Catboats Discussion Board
Topic: Cruising

Original Message
Posted by:
Kevin F. O'Driscoll
6/6/10 5:03:38 P
Subject: 0
I hope someone can help. My 1974 Herreshoff America's centerboard is stuck up in the centerboard trunk. The former owner had a problem and drilled a hole through centerboard trunk cover.(TEAK Ouch!) It had been working fine then it stopped. The board was pulled up real fast, then nothing. If anyone has any ideas, I'm sure someone else has had a problem like this. Thanks Kevin
Posted by: William Dolan
6/8/10 7:23:54 P
Subject: Stuck Up centerboard 74 Herreshoff America
Kevin, Without seeing the board it is hard to say EXACTLY what has happened but judging from past experience, I can certainly venture a guess. You say that the board was operating properly in the past and that 'all of a sudden it jammed up in the trunk' From that description, I would rule out that the centerboard is suffering from one of the common miladies which is that the steel center board is or has de-laminated. Your centerboard is made up of a large piece of steel and the centerboard pennant cable is attached to that piece of steel though the use of an aircraft fork. ~ Many times these 'forks' are seen in common usage to tie down mast shrouds on smaller boats~ Never the less, it would be my guess this fork is bent and jammed in the centerboard trunk preventing the board from moving. If this is the case ~ The boat will have to come out of the water on a travel lift so that the board can be fully extended and you can gain access to the top portion of the centerboard itself. You will the need to replace or repair the aircraft fork coupling. One word of caution. DO NOT WORK UNDERNEATH THE CENTERBOARD. IT IS VERY HEAVY and if it releases by itself and you are underneath it, it will look like Bastile Day at the boat yard. If the problem is as I suspect, this is a quick job for a professional rigger with a swedging tool and should not be all that expensive. Fair winds, Bill
Posted by: Steve Inniss
10/15/11 2:37:39 P
Subject: Stuck Up centerboard 74 Herreshoff America
I had a similar problem with mine. It seems if it is raised up too far, the centerboard can jam in the aft end of the trunk. The fix was a simple matter of swimming underneath and dislodging it; which I was able to do by grasping and yanking down. I marked the centerboard pennant so I can stop raising the centerboard before it jams. Steve HA18 #23 "Swell"
Posted by: Charles Huberman
12/30/11 5:29:20 P
Subject: Stuck Up centerboard 74 Herreshoff America
Nine out of ten times, a stuck HA18 board is from the steel scaling up, expanding and jamming up the board. I have found the best thing is get the boat up on dry land with the bottom of the trunk accessible. Than I use an old wood saw, carefully sliding the saw blade between the steel and the trunk. By "sawing" at the scale, you will dislodge the scale. This is real messy so be prepared. Once the board is clear, it can be lowered and lifted off the pin. You might have to get the boat up in the travel lift to do this. If the board still has some meat left, you can bang the scale off, still very messy. Once all the scale is gone, I use a product call POR 15 to coat the steel. Two coats does it. Than proceed with a good coat of antifoulant. Now to the next common cause I have found, the cable and pin. I like a pennant with an air craft style fork. 5/32 cable and a fork is what I have on my 1974 HA18. Dwyer Metal Mast made my pennant, all you need is about eight feet of cable and the fork. What can cause the board to stick is the clevis pin in the fork. The fork is narrow enough, the problem is the pin. I have not been able to find one short enough so I made my own, cutting a pin just long enough for the fork, than drilling a hole for the cotter pin. If the pin is too long it will jam in the upper part of the trunk were the inside tends to get narrow. All this sounds like a lot of work, but once it is right, and properly maintained, you will have a board that can be brought up tight in the trunk without worrying about a stuck board ruining your day.