Thursday, July 09, 2009

Drive Leg Fix

[Kyle]We had previously reported that we thought one of the reasons that our autopilot motor failed was because of the strain of unsticking the drive leg from its flopped-over state at certain points of wheel travel. This is my super-simple solution and it works great. It is merely two lines, one from each side, led from the bottom of the inboard step rails to the ring on the drive leg. I used a bowline to attach the lines to the drive leg ring below the steering lines, which pull to the top when the drive leg is down. On the rail end I used a rolling hitch to get the tension just right. With the drive leg down, the wheel is turned to the stop in one direction and the opposite line is tightened until all the slack is out. When the leg is lifted, the lines tighten and pull the drive leg far enough to the center to keep from making metal to metal contact with the transom piece and slackens the steering lines, thus eliminating the sticking and reducing the load on the autopilot and steering system.


MD said...

Oh boy, do I have a list of projects for you!

Happy Cat said...

Maybe you can help us figure out how to get our drive leg up out of the handy, dandy couple!

SV-Footprint said...

Geoff & Mary on Happy Cat

Whenever we struggle to get the drive leg up, it is because we haven't greased the drive leg and especially the release cable / latch area lately.... We have it on our schedule to do once a month, if we leave it for more than 2 months it gets more and more difficult to release the latch. I.e. no matter how hard we pull on the T-handle, it won't unlock the drive leg unless it is well greased.

Walt also reported that he "fixed" his unlock problem by simply adjusting the nut on the release cable (I guess shorten it), but we've not had to do that yet.

Good luck with that! Hope you guys are enjoying summer sailing.

Happy Cat said...

Thanks for the advice. Geoffrey is going to work on the drive leg this evening so I'll pass this on to him.
Ireland in 3 weeks - yeah!! I don't think we'll get 30 knot wind on the canal/ least, I hope not!