Latest News: Forums Technical Removing Centreboard afloat?

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  • #3406
    Grerobe
    Member

    Hi, This is my first attempt at a message board!

    Like others I would like to remove my centreboard. Doing it afloat seems to make most sense to me – has anyone done it this way?

    thanks

    #4938
    Swiebertje
    Participant

    Yes, I did it like that once.

    #4939
    Dave Barker
    Keymaster

    Hi Grerobe,

    Forgive me if I’m stating the obvious here, but the main reason that this isn’t the technique everyone uses is that water will start flowing into the boat as soon as you loosen the centreboard bolt.

    I haven’t personally tried the afloat method, but I would imagine that not only would speedy work be essential to recover the boat onto the trolley (or beach etc.), but also when re-fitting the board it could be quite awkward both to get the holes lined up (lines marked on the board and the top of the case are helpful, as is a thin screwdriver to “find” the hole in the board) and to fit and tighten the nut/bolt/washer/bush combo while simultaneously working against the clock with cold water flowing out of the holes in the case all over your hands, tools and fastenings.

    By way of contrast I do have personal experience of removing the board ashore. With the launching trolley in its most “front down” position (jockey wheel removed) I used old car tyres in stacks of 3 or 4 to fit snugly under the bilge rails behind the trolley. I then raised the front of the trolley and wedged more tyres under the front of the boat in the triangular gap in the centre of the trolley.

    At this point, because I was working solo I had a long spell of fiddling about with extra tyres here and there, but with assistance, i.e. someone to lift the boat one corner at a time, it should be quite straightforward to wedge an extra tyre under each bilge rail and then slowly work the trolley forward a metre or so to clear the centreboard case slot. With two of us working together we used this technique in reverse to replace the mended board and it was a doddle. I recommend at least one assistant if possible.

    Usefully the board doesn’t need to be vertical to remove it from the slot, so you don’t need a huge amount of ground clearance.

    Good luck.

    #4941
    Grerobe
    Member

    Wow – it works!

    Thanks for your help, think I might go for the spare tyre option.

    #4942
    Swiebertje
    Participant

    As Dave stated, lining up the holes isn’t easy on the water but there is no problem removing the CB while afloat. However, most floor boards will prevent you from reaching the bolt. Though water ingress is minimal (it takes hours to flood the boat) removing the back benches, the floor boards, and you know what is unnecessary difficult while afloat.

    It is a fairly easy job ashore provided the mast is still up. Find yourself a soft lawn or some soft sand (beach). Then start with removing the back benches, the floor boards and any loose parts. Next slide the boat of its trolley into the grass. Then put it on its side by pulling the shrouds and weighing the mast down with something heavy to prevent the boat from accidentally rising again. (A case of beer will do fine, specially if friends are helping 😉

    After you removed or inserted the CB the boat is righted slowly again by pulling the shrouds all the way until she is upright again. Then the boat is slid back on the trolley. Though it can be put on the trolley again by one person and a rope purchase, you may want he help of a friend or two for this. Have your friends lift the bow as high as possible while you push the trolley under the boat as far as it will go. Then one person holds the front of the trolley in place while two others push the boat at the transom forward.

    This way the whole process of removing the CB takes less then five minutes and is much safer that fooling around with stacks of tires, work mates, chairs or other improvised scaffoldings. If you cant find a suitable lawn use fenders and/or blankets.

    #4943
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    To ease putting the board back in, after removing bolt, put a long thin piece of string through the hole, remove board then cut the loop you have created without removing the string from the boat. When you want to put the board back, put one end of string through board, tie to other piece of string then use the string to guide to centre board hole to the centre board casing hole by pulling string as you refit board.
    I hope this makes sense.

    #4945
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Can I suggest an alternative way of ‘finding the hole’ so to speak – I get the board in a wiggle it about whilst having a small torch shining through the hole. When you see the light the other side a small screwdriver will fit through.
    Matt
    W773

    #4950
    Anonymous
    Inactive
    #4962
    Tringa
    Member

    I too have used the method of supporting the stern while easing the boat off the trolley. It’s fairly straightforward and if you have access to a garage even easier – there’s always somewhere in a garage you can secure the boat to and the possibility of rigging up a block and tackle or winch to make putting the boat back less of a strain.

    I’ve painted lots of lines on my centreboard all radiating from the bolt hole to help with the lining up when refitting.

    #4982
    Grerobe
    Member

    Just to say to all that I have succesfully removed my centreboard afloat and single-handed too. For those who may be interested, I removed the centreboard nut on land then moored up (about 4m from the launch trolly). The removal was very straightforward (but watch out for the thwart where it meets the centreboard case slot). Water did come in once the board was out completely but not at a terrific rate and there was certainly enough time to get the boat back on it’s trolly and out without rushing too much.

    Thank you to all for your help and suggestions, I’ll let you know how it goes getting it back in again, which I may well try dry. 😀

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