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Monitor Emergency Rudder (M-rud or E-rud)

Warren Holybee

Active Member
I just got off a long phone call with Mike Scheck, the President of scanmar. They have had some internal meetings and discussions about my situation.
The short of it, is that it probably would have worked better if I had not lashed the rudder to center, but let it move, but they are not sure. The main Rudder is fairly long, and that adds to stability of the boat, and makes it harder to turn against. They feel that the M-rud is adequately sized for the boat, that an emergency rudder should be about half the size of the primary. Only looking at drawing, this appears to be the case.

I'm not sure how much detail I went into in my previous post. I was sailing downwind, in light air. The boat kept rounding up, and I would need to start the engine to get enough boat speed to get back on course. With more wind, and more boat speed, it would have worked fine. (And from my previous tests testing it in 15 knots I confirm, it did work in my tests prior to departing California.) Also, even needing to start the engine once and hour or so, I was making progress, and for an emergency rudder, it would have gotten me to my destination. And, with the main rudder free, it might have worked even at the lower speed.

We also discussed the difference between the M-Rud and the E-Rud. I have seen the E-rud at the Annapolis boat show. For those that don't know, the M-rud is the original version, where the entire hinge, safety tube, and paddle are removed, and the emergency rudder installed. The newer E-rud, the standard paddle stays in place, and the E-rud installed over it, while the paddle is out of the water. Much easier and safer. The E-rud is also rectangular, and 10% larger than the M-rud. The M-rud is tapered at the bottom instead of being rectangular.

He agreed to some in the water tests of both the M-rud and E-rud on my boat when I return to the Bay Area.


Terence Thatcher
I am encouraged that they responded so thoroughly. I have the original M-Rud, and installing it is not easy and, in serious waves, might be impossible or dangerous. I love the folks at Scanmar, they have always been very helpful. But your decision to lock the main rudder makes sense to me. Good sailing on your way home.
Very interesting and informative Warren. Thanks. I have decided to go with the Hydrovane. I like having an independent emergency rudder, no wear and dependence on main the steering system, offset installation, ability to trim with the main rudder, and absence of lines in the cockpit.