Help Needed from Rascal Owners

Your boat sounds exactly like mine. Is yours a Spindrift OneDesigns, or a Ray Greene? Mine looks like the only thing it's missing is a Mellow Yellow logo.
So little to ask in return!
I figure I don't need to duplicate yours, just get to something that matches in functionality. That said, taper never even occurred to me.

And this gives me another chance to scout for my lost one this weekend. I'm renting tanks and getting serious, dammit.

Thank you for the help. Enjoy the fly fishing on the lake, sounds great!
I'm back! Got a lot of sailing in. So many perfect days for it. I have all the measurements you need... if you still need them. If you do, let me know which ones exactly. If you want them all, no worries. There's a compound curve in the top of my rudder so it would almost be easier for me to just trace the whole thing and mail you the outline.
Let me know
I'm thinking I need the overall dimensions of the rudder itself, as I am not sure how big it needs to be to properly steer the boat. I have a rudder from a smaller boat that I was going to take the tiller from, and use the two aluminum plates as a pattern for getting larger ones made (so the pins will fit in the gutcheons). But if you would send me whatever dimensions you have, that would be great! Please send to:
Rick Percoco
2 Rolling Ridge Dr.
East Greenbush, NY 12061

I'm thinking I may have to make the rudder itself out of marine-grade plywood. I can't figure out how I am suppose to get fiberglass, much less shape and work with it.

Thank you for the help! Glad to know you were able to get out on the lake.

working with fiberglass is simple. I felt the same way about it before I built a drift boat but trust me, it's no big deal. As for obtaining it, there's a ton of places online to order it from. Try Jamestown Distributors. For something like a rudder, I wouldn't get anything thicker than 7 oz. bi-axial weave. As for the Epoxy, you're going to need West Systems 207 special clear hardener, and 105 resin. Both of which can be obtained from Jamestown Distributors.
I suppose you could use plywood, but because of the taper, it would make it quite weak along the trailing edge. Even with the fiberglass.
I literally have everything I need to make you one in my workshop right now. I just don't know when I'd be able to get to it, and wouldn't want you to have to wait for me. It's simple if you have the correct tools, but you'd need a thickness planer since the rudder is only about 1/2" thick, clamps to join each plank of wood (mine is actually made up of 4 pieces joined together on edge) a joiner, a way to taper both edges (I'd use a hand plane and a router), and then the materials to fiberglass it, although if it was made from solid mahogany, you really wouldn't need to fiberglass it. Just a few coats of epoxy and some varnish. If you can't find something that will work, let me know and I'd be happy to help you out. I'll charge you if it would make you feel more comfortable. :) I'd be more than fair. But I'd love to have a reason to make some sawdust.
I'll sketch up the dimensions for you and send them over tomorrow.

I have rudder envy.

If not plywood, would you use pine or poplar if you were going to fiberglass it? I see what you mean about the taper and losing strength, although I could easily see me taking some shortcuts for now, just to put something together.

Any idea where to source the aluminum plates? It would be great if those are made somewhere. Or do I just buy aluminum in Home Depot? I have the two pins that I can take off an old rudder that is too small. I don't think I can rig up the plates off it to fit my transom, and I don't want to move the gutcheons to fit the smaller rudder. If that makes any sense to you.

And if you are up for building one, I would be oh so glad to compensate you for your time.

Pine would most likely be too light of a wood for the size and thickness. It's almost 3 feet long. At just 1/2" thick, I'm thinking pine would not fare so well. Even if it was temporary. Obviously, mahogany is a great choice since it's very stable and has a high cellulose content (makes it really good at resisting rot, like cedar only way stronger) but it can get pricey. For something temporary I would go with white oak. shape it, then paint the heck out of it. Forget about fiberglass or epoxy. You'd be wasting your time if it was temporary. As you said, you just need something to get you up and running.
The aluminum wouldn't be available at Home Depot. You'd have to go to an industrial supplier for it. The good news is that they would probably have some scrap that would be the right size so they'd hopefully cut you some kind of deal. I used to deal a lot with those types of companies (just local here in MI) and if you give them a rough size and thickness they should be able to tell you yes or no. ANY one dealing in that type of metal would be able to cut it to the dimensions you need. (for a nominal fee, of course.) The aluminum on mine is roughly a 1/4" thick. What I would do is just give them a drawing with dimensions (supplied by yours truly) and tell them you need two. The holes you could just drill yourself since aluminum is super soft and easy to work with.
The tough part are the pintles. (pins that sit into the gudgeons) You're right in not wanting to move them. I would never drill holes in my boat if I didn't need to! Mine look to be machined out of billet aluminum. I could give you an exact rendering of them, but there's no way you could make one. You'd have to have someone with a C and C machine mill it out. You're best bet would be to find two pintles, any that fit into your gudgeons and then make everything else to fit them.
As I said I would definitely be able to make you a permanent rudder. If you wanted, I could make it look pretty much like the one I have. No big deal. I just need to know exactly how you plan on mounting the thing before I start chopping up an expensive piece of mahogany. ;)
Of course, the one thing I didn't measure are the diameter of pintle, but then you should be able to figure that out by measuring the hole in your gudgeon.
Sorry for the long reply. I start talking shop and lose all control.
talk to you soon
I was going to take the pintles (ah, if you don't know the jargon ...) off the old rudder I have, since they fit my gutcheons. And that to me is like half the battle. It's the aluminum plates I have that are too small, because the pintles can't be moved far enough apart to fit the gutcheons on my boat. I wanted to just adapt the existing one, but I don't see how it would work. Hence I need new aluminum, and try to describe the shape you need ... I live in a rural area but also near Albany, so I figure I should be able to get aluminum from a machine shop that takes pity, or maybe one of the farmers I work with. And thank you for the thickness, and suggesting white oak. That makes perfect sense.
Here you go!
on the top plates I purposely left the location of the holes out except for where the rudder pivot goes. Figured it would make it less cluttered that way. Let me know if you have any questions.
Crap. Just realized that I forgot to put in the top dimension of the brackets. It's 4 1/2 inches.

Any ideas on gelcoat? My Rascal is starting to suffer from the small semicircular breaks in the gelcoat on the topside, both seats and bow. I've done only a small amount of research...most seem to recommend scraping and complete resurface. I have also replaced the centerboard trunk due to carpenter ants. I wasn't as hard as I thought.