View Full Version : Repairing Rudder

Red Sea Pedestrian
08-07-2001, 09:48 AM
Hi, I'm looking into rebuilding a rudder for a Cheverton Crusader. Any help from this board would be greatly appreciated!

I've had a look on the Internet for information on materials, designs etc but haven't maganed to come up with anything as yet.

If anyone can point me in the right direction of some specific info on this boat or building rudders generally I would be greatly obliged.

Thanks in advance :)


08-07-2001, 11:12 AM
Never heard of her, but rudders are fairly lo-tech items. What happened to the old one? Rot? Corrosion? Collision damage? Too small? Does duplicating what's there make any sense?

Red Sea Pedestrian
08-07-2001, 11:17 AM
Thanks for the reply tom, there's a picture of a crusader here:


She was build in about 1960, the rudder has probably just corroded and broken off, only about the top fifth remains.

Any ideas?


08-07-2001, 02:16 PM
I think I'd use the drawing and such dimensions as you can get from the boat itself and eyeball a full scale profile of a new rudder. You could build up the slab with vertical laminations of rift sawn timber drifted together with long pins/drifts. The bottom fittings are gone/corroded off and left the top 1/5th? Weird! Sounds like maybe talking to someone knowledgable, perhaps at that Cowes yard, to look at it first-hand wouldn't hurt.

[This message has been edited by TomRobb (edited 08-07-2001).]

Carl Stone
08-07-2001, 02:43 PM
Just had to replace a rudder on a 31 footer that has the same lines as yours. She is beautiful, by the way. First step was to draw the approx shape of the rudder full size on paper. When that looked close, it was transferred to 2" rigid insulation (common here in the US, often found on the ground around building sites. This was shaped ( any matt knife or reasonably sharp object, it cuts like butter) and put against the actual keel to check prop clearance and proper fit in all directions, including swing of the rudder. Next had two pieces of 3/4" marine lumber glued together and tapered to the shape of the rudder. Note - we tapered the forward adge in an inverted "V" to recieve the stainless pins. If you can reuse you eisting pins, bolt them trough, or else use the old ones for templates. After installation, we used fiberglass resin (two coats) before bottom coat was applied. Hope this helps.

Red Sea Pedestrian
08-08-2001, 07:05 AM
Cheers guys, thanks for the help, very useful indeed.

We're not going to get a chance to work on her for a couple of weeks, but when we do I'll keep you informed.

thanks again,


Red Sea Pedestrian
08-08-2001, 10:47 AM
Carl, If you're still about.....

Excuse my ignorance, not sure if it's me or the fact that we are from two countries separated by a common language! :)

Would you mind clarifying for me what you mean by 'Marine Lumber', do you mean marine ply or some form of hardwood.

I think the main problem now is just deciding what type of wood to use.

Thanks again


08-08-2001, 10:50 AM
At the risk of putting words in Carls mouth, I believe he means 3/4" marine plywood.

08-08-2001, 11:08 AM
You will note that the discribed rudder differs considerably from a classic wood or iron rudder, such as your boat would have had. If you don't have the old rudder to copy or the plans, I agree that the drawing shown would give a good basis for making a new one. I recommend that you find a copy of the book PRACTICAL YACHT CONSTRUCTION by C.J. Watts and other books like Chapelle's BOATBUILDING, to see what your boat might have had for a rudder.

Carl Stone
08-08-2001, 12:30 PM
Yes Andrew, you put the correct words in my mouth. A footnote to Thad's comments. I also have a 1970 Lunnenburg 45' wooden Ketch that recently lost her rudder shoe. (This was my year of the rudders!) In the process of the shoe repair, I got very familiar with her rudder.The rudder itself is oak planks, very heavy, and truthfully, I don't know how they are assembled. In considering the replacement for the 31 footer, marine play (when laminated) is strong, one piece, and so much more manageable. If your are a purest, Thads' path is best, otherwise I found the ply the way to go.