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Replace broken gudgeon screw?

Jimlaserboat

New Member
Hi All. It's been a great sailing season in Centerport, NY this year. A friend and I sail 1984 models.

The other day we noticed two screws were missing from his gudgeon. I had a spare screw so i was able to get one back in, although on a slighlty askew path. The other screw's head broke off cleanly so we now we have a screw in the hole with no head. Before realizing what I was dealing with (metal fatigue), I went to try to tighten up the other screws and another head popped right off when i applied pressure. This was when I realized I had simple metal fatigue, and all the screws are likely comprimised.

So my question....how does one remove and old screw from a hole, and get a new one in? Or...would it be reasonable to attempt to slightly move the gudgeon and reposition it to a new home if possible? As you can see in the photo, I only have room to move the gudgeon up towards the deck.

Even with all this, the gudgeon still seems well anchored. I think the reason the screw that I was able to get in went askew is because the other half the screw that broke was still inside the hole, so when i put the new screw in, the old stump diverted it slightly, but I did get it to grab good wood.

Moving the gudgeon would be less preferable to trying to get screws back in the original holes, but if that's what's need then ok.

Thanks for any advice here.
JB
 

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Don't move the gudgeon, this will raise the iller and affect the rudder latch.

Drill new holes in the gudgeon and boat; there is room for another 4 screws if needed.
 

Nicholson58

I’d Rather Be Sailing My Tornado
Do you operate in sea water or only fresh? Various targeted corrosion with salt present may do this. The grooves (threads) are stress risers. The space under the head is is an oxygen depleted zone. This accelerates crevice attack at the base of a groove. The mix of aluminum and stainless doesn’t help.

be sure you adequately seal the space to keep out water.

to remove the old screws assuming no port, use a punch to pop them into the interior. Replace with oversized screws. If you are very skilled, you might be able to use a series of small drills to drill out the old screws.

I like the suggested “move the screws” option. I’d use a tapered countersink to taper the old hole and MarineTex or similar filled epoxy to plug the holes. Fill the hole, cover with polyethylene film and tape until cured. Film & tape will prevent the filler from slumping out of the hole.
 

LaLi

Well-Known Member
Don't move the gudgeon, this will raise the iller and affect the rudder latch.
How would this be a problem? If the rudder retaining clip/lift stop/latch (whatever you want to call it) is "affected", then move that, too! Chances are you don't even need to drill new holes on the transom, just slide the fitting all the way up along those elongated mounting holes:
Unknown.jpeg
If you want to optimize the tiller angle that's another issue, but even for that it's highly preferable to position the gudgeons as high as possible (the higher the rudder head stands on the transom, the lower the tiller can "point"). My own top gudgeon almost touches the gunwale.

Drill new holes in the gudgeon and boat; there is room for another 4 screws if needed.
I would NOT do that. It's rather questionable to drill new holes in standard fittings (it's both a structural and legal problem), and there really isn't quite enough room for all four.

The mix of aluminum and stainless doesn’t help.
No aluminium involved in this area (luckily).

to remove the old screws assuming no port, use a punch to pop them into the interior. ... If you are very skilled, you might be able to use a series of small drills to drill out the old screws.
I'd try those first. If that doesn't work, the next thing would actually be to install an inspection port on the aft deck and take the old screws out that route. And as you then have permanent access to the backside, use bolts.

JB, can you post pictures of the upper gudgeon (to see how far it's from the gunwale), and the retainer?

_
 

Jimlaserboat

New Member
How would this be a problem? If the rudder retaining clip/lift stop/latch (whatever you want to call it) is "affected", then move that, too! Chances are you don't even need to drill new holes on the transom, just slide the fitting all the way up along those elongated mounting holes:
View attachment 53421
If you want to optimize the tiller angle that's another issue, but even for that it's highly preferable to position the gudgeons as high as possible (the higher the rudder head stands on the transom, the lower the tiller can "point"). My own top gudgeon almost touches the gunwale.

I would NOT do that. It's rather questionable to drill new holes in standard fittings (it's both a structural and legal problem), and there really isn't quite enough room for all four.

No aluminium involved in this area (luckily).

I'd try those first. If that doesn't work, the next thing would actually be to install an inspection port on the aft deck and take the old screws out that route. And as you then have permanent access to the backside, use bolts.

JB, can you post pictures of the upper gudgeon (to see how far it's from the gunwale), and the retainer?

_
Thanks for your replies gents. I wont be back near that boat until Sep
How would this be a problem? If the rudder retaining clip/lift stop/latch (whatever you want to call it) is "affected", then move that, too! Chances are you don't even need to drill new holes on the transom, just slide the fitting all the way up along those elongated mounting holes:
View attachment 53421
If you want to optimize the tiller angle that's another issue, but even for that it's highly preferable to position the gudgeons as high as possible (the higher the rudder head stands on the transom, the lower the tiller can "point"). My own top gudgeon almost touches the gunwale.

I would NOT do that. It's rather questionable to drill new holes in standard fittings (it's both a structural and legal problem), and there really isn't quite enough room for all four.

No aluminium involved in this area (luckily).

I'd try those first. If that doesn't work, the next thing would actually be to install an inspection port on the aft deck and take the old screws out that route. And as you then have permanent access to the backside, use bolts.

JB, can you post pictures of the upper gudgeon (to see how far it's from the gunwale), and the retainer?

_
Th
You are. The gudgeons have been plastic since 1976, and stainless before that.

_
Thanks LaLi I'll get a photo asap.
 
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