Hello, I would be grateful for any comments on this issue.
I keep my Mark 4 Wayfarer at Thorney Island Sailing Club in Chichester Harbour and I’m having some difficulties with a stiff centreboard, which is difficult to put up or down; needs all my strength, and my wife and children can’t manage it when I helm. Hartley Boats advised to loosen the brake, which we did, but there is little difference. In all other respects the boat sails like a dream, but this is becoming a serious issue. We have tried lubricating the board in the centre-board case with WD40 and this helps a bit but not enough. Do I need to remove the centre-board? What’s the best way to do this?
You have probably picked up a small stone. There is someone who sells a thin stainless steel blade with a hook cut in it for this very problem. If that doesn’t work then you will probably need to get the board out.
You will see there is a fitting screwed into the centreboard that holds it against a pin that is permanently moulded into the centreboard casing.
The technique is to slide the hull back on the trolley until the centreboard slot is clear of the roller/cradle, supporting the transom so the hull is sorta level, then lay down under the boat and remove the st. st. fitting and wiggle the board up and out through the slot in the top. Which will be tricky as you have said it is very stiff. Try blasting some water through with a pressure washer first.
The centreboard and inside of the casing may have some scratches from whatever the foreign object is – probably a small pebble from the beach. Fill and fair using epoxy gelcoat filler; make sure you seal any exposed fibres so that water cannot get into the laminate.