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C30 Rudder Removal

Sep 15, 2016
24
Catalina 30 Newport, RI
I’ve been lurking for a while re rudder removal on my 1986 C30 short rig Fin Keel. The fact is that I have water intrusion and want to remove it to drain and reseal. This is my boat and I don’t go offshore with it.

It seems like all the other posts about rudder removal seem to go into a lot about hole-digging. Let’s assume thats not a concern for me.

My question for you: the other posts about this job talk about removing the 4 quadrant bolts and the etiller bolt and that will be enough to remove the rudder. My quadrant has a fifth bolt that appears to pass through the rudder shaft and is bolted on the other side.

I stopped by the boatyard today to confirm that i could loosen all the bolts. Ill bring my jack back later this week and i expect this will go pretty easily from there. Thoughts?

5F8A7F9D-B8E1-412D-BB39-8FCC6977EF2C.jpeg
 

dmax

.
Jul 29, 2018
174
O'Day 35 Buzzards Bay
All five of the bolts in your picture must be removed - there are also bolts at the outer edges of the quadrant along the split that need to the removed as well as the bolts that the steering cables connect to (separate the cables from the quadrant). Here is a picture of my quadrant showing the bolts that need to be removed - the C30 is the same. Once all of the bolts are removed, the rudder can be dropped. Put a hydraulic jack under the rudder before removing the bolts so you can ease it down.
 

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Apr 5, 2009
1,133
Catalina '88 C30 tr/bs Oak Harbor, WA
If all of your bolts are free, you should be good to go. Many C30 owners have had seized bolts due to dissimilar metal corrosion of the cast aluminum radial and SS bolts. If you plan to dry out the rudder you might try using an HVAC vacuum pump to pull the moisture out as vapor. I did this to dry out a 6' x 2' section of my cabin top that was completely saturated.
 

dmax

.
Jul 29, 2018
174
O'Day 35 Buzzards Bay
With respect to encountering seized bolts, make sure to use some tef-gel, lanacote or some other anti-seize compound when you put it back together so it will come apart easily next time.
 
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Likes: Hayden Watson
Sep 15, 2016
24
Catalina 30 Newport, RI
All five of the bolts in your picture must be removed - there are also bolts at the outer edges of the quadrant along the split that need to the removed as well as the bolts that the steering cables connect to (separate the cables from the quadrant). Here is a picture of my quadrant showing the bolts that need to be removed - the C30 is the same. Once all of the bolts are removed, the rudder can be dropped. Put a hydraulic jack under the rudder before removing the bolts so you can ease it down.
Very good call. I did not realize, until I got back, that your picture is “upside down” from the orientation on my boat. However, there are in fact 2 additional bolts on the outer portion of the quadrant like you have pictured.
 
Sep 15, 2016
24
Catalina 30 Newport, RI
If all of your bolts are free, you should be good to go. Many C30 owners have had seized bolts due to dissimilar metal corrosion of the cast aluminum radial and SS bolts. If you plan to dry out the rudder you might try using an HVAC vacuum pump to pull the moisture out as vapor. I did this to dry out a 6' x 2' section of my cabin top that was completely saturated.
My bolts were a mix, and yes some seized, but they are all out now. The bigger issue is that the Al cap (etiller) is seized to the top of the rudder stock! This led to the funny situation where the rudder did not come out! I hit the holes with some pb blaster, and lightly tapped the cap with a rubber mallet while trying to “work” the rudder free with the jack a quarter inch below the rudder. No joy. Heat has been suggested. I am going to try again today hopping that the pb blaster worked a little. I did not bring my torch to avoid that temptation....
 

dmax

.
Jul 29, 2018
174
O'Day 35 Buzzards Bay
Keep applying PB Blaster, it can only help. Heat gun followed by ice might help. The center bolt on mine was an SS pin and was really stuck - I made a press out of 3/4" threaded rod and 1/4" steel bar to get it out - took a lot of force and made big noises. Maybe you can attach a gear puller to the cap to pull it off. You may need to make a disk the size of the rudder stock for the puller to push against.
 
Apr 5, 2009
1,133
Catalina '88 C30 tr/bs Oak Harbor, WA
That makes me glad that I have a Mk2. They do not have that cap so once the radial is off, the rudder comes out.
 
Apr 5, 2009
1,133
Catalina '88 C30 tr/bs Oak Harbor, WA
Do you have much play in your rudder bearings? I have seen many that had significant slop. I am planning to do the epoxy repair when I replace mine this spring.
 
Sep 15, 2016
24
Catalina 30 Newport, RI
Do you have much play in your rudder bearings? I have seen many that had significant slop. I am planning to do the epoxy repair when I replace mine this spring.
Ince the quadrant was off i noticed some play. I was just looking at that repair yesterday on catalinadirect.
 
Sep 15, 2016
24
Catalina 30 Newport, RI
Well I tried heat with the heat gun and then, when that didn’t work, my torch. Still no luck. She’s on there.

As far as using a bearing puller... I would have to take so much material off the etiller head that I would just rather cut it off and replace it.
 
Apr 5, 2009
1,133
Catalina '88 C30 tr/bs Oak Harbor, WA
Have you tried a hard plastic hammer (phenolic) to hammer around the edge of the cap to dislodge the corrosion? how much vertical movement do you have? You could possibly use the self weight of the rudder as a drop hammer to drive the cap off. I would be very careful with this idea because you do not want to damage the rudder tube.
 
Sep 15, 2016
24
Catalina 30 Newport, RI
Have you tried a hard plastic hammer (phenolic) to hammer around the edge of the cap to dislodge the corrosion? how much vertical movement do you have? You could possibly use the self weight of the rudder as a drop hammer to drive the cap off. I would be very careful with this idea because you do not want to damage the rudder tube.
Hi Hayden,

Yes I use two types of mallets for this kind of thing. 2lb rubber and 1/2 lb plastic. Yes, I have been tapping around the cap in an attempt to dislodge. This includes every combnination I could imagine (like cycling the rudder while tapping, hitting up against the etiller handle responsibily, etc).

The rudder has about 1/16" movement in the up/down direction. Possible 3/16" more if I remove the plastic bearing washer under the etiller cap (I would prefer not to this as long as the rudder is in.)

Really, I think the best solution is "cutting" off the etiller somehow.
1. First I will try to drill a hole in the etiller cap (in the y direction) such that it intercepts the top of the rudder stock tube somewhere. I will tap this hole using a bottoming tap. Then I'll screw in a bolt so that this bolt pushes up on the cap and down on the stock.
2. If that does not work, then the second option is the one where I use an agle grinder and dremel with cutting discs to remove the cap. If I end up going this route I will do a writeup on how I manage not cutting into the stock.

Both of these option render the cap unusable at the end, but it is replaceable.
 
Apr 5, 2009
1,133
Catalina '88 C30 tr/bs Oak Harbor, WA
Have you tried putting the E-tiller into the cap and tapping up and down to rock it a bit. Once you get any form of movement it should get easier.
 
Sep 15, 2016
24
Catalina 30 Newport, RI
I have, hitting up and down with the 2 pounder. Unfortnately, it hasn't budged.

I am more familiar with working on cars, but my presumption is that the "you're not htting it hard enough" mentality does NOT apply for fiberglass boats??
 

dmax

.
Jul 29, 2018
174
O'Day 35 Buzzards Bay
You could drill and tap 3 holes and screw bolts into them and design a press to pull it off, maybe?
 
Last edited:
Sep 15, 2016
24
Catalina 30 Newport, RI
I drilled and tapped holes to press out the cap. I left the rudder to hang to add some additional downward force to the rudder stock.

The only result was to immediately strip the threads on the holes I tapped, which is really no surpise because of the bolt size required to use. That and the Cap was really ON THERE.

This was the last step and I ended up cutting of the cap. To do this, I used a dremel (w/ cutting wheel) to cut a groove down the center of the cap. I did not cut all the way to the stainless rudder stock. Instead, I carefully did as much as possible without going all the way through the aluminum cap. Then I stuck it with a cold chisel/hammer and that cracked the cap right down the cut I made.

Unfortunately, this was still not enough to break the cap off. I ended up grinding the top off and that did it!

I got the rudder home and it is drying in my garage. It actually looks promising.

rudder.jpg


However, I noticed some sealant applied over the shaft around where the stuffing box goes. I immediately hit it with the wire wheel and no kidding, it was covering up some pitting.

stock1.jpg


It is hard to tell from the pictures, but the pitting is deep and does goes al the way through. I believe this is where the water is entering the rudder.

stock2.jpg