Can't Raise Centerboard

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Drifter
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Can't Raise Centerboard

Post by Drifter » Sat Nov 21, 2020 5:30 am

In a different (and very long) thread, Scott said:

"your centerboard cable should not need to be pulled excessively tight to retract your board all the way into its slot. You may need to drop the centerboard and make sure there isn't anything lodged in the centerboard trunk. I believe to remove the centerboard that it's just a couple bolts inside the boat at the base of the mast compression post."

Well I've just recently lowered it (with a loud thud!) and cleaned the barnacles off it, sanded it down and re-painted it with anti-fouling paint, or at least as much of it as I can reach.

Problem - when I go to retract it, nothing much happens. With a really hard pull and release I can hear it bonking, so apparently moving an inch or two, but it certainly doesn't seem to be coming up.

Tricky to say just what's going on as I'm working by myself, so can't be under the boat and pulling on the line at the same time, see? Tomorrow I'll climb underneath and see if it is still free to move. It seemed to be yesterday, as I was raising it up and down (from under the boat) to clear all the leaves, shells and other junk falling out of the slot.

Point is, from under the boat it seemed to be easy enough to raise and lower it, but from the cockpit the rope/wire thing just doesn't move much. Feels like it's really jammed.

Is it likely/feasible for the board to be free but the control line jammed somewhere?

Bonus question! At the very end of the centerboard there is a little hole. What is that little hole for? I don't see anything in the manual?


Image

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Russ
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Re: Can't Raise Centerboard

Post by Russ » Sat Nov 21, 2020 6:00 am

So are you saying when under the boat you can manually lift it back into the slot but not from above?

The hole I believe is for water to fill the boat. At least on the M's dagger that is what it's for.
--Russ

Drifter
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Re: Can't Raise Centerboard

Post by Drifter » Sat Nov 21, 2020 6:12 am

So are you saying when under the boat you can manually lift it back into the slot but not from above?
That seems to be the case, yes. I'll have another bash in the morning, as I got dragged away by the ... I believe the common vernacular is 'admiral'?

Perhaps if I can get the Admiral under the boat, she can push it up and down while I tug the line?

I'm just wondering if this is a common or known thing? Or just jammed and I need to free it? I was actually going to ask if one is supposed to use the starboard winch to pull the thing up, but earlier when I mentioned the rope/wire was very tight, Scott said it doesn't need to be, or shouldn't?

And even when super tight, it was NOT all the way up.

It's good that I can get under it on the trailer - vastly better than afloat at a marina - but the trailer itself gets in the way. Can't lower it very far (see pic)

You say the the hole is to fill the boat? I presume that was a typo and you mean the hole in the centerboard is to allow the centerboard to fill with water? To make it heavier and prevent it trying to float up?

DaveC426913
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Re: Can't Raise Centerboard

Post by DaveC426913 » Sat Nov 21, 2020 1:37 pm

Drifter wrote:
Sat Nov 21, 2020 6:12 am
I believe the common vernacular is 'admiral'?
Yes.
Drifter wrote:
Sat Nov 21, 2020 6:12 am
I'm just wondering if this is a common or known thing? Or just jammed and I need to free it? I was actually going to ask if one is supposed to use the starboard winch to pull the thing up, but earlier when I mentioned the rope/wire was very tight, Scott said it doesn't need to be, or shouldn't?
Mine is not hard to raise. Though that's in the water. Not sure how hard it is to raise on-the-hard.
Drifter wrote:
Sat Nov 21, 2020 6:12 am
And even when super tight, it was NOT all the way up.
Mine goes up to within about two inches.

Drifter wrote:
Sat Nov 21, 2020 6:12 am
You say the the hole is to fill the boat? I presume that was a typo and you mean the hole in the centerboard is to allow the centerboard to fill with water? To make it heavier and prevent it trying to float up?
Yeah. Rudders too.
MacX 2000 Honda BF50A 'SeaSaw'

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ris
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Re: Can't Raise Centerboard

Post by ris » Sat Nov 21, 2020 5:29 pm

There might be a kink or knot in the line that lifts the center board. You would have to drop the centerboard and pull line down under the boat to check. It might be a good idea to inspect the line that lifts the board so you do not have a problem at an inconvenient moment. We usually check the center board, line and board trunk area once a year. It is for sure easier to lift the board with someone pushing up on it.
Richard

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Re: Can't Raise Centerboard

Post by beechkingd » Sun Nov 22, 2020 8:37 am

When you're not on the water you have to lift it up manually and support it while you cleat it. The keel floats and doesn't have much leverage unlike the old Ventures that had the cast iron keel and the heavy duty winch.

Drifter
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Re: Can't Raise Centerboard

Post by Drifter » Sun Nov 22, 2020 9:56 am

It floats?

That's awesome to hear, because it seems crazy heavy as it is now, on the trailer. With a really determined heave it did swing up and thud into place, but I can't see me doing that on a regular basis. Hurt my hand, pulling that hard.

But if it floats how to keep it down?

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NiceAft
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Re: Can't Raise Centerboard

Post by NiceAft » Sun Nov 22, 2020 1:09 pm

Remember that hole you were questioning.

When down, the centerboard fills with water. When raised, it empties; same action as the rudders.
Ray ~~_/)~~

Drifter
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Re: Can't Raise Centerboard

Post by Drifter » Sun Nov 22, 2020 5:03 pm

So it gets even heavier to raise it on the water, or there's a degree of floating to assist?

I've never captained a Mac but I don't believe you're supposed to pull that hard on the thing, unless you're supposed to use the winch.

Is this yet another example that I bought the wrong boat, because it's a bad design they improved later? I know they added a notch later, which mine probably doesn't have... :(

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opie
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Re: Can't Raise Centerboard

Post by opie » Sun Nov 22, 2020 7:16 pm

Drifter,
Sleep easy. You bought the right boat. Plus we all enjoy the tales of your adventures very much. Invite us all down to your first launch, please. But, the new sailor here has to buy the rest of us beer and pizza.
Now, for the centerboard. It fills with water to help make it less effort to raise, and, of course, easier to deploy. So don't block the top holes or bottom holes. The centerboard also should be loose on its pivot and make a banging noise while down if at anchor. The board gets rock solid tight when sailing off the wind as the flowing water jams it sideways. And to raise or lower board you have to tack or gybe through the wind. So, if you wish to change the center of motion of the Mac26x and decide to change the position of a partially lowered board more downward while sailing, you uncleat it the amount you need and upon next tack or gybe the board will respond. On the other hand, you must be at midpoint of tack or gybe to raise the board as during that lull of flow the board will cease to be siezed against the centerboard inner housing. I think this feature, as well as others, are evidence of Roger MacGregor's genius.
More advice -
All the foils must be fully up, especially the centerboard, when motoring at speeds over about 5 or 6 knots or the boat could "trip' over itself.
-- There is a strange sponge stuff inside the centerboard. I suppose it is there to keep debris from entering through the holes.
-- I have woven colored fabric at the 0, 33, 66 and 100% positions of the centerboard line at the grab cleat just to the right of the starboard winch.
-- As mentioned above, pull out the entire line and check for wear every two years.
-- The knot in the line should be a simple overhand knot. That's all you need. It won't come loose. A figure 8 knot may be too large and rub against chamber side.
-- If your boat uses wire instead of line (halyard size and type) I recommend you replace the wire with line instead.
-- As said above by others, you should never winch the centerboard line. Two hands is all that it should take. Anything stronger, while on water, means a fat lobster may be up in there, or more likely some driftwood. (While I have heard of others finding debris in the centerboard chamber, I never did.)
-- Don't try to equate the hand power needed to lift the board on the hard as compared to on the water. Two hands and steady pressure at anchor will do fine.
-- I recommend the simple mod I did and put a small block at top of hole on deck and run the line up and over it as it exits the hole on top and before it goes to the starboard block. (ask for picture if interested)
-- While painting the bottom, I have never painted inside the chamber. Yes, I get some barnacles and growth in there sometimes but a scraper stick cleans it out fine.
-- I enjoy the physical challenge of checking and replacing the cb line while at anchor while snorkeling, during warm water season.
Good luck and keep on asking questions. We all are interested in your success.
Opie

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Herschel
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Re: Can't Raise Centerboard

Post by Herschel » Sun Nov 22, 2020 8:10 pm

In the odd chance my story might be useful, I did encounter difficulty getting my board up and down at one point a few years back. After diving under water to dislodge it a time or two (which is NOT advisable around a pier that has electric hookups), I tried running a line under the hull and snagging the tip of the board to get it to go down. When pulling it up, I would have a hard time getting it all the way up. Finally, after I had it hauled out at a marina, I was able to find a Styrofoam fishing bobber stuck up in the trunk. Fished it out and no more problems. And I would like to echo that a good two-handed pull should be enough to retrieve the board all the way up. No winch needed. And, just a recommendation...I would suggest you have the admiral in the cockpit pulling while you push from below. Just a notion that would go over better... :wink:

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Re: Can't Raise Centerboard

Post by Dguy » Mon Nov 23, 2020 5:04 pm

Herchel,

Not a good suggestion. My admiral would drop the centreboard on my head.

Drifter
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Re: Can't Raise Centerboard

Post by Drifter » Mon Nov 23, 2020 5:19 pm

Hi guys, sorry I didn't get around to replying yesterday, was busy with some painting and hatch making, while removing some of the PO's fittings.

The posts did cheer me up though, thanks!

Yes, I absolutely would like to see a photo of a block arrangement :)

Perhaps a block and tackle..? :D

Regarding changing from the current wire to line, has anyone actually done that? From what I can see there's only a tiny little wire-sized hole for the wire.

I cannot lower it enough on the trailer to see where the wire attaches to the board.

PS: I'm not one for videos much but I will indeed try to film the first launch and attempt at sailing! That way I can invite you all, plus I think such a video would be hugely useful to future newcomers to the world of Macgregors. I know I'd love to see such a vid but the few that exist don't really capture the whole thing, don't show the little but critical details etc.

I'd consider it my way of paying back to the community

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Herschel
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Re: Can't Raise Centerboard

Post by Herschel » Mon Nov 23, 2020 7:28 pm

Drifter wrote:
Mon Nov 23, 2020 5:19 pm
Hi guys, sorry I didn't get around to replying yesterday, was busy with some painting and hatch making, while removing some of the PO's fittings.

The posts did cheer me up though, thanks!

Yes, I absolutely would like to see a photo of a block arrangement :)

Perhaps a block and tackle..? :D

Regarding changing from the current wire to line, has anyone actually done that? From what I can see there's only a tiny little wire-sized hole for the wire.

I cannot lower it enough on the trailer to see where the wire attaches to the board.

PS: I'm not one for videos much but I will indeed try to film the first launch and attempt at sailing! That way I can invite you all, plus I think such a video would be hugely useful to future newcomers to the world of Macgregors. I know I'd love to see such a vid but the few that exist don't really capture the whole thing, don't show the little but critical details etc.

I'd consider it my way of paying back to the community
I can't help with a video, but I do have some checklists I have used in the past on Excel files, if that could help.

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opie
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Re: Can't Raise Centerboard

Post by opie » Mon Nov 23, 2020 8:01 pm

Image

This is my block. I drilled one hole for one corner bolt and shared another of the block's holes with a mast plate bolt.

BUT, you say your passage from below is tiny and only fit for wire cable.
Sorry then. Cable it must be, but surely the bitter end is line so that you can grip it properly?

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