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Remounting Rudder

Discussion in 'Ask All Sailors' started by agg212, Feb 11, 2019. Add this thread to a FAQ

  1. agg212


    Joined Feb 11, 2019
    2 posts, 0 likes
    Albin Cumulus
    US Boston
    Hi all,

    I have an Albin Cumulus (28') and had a rudder problem at the end of last season (thankfully). In short, one of the two gudgeons holding the rudder to the transom failed (rusted though). The gudgeons are through-bolted through the rudder stock.

    I have had two replacement gudgeon fabricated (both top and bottom), and am wondering what the best way to mount them is. I was thinking of (1) drilling out the old holes, (2) filling them with West System 610, (3) re-drilling them to the screw size, (4) coating the screws in some more 610, and (5) tightening the nuts.

    I have a few questions however. First, does this sound like a good plan? Also, should I coat the inside of each metal gudgeon in some 610 before adhering the part in place? If so, will I ever be able to get it off again?

    Lastly, I'm wondering what the best way to make sure that the gudgeons are properly aligned (angel + position) since they need to match up exactly with the bracket attached to the transom.

    Appreciate any input, and attached are a few pictures, thanks!

  2. Charlie Jones s/v Tehani

    Charlie Jones s/v Tehani

    Joined Mar 1, 2012
    1,699 posts, 654 likes
    1961 Rhodes Meridian 25
    us Texas coast
    If it were me, I'd through bolt them.

  3. dlochner


    Joined Jan 11, 2014
    3,438 posts, 1,579 likes
    Sabre 362
    113 US Fair Haven, NY
    You are on the right track with drilling out the holes and filling them with West 610 or thickened epoxy. I'd use six10 because it is already mixed.

    Align the gudgeons with a pipe or dowel inserted into the gudgeon holes measure precisely. Usually one pintle is longer than the other, so you do have a little wiggle room. Another issue is the clearance between the tiller and rail. If the boat is out of the water, you could make a template and use that. Or put the gudgeons on the pintles, lift the rudder and place it in the gudgeons and mark the locations. That will take some muscle. If you do that, you'll benefit from some scaffolding to support the weight of the rudder while measuring. As I think about it, probably the most accurate and easiest is to build a template using some scrap lumber. Hang it as if it were the rudder. Mark and measure then transfer the measurements to the rudder.

    Through bolting is the way I would go, get 316 SS bolts. Use 3M 4000, 4200 or something comparable to seal the bolts into the hole. I would not epoxy them as someone may have the need to remove the bolts in the future.

  4. Gunni


    Joined Mar 16, 2010
    5,925 posts, 1,479 likes
    Beneteau 411 Oceanis
    US Annapolis
    Looks like a fun small project. Here is how I would do it:
    1. Dry fit your new gudgeons to the rudder, increase the size of the holes if you need adjustment room to make them line up properly to your pintles. When right, use a sharpie to outline their proper location right on the rudder.
    2. Overdrill the mounting holes, inspect the rudder core to make sure it is dry. When the core is dry, prep the hole with an acetone cleaning, tape one side of the hole, lay flat on a work surface and fill the hole with thickened epoxy. I have plenty of West 105 epoxy and colloidal silica filler (406 West Systems) laying about and would mix that up, but Six10 pre-mix will also work. You may have shrinkage into the hole upon cure, so be prepared to complete the hole fill with 12 hours.
    3. Line up your gudgeons using your marked outline and drill your new bolt holes through the epoxy fill using the gudgeons as a guide. Drill each side and meet in the middle of the rudder stock. Dry fit your gudgeons bolts to make sure everything fits.
    4. Refinish your rudder as desired.
    5. Thru-bolt your gudgeons. DO NOT use any epoxies, or caulks. If not using ny-lock nuts, apply thread-locker to the nuts.

  5. dlochner


    Joined Jan 11, 2014
    3,438 posts, 1,579 likes
    Sabre 362
    113 US Fair Haven, NY
    One issue that comes up with six10 and injected epoxy are air bubbles. As the epoxy is injected, periodically insert a small wire, a paper clip will do, to break the air bubble.

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