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Old 05-06-2012, 14:38   #16
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Re: Rudder problem

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Originally Posted by DennisM View Post
After haul-out in the fall, I discovered that the damage to my rudder, though repaired, had allowed water to seep into the rudder itself. I drilled it, drained it and patched it, but I won't know probably until next haul-out whether the rudder is still compromised with water.

May I also say that getting testy with people who are responding to your request for help and advice is probably not the best way to deal with the good folks on this forum.

Sorry I didn't mean to be "testy" and I don't think it would have come across that way in person. Not the intent. What you described is what I'm worried about -- that water will get in the fiberglass and rust the shaft. Right now that rudder is brand new and I would get full value from it from insurance. Going to have to get off line now but I promise I'll check back later.
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Old 05-06-2012, 14:41   #17
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Re: Rudder problem

The water is warm enough to get in and hepilp pull the rudder out. Drop it in 10 feet of clear water and you can dive down and get it if it decides to sink.

When we did it on a Cal 28, we took the rudder to a boatyard, found a long piece of pipe to go over the shaft, then blocked the rudder under the keel of a big boat and pried up with the pipe (put the end of the pipe on the bend) until it straightened up. Reinstalled it, and AFAIK it is still working 30 years later.

The boat owner was in charge of the stress analysis group for GE nuclear energy, and he knew a lot about bending stainless steel and fatigue--it didn't bother him.
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Old 05-06-2012, 14:48   #18
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Re: Rudder problem

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Originally Posted by Rakuflames View Post
Sorry I didn't mean to be "testy" and I don't think it would have come across that way in person. Not the intent. What you described is what I'm worried about -- that water will get in the fiberglass and rust the shaft. Right now that rudder is brand new and I would get full value from it from insurance. Going to have to get off line now but I promise I'll check back later.
Many folks here are more knowledgeable than I about these things, but the only way I know to check on whether or not a rudder is "wet," is to get it out of the water. Mine was weeping rusty water through the fiberglass once on the hard.
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Old 05-06-2012, 16:25   #19
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Re: Rudder problem

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When I bent my rudder post last season, I was told that it was bent too far to straighten, so I had to have it replaced. Apparently, there is a point at which the stainless won't go back straight without cracking. Here's a photo of the bent post with a straight-edge held up against it:
\


I really appreciate this discussion. I guess this is why I have comprehensive insurance. We can safely pull the rudder, but I personally am skeptical about whether it can be straightened. Another fellow I know has the same boat, however, and he straightened his. I'm going to have a metal working shop do it. They specialize in boating needs and I think I can trust them. I'm most worried about salt water getting into the rudder and then doing more damage where it can't be seen.
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Old 05-06-2012, 16:28   #20
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Re: Rudder problem

[QU
Quote:
Originally Posted by DennisM
When I bent my rudder post last season, I was told that it was bent too far to straighten, so I had to have it replaced. Apparently, there is a point at which the stainless won't go back straight without cracking. Here's a photo of the bent post with a straight-edge held up against it:

Ouch!!!!!

Da_n, Dennis. That's a heck of a bend!


Note to self -- take pictures. We might as well not lose the entertainment value of all this!

Zeehag you're right about funky steering. it was really HARD to turn that wheel but we had to in order to bring the headsail in safely. Fortunately we were very close to safe anchorage.
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Old 05-06-2012, 16:59   #21
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Re: Rudder problem

FWIW,

If the bend in the shaft was caused by lateral force on the bottom of the rudder blade, it seems likely that some damage to the glass to foam bond or the glass skin itself will have occurred. A careful visual inspection plus sounding (tapping with a mallet whilst listening to the sounds generated) should locate any delamination areas.

From your description of the construction (shaft and tabs only going part way down the blade) I would be quite concerned about structural integrity.

Hope that it works out ok for you... but after all this sort of thing is why you have insurance, isn't it?

Cheers,

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Old 05-06-2012, 18:09   #22
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Re: Rudder problem

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Originally Posted by donradcliffe View Post
The water is warm enough to get in and hepilp pull the rudder out. Drop it in 10 feet of clear water and you can dive down and get it if it decides to sink.

When we did it on a Cal 28, we took the rudder to a boatyard, found a long piece of pipe to go over the shaft, then blocked the rudder under the keel of a big boat and pried up with the pipe (put the end of the pipe on the bend) until it straightened up. Reinstalled it, and AFAIK it is still working 30 years later.

The boat owner was in charge of the stress analysis group for GE nuclear energy, and he knew a lot about bending stainless steel and fatigue--it didn't bother him.

Well you just described our "Plan A" except that we're going to have it straightened in a metal-working shop where they are very knowledgeable about boats.

And ... since I just bought this rudder in February (sigh -- yes, we bent a BRAND NEW RUDDER) -- we already know it will float. The only real concern I have is if the foam has been compromised because that could lead to later metal damage I wouldn't be able to see. You couldn't have seen the damage on the old rudder until it broke.
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Old 05-06-2012, 18:11   #23
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Re: Rudder problem

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Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
FWIW,

If the bend in the shaft was caused by lateral force on the bottom of the rudder blade, it seems likely that some damage to the glass to foam bond or the glass skin itself will have occurred. A careful visual inspection plus sounding (tapping with a mallet whilst listening to the sounds generated) should locate any delamination areas.

From your description of the construction (shaft and tabs only going part way down the blade) I would be quite concerned about structural integrity.

Hope that it works out ok for you... but after all this sort of thing is why you have insurance, isn't it?

Cheers,

Jim
Yes, this IS why I have insurance -- for major things. I'm concerned about the foam too. On the other hand, the insurance company may well want some kind of evidence that the rudder is so compromised that it needs to be replaced. But I'm glad to hear about the tapping. I was also wondering if a moisture reader would be of any use?
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Old 05-06-2012, 18:19   #24
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Re: Rudder problem

glad you have it under control. appreciate the scolding about your safety--it wasnt deserved,as many boats do have ingress of water from rudder problems.have lots of fun

dont worry i willnot again be concerned for your safety.
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Old 05-06-2012, 18:25   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rakuflames

Yes, this IS why I have insurance -- for major things. I'm concerned about the foam too. On the other hand, the insurance company may well want some kind of evidence that the rudder is so compromised that it needs to be replaced. But I'm glad to hear about the tapping. I was also wondering if a moisture reader would be of any use?
You may find the insurance company more accommodating than you expect. Since the integrity of the rudder is dependent on components you can't see and they don't want to deal with the rudder failing after refusing to replace it, they may be quite willing to spring for a new one. At least, that's what happened with us.
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Old 05-06-2012, 18:40   #26
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Re: Rudder problem

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Originally Posted by zeehag View Post
glad you have it under control. appreciate the scolding about your safety--it wasnt deserved,as many boats do have ingress of water from rudder problems.have lots of fun

dont worry i willnot again be concerned for your safety.
Sorry. I didn't mean to "scold" you but just to keep the discussion on the rudder.

The rudder post slides into another post on the boat that extends all the way to the top of the transom, where the emergency tiller fits in. And of course we have checked for water from the bottom as well. We've been under the boat. There's no further risk to the boat from this. As I said, we just replaced the rudder (in the same way, by finding deep enough water) in February. (The old one broke in an entirely different way, was original to this 1983 boat and was severely compromised. In fact I'm lucky that it broke when it did instead of, say, in a storm ...)

Does anyone have an opinion about the usefulness of a moisture meter here?
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Old 05-06-2012, 19:09   #27
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Re: Rudder problem

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Originally Posted by DennisM View Post
When I bent my rudder post last season, I was told that it was bent too far to straighten, so I had to have it replaced. Apparently, there is a point at which the stainless won't go back straight without cracking. Here's a photo of the bent post with a straight-edge held up against it:
That SS is no where near bent too far to cause metal damage. In fact, if you could it would be stronger in the former bend... and that hapens to be right where you would like it stronger! On the other hand... I dont know how you would straighten it properly.


To the OP: You said it was a skeg hung rudder. You definitely need to haul out and see what happened....how did a skeg supported rudder move up from banging on the bottom? Doesnt the skeg protrude lower than the ruddr?
  • The hull may haver oil canned up and back...?
  • The shoe on the bottom of the skeg may have been pushed into the skeg further...?
  • The tube from the bottom of the hull supporting the shaft/bearing/seal may be hanging on by a thread...
  • lots of bad scenarios worth investigating.....
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Old 05-06-2012, 19:18   #28
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The steel frame inside the foam rudder may cause false readings on your moisture meter. Also it may be dry now but after you straighten the shaft you may create a leak where the shaft enters the rudder. Although lots of rudder shafts have been successfully straightened, there are many problems that can arise. If the bend is close to where the shaft exits the blade then you could fatigue the steel just inside the blade where it cannot be detected. If the bend is in the area of the bearing then you will have to use a larger bearing as a round pipe is never round again after being bent. I vote for a new rudder but feel you on the insurance, anything they give you they will take away and more come renewal time. You can read some about rudder problems on my blog.
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Old 05-06-2012, 20:28   #29
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Re: Rudder problem

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Originally Posted by tartansail View Post
You may find the insurance company more accommodating than you expect. Since the integrity of the rudder is dependent on components you can't see and they don't want to deal with the rudder failing after refusing to replace it, they may be quite willing to spring for a new one. At least, that's what happened with us.
Well ... keep a good thought!

Since I just got this rudder in February it does seem to me that I should get full replacement value on it.

You know, I sailed that boat 14 days in May -- that's more than most people take their boats out in a year. I'm really glad now because it will probably be a little bit before I'm sailing again.
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Old 17-11-2012, 08:12   #30
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Re: Rudder problem

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Originally Posted by DennisM View Post
When I bent my rudder post last season, I was told that it was bent too far to straighten, so I had to have it replaced. Apparently, there is a point at which the stainless won't go back straight without cracking. Here's a photo of the bent post with a straight-edge held up against it:
I have a similar bent rudder shaft on my Sabre 28. Were you able to straighten it or did you get a new and/or used rudder? Where should I look for a replacement rudder?
Thanks,
Ware
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