Epoxying up the centerboard from two pieces of 1/2″ ply.
Following the plans, I shaped the centerboard into a rough foil shape. Part of me wonders how much performance I’d gain with a better shape, or if what I have is good enough.
Fiberglassing one side with 6oz glass.
I let the glass hang over to make a bit of a “gutter” which I then filled up with thickened epoxy to act as a hardened edge to ward off damage.
Fiberglassing the other side and sanding the edges. The hole for the pivot pin is lined with thickened epoxy.
Ross recommended making a bracket that bolts onto the centerboard and projects up through the centerboard trunk cap. Then a stainless rod attaches to that to allow you to raise and lower the centerboard. The bracket seemed like a lot of work, so I just drilled a hole and whittled out a section for the thickness of the rod. The hole is encased with thickened epoxy to provide a hard surface and the rod is bent in such a way that it lays flat along the cap when the board is in the up position.
Here’s how the rod sits when the board is up.
Gluing up the rudder in the same way as the centerboard. This is one piece of 1/2″ and one piece of 1/4″ as the foil only needs to be 3/4″ thick.
Making the wooden rudder head was a disaster. Somehow I made the cheeks too tight so the rudder wouldn’t fit and I didn’t have time to redo it. We had a vacation coming up that I wanted to take the boat on and I was really down to the wire at this point. So I decided to weld one up out of aluminum.
Making the tiller from a nice piece of Cumuru deck board that I “liberated” out of a dumpster at a jobsite I was on. I installed a small fairlead and pop open jamb cleat so the rudder can kick up if it hits anything. I don’t have any brightwork on the boat, so I decided to varnish the tiller to add a bit of bling.
Here’s the completed rudder and tiller assembly installed on the boat.
I’ve been sailing around with it bare for two years. I finally decided to have my buddy powder coat it the same green as the mast partner, but it outgassed quite a bit during the baking. Part of the problem was galvanic corrosion between the stainless gudgeon and pintles, so I cut some insulators out of a milk jug. Might not be necessary with the powder coating, but it can’t hurt.