Saturday, January 18, 2014

Centerboard of Doom

The past few times I've have taken Solitude III out, I noticed that it was becoming increasingly difficult to get the centerboard to go up or down.  I had to resort to opening up the inspection hatches and using a combination of fingers, screwdrivers, and the handles of a pair of pliers to apply what could gently be described as a flabbergasting amount of excessive force to get the board down.  Finally, the last time I had the boat out, no amount of persuasion was successful in getting the board down.

Diagnoses of the problem has proven problematic at best.  I've tried using a mirror to look down into the trunk to see what's going on, but I can't see the problem...or much of anything. I've also tried looking up from underneath, but most of the centerboard slot is covered up by the keel trough on the trailer.

Right now, the sandy shores of Jetty Island are the leading contender of a beaching site.
My current plan is to careen the boat, pull her down onto her side, and see if I can get a good look at what's going on.  Doing this will require the right combination of free time, weather, tides, and daylight.  This time of year, getting the right combination of those things isn't easy.  So, for now, I wait.

Unless someone has a forklift, Travelift, or other contraption I could borrow...


  1. Good luck with careening. Very sketchy but doable.

  2. SUper easy to jack that little boat up 5 feet and drop the keel

    1. If you can provide a little more detail on how you'd approach jacking it up, I'd totally dig it. If I can avoid careening, i'm all for it.

  3. Not sure how your trailer is set up. But could you build a keel support with a opening on the bottom where the center board trunk rests. Then launch the boat, replace the center board support on the trailer and reload the boat. I would think you could then use some floor Jacks or ramps to raise the boat to access the center board