I am in the process of having the rudder replaced as the original one bent and sheared at the post. Apparently there is a design flaw that was corrected at some point. The post for the new rudder has about 150% wall thickness as the old one. Our rudders are the same oned used on the C400. A friend of mine with a C42 who recently completed the Pacific Cup race replaced his rudder as a precaution after reading about a number of failures. The old design used a tube with thinner walls and a second tube inserted into that tube. The weld for the second tube happened to be right at the entry point into the lower bearing where all the load is. CY now makes them without the inner tube and just a thicker walled single tube. I am referring to the rudders used with the fin keel
Here is the thread I mentioned where Bob Perry discusses carbon fiber rudders:
Here is a link to a specific message in the thread where Bob included his design for a carbon rudder:
In response to my question he guesstimated $7K to $9K for a cf rudder but suggested contacting Phil’s Foils.
The idea is to let the rudder down a few inches….maybe 4 or 5″….and insert a shim around the post, on top of the rudder, then jack or lever the rudder back up in place. Several here have done this….I used 0.015″ thick, about 3″ wide…..it’s lasted at least 6 years & still is good.
I was able to do this without disconnecting anything, although some have disconnected autopilot mechanism and/or quadrant.
Also did narrower band in upper bearing, mostly by “stuffing”.
Teflon sheets- carried by Small Parts, Inc, Miami Lakes, FL (305)-557-8222, but they may not be in business anymore. I ordered 0.005″, 0.015″, and 0.030″, applied to base and top of rudder shaft with salt water grease (strips about 3″ high after dropping the rudder slightly using car jack support), as a temporary fix for the season. Total job took 15 minutes. This
By Tim Porter, C-380 #199, “Serendipity”
Mainsheet, November 2009
When I purchased my 1999 C-380 in 2008, the steering was very tight. I later determined someone had greased the lower rudder bearing with petroleum-based grease, which is very detrimental to Marelon, the material from which the bearings are made. Petroleum grease causes Marelon to swell, which caused the bearing to contract on the rudder post. My only option was to replace at the minimum the lower bearing. What follows is what I learned in the process, and how I did the replacement. The notation [WP] refers to information I received from Warren Pandy at Catalina inLargowhen he helped me determine the problem and what I needed to know to fix it…thanksWarren!
First off, there are two bearings on C380’s and C387’s, upper and lower, plus a mid-shaft packing gland. Here are some specifics about each:
[Editor’s Note – See Catalina
Title: Installation of Rudder Roller Bearings
Author: Warren Elliott, Rick Ranno
Hull #: 297
The previous Mainsheet issue included some relatively simple maintenance/repairs for your rudder system; this was in response to a number of captains noting various “”clunking”” or similar sounds that was traced to lateral [or vertical] movement of the rudder coinciding with rolling and/or pitching of the boat. I had the same problem, which was solved by tightening the packing gland, as recommended by Catalina’s Chief Engineer Gerry Douglas.
For those of you who are starting to notice some similar sounds, I suggest checking the top of your rudder post at the time you notice those sounds, easily accessed by unscrewing your emergency tiller deck plate.
On the other hand, Rick Ranno, captain of “”Sea Flat””, C380 #297 decided to go “”all the way”” and install quality roller bearings, top and bottom. One note of
Hull #: 44
Here’s another topic that’s received quite a bit of attention. It seems that a number of boats are sending out “clunking” sounds from the rudder shaft. This occurred on my boat near the end of the 2001 summer, when the boat was 5 years old; I traced the sound to the upper bearing, which is easily accessed through the emergency tiller deck plate [at the helm]. I could see the upper end of the rudder shaft moving back and forth, albeit a small amount, in synchronism with the sound and rolling motion of the boat.
Further investigation took place after our 380 was “on the hard” for the winter. By holding the bottom of the rudder and moving it side-to-side, I found both upper and lower bearings had some “slop”. Initial measurements indicated that there was about 1/16″ top and bottom. But