34 rudder post access for AP

Jan 28, 2017
23
O'Day 34 Suttons Bay
I started a project to install a belowdeck autopilot and have hit a snag. The rudder post is completely encased in a fiberglass tube except where the radial drive wheel is through bolted on, making it impossible to measure the post diameter for a tiller arm, much less install one. Has anyone dropped their rudder and checked out the post and that tube? Would removing a couple of inches just above the radial drive create any functional issues? Does the post have a keyway or does everything need to be through bolted?
I've read the threads about attaching the AP rod to the edge of the radial drive. I'm interested in keeping the hardware below deck to have an emergency steering system and less motor noise in the cockpit. Thanks for any guidance.
 

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Harlan

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Jun 4, 2004
99
Oday 34 Niantic
Not sure of the post diameter but you can open the deck plate at the top and measure the diameter there. There is no key in the post - there is a single bolt that passes through the quadrant and post (there are additional clamping bolts on the quadrant but only one that passes through the post). IMO, I would question making the opening in the fiberglass tube wider to accommodate a tiller arm. It's a key structural component of the steering system. I'd attach onto the existing quadrant.
 

jviss

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Feb 5, 2004
4,627
Tartan 3800 Westport, MA
I would like to hear what other O'Day 34 owners have done, but I think you would end up best trimming the 'glass tube above the radial drive and mounting the tiller arm there. There are compelling reasons to have a separate, bronze tiller arm. Those aluminum radial drive wheels can break!
 

DannyS

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May 27, 2004
923
Beneteau 393 Bayfield, Wi
I've dropped my rudder a couple of times and it's a pain in the butt. The space between the tubes is just enough for the quadrant. I think it would be tricky to get a good clean, perpendicular cut with the space you have to work. Would attaching to the quadrant not work for your AP?
 

jviss

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Feb 5, 2004
4,627
Tartan 3800 Westport, MA
Would attaching to the quadrant not work for your AP?
I went around and around on that topic a few years ago, and went from vigorously defending the idea of connecting the linear drive to the Edson radial drive wheel, to being a staunch supporter of a separate, bronze tiller arm.

Is the quadrant on the O-Day the same, the Edson aluminum radial drive wheel?
 
Jan 28, 2017
23
O'Day 34 Suttons Bay
Is the quadrant on the O-Day the same, the Edson aluminum radial drive wheel?
Mine looks like it.
View media item 26417
I wonder if I could mill a tiller arm that could piggyback on the radial drive collar using longer bolts with nuts on the starboard flange. And thoughts on that?
 

jviss

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Feb 5, 2004
4,627
Tartan 3800 Westport, MA
I wonder if I could mill a tiller arm that could piggyback on the radial drive collar using longer bolts with nuts on the starboard flange. And thoughts on that?
I advise against it. You really don'e want to Mickey-Mouse this. A clean, separate installation is best. The Edson bronze tiller arm is ordered bored to the exact diameter of your rudder post, and then it's not only clamped, but through-bolted to the post.
It looks like there's plenty of tube there to trim enough off above the radial wheel to fit a tiller arm.
 

Apex

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Jun 19, 2013
1,054
C&C 30 Elk Rapids
Benjamin, keep a good record of what you run into. I have an ODay 28 that I am looking to add wheel steering. The rudder shaft is currently completely encased. I would be interested to know if only one or both sides of the quadrant contain a bushing for support.
 
Apr 20, 2018
1
Oday 34 23456 Lefkada
ciao, sono italiano, e ho avuto un oday 34 in grecia per 20 anni, ho installato raymarine ev 200 con attuatore t1, sul settore, sono passati due anni e non ho avuto problemi, anche perché mettere una biella tutto è indebolito. quindi inserirò le foto delle modifiche su:
velabeppe
 
May 1, 2011
2,326
Pearson 37 Lusby MD
ciao, sono italiano, e ho avuto un oday 34 in grecia per 20 anni, ho installato raymarine ev 200 con attuatore t1, sul settore, sono passati due anni e non ho avuto problemi, anche perché mettere una biella tutto è indebolito. quindi inserirò le foto delle modifiche su:
Again, Google is my friend! Here's the translation of @GIUSEPPE 's post:

hello, i am italian, and i had a 34 day in greece for 20 years, i installed raymarine ev 200 with t1 actuator, on the sector, two years have passed and i had no problems, also because putting a connecting rod everything is weakened. then I will put the photos of the changes on: velabeppe

:beer::beer::beer: