Fitting a Think rudder to a Fenn

Monday, 01 August 2011 06:50 | Written by  Dave Chambers
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Fenn rudder (L) and Think rudder (R) Fenn rudder (L) and Think rudder (R)

I have always wanted to fit an elliptical rudder to a Fenn, particularly a Mako 6 as it is my favourite ski. I can paddle an Elite but I prefer the 6 for all round stability and performance particularly in chop. Its main weakness is that the shark fin loses bite because of the ski's rocker and the fin's proximity to the tail causes the odd broach particularly in big swells. 

In any event the range of Think rudders that was posted on recently fit a Mako 6 with a minor amount of modification. They are also very well made and can be bought off the shelf.
[Editor: in my experience the Fenn rudder shaft can vary in length.  Be sure to check the length of your current rudder shaft against the Think replacement before you shell out hard-earned bucks...  If the Think rudder shaft is too long, you can use washers to fit it; if it's too short, you're stuck with your old rudder.  The elliptical rudder really does make a massive difference to the downwind handling though - particularly with the Mako6.]

Rudder Yoke

A Think rudder yoke is needed and replaces the Fenn yoke (see below).  The steel rudder cables will need to be cut and re-crimped when the new yoke is fitted.
Think rudder yoke
I have chosen to run with a 9 inch elliptical rudder and a 7 inch swept back rudder (rudders 4 and 3). The Think rudder shafts fit in the Fenn rudder well without having to be cut down.
The Think range of rudders

The top face of each rudder behind the rudder post needs to be sanded slightly otherwise the rudder catches . All up it takes about 30 min to do. Swapping the two Think rudders over takes just a couple of minutes.

Think rudder!

Rudder in situ - just add water!

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