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      I have a 2006 B37 – “Alchemy”. Last year we had a slight clonking noise from the rudder, mainly when broadreaching in a seaway – i.e. with reasonable sideways loads on the rudder as waves passed under the quarter. Opal said the bearings needed tightening and did so when the boat was out of the water last winter – but they were actually pretty tight anyway. This last weekend we were out in similar conditions (F5-6 broad reach) for the first time this year and the noise is back – only worse. It sounds as if a bearing is moving in its housing, or is cracked?

      Anyone else had the same problem? I have asked Opal to come out to look again, but am not confident that they know or will find the real cause.

      Dave Targett



        Last year I thought I had the same problem. I kept getting a clonking noise from our rudder, so I checked the top nut and found it was fairly loose. I tightened it and replaced the locking screw with an M6 hex head set screw also. Then I found the steering creaked, so I must have had the top nut too tight? Also found this year that the clonking noise is still there, so loosened the top nut back off a little to ease the creaking.

        At first I was convinced the clonking was coming from the rudder, but now I realise it can’t be, the top nut has adequate tightness, the rudder feels smooth and when she was out for antifouling I could feel no play or movement other than correct firm solid roatation.

        I have now put the clonking noise down to two things, firstly I’m convinced that swell is slapping the underside of the stern, and secondly when I bought the boat I installed a shore power connector in the transom. The connector is just below the exhaust hose and I think the hose when pumping out exhaust water under fairly strong engine revs, was knocking against the connector. I’ve cable tied the hose away from the connector and sure enough the clonking is a bit quieter.

        “Betty Blue”
        2002 B36.



          I had a similar problem on Tanami(B34) and found that bottom bearing had slipped about 1/4 inch down the shaft. First I tried to jam it up with silicon but that must have lasted about a day. Next time he boat was out of the water I gave the bearing a good hard push up while wriggling the rudder then I put a big shelf of antifoul in the hole to hold the bearing up.

          That was 7 months ago and I haven’t heard or felt a thing. Will be having a look when I pull the boat out later this month.


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