Hairline cracks on the rudder

One more maintenance orientated blog post from May...

Last autumn, after the boat was lifted, I noticed that there were a couple of cracks on the rudder. I decided to tackle those at spring. First the cracks were widened into a V-shape with a Dremel, which is a useful tool for working at tight places. I decided to use Hempel's Epoxy Filler for filling the cracks. I find this two-component product easy to use and mix at right quantities. When mixed it forms a grey paste. Because the repair was under the waterline, the colour did not matter. After filling the cracks, the repaired area was coated with an epoxy primer and then antifouled a couple of times.

After I had already started the repair, I talked with a guy who owns a similar boat, and he showed me cracks almost at the same spots on his rudder. So clearly this might be quite a common problem with this kind of rudder construction. The owner told me that he had once repaired the cracks, but they had re-appeared after a year. Thus, he decided to do nothing. It may also be the case with my repair, that the cracks will re-appear. Let's see how it goes. They are in places where bronze fittings are laminated into the rudder blade. It is difficult to get this joint between metal and fiberglass completely tight. I have to check the rudder blade for water-ingress next autumn.


  1. Tämän näköiseksi kannattaa hioa:


    1. Hienosti kiiltää Charlottan peräsin! Meillä ei lopputulos näyttänyt valitettavasti ihan yhtä hyvältä. Tuo peräsin on ensi talven pohjarempan yhteydessä tarkoitus putsata vanhoista maaleista ja primereista, joten en viitsinyt täksi kaudeksi tehdää enempää kuin välttämättömät korjaukset.

  2. Hi Antti,
    thanks for the nice blog that I now follow regularly.
    One quick question: how many layers of epoxy primer did you give before painting with the antifouling again?


    1. Thanks Paolo for commenting!

      I painted three layers of Hempel's Light Primer on the rudder and four layers on the repaired keel. But this coating is just for this season as we are going to have the bottom slurry blasted next autumn to apply new epoxy barrier coating to the whole hull next year. I guess that I will be painting at least 4 or 5 layers of epoxy barrier then.


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It would be very great to hear your opinion or comments. Thank you in advance for commenting! -Antti & Minna