Refitting Keel shoe and rudder bearing questions

Refitting Keel shoe and rudder bearing questions

Postby percyverhance » Tue Jan 24, 2017 4:02 pm

I am currently getting my shoe and keel bearing rebuilt.Does anyone have and suggested sealer that i shoukd use when i refit the shoe and bearing?
I also have a million questions about the bearings in the top end of the rudder tube and the removal of said bearings.
Any help and advice greatly received.
Cheers.Dave
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Re: Refitting Keel shoe and rudder bearing questions

Postby Phillip » Wed Jan 25, 2017 11:02 am

What exactly are you having rebuilt Percy?

Only thing down there is the nylon bearing and up top the two cutless bearings.
Phillip.
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Re: Refitting Keel shoe and rudder bearing questions

Postby percyverhance » Wed Jan 25, 2017 4:50 pm

Hi Phillip.The stainless pin in the shoe had become loose over time and had flogged out the tolerance fit hole in the shoe and also the stainless bearing on the rudder.Im not sure what to use when i refit the the shoe to seal it back up.
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Re: Refitting Keel shoe and rudder bearing questions

Postby steve » Thu Jan 26, 2017 10:24 am

Hi Dave,

Do you mean to seal the rudder shoe and bearing to the fibreglass? The Mark III shoe drawing in the gallery shows that the shoe was set in polyester putty. That is probably the best material to use again. Epoxy would probably adhere too well and you would never be able to get the shoe off again.

I was not able to remove the shoe when I tried many years ago. How did you get the polyester putty to release its grip?

For sealing around the bolts, Sikaflex might be best. My bolts (stainless) were corroded to half their original thickness.

Thanks for posting those photos - I had wondered what was attached to the bottom of the rudder. Is the metal disc simply welded to the bent sheet metal? Any sign of corrosion or weakening of the weld?

Regarding the top of the rudder shaft, the sleeve bearing where the rudder shaft passes through the hull is shown in the gallery drawing of the rudder tube. Presumably there is a similar bearing just below the cockpit floor. It is not clear from the drawing how the bearings are held in place but I assume that they were just forced into the PVC tube. I suspect that you will not be able to remove them without damaging the PVC tube.

When my upper sleeve bearing became worn many years ago I enquired if the original type were still available but it appeared that they are no longer manufactured. Instead I used a Vesconite sleeve bearing from Vesco Plastics.
I simply cut a Vesconite bearing in half and used only one half to support the back of the shaft. I pushed it into the rudder tube (without removing the block at the top of the shaft) and then built up epoxy behind the upper part of the bearing which remained above the cockpit floor. I did this at least 10 years ago and it has not given me any trouble.

I still have the other half of the Vesconite bearing (50mm long, 25.0 ID, 30.0mm OD) if you want it.

Steve
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Re: Refitting Keel shoe and rudder bearing questions

Postby Killick69 » Thu Jan 26, 2017 4:32 pm

About 2 years ago I replaced the threaded rod that holds the shoe in place. I used 8mm stainless steel rod and nyloc nuts. The old rod was corroded and reduced in diameter. I used rod and not bolts, because rod had previously been used. I could just as easily have used bolts. There was no evidence of any kind of sealant and I got the impression the holes in the keel and rudder were drilled out of solid material and did not need sealant. Maybe I should have used sealant.
The part that bolts onto the rudder is stainless steel, whereas the part that bolts onto the hull is bronze, so I used Duralac here. Both these parts looked good. The thrust washer (probably Vesconite) that slips over the SS rod looked good.

I do not know what the tube that the rudder shaft sits in is made of, but thought it is stainless steel, as this is what is visible in the cockpit. There is the remains of a bush just below where the SS outer is visible in the cockpit. I say remains, because it is badly worn on one side. I got the correct bush from Cassells Marine in Western Sydney. It was cheap and a stock item. Suggest you check their website.
I tried to hammer the old worn bush down into the tube, but it seems to be glued, so I fitted the bush from Cassells over the rudder tube and tapped it in as far as it will go. This has eliminated/reduced the rudder flop.
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Re: Refitting Keel shoe and rudder bearing questions

Postby Phillip » Thu Jan 26, 2017 8:56 pm

Everybody is on the right track. I removed the bottom shoe etc some years ago and found that the bronze pins were Ok but as I had damaged them while removing them I replaced with SS threaded rod. All were reset in silaflex to protect the SS. From what I've seen I'd replace the SS every 5 years or so, do one at a time, no need to remove the shoes.

My Mk 1 had cutless bearings top and bottom in the rudder shaft tube glued in with Aradite. I've replaced them once [1st time?]. Cut the bearing longways with a hacksaw blade and they came out OK.

I'd say that most of the 1960's 1970's Top Hats are up for this maintenance around now.
Phillip.
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Re: Refitting Keel shoe and rudder bearing questions

Postby percyverhance » Fri Jan 27, 2017 3:22 pm

Thanks for the info Chaps.I have been slow to respond as I havent had a proper internet connection for a week now.
Steve my shoe came off relatively easy and I have since re-read the notes on the drawings and as you suggest they were originaly set in Polyester putty.
The female rudder bearing housing is made of stainless with the stainless bearing section welded in.
I will give you a call re the bearing you replaced at the top of the rudder shaft Steve as I do have a small amount of play in the rudder shaft which would be nice to tidy up.

Thanks Killick.My shoe was aslo fitted with stainless allthread as opposed to bolts.Thanks for the info mate.

I should have the shoe and bearing back from the engineer on Monday (forecast 38C for Melbourne)Might have to budget for a few extra Carlton Draught stubbies for the refit I think.

Cheers
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Re: Refitting Keel shoe and rudder bearing questions

Postby Killick69 » Fri Jan 27, 2017 8:15 pm

Hi Percyverhance,
You say SS bearing. I believe there should be a engineering plastic bush (Vesconite/PTFE/engineering plastic incorporating graphite/Nylon/whatever) on top of the 'bearing'.

Phillip, what do you mean by cutlass bearing? Please describe it. Any drawings would be a help in understanding the components.
Cheers, John
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Re: Refitting Keel shoe and rudder bearing questions

Postby percyverhance » Fri Jan 27, 2017 8:35 pm

Correct Killick.My explanation wasnt the clearest.There is the thick nylon type washer between the 2sections.
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Re: Refitting Keel shoe and rudder bearing questions

Postby Phillip » Mon Jan 30, 2017 12:48 pm

Killick69 wrote:
Phillip, what do you mean by cutlass bearing? Please describe it. Any drawings would be a help in understanding the components.
Cheers, John


Its a sort of fibre bearing from the 70/80's any competent marine supplier should know what a cutless bearing is.

All, Mark 1's at least, started with cutless bearings in the drive and rudder shafts.
Phillip.
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