When installing the engine, I needed to replace the old prop shaft with a longer one. I had anticipated this and had a replacement one on hand. Even though there appears to be a cutout in the rudder where it looks as though the shaft will slide in with out removing the rudder, it will not slide past. So, I had the remove the rudder. Not near as hard as I imagined it would be.[Editor's note: I have become insanely fond of the GoreTex teflon packing. You tighten it until there are no drips when the shaft is turning. And it runs cool. If I was replacing my rudder packing today, I'd use it there too.]
If you have to do it, here is how. First remove the steering cables from quadrant, then remove quadrant (4 bolts), then loosen a little the 3 bolts/screws that hold down the packing in the packing gland. On the outside place something under the rudder to keep it from falling out when you remove the rudder bottom pivot. I used a jack so I could lower it slowly out of the hole. You will not need to dig a hole under the rudder to gain room. You should have plenty of room if your boat is blocked up as normal, with about 12 inches under the rudder.
Installation is the reverse. I picked this time to replace my packing and cleanup and re-bed the lower pivot. I did not take a lot of pics of this process. It appears that the packing gland for the rudder shaft is something that was made in house by Cabo Rico. I also added a grease zerk to the lower pivot point to make it easier to re grease.
Tuesday, July 17, 2012
Mike of s/v Chalice takes us thru the removal of his rudder in order to replace his shaft. This is seen by most as a daunting task, but Mike makes it sound easy (for his boat, at least):