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Rudder repair or replace?  Bottom

  • Ok, so I screwed up a tack in my Nacra 5.0, too close to the shore, blowing about 20 and ended up in the mud at the lake this weekend. In the process of turning the boat and launching again I managed to side-load the starboard rudder and crack the blade half-way thru over the entire width of the blade. Again, one side is cracked right to the core but the other side of the same blade didn't get damaged. Is there any chance of injecting a shi-ton of epoxy into the crack and letting it cure for a day or two or am I SOL and driving to Austin or Houston for a replacement blade?

    Thoughts?

    I'll try to post a picture tomorrow in case my description failed.

    Thanks,
    Jimmy

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    1983 Nacra 5.0 Sail #10
    Dallas, Texas area
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  • IMHO - you may be able to "extend" it's life but i would be willing to bet it wont last
  • I think I would pick up that used one, if they are the same length. The older Nacra skeg boats have a hull profile that rises towards the end. This makes the boarded boat (5.2) rudders a bit short.
    Injecting will not give you the same strength as a proper repair. You need to remove the damaged material & build a repair that distributes the load.
    Grind down the material along the crack,(a cutoff wheel with a grinding disc works well, just use a dust mask & eye protection) & repair it as a spare.
    You will want to grind out material for a few inches each side of the crack, sort of a shallow V shape, with the crack at the apex. Next layer up glass cloth & wet with resin. You want as much cloth as you can get, then thoroughly wet it out. The idea is not to place 1 layer of cloth with 1/8" of resin on each side of it, use multiple layers of cloth, & just enough resin to wet it through. You can place a scrap of poly over the patch & use that to help form the patch & compress it into place. Once you have the profile pretty close, sand it fair, then paint one very thin layer of resin over the top to seal any glass ends you may have exposed due to sanding.
    I have one rudder that cracked, & so far the this repair has held up. It may not be as strong as original, but so far it is strong enough.

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    Hobie 18 Magnum
    Dart 15
    Mystere 6.0XL Sold Was a handful solo
    Nacra 5.7
    Nacra 5.0
    Bombardier Invitation (Now officially DEAD)
    Various other Dock cluttering WaterCrap
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  • I'd get an extra if it's available, as its always good to have spare parts come summer. Then I'd fix the broken one as Ed has said. In my experience the 5.0 rudders don't feel very loaded, so I'd expect a repair w/ epoxy and glass to hold without issue. Just remove ALL of the broken stuff and give yourself a fighting chance at making a clean repair.

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    Rob
    OKC
    Pile of Nacra parts..
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