Rudder Bearing Replacement

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

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