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Old 10-05-2009, 06:49 PM
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81 Star and stripes rudder/steering issue

The steering on this boat has a lot of play. It causes the steering to grab a jerk. Mainly noticeable when turning back right (If I recall correct). Kinda snaps right. It's out of the water now and I'm looking at the parts. The ball joint/pivot near the rear has a lot of play causing the cable to move. What is a good source for this part? The rudder also seems to tilt side to side a bit. Maybe 1/4" at the bottom point of the rudder. How much slop should a rudder have? Can this be tightened up? Are there known tolerances?

We put about 30 hrs on it since we got it this summer and the steering is get worse. Want to get it ready for next summer! It's a little scary (especially when someone is on the boom).

Thanks for the input! G
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Old 10-05-2009, 07:20 PM
TMCNo1 TMCNo1 is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2005
Boat: Gone
Location: Gone
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If you choose to replace it, you can get one here, http://www.skidim.com/prodinfo.asp?number=DISC-RPTNSLOTAS,
here, http://www.elberts.com/underwatergear.htm, they are the triangular rudder and like the s/s MC by Design one I installed in our '89 four years ago with no difference in steering than the OEM duckbill rudder and the updated dripless unit here, http://www.ojprops.com/products/rudder_kits
Charter Member Number 1

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Last edited by TMCNo1; 10-05-2009 at 07:28 PM.
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Old 10-05-2009, 09:27 PM
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1redTA 1redTA is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2009
Boat: 1981 MasterCraft 351W slot
Location: Pace, FL
Posts: 1,446
I pulled the rudder on my 81 recently, while apart I cleaned the rudder and tube with some scrotchbrite and a brass brush. I then put some automotive grease in the assembly. It helped a little with the slop but my boat had no seals of any kind in it
1981 MasterCraft
19' Skier 351W PowerSlot
Long gone is the Trans AM waiting for another
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Old 10-05-2009, 10:01 PM
waterlogged882 waterlogged882 is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2004
Boat: 93 190
Location: lake
Posts: 12,106
New cable will resolve.

As stated above, www.skidim.com

Very nice looking boat.
John 3:16-18
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Old 10-06-2009, 06:32 PM
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Hi All, Thanks for the quick feedback and all of the links for sources to parts. I took the rudder assembly apart last night. The packing nut was loose (the jam nut was not even close) and there is a slight amount of shaft wear. What is acceptable? The Clamp block wobbles all over. The Cable is smooth and does not seem to have any sloop. Thanks again!
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Old 10-06-2009, 07:59 PM
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ski_king ski_king is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2004
Boat: 1982 Skier19, Powerslot, 351PCM
Location: Western PA
Posts: 5,924
As a short term solution, try greasing the fitting inside the hull. YOu may be suprised on how much this may tighten things up.
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bushing, jerk, rudder, slack, stering

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