Thursday, August 6, 2009
Not that I'm counting on the steering system failing, but I do want to make sure I have a back up method of steering the boat.
I'm using a hydraulic steering system on board that is similar to a car. I have a pump mounted to the engine witch powers the helm station witch sends oil to the hydraulic cylinders that are bolted to the rudder post. In the event of a failure of the steering system, I can by pass the hydraulic system and attach a manual tiller to my rudder. I should probably note that I had the end of the rudder squared off for this reason.
The emergency tiller consists of a tiller, a custom made end to fit over the rudder and into the tiller, a bearing welded into the deck, an "O" ring seal, and a cover. All this was designed by me so I have no one to blame if it self destructs. I have tried it out, and I must say it goes together quickly, and locks on to the rudder rather well. It seemed important to me to have the tiller on deck so the tiller mate and the helmsman could communicate.