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Old 07-07-2010, 05:58 AM   #1
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I want to move the rudder on my steel 43 foot Roberts Mauitious. It was built with the rudder keel hung and it's too far forward and is hard work in strong wind. Has any one had any experience with this modification. My plan is to move it aft as far as I can and swing it off a skeg..

I realize it wont tack as quickly but it will hopefully make her a better boat running down wind, at the moment she is a hand full if its fresh.
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Old 07-07-2010, 10:13 AM   #2
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Hello Lewsea,

Welcome to Cruiser Log, maybe can help, have done such a addition/modification to a 47ft Steel Ketch. Added skeg, modified rudder to the extent of partial balancing (shaft 20% from front of rudder) added solid steel roll bar from aft base of keel to bottom of skeg. here is just one pictures - also have drawings etc. (will need your photos and measurements,where are you located? what steel has been used?)

Roll bar.jpg

Richard
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Old 07-07-2010, 04:09 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by lewsea' date='06 July 2010 - 10:58 PM View Post

I want to move the rudder on my steel 43 foot Roberts Mauitious. It was built with the rudder keel hung and it's too far forward and is hard work in strong wind. Has any one had any experience with this modification. My plan is to move it aft as far as I can and swing it off a skeg..

I realize it wont tack as quickly but it will hopefully make her a better boat running down wind, at the moment she is a hand full if its fresh.
There is an article out with several pictures by an Oz or NZ sailor who modified/enlarged the rudder on his steel Mauritius, with apparently good results. Before you modify, check if perhaps a rigging change or tweak might correct any downwind friskiness. It seems to me that removing the existing rudder well and re-routing the steering mechanism etc. will be quite a job in a boat that is already fitted out. Also, the strength provided by the keel for attaching the rudder is of course lost with going the skeg route, so additional bulkheading or bracing may be needed.

Just make sure the cutting torch doesn't fire up your mattress and turns your sailing boat into a shore-side stink-pot brazier. Good luck on the project in any case.

If you can't find the article on Google I may still have a copy.

Ivo
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Old 07-07-2010, 05:28 PM   #4
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Having spent longer than I expected learning how to sail reasonably well, I discovered that many of my problems with boat handling could be directly attributed to poor sail trim. Add to that my positive loathing for sailing dead downwind, and I have become a nagging advocate of trying EVERYTHING before making any physical modifications to a boat.

Some examples.

We had such a terrible weather helm that I was exhausted sailing between islands in the Caribbean. One "expert" told us we needed to modify our rudder, but fortunately a friend who was also a circumnavigator overheard that conversation and suggested that we work a bit harder at perfecting our sail trim capabilities first. Good advice.

When I did more reading about How to Sail (with an emphasis on sail trim) we started experimenting with sail trim and various reef positions. We found that easing the jib sheet could increase speed and make the helm so easy to handle that I could steer with my big toe (TRUE!) leaving both hands free for talking and keeping my water jug handy.

Struggling with a full main going to weather, barely moving, it seemed, we were shamed when we were passed by a boat with two reefs in her main. !!!!!! Peter grumbled a bit, but he reefed the main and we gained two knots immediately. A few more tweaks and we started to overtake that upstart!

I did a lot of reading about downwind sailing since I hated the motion so much. I latched onto an article discussing the better technique of jibing down the rhumb line on a series of broad reaches. The somewhat longer distance was more than offset by the better speed and greater comfort of the reach. It took a major bribe to convince Peter to try this, but it took only one crossing to convince him. (the payoff of his favorite foods and no more whining from me might have helped, too ). In the Caribbean where the wind is so reliable, it was very easy to compare passage times when the only variable was sail trim.

Please experiment a bit more with sail trim before doing something as drastic as modifying the rudder.

Fair winds,

J
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Old 07-08-2010, 12:29 AM   #5
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Agree (yet again!) with JeanneP about sail trim being key. Our rudder spends most of its time doing absolutely nothing--we hardly touch the helm nor is there an autopilot running it for us. It is locked in a center position. With proper sail trim, life is good. I must say, though, that for us that means often reefing the main (double reefed) to balance the other 3 lowers (we have a schooner rig).
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Old 07-08-2010, 03:51 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by linnupesa' date='08 July 2010 - 02:09 AM View Post

There is an article out with several pictures by an Oz or NZ sailor who modified/enlarged the rudder on his steel Mauritius, with apparently good results. Before you modify, check if perhaps a rigging change or tweak might correct any downwind friskiness. It seems to me that removing the existing rudder well and re-routing the steering mechanism etc. will be quite a job in a boat that is already fitted out. Also, the strength provided by the keel for attaching the rudder is of course lost with going the skeg route, so additional bulkheading or bracing may be needed.

Just make sure the cutting torch doesn't fire up your mattress and turns your sailing boat into a shore-side stink-pot brazier. Good luck on the project in any case.

If you can't find the article on Google I may still have a copy.

Ivo
Thanks Ivo

I guess this is the information I'm chasing,re someone who has done it already.

I know it's a big job but after the wife and I sailed home with a cyclone chasing us a few months ago when we only had less than 1/3rd of our headsail and no main at all it was in my opinion in need of modifying. As well as she sails in fair weather the unavoidable passages in strong winds would be nice if we could use the auto pilot occasionaly.

If you have a link or contact it would be greatly appreciated as I can't find anything on Google.
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Old 07-08-2010, 07:57 AM   #7
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Here is my rig for sailing dead downwind. It really does help to have a cutter rig here and use it to the best of its ability. You'll note the mainsail packed away on the boom and twin poles.
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Old 07-08-2010, 08:15 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by lewsea' date='07 July 2010 - 08:51 PM View Post

Thanks Ivo

I guess this is the information I'm chasing,re someone who has done it already.

I know it's a big job but after the wife and I sailed home with a cyclone chasing us a few months ago when we only had less than 1/3rd of our headsail and no main at all it was in my opinion in need of modifying. As well as she sails in fair weather the unavoidable passages in strong winds would be nice if we could use the auto pilot occasionaly.

If you have a link or contact it would be greatly appreciated as I can't find anything on Google.
I could not quickly bring it up on Google either but I may still have a copy on the boat. Will only get back there again later this month and let you know then, unless some modified search terms may bring it up. Bruce Roberts mauritius rudder welded welding extension enlarged moving steel.. something like that may work.
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Old 07-09-2010, 10:26 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by MMNETSEA' date='07 July 2010 - 08:13 PM View Post

Hello Lewsea,

Welcome to Cruiser Log, maybe can help, have done such a addition/modification to a 47ft Steel Ketch. Added skeg, modified rudder to the extent of partial balancing (shaft 20% from front of rudder) added solid steel roll bar from aft base of keel to bottom of skeg. here is just one pictures - also have drawings etc. (will need your photos and measurements,where are you located? what steel has been used?)

Attachment 1422

Richard
Hi Richard

Tried to add photo's but I get excommunicated each time, not techno savy I'm afraid! My plan is to move the rudder back to increase directional stability, at this current configuration the auto pilot can't be used in any wind over 10 knots. Balancing the rig is ok in theory which is the common consensus but on a recent run in fresh wind using only 1/3rd of the head sail and no main she was all over the shop in thirty knots+(cyclone Ilui) and I needed the next day off to recover, obviously you modified your rig for similar reasons.

My yacht was built in Canada and it's quite cosy in the aft cabin which is why any modification will involve some major changes in here as well to let some air flow, as I live in Cairns in North Queensland where it's never less than warm and usualy hot.

She is multi chine and fairly heavily plated in mild steel I'm interested in how you supported your skeg if you used one to hang your rudder from, did you simply weld it to the hull?

My main concern is moving the rudder away from the prop and loosing some manouverability as she will turn on a penny at present, extending the shaft isn't an option in my case.

Thanks in advance for any help Richard

Lew
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Old 08-11-2010, 07:12 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lewsea' date='10 July 2010 - 08:20 AM View Post

Hi Richard

Tried to add photo's but I get excommunicated each time, not techno savy I'm afraid! My plan is to move the rudder back to increase directional stability, at this current configuration the auto pilot can't be used in any wind over 10 knots. Balancing the rig is ok in theory which is the common consensus but on a recent run in fresh wind using only 1/3rd of the head sail and no main she was all over the shop in thirty knots+(cyclone Ilui) and I needed the next day off to recover, obviously you modified your rig for similar reasons.

My yacht was built in Canada and it's quite cosy in the aft cabin which is why any modification will involve some major changes in here as well to let some air flow, as I live in Cairns in North Queensland where it's never less than warm and usualy hot.

She is multi chine and fairly heavily plated in mild steel I'm interested in how you supported your skeg if you used one to hang your rudder from, did you simply weld it to the hull?

My main concern is moving the rudder away from the prop and loosing some manouverability as she will turn on a penny at present, extending the shaft isn't an option in my case.

Thanks in advance for any help Richard

Lew
Gooday 'lewsea' aka Lew. james here. Live just inland from Kuranda. If you've still got this as a project - give me a ring on 40 93 9900. There are a few locals that are in a position to be of some assistance - if you wish. I was a 'yacht-builder/sailor/racer/cruiser for more years than I'd like to say & am going to go back sailing before I fall off my perch. Catch-ya if you wish. jamesJames and Missy Q JVJ-0060.jpg
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