Removing keelboat rudder.....

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by epoxyman, Dec 12, 2006.

  1. epoxyman
    Joined: Dec 2006
    Posts: 20
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    Location: North Carolina

    epoxyman Junior Member

    ...while in the water?

    I have never removed the rudder on my Capri 30 (inboard spade rudder with tiller) but would like to do so to do some long needed work on it. The only yard / hoist in the area will charge me $150 to hoist the boat out and $150 to put back in.

    So, can you remove the rudder at dockside by putting some lashings on the rudder or a net below the rudder, then loosen the bolts on the tiller where it attaches to the rudderpost, and pushing it down and out of the hull, and retrieving it from the water? Or is there something else that has to be done? Are there bearings that will fall out when the rudder post comes out or do they stay up in there? Any help is appreciated!
  2. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    With the rudder mounted under the LWL you're going to have a substantial leak issue the moment you begin dropping the blade, from it's port. The blade, plus the length (at least) of the shaft will have to drop clear, meaning you'll need considerable draft at the dock, which can be plenty hard to find on the east coast.

    This can be a challenging enough job on land. Often they just fall out when the gland nut is loosened, but many times they don't and you have to convince it to drop down. This can be a troublesome issue, as water is spraying all over the worker and the boat is beginning to sink.

    I would strongly recommend you bite the bullet (or travel lift) and have her hauled. Let them know you're going to pull the rudder, so they'll block her high, or park her butt over a hole. This isn't a particularly difficult job, but since you'll be fiddling with parts you're unfamiliar with, it would be a good idea to work on the hard, where parts can drop to the ground and be easily retrieved without wearing a mask and fins while groping around in the mud.
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