Review: Rudder Construction and Assembly

The original bare hull and deck project excluded a factory rudder. Original rudder plans from the original construction manual were limited. A NA from R.H. Perry’s office designed an appropriate rudder.

In general, the rudder assembly is 5 layers of biaxial e-glass, over airex C30 foam on a 316L stainless steel frame. The assembly is resin infused with vinylester. 

The stainless steel assembly includes, as the upper rudder post, Aquamet stainless steel shafting. The lower pintle of the rudder is machined from Aquamet shafting and welded into a piece of schedule 40 stainless steel pipe.


The lower pintle is machined to fit into a cast bronze rudder shoe through bolted to the lower skeg. A quarter inch thick round of UHMW is between the pintle and shoe as a slide bearing. 

A web of 316L stainless steel, jet cut from the original drawings, are welded together, and to the upper shaft and lower pintle to provide overall structure.

A thin piece of G10 provides structure for the trailing edge.

The upper rudder bearing is a 60mm self-aligning roller bearing made by Jefa (sold through PYI Inc). The roller bearing is housed in a machined piece of G10 tubing that is attached to the hull using 3 layers of biaxial glass and epoxy.

A neoprene gaiter clamped to the G10 bearing housing and upper rudder post seals against water intrusion.

Related: Steering Review