building a new rudder for W32

<< First  < Prev   1   2   Next >  Last >> 
  • December 03, 2011 9:20 AM
    Reply # 765123 on 762305
    Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Robert Sutton has an interesting video of his rudder infusion for his W42 . 

    His blog is at  and well worth the time to study his work on his W42 -- he started from a bare hull and deck - his will be the newest W42 when she is launched.

    Last modified: December 15, 2011 7:25 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
  • December 04, 2011 7:46 AM
    Reply # 765460 on 762305
    Deleted user
    Following on Jays comment, here is the picture album of the rudder construction.

    The rudder was 'engineered' by one of Bob Perry's engineers a couple years ago. Construction of the frame is of 1/2 and 5/16 stainless steel plate, sched 40 stainless pipe and aquamet shafting. Internal core is Ariex C70 foam and G10 fiberglass plate.

    The upper rudder log is a self-aligning roller bearing housed in a G10 tube that is glassed to the hull. 
  • December 04, 2011 9:51 AM
    Reply # 765503 on 763889
    David Wiencke wrote:

    Out of curiosity, anyone know when Westsail redesigned the rudder? Year or hull #? Was it a Crealock design change?

    Seems I've seen photos of some boats with the "new" (square bottom) rudder, but not the glass gudgeons--a transition period?...or retrofited older boats? 

    I suppose this question should be in Bud's column, but maybe he's watching and will chime in with some wisdom and advice.

    We made the new rudder design about mid 1973.  The old one had mishmash fill (asbestos powder and polyester resin).  There was now a restriction on using asbestos, so we made a deal with Foss Foam in Costa Mesa to make a new rudder mold, using fiberglass skins and foam injected into the mold.  We changed the attachment design to use the fiberglass gudgeons and bronze pins rather than the stainless straps.  We also added area to the aft lower end of the rudder and used a straight line aft end, as well as cutting down the mid section width somewhat.

    However we had a good supply of the stainless straps in stock, so we used them up on the first of the new rudders, before making the fiberglass gudgeons.  We were not sure the fiberglass gudgeons and bronze pin attachment design would hold up, so we beat on it and maybe ran a car over it, I don't exactly recall.  However it has proved to be plenty strong, with the only downside that after time, the fiberglass tube in the gudgeon can wear, and the pin becomes loose and the rudder can vibrate when sailing fast.

    Now you know the rest of the story.

    By the way, Foss Foam is still in business in Florida, and still has the W42/43 mold on hand.  They recently made a new rudder for Todd Duff for his W42 #1 Small World (ex:  Consort).  The don't have the 32 or 28 rudder molds though.  I would imagine that if enough owners are interested, they could make a new mold and make new rudders.

  • December 13, 2011 8:10 PM
    Reply # 772988 on 762305
    Bud, why was the rudder shape changed? Does it have to do with downwind steering or something else? Just curious..
  • December 15, 2011 7:09 AM
    Reply # 774112 on 772988
    Gary Burton wrote:Bud, why was the rudder shape changed? Does it have to do with downwind steering or something else? Just curious..

    We needed a new rudder mold when we decided to have Foss Foam make the rudders using a foam core rather than the mishmash core that was originally used by Kendall.  Bill Crealock suggested more rudder area down low on the rudder, and a shorter cord width for better steering control.  We also wanted to design away from the stainless pintals and gudgeons.  That's how the new rudder design came to be.


  • December 17, 2011 9:17 PM
    Reply # 776396 on 772988
    Deleted user
    Gary Burton wrote:Bud, why was the rudder shape changed? Does it have to do with downwind steering or something else? Just curious..

    Hi Gary, I beleive the original curved rudder design,  common on older boats, was to minimize rudder damage in a grounding, especially if the boat's pitching. The modern shape with more surface down low (where it counts) and straight edges makes for more efficient steering. Probably a good trade off, as one hopes to spend more time sailing than taking the ground.

    I also seem to recall reading somewhere that the early W32's could become difficult to steer in heavy wind and waves, possibly remedied  by reducing sail.

  • August 06, 2014 10:35 PM
    Reply # 3066118 on 762305
    Deleted user

    Jay Bietz and Bud Taplin,

    I like the approach that "the deleted user" building that rudder took. I was wondering how I can align the rudder pivot pins in the fiberglass gudgeon type rudder. I originally planned to make a special fixture to install each of the bronze shafts by pressing them into mishmash lined pockets that were originally there, but are definitely out of "wack". This is still not the ideal way to go, as when removing the shafts out of those recesses, the excess mishmash will cause them to hang up. I decided to "fudge" them in and have the top and bottom lightly fastened to allow the mishmash to ooze slowly out before the  stuff hardens completely..

    Westsail (in hindsight) could have made the continuous shaft by creating one like in the picture of the previous post. This makes for a nice in line bearing surface. To intercept the shaft screw holes, the center pin would have a predrilled hole made with a simple jig , as would the top and bottom one.. To remove a shaft, a long push bar ( for example when in Mexico, they have lots of rebar) would persuade the shaft to travel out of the hole.

    At this writing, I am working on adjusting my center gudgeon to fit into the cutout in the rudder. I am a one man show and my back is killing me. I have a high success rate in getting the distances between the gudgeons and rudder recesses trimmed. It would have been easier with the continuous shaft hole.

    Thanks for the author of the article and photos,

    Mike Z

    Last modified: August 06, 2014 10:41 PM | Deleted user
  • August 07, 2014 4:07 PM
    Reply # 3066958 on 762305
    Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Micheal:  I'm afraid that I'll have to pass this to Bud and /or Dave King - I haven't done the rudder over haul... 

    What I would like to do is to extend my current/standard rudder trailing edge to change the round edge to a tapered edge.


<< First  < Prev   1   2   Next >  Last >> 
Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software