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Thread: i am making a rudder

  1. #11
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    So this rudder will be comparable to a J-29 or J-30 rudder except that this one will be balanced and the One Design rudders for those boats are not balanced. The entirety of the One Design rudder blades for those boats are behind the axis of rotation of the rudders; the entire rudder is aft of the gudgeon/pintle pin axis. Balanced rudders are not class-legal...though maybe the classes should make them legal as those guys all talk about how their rudders load up something fierce on a long, heavy-air reach.

    Anyway, Competition Composites..aka "Phils Foils" makes a balanced rudder for the J-29/J-30. It's a beauty.

    http://www.fastcomposites.ca/site/wp...-gallery-2.jpg

    ...It's also $2400 (Canadian dollars) cha-chiiinnnnggggg....though honestly probably worth every loonie you pay for it.

    Rudder Craft also makes a balanced J-30/J-29 wood-core rudder. It's $2100 USA. Waterline Systems makes a class rudder theoretically for $1400, but it's not balanced and they didn't return either of my e-mails. Larry Tuttle at Waterrat quoted me $2K for a much "hotter" elliptical rudder, and I thought about that but two thousand dollars is a lot of moolah for this guy.

    Rudder Craft makes rudders which are somewhat smaller than these which would probably work for my boat, but the largest one they make and market for 24-26 footers is made of machined HDPE plastic. That stuff bends under load. If I was just cruising around I might not care, but.... They also make an $895 wood core rudder, but it was just a scooch smaller and thinner- aka "less robust" than I wanted. It probably would work, but it would suck to find out that it didn't on the LongPac Racae, 185 miles out. On the other hand that $895 plus shipping includes custom rudder gudgeons for 5/8th inch pins, and those are about $350, right there. But still, their wood core rudder was just a bit too small and thin for what I wanted. I wanted ridiculous BEEF.

    So here I am, making a rudder. I should also add that I am NOT a "fine woodworker". I have Orchard Supply level tools...a small table saw, hand drill, cheapo jigaw, cheapo circular saw, and now a pretty decent router, but seriously...I'm making this on my garage floor.
    Last edited by AlanH; 11-11-2017 at 08:37 PM.
    S-2 7.9: "Wildcat of Loch Awe"
    1968 Selmer Series 9 B-flat and A clarinets
    Piper One Design 24, Hull #35; "Alpha"

  2. #12
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    Today I made the *Flat* surface/table that the rudder and router guide rest on. That was pretty straightforward, glued-together particle board and 2 x 4's, with outdoor deck screws. it rests on the sawhorses that I use for working on cabers.

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    I then "microadjusted" the router guide/template with the table saw so it fit to close tolerances over the rudder. It's great at the top and to about 2/3rds of the way down the submerged part. I'll have to shim it below that. This photo is taken just where it's starting to get a bit loose. I also had to plane down some of the epoxy dribbles, since this was the underside, while I glued it. That wasn't bad, though.

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    Then I started to set up the router. I'd bought a nice 3/8 round router blade at Home Deport, so after futzing around, trying to figure out how to change bits, I finally got it in the chuck, only to discover that it's not long enough. Come to find out that there are "router bits" and there are "extra long router bits"..... GRRRRR. That's $20 shot, as I destroyed the packaging getting it open. Oh well, now I have a router, and I expect that I'll need some bits someday. So no foil shaping today. Instead, I trimmed off the top and cut the angle in the back edge, above the waterline.
    Last edited by AlanH; 11-12-2017 at 09:17 PM.
    S-2 7.9: "Wildcat of Loch Awe"
    1968 Selmer Series 9 B-flat and A clarinets
    Piper One Design 24, Hull #35; "Alpha"

  3. #13
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    I was going to post a video of myself, happily routering-away, removing wood at a great pace and forming a perfect foil. Haha! One of the guys on the Wooden Boat Forum said that he'd made his centerboard in 45 minutes, each side. Haha!

    NOT.

    After 4 hours of work I have about 3/5ths of one side done.You know how it is, about 1/3rd of the way through the job you figure out the best way to do the job.

    Gaaaa.... I discovered that router bits drift in the chuck after a while. You have to check them every 10-15 minutes. Imagine how I figured that out. Except for the godawful area where the bit moved, which will have to be faired, bigtime, most of the body of the thing is tolerable. The trailing edge is OK. The leading edge is disgraceful. Now I know why the guy in the YouTube video used an elliptical edging bit for his leading edge. I'll be able to fill with epoxy and wood dough and it will be fine, but yeeeecccchhhh.

    I refuse to show you all photographs of this mess.
    S-2 7.9: "Wildcat of Loch Awe"
    1968 Selmer Series 9 B-flat and A clarinets
    Piper One Design 24, Hull #35; "Alpha"

  4. #14
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    All this stuff about emergency rudders got me inspired. I grabbed some lumber that's been sitting down the street, in an empty lot that used to have a house on it, a few years ago. This stuff has been outside for 18 months-plus. I thought it was doug fir, or "construction hemlock" but when I cut it, come to find out that it's redwood. Hmm. This is for an emergency rudder, that will go in a low-tech cassette.

    Anyway, I cut the bits out and put in two pieces of mahogany from Home Depot to add some stiffness. I carefully chose bits of redwood with the fewest knots, and actually scored pretty well, there are almost none in the rudder. And then in a fit of cheap, I edge-glued them with Loctite PL100 polyurethane because I had a tube of that lying around but no epoxy.

    Before everybody loses their minds over the PL100 I have to say that I use the stuff to fix cabers for the Scottish Highland Games and that stuff is strong. The cabers stay out in the rain and weather until we finally bust 'em and invariably the wood goes before the PL100- wood bond breaks. AND, the stuff is $6 a tube. Cheapo home-builder dudes who knock together semi-disposable plywood boats use PL100 to seal seams and glue stuff together all the time.

    I dunno about redwood. It's light, I'll say that. This will be an experiment. The blade is now 7 feet long overall, but that's because I have to cut the top off at an angle so the rudder can get over my transom. The thing may get used on George McKay's Capo 30, too. The foil part of the blade is going to be about 40 inches. While I was at TAP plastics today they had 4 1/2 feet of linear carbon, 12 inches wide in the "2/3rds off" bin. WTF, I bought it, it was $7.. I'll cut some 2 inch wide strips and lay on there, to reinforce the rudder/cassette line to help the redwood. Then laminate over it all with bi-directional glass in epoxy. The chord is 13 inches, the stuff is 1.75 inches thick, by the time I fair it and glass it, it will probably be close to 2 inches thick. Beef, I think. It might not be pretty when it's done but it will be strong. I'm sort of mentally assuming that the redwood will contribute minimal strength. It will be more than foam, for sure, but way less than douglas fir.
    Last edited by AlanH; 11-22-2017 at 01:49 PM.
    S-2 7.9: "Wildcat of Loch Awe"
    1968 Selmer Series 9 B-flat and A clarinets
    Piper One Design 24, Hull #35; "Alpha"

  5. #15
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    Actually, turns out that it's not that bad. --- looking here: http://www.woodworkweb.com/woodwork-...strengths.html

    I'm guess that "compressive strength perpendicular to grain", is probably the most likely thing that would be applicable to shearing off a rudder with side loads..

    Doug Fir, depending on where it grows, is 1100 - 1400 psi
    Young growth Redwood - is 1100 psi. so, in the ballpark.
    S-2 7.9: "Wildcat of Loch Awe"
    1968 Selmer Series 9 B-flat and A clarinets
    Piper One Design 24, Hull #35; "Alpha"

  6. #16
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    Sounds like progress to me.

    On an only ever-so-slightly related note, TechShop just shuttered operations with zero notice. Bay-Area-Tech-Shop-announces-closure-of-locations The place was a major boon to us apartment dwelling sailors. I had all sorts of boat project hopes based on the tools I learned to use there, including e-rudder and windvane foils on the CNC, but alas.
    There are other "maker spaces" around the bay, but nothing I've seen yet really compares.
    This event has me considering - god forbid - putting my priorities in their proper order: home ownership (+garage+basement+yard workshop space), THEN boat ownership!
    Last edited by Lanikai; 11-22-2017 at 11:32 PM.

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lanikai View Post
    Sounds like progress to me.

    On an only ever-so-slightly related note, TechShop just shuttered operations with zero notice. Bay-Area-Tech-Shop-announces-closure-of-locations The place was a major boon to us apartment dwelling sailors. I had all sorts of boat project hopes based on the tools I learned to use there, including e-rudder and windvane foils on the CNC, but alas.
    There are other "maker spaces" around the bay, but nothing I've seen yet really compares.
    This event has me considering - god forbid - putting my priorities in their proper order: home ownership (+garage+basement+yard workshop space), THEN boat ownership!
    Oh, man. that SUCKS. I know a dozen people with memberships, who will be upset by this.

    On the home front, I smoothed over the worst of the part that I gouged up pretty badly with the router, when I first started. This is on my primary rudder. The leading edge is now acceptable for this stage. I built up the worst gouges with epoxy and sawdust...not even wood dough, sawdust. They're back to acceptable now, but for one dollar-sized high spot and a ragged inch on the trailing edge. I'm going to need another box of wood dough.

    Tomorrow, back to the router.
    S-2 7.9: "Wildcat of Loch Awe"
    1968 Selmer Series 9 B-flat and A clarinets
    Piper One Design 24, Hull #35; "Alpha"

  8. #18
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    Today I finished off routing one side of the blade, flipped it over and did the leading edge of the other side. It's not turning out as thick as I'd wanted, so I'm scabbing on some"cheater" 3/16ths inch fir strips, which I will rout and belt sand. I also got the first "fairing" coat of epoxy and sawdust on the leading edge side that I did today.

    Tomorrow I'll use the surform plane to even out the leading edge on that side, and then fair some more with epoxy and wood dough. If I can, I'll route out the trailing edge. If that's the case, then the basic forming of the overall shape will be done.
    S-2 7.9: "Wildcat of Loch Awe"
    1968 Selmer Series 9 B-flat and A clarinets
    Piper One Design 24, Hull #35; "Alpha"

  9. #19
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    OK, I used the router for about 2 hours again today, and finished the essential shaping of the foil. I'm adding on some thickness at the thickest part, as that's undersized, but the basic shape is done.

    Here's my setup in my "workshop" aka, the driveway.

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    and some close-ups of the process, showing the degree of smoothness (not much) and accuracy (so-so) that I'mm getting on the trailing faces.

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    S-2 7.9: "Wildcat of Loch Awe"
    1968 Selmer Series 9 B-flat and A clarinets
    Piper One Design 24, Hull #35; "Alpha"

  10. #20
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    Work has been progressing, but nothing big until today. The little stuff? After doing my thing with the router I noticed that it was cutting almost nothing at the thickest point of the chord. That seemed odd so I did some measuring. I decided to glue a couple of 3/16th strips, 2 inches wide, most of the length of the rudder, at the thickest point of the chord (on both sides of course). Then I went over it with the router again. --MUCH better. Also, since I'd developed some technique with the router/template, and I was using a larger ball-shaped-bit, I went over the back 1/3 of the chord over most of the rudder and cleaned it up. That really made a difference on one side, in the bottom 1/3rd of the foil.

    Anyway, that was yesterday. Today was belt-sanding out all the router grooves, which went very fast. Then I blopped in some spooge of wood dough and epoxy and filled in the worst of the gouges, faired part of the leading edge to the first "strip" and shaped the bottom of the rudder.

    The bottom was an issue...what to do? Should I leave it more or less square, like and old-skool J-24/29/30 rudder or an an "elliptical" (haha!) trailing edge to the bottom? OK, well "elliptical" I don't know but this is what I have. It still needs a lot of smoothing, but the shape is there.

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    And here's a view of the "One-side-is-wood-dough/epoxy faired-step one" setup on my workbench. The chain is holding down a strip of the extra wood that got lifted during the routing process. There's a piece of plastic between the chain and the wood/epoxy.

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    The "really brown" part in the lower right is where I did the very first few passes with the router. I cut way too deep so there's a LOT of epoxy/sawdust or epoxy/wood dough in there to build it up. It needs one more "go" with the wood dough/epoxy and then some sanding before I'll call it good.
    Last edited by AlanH; 12-17-2017 at 07:15 PM.
    S-2 7.9: "Wildcat of Loch Awe"
    1968 Selmer Series 9 B-flat and A clarinets
    Piper One Design 24, Hull #35; "Alpha"

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