I’ve not had the problem of a stiff rudder but I did replace my rudder bearings last year. It’s a fairly straight forward task, just make sure when you have the boat blocked off there’s enough room to drop the rudder. The only real issue was timing. The delivery for parts from Opal can be quite long and timing the lift out with the arrival of the bearings from Opal, was my only real problem…… for a change 😉
Thanks for the advice Jim.
I have just returned from a trip on the boat so sorry for the delay in replying. I contacted Opal regarding new bearings but they hadn’t any in stock so decided to have the rudder dropped to investigate.
The bottom bearing was really tight on the rudder stock . The engineer decided to ream out the bearing in situ. He took off around 0.5mm, and replaced the rudder. This seems to have solved the problem with the steering feeling ‘as good as new’.I just hope the same problem doesn’t return at a later date in which case I shall have to have the bearing replaced.Cheers Ian.