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S&S Swan Maintenance - Autopilot installation Swan 41 (Hydraulic drive)
12 November 2023 - 21:50
#1
Join Date: 11 November 2023
Posts: 6

Autopilot installation Swan 41 (Hydraulic drive)

Hello,

we're new proud owners of s/y Pampero, Swan 41/048 1976.

We'll be doing some repairs during the winter and one of the biggest is installing an autopilot.

System consists of:

-B&G Zeus 9"S
-Hy-ProDrive linear working unit
-B&G NAC-3
-Garmin MSC-10 satellite compass (roll+pitch)

1. Does anyone have installation pictures of similar projects for hydraulic drive?

2. The Professor, wrote: "The recommendation is to install the autopilot ram fore and aft, this will reduce the maximum side loads on the rudder bearings"
--> so this means, the arm should be installed lenghtwise (longitudinally)?

3. Previous owner told, that rudder bearings are leaking, when motoring 6-7 kts. Are there any sealings/gaskets, or do we need to change the bearings? This obviously means removing the rudder axle?

4. Any tech tips and wise words are welcome =)

 

Best regards,

Mari & Henri

s/y Pampero

12 November 2023 - 22:34
#2
Join Date: 29 January 2007
Posts: 1014

Dear Mari & Henri,

3) if leaking, first thing to do is tighten the gland on rudder stock. To do this unscrew the ring at the bottom with its proper tool (image below), then, gently and by hand, tighten a bit the top gland, better while motoring, in order to check when leaking will stop, if needed, use the same tool, but do not overtight it otherwise the wheel will became to hard to be turned; when it will be OK and stopped leaking, tighten very hardly the bottom ring with same tool.

If leaking won't stop it is likely you have to change the  packing which is inside the gland (3/5 turns).

All instructions are on "technical papers" on classicswan, if anything not clear, please ask, we are here to help!

Fair winds,

matteo (47/069 Vanessa)

13 November 2023 - 07:10
#3
Join Date: 11 November 2023
Posts: 6

Thank you Matteo for very clear explanation.

We'll inspect the rudder axle bottom carefully now that the boat is ashore. Previous owner had made an quick fix, probably without knowing how to tighten the bracket. Please find attached a picture.

The tool is originally delivered with the boat?

Yours,

Henri

 

Rudder axle bottom

13 November 2023 - 08:15
#4
Join Date: 20 July 2017
Posts: 115

Hi Henri,

this looks like a very quick fix indeed; hopefully it will be an easy fix to do it properly following Matteo's advise!

I believe the tool would/should have come with the boat originally ... hopefully the previous owners didn't get rid  of it while 'decluttering' as it's an odd one and not immediately obvious what it is for. Almost happenend to us when we bought Kairos :-) 

Congratuations by the way for buying an S&S Swan, they will last forever when being looked after and give you many a days of joyfull sailing (some extra grey hairs, too, to be really honest ... but they tend to be worth it)

Fair winds,

Stefan

SY Kairos (57/043)

13 November 2023 - 08:57
#5
Join Date: 29 January 2007
Posts: 1014

Dear Mari & Henri,

yes, as Stefan says, it came with the boat, but don't worry if you can't find it onboard anymore, there are similar tools on the market, I will send details next week as I will be onboard (I do have one of these onboard Vanessa).

Speaking of the rudder, it looks previous owner, not knowing how to fix the leaks, did that job.

As the boat is ashore you can esaily and without any worry dismantle that stuff, and check what there is underneath, please update us with detailed images. If there is a delamination (unlikely, but not impossible) between hull and rudder tube, it should be fixed, otherwise it could have been a desperate tentative to solve a simple problem not knowing these boats are very simple, straightforward, and a leaking could be stopped just tightening the top gland.

Stuffing box inside (3/5 turns) could be changed even with boat afloat (this part is above water line when boat is at the mooring, as designed by S&S ALL details have been properly enginereed), and if you want to put a new one, please be sure it does not have graphite in it.

Looking forward to receiving more details soon.

Fair winds,

matteo (47/069 Vanessa)


13 November 2023 - 09:03
#6
Join Date: 11 November 2023
Posts: 6

Thank you Matteo and Stefan,

I'll follow these instructions and will post info + pictures.

 

Fair winds!

Henri,

s/y Pampero (41/048)

13 November 2023 - 20:08
#7
Join Date: 29 January 2007
Posts: 1014

Dear Mari & Henri,

the tool is USAG 282 TSN 50/80.

Fair winds!

matteo (47/069 Vanessa)

14 November 2023 - 20:35
#8
Join Date: 11 November 2023
Posts: 6

Many thanks Matteo!

I'll try to find one from a local dealer here in Finland.

Fair winds!

Henri

s/y Pampero (41/048)

01 December 2023 - 21:14
#9
Join Date: 11 November 2023
Posts: 6

Hello,

tomorrow I'll be visiting the boat and try to take some measurements for hydraulic arm.

Does anyone have a picture of hydrdaulic arm installation as Professor suggested (longitudal)?

It would be nice to see an example or an idea to help planning the structure.

It seems that base for the arm needs to be laminated to hull. For materials I've been thinking are Coosa plate and fiberglass. Coosa plate with resin is strong enough to whitstand the forces.

Another option could be divinycell.

Fair winds,

Henri
s/y Pampero (41/048)

 

19 December 2023 - 17:44
#10
Join Date: 30 January 2007
Posts: 461

Hi Sypampero,

I am replying only on the "position of the ram" problem because I remember discussing the topic with Lars.

Ideally, the autopilot arm fixed on the rudder stock should be positioned exactly on the vertical of the rudder blade because, in such a way, at least theoretically, some of the momenta on the system are minimized.  Practically, this is seldom possible and, moreover, there is no important reason to actually adopt this setup because the major cause of consumption of the rudder bearings are usually not due to the autopilot action.

I suggest to take into consideration only the principal points when positioning the ram:

1) available space

2) solidity of the fixed point on the hull.

Just for curiosity: in order to actually minimize the influence of the autopilot on the bearings, there should be two rams acting on two opposite arms; are you willing to do it? Naaaaa!

Daniel, 411/004 Luna Menguante

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