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  • Alick Burt

Sailing Rig some last minute changes to the rudder.

Hello folks

As you may know I have been using Todd Bradshaws book"Canoe Rig The essence and the Art” to guide me in my design of sailing rig.

In the book there is mention of a really good type of pintle and gudgeon for the rudder that was used by the canoe makers Willitts Brothers.

The design is clever because it has large plates that allow for lots of screw positions into the woodwork of the canoe.The problem as far as I can tell by searching online is you can't buy them anywhere!

Todd mentions he likes them so much he might make a pattern and have some cast for himself. I don't know if he ever did, but as I did the first year of an engineers patternmaking course (back in 1981) I have decided to make a pattern and see if I can get some made.

The first problem is the design of the rudder housing will need to be bevelled at the front to take them so I needed to cut and shape it retrospectively. These bevels would have been easier to make if I had thought of it before I glued up the parts but such is life and mistakes prove I am human!

I was able to cut the first bevel on the circular saw to begin with and then I put the rudder in the vice and finished the cut by hand.

The other side will not go on the circular saw as the sliding table and tilt of the blade is handed so the cut cannot be made.So I cut the second side on the bandsaw which tilts the other way.

Then as before I put the rudder housing back in the vice to cut the waste across at the top. You can see the bandsaw has not made a perfect cut and the circular saw cut on the other side also need cleaning up.

As the grain was a bit curly I used my scraper to finish off.

Here you can see my pattern which will finish smaller when the metal is cast and shrinks so I have left it a bit tight at this stage.I may make adjustments to the wood when I have my fittings but this is much closer to the shape I need.

In addition I spent some time rounding edges and cleaning up the other parts in preparation for varnishing. Here is the leeboard bracket and its buttons.

and I also rubbed the mast, boom and yard down and gave them another coat.

and thats all for now.



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