Rudder Damage

The rudder did not break during the beaching, but actually during the recovery process. The rudder had dug itself into the sand, and when the boat turned during the salvage, the rudder wanted to stay put. 

The keel rotated around the rudder (instead of the rudder on the keel) and turned past the limits of the rudder. 


The top and bottom of the rudder snaked into the keel and chipped off bottom paint as well as producing some damage on the rudder's skin. 

The first step in the repair process is to sand away the area to reveal any hidden damage or cracks. All cracks are then ground out. The core of the rudder is then inspected for water intrusion and moisture. 

Luckily, in our case, the rudder is filled with a foam that will not accept water, so there was no moisture in the body of the rudder. The bottom only suffered a compression, but no crack. 

The voids were filled in with fiberglass and epoxy with 406 thickening agent and allowed to cure. This was then covered with epoxy and 407 fairing compound, making it easier to sand the final fix into the airfoil shape of the rudder blade. 

Steering is critical, it means the difference between a yacht and a shelter! This was the repair needed for the external damage to the rudder, but we still have to deal with the internal damage that occurred: the rudder quadrant.