it in by just pushing it over the area where I could feel water. I first put it on inside and that got it down to a weep. I then dove and put more on the outside to stop it completely. I carry two of the 28oz containers. It's also a better solution than the tapered plugs people carry since leaks are rarely perfectly round holes.

I don't think manual crash pumps make much sense anymore given the electric power available on a typical cruising boat. The pump the Delos people are using is not moving a lot of water compared to a big electric pump. By the time I lose all electricity, I plan to be getting into the liferaft. I have two Rule 3800 bilge pumps with 2" diameter hoses. They are mounted several inches above normal bilge water and the regular pumps. They've never gotten wet - thank God.

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