Rudder Stops

I’m looking for ideas on how to rig up some rudder stops. Any pics out there of attachments to the rudder. On the other side, I’m guessing attaching to the boomkin chainplate somehow would be fine. Any words of wisdom out there on this?


Good morning Ben,

The boat I have had rudder stops already installed by Sam L Morse. They are angled blockes of solid Teak which are mounted between the bottom of the taffrail and the covering board directly below the taffrail. The blockes are thru bolted and holes plugged with Teak. If you go to the gallery section “Special Events” click on the Turkey Shoot and go to 2nd page of pictures. Picture titled “Chasing Lightfoot” can be double clicked for very large image. If you look closely you can see the blocks.

You may want to play around with how much rudder travel you need before reducing it to any degree with stops. If you are in a slip or have otherwise tight quarters you may need maximum rudder travel.

Good luck
SV “Lightfoot”

Hmm, that’s an interesting solution, thanks for pointing those out Mark. Your boat looks so great! I was thinking more along the lines of rope/chain that went from somewhere on transom to the after egde of the rudder. This would remove the tiller from the equation. Might be a good place to use some Dynex Dux perhaps.

Morning Star had something similar to what I’m talking about:

But my inclination would be to use the boomkin chainplates.


This is what we have.

I plan to improve this by replacing the stopper knots and washers either side of the hole through the rudder with a short piece of bronze all thread with eye nuts either side. Too many projects right now.



This is what we have.

I plan to improve this by replacing the stopper knots and washers either side of the hole through the rudder with a short piece of bronze all thread with eye nuts either side. Too many projects right now.


I didn’t think that a big surge load on the upper aft edge of the rudder was ideal, so decided to run the lines between the tiller and the taffrail knees. After all, the tiller and the rudder cheeks are designed to take rudder forces. Two large ABI straps just fit on the sides of the tiller–the bolts running below and above the tiller, with no drilling needed. Two smaller straps were through-bolted to the inboard side of the knees. I used low-stretch polyester for the lines.

This setup may not be ideal if you want to remove your tiller frequently to make room in the cockpit. However, the tiller is removable by undoing just the 2 nuts from the tiller straps. I’ll try to post photos soon.


The Pardey’s use two nylon lines for rudder stops. These lines are connected to the rudder with a ring bolt and ring nut that is though bolted through the rudder and located near the “rudder step” and aft on the rudder. From the rudder, the lines lead to shackles on the bumpkin stay tangs. The shackles also serve as clevis pins for the bumpkin stay eyes. Nylon rope was selected for its shock absorbing properties. The rudder stop lines are spliced at both ends for strength. Bowlines decrease the strength of a line by 40%.

The above approach is also used on the schooner Pride of Baltimore with the exception chain is used instead of rope.

Hi Rod!

This sounds more like what I’m thinking about… must have been something I’m used to seeing on the schooners I’ve worked on. Where did you see this Pardey info, do you recall?



The information is either in a Pardey book or on a video. I think they used eiher 1/2" or 5/8" nylon rope to make the stops. When I am at the boat this week, I will check their books.


Here’s photos of Shaula’s rudder stop setup.


IMG_0706 for forum.JPG

IMG_0707 for forum.JPG

Very interesting – great pics everyone – thanks, I’ll upload them to my ideas gallery on my picassa pages for future reference for all.

Thanks Rod, I can check my L&L books and vids when I get back to them on Thursday, for that reference.

Bronze Eye bolt for rudder stop lines - BCC AURA, Baltimore, MD

Check with for bronze eye bolts - Davey and Company, Ltd catalog.

Thanks Rod, great pic. I’m trying ti install that style windvane, so would be ideal.

From the Pardey’s Website:

Cruising tips for June, 2008:

“4. Be sure your rudder has proper rudder stops. Rudder failure is not uncommon in these conditions. There is a chapter on this in the Third revised and expanded edition of Storm Tactics handbook.”

I also remember seeing a bit about it in Self-Sufficient Sailor.

Aaron N.

I like the idea of rudder stops for ocean passages but I have not determined a means to keep the slim and barnacles off the rudder stop line when the boat is docked or at anchor for a long period of time.

Not having one yet, not sure if this would work…but…

Possibly just another thing to do after a sail, like putting on sail covers etc, take a piece of small stuff and pull it up towards the boomkin? or dare i say it…a bungee?