How to fit a Solway Dory stern mounted rudder to a plastic open canoe.

stern mounted rudder and fittings

The stern mounted rudder comes with a plastic bar and two threaded eye bolts that fit to the stern of your plastic canoe.

The plastic bar goes on the inside of the canoe and holds the rudder fittings securely and with the correct spacing to hold the rudder stock.

(Note that the eye bolts are not exactly as per the fittings pictured, but are installed in the same way)









stern mounted rudder and fittingsStick a piece of masking tape down the stern of your canoe. Hold the rudder up against the stern of the canoe and position it so that the uphaul and downhaul lines that go through the rudder pin are just above the rear deck of the canoe. Draw a pencil a mark on the tape just below the top rudder fitting on the stock.












stern mounted rudder and fittingsHold the plastic bar on the end of the canoe and line up the top hole with the mark on the tape. Position the bar carefully in line with the end of the canoe making sure that the bar points along the centreline of the canoe, (that is it points to the bow). Fasten the bar securely onto the end of the canoe with tape.













stern mounted rudder and fittingsDrill an undersized hole through the two holes in the plastic bar and through the end of the canoe. Take care not to knock or move the plastic bar whilst drilling the two holes. Be very careful not to damage the threads in the holes in the plastic bar.








stern mounted rudder and fittingsRemove the tape holding the plastic and run the drill through the two holes again, enlarge the holes to 8mm or 8.5mm so the eyebolts can pass through the hull. Make sure that you hold the drill in line with the centreline of the canoe as before.

(Do not run the 8 or 8.5mm bit through the plastic bar or you will remove the thread in the hole)






stern mounted rudder and fittingsPlace the plastic bar inside the stern end of the canoe and hold it in place with a screwdriver placed through the bottom hole in the end of the canoe and the bottom hole in the bar.

Holding the plastic bar with one hand inside the canoe, thread a rudder bolt into the top hole and into the top hole of the plastic bar.








stern mounted rudder and fittingsBefore you tighten the top fitting too much, go to the bottom hole and thread in the bottom bolt.

If you have drilled the holes carefully they should line up. If they do not quite, then you should be able to enlarge one of the holes until both bolts thread into the plastic bar.











stern mounted rudder and fittings

Once both bolts are threaded into the plastic bar, you can tighten the bolts till the shoulder on the bolts come up against the skin of the canoe. Adjust the bolts till the rudder pin will fit through the two holes in the rudder bolts.











stern mounted rudder and fittingsThe plastic bar sits inside the end of the canoe, sealing the bolt holes and securely holding the bolts in line.

After trial fitting the bracket use a marine sealant such as Sikaflex 291i around the holes to ensure they are fully sealed/watertight.















stern mounted rudder and fittingsThe rudder fits on  the canoe with the fittings on the rudder stock sitting above and below the bolts on the stern of the canoe.

The rudder pin goes through all four holes and holds them all securely together and forms a pivot around which the rudder can turn.

The uphaul and downhaul lines go through the top of the rudder pin and prevent the pin from accidentally dropping out, if the canoe turns upside down in a capsize.