Replacement rudder part for my Zuma?

Discussion in 'Laser Talk' started by wrybread, Nov 3, 2013.

  1. wrybread

    wrybread New Member

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    Ugh, I just broke the part that connects my rudder to the boat on my Laser Zuma. Googling around I see it sometimes called a "rudder cheek assembly". Its listed on this page, but it looks like they don't carry the part:

    http://www.apsltd.com/c-2964-hullanddeckfittings.aspx

    If you click the popup above rudder parts, you get this diagram, which shows the "rudder cheek assembly":

    http://www.apsltd.com/gallerypopup.aspx?GalleryID=188

    I don't imagine anyone knows who might have that part in stock? Ideally in the U.S. since I'd hate to be without my boat for long.

    And by the way used is fine.

    I attached a couple of pics of the broken part.

    Thanks for any help.

    Attached Files:

  2. 49208

    49208 Tentmaker

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  3. Rob Hair

    Rob Hair Member

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    Because of this equipment breakage and the other post you made about having to put great force on the tiller (and your declaration that you are new to sailing), I wonder if you are setting the rudder correctly. Are you putting the rudder in the "down" position when sailing? If the rudder is not in the "down" position the tiller will require much more force and the boat will seem out of control. It's also easy to imagine that this could lead to breaking the rudder head because of the large force needed on the tiller. If I've assumed that you are much more the novice than you really are, please accept my apology, but I just thought I should ask about this to be sure.
  4. wrybread

    wrybread New Member

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    @Rob Hair: all good points about my technique being the probable cause of the breakage. But I've gotten a bit better about not putting stress on the rudder by either letting the boat get some speed before steering, or by taking some power out of the sails. Not saying I don't still put too much force on the rudder from time to time, but I'm not forcing things nearly as much as I used to.

    In this case the culprit was (I think) a combination of a screw being lose on the rudder cheek, which allowed a bit of flex, and sailing during one of the lowest tides of the year, so I kept bottoming out on sandbars that aren't usually there. I noticed the loose screw but thought I could tighten it later. Oh well, live and learn.

    To anyone else who comes this way looking for a Zuma rudder cheek assembly, this is what I've learned so far:

    - after 1995 (maybe including 1995, not sure) the Zuma, Pico and Sunfish all used the same rudder cheek. Maybe the whole rudder assembly, but at a minimum the cheek.

    - before that Zuma rudder cheeks were just for Zumas.

    - you can tell which you have by measuring the diameter of the spring loaded bolt (the "pintle pin") that connects the rudder to the boat: if its 3/8", you have the post-1995 style. If its 1/2", you have the earlier style.

    - ugh, I have the earlier style, and can't find one for sale. I'm thinking about buying the later style with the 3/8" hole and boring it out to 1/2" and using the pintle pin from mine. Or I may get a Sunfish gudgeon bracket (the part that connects the rudder to the boat) and use the Sunfish rudder cheek as is. I need to confirm that that will work. Or I may just try to fab a whole new part.

    FYI, here's a parts list for the Zumas:

    http://www.ullfl.net/zumaparts[1].pdf
  5. Rob Hair

    Rob Hair Member

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    I'm not sure you understood my comments. I am not referring to technique. The rudder should be vertical while sailing.
  6. wrybread

    wrybread New Member

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    Sorry I wasn't more clear. I keep the rudder down while sailing.
  7. stealth71

    stealth71 New Member

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    Looks like the part is cast aluminum? Can you find someone with a TIG welder locally and just weld it back together?
  8. wrybread

    wrybread New Member

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    Unfortunately the other half is at the bottom of Tomales Bay somewhere.

    I managed to find a replacement from someone on the Zuma email list. If anyone else comes down this path and has a Zuma, join that list, great resource:

    http://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/zumasailing/info
  9. Eyeper

    Eyeper New Member

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    Hmmm... Were you by any chance surfing when you broke that?
  10. wrybread

    wrybread New Member

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    Nope, the surfing was afterwards. The surfing was done with half a head stock held on with bungee chords...

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