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 Post subject: Crooked Rudder
PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2013 7:32 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 11, 2013 8:23 pm
Posts: 10
Location: Laguna Vista, TX
Well, here we go again. Another issue with my new Oasis. This time it's with the rudder. Before taking it out for the second time (the first time it seemed like the steering was a little off) I decided to check out the rudder system and controls. I'd read the forum, and, based on that vast knowledge, I fiddled around with it. In the middle of my fiddling I noticed that the rudder was crooked. It skewed to the left. Further examination revealed that the source of the crooked rudder was the "rudder block" that attaches to the kayak hull. It, too, was a little off causing the bottom of the rudder to be several inches left of center. Does anyone know if this can cause less than optimal steering response? I think I've posted a picture of the rudder, but I'm not sure. New to this forum and the posting requirements. Hope it works. Thanks for any advice.

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 Post subject: Re: Crooked Rudder
PostPosted: Tue May 28, 2013 9:25 am 
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Joined: Mon Apr 26, 2010 6:06 am
Posts: 734
Location: Amelia Island, FL
Take it to you dealer who handles all warranty issues.


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 Post subject: Re: Crooked Rudder
PostPosted: Tue May 28, 2013 10:50 am 
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Location: Laguna Vista, TX
Here's the problem. . . the dealer is 400 miles away. Would really like to resolve the issue myself, if possible. So far, I've not been impressed with Hobie's quality control. From my perspective, great product. . . poor execution.

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 Post subject: Re: Crooked Rudder
PostPosted: Tue May 28, 2013 11:17 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 19, 2005 6:29 pm
Posts: 2037
Location: High Point, NC
It won't affect the steering as much as you might think it would, but no doubt it can be unnerving to have it that way.

I have no idea of your personal level of confidence in taking things off you boat, but you might remove the rudder and then the gudgeon to see if perhaps the bottom bolt is missing, or something there is bent. If the brass nut inserts are simply molded off center, then I'd talk to my dealer about it. It may be something simple, or it may be something not easily corrected.


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 Post subject: Re: Crooked Rudder
PostPosted: Tue May 28, 2013 2:00 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 27, 2003 12:44 pm
Posts: 8975
Location: Oceanside, California
The image appears to be behind a password protection. Images need to be public.

Email to warranty@hobiecat.com for direct feedback.

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 Post subject: Re: Crooked Rudder
PostPosted: Tue May 28, 2013 2:53 pm 
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Joined: Sun Aug 12, 2007 5:17 pm
Posts: 513
Location: Auckland NZ
Hang in there, Tag - if you have got a Friday afternoon product there I would be surprised and you would be very unlucky. Hobie's execution is right up there in my experience - it is a premium product and they really do strive to and succeed in giving premium service again based on personal experience - even right down here at the very ends of the earth. If there's a problem with the product I am more than confident that Hobie will help sort it out. If it is something you can iron out yourself you'll get no end of assistance from people here.


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 Post subject: Re: Crooked Rudder
PostPosted: Tue May 28, 2013 3:48 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 11, 2013 8:23 pm
Posts: 10
Location: Laguna Vista, TX
OK. Let me try this again. I moved the photo to a public folder. Hope this works. I learn something every day. Also, had the Oasis out for the second time today and it turned on a dime to the left but it took quite a sweeping turn to right.

Really appreciate all who are trying to help. Means a lot to me. Hope I can return the favor someday when I'm more experienced.

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Last edited by Jbernier on Tue May 28, 2013 3:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Fixed photo links to show properly


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 Post subject: Re: Crooked Rudder
PostPosted: Tue May 28, 2013 7:20 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2005 10:46 pm
Posts: 2394
Location: Escondido
If your rudder is warped (which it appears to be), you should be able to email your dealer a pic and have him fill out a warranty claim and have the replacement mailed directly.

On the other hand, if your boat is turning more to one side than the other, your major problem is the rudder not being centered -- not uncommon. Here's a link on how to properly center it and maximize your turning ability in both directions:
viewtopic.php?f=11&t=28425&p=115904#p115904
8)


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 Post subject: Re: Crooked Rudder
PostPosted: Tue May 28, 2013 8:41 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 11, 2013 8:23 pm
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Location: Laguna Vista, TX
Thanks for the input, Roadrunner. By way of update, I have reported (with picture) to the dealer and am awaiting their response. I have also replied to Matt Miller's request (above) to send the picture to Hobie Warranty. In addition, I have checked the rudder deflection with a cut cardboard and to the best of my ability, I believe the deflection - both to the right and left - is approximately 40 degrees. I'm pretty sure the rudder is centered. As I closely examined the "rudder block" (Tom, above, called it a gudgeon - I looked that word up and I believe he's right) it, too, appears to be askew and the source of the problem. I thought I may be able to straighten it by loosening the two screws that hold it to the hull. After the bottom screw broke free it continued to loosen quite easily. However, the top screw turned hard all four or five turns that I unscrewed it and it had the "feel" of a cross-threaded screw. I did not take either screw all the way out. I just wanted to loosen them to see if I might then twist the gudgeon in a counter clockwise rotation and straighten the rudder. I was not successful in moving the gudgeon. When I hear from the dealer or Hobie I will post their response. I posted this question just to see if anyone else has ever run into this situation before and, if so, what they did to resolve the problem. Again, thanks to all who gave input and shared their knowledge and experience. It is appreciated.

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 Post subject: Re: Crooked Rudder
PostPosted: Thu May 30, 2013 7:50 am 
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Location: Oceanside, California
Fyi... Our factory manager noted the damage to the rudder's trailing edge. It is possible this was damaged in transit.

Was this boat shipped to you by a dealer LTL?

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 Post subject: Re: Crooked Rudder
PostPosted: Thu May 30, 2013 1:51 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 11, 2013 8:23 pm
Posts: 10
Location: Laguna Vista, TX
Yes. It was shipped to my residence by Austin Kayak. It arrived in, what I believe to be, the original manufacturer's packaging. Cardboard underneath, white bubble wrap and clear plastic over everything. The wrapping around the seating compartment was split open and some accessories I ordered were placed inside and then resealed. Nothing seemed to be disturbed around the rudder area or any of the other wrapping. Please see above posting by me. The Oasis is currently stored upside down and if you look straight down at the gudgeon it definitely appears to be skewed to the right (left when the Oasis is upright.) I am away form home right now but will return late tomorrow and I will post a photo of the gudgeon (I'll also send the photo to your warranty dept.) and I think you will easily see the problem. I'm sure I can fix it, but I just don't know exactly how and some guidance on this issue would be helpful. While the rudder itself does seem to be warped, I don't know if this would cause a significant problem or not. I would defer that to your better judgment and accept your decision. Thanks for your continued interest in resolving this issue, Matt. It is much appreciated.

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 Post subject: Re: Crooked Rudder
PostPosted: Thu May 30, 2013 5:36 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 27, 2003 12:44 pm
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Location: Oceanside, California
Unfortunately, our packaging is not meant for LTL shipping (we ship in our own trucks with full loads typically), so we see more damage when dealers re-ship without wrapping the boat better. When we ship LTL we double wrap.

My only real concern would be that the gudgeon got jammed and is not repairable for some reason, so removal of the screws and inspection of the brass inserts that are molded-in would be required.

If you loosened the screws and tried to straighten without luck... it just might be a little crooked in the transom. The twisted rudder and possibly some line adjustments could compound to reduce steerage to one direction as you described. I would center the steering handle, adjust steering lines to align the lower portion (what is really in the water) on the center line of the boat. That should do it.

The small tip to one side should make very little difference.

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Hobie Cat USA


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 Post subject: Re: Crooked Rudder
PostPosted: Fri May 31, 2013 2:29 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 11, 2013 8:23 pm
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Location: Laguna Vista, TX
Good analysis, Matt. Where the gudgeon got bumped we will never know for certain, but I suspect you are right on track. It's not something that is really noticeable and you would never know it was damaged until you had the boat in the water and tried it out.

The top of the gudgeon only needs to move about a 1/4 inch to bring it straight (see photo below). While I did attempt to twist the gudgeon straight with the screws loosened, I only twisted it with my hands and did not place a lot of pressure on it.

My first choice would be to straighten the gudgeon, if possible, rather than compensating for the cooked gudgeon with rudder adjustments.

What I don't know is what type of material the brass inserts are molded into and whether or not it is practical to replace that "block of material" with a new one including new brass inserts. If that is not possible, how about this? - I remove the rudder and gudgeon, see if I can straighten the brass insert and fill any gaps made by the unwanted "twist" with epoxy to stabilize it. Then re-install the gudgeon with the original screw.

If this doesn't work and as a worst case scenario, I could fill the hole and damaged area with epoxy, drill a new hole all the way through the block of material and through the Oasis hull, insert a new (longer) bolt through the hole and place a locking nut on the inside of the hull (with appropriate sealing washers, of course).

I'll be interested in your thoughts. Thanks for all your advice and help

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 Post subject: Re: Crooked Rudder
PostPosted: Fri May 31, 2013 3:04 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jan 05, 2007 9:21 pm
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Location: Maui, Hawaii
The brass inserts are molded into the hull plastic when produced. You probably need to see if the plastic is damaged around the inserts to tell what is the next step.

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 Post subject: Re: Crooked Rudder
PostPosted: Fri May 31, 2013 11:36 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2005 10:46 pm
Posts: 2394
Location: Escondido
I think your best bet at this stage is, if there is no apparent damage that would compromise the integrity of the hull or operation of the rudder, to re-center the rudder -- it should work fine for all practical purposes and give you virtually full turning capability. Bypassing the brass inserts as an alternative would weaken the structure IMO.

You might also wish to consider reporting this more recent info to Austin kayaks and asking them to retroactively adjust your purchase cost to that of a "demo" or "blem" with a refund or equipment credit -- if you paid for a first line boat. 8)


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