What's new

Need help re-assembling first-generation rudder


New Member
Trying to put my newly obtained 1964 fiberglass sunfish into sail-able condition. If the information I'm asking for is already posted somewhere, please point me to it.

Except for the piece that is attached to the bottom of the hull by a single screw, the rudder hardware is off the hull and missing at least the screws. Although I've read various things online about the old rudder assembly, I'm not clear how the parts that are attached to or mounted on top of the deck are put together and screwed on (and what screws and/or bolts are involved). I've put an access port in the deck a little fore of the holes for rudder mounting and have retrieved the mahogany block that the deck-mounted rudder hardware gets screwed into, which had become detached from the deck.

Can anyone supply, pictures and/or instructions for how to assemble the various pieces to make a functioning first-generation rudder attachment assembly? Also, at the location where the halyard cleat is located on post-1972 boats, the hardware is missing and there are three screw holes in the deck arranged in a triangle (one hole is occupied by a screw, so it seems the backer-block remains in place) - can anyone tell me what the original hardware at that location looked like?

Thanks very much!
Last edited:

Breeze Bender

Breeze Bender
Here are a couple shots of one I picked up a few years ago. “Before” pic is missing one screw into plate. You’ve already added the stern port, so many would ask “Why not update the rudder?” I did with this boat, (see “After pic”)B2EC757A-882A-4C95-B789-F1BC42CFB562.jpegC5E98B82-343B-4124-A32E-F5F6FC32A793.jpegimage.jpg but I’m finishing up a second “old school” (also my favorite blue deck- see last two pics) that will remain with its original rudder. It works flawlessly and I have never had issue with it popping off.
I also have lots of these parts if you know what you’re missing. Post a few pics if you can.
Don’t know why you’d have 3 screw holes for a horn cleat. I’d probably fill one with thickened epoxy and dip screws for other two in epoxy then into backer block.