Thursday, July 09, 2009

Steering - Technical Stuff

The yard have taken the rudder shaft out and had a large Woodruff key cut in it. This will keep tiller arm fixed. The tiller arm itself is new and will be attached to suit the new steering (the Woodruff key locks the tiller arm to rudder shaft).

We finally got rid of the Tenfjord which was nearly 40 years old. Although itwas actually still in reasonable order and would have been salvageable using new rubber seals and an expert overhaul by Jimmy the Cat, , the company who made the steering is now owned by Rolls Royce and apparently spare parts are very hard to get hold of. They can take months to appear after ordering, and not wishing to be stuck somewhere in the event of a breakdown (unless its Red Bay, of course) we have coughed to upgrade to a super-modern Hypromarine system using two double rams...

The deck is being caulked on the right and you can see the strings of oakum at the edge of the steering gear plate at the starn here.
On the left is the finished deck over the steering with the beautiful brass plate with its own key.

You could have controlled the old Tenfjord system (if the hydraulics were still working) by pressing screwdrivers into valves, probably with oil coming out at the same time, based on shouted instructions from the bridge, almost impractical but a comforting thought. However, what we have now will work from one of the rams only; if one ram were to fail, the other would automatically take over the job, so there is a system and a backup, and no screw-drivers or yelling involved. The third backup is a new tiller made to fit on the top of the rudder shaft itself to allow non-hydraulic assisted steering (i.e. by hand) by standing on the aft-deck, again, being shouted at from the bridge, a noisy but essential emergency plan. The new tiller is 6ft long, like a scaffold pole for extra leverage, and if we buy small VHF radios it might do away with the shouting.

The hole on the top of the rudder is still there - this is a final manual steering feature - by looping some rope through the hole to make reins the rudder can be pulled directly to give some steering when all else fails.

All the steel work supporting the steering gear down below has been needle gunned and treated so looks pretty new, and there is much shiney new equipment right at the back with a new plate covering the steering on the deck.


Blogger JB said...


Keep the information coming....its been a great read so far and very interesting. I'm just please I'm not bank rolling the project!!!!

I was up in Eyemouth last week and it was nice to see a large addition to the hull, another milestone achieved for you.

Are you on plan with the project? Do you have a planned launch date / planned date to set sail for sunny climes? I would love to see her in the water and ready to go.

Keep up the good work.



7:11 pm  
Blogger bowiechick said...

Hello! I stumbled upon your blog via the Strathspey II. I am adding you to my blogroll as I've some fellow boat blogging buddies who will be interested in following you as well.

Lovely work you're doing and best of luck!


6:41 pm  

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