After letting Julie drive 'Shockwave', it seems we now need a few bits and bobs in the keel area. Although some maybe ok, its seems sensible to replace most bits while the opportunity is here.

Has anyone got any drawings for any of the parts? I need;-
Profile of the lower keel with dimensions. (theres a question on the sizes on the new mold at Iron Bros.)
Forward Delrin slides (Pt & Stbd)
Aft Delrin slides (Pt & Stbd)
Lower after Vee block. (question; can this be made in a big block to fill the void? rather than a thin section with bolts?)
Lower forward roller. (I'm thinking Ken made one in stainless steel?)
I can and will measure all the items as they come out of Shockwave (except the Keel) but it would be good to have a comparison to help.

For general info, once I have surveyors report, etc, i'll try and get all the details on the website, ready for the next time she drives....
Ken Surplice
Hi. I did indeed convert my forward keel roller from a setup with a delrin roller, which always developed flats, to use a stainless steel roller instead. It has worked well over several seasons. I cannot remember if I had a new roller assembly made up from scratch or if I converted the existing part. Vol-au-vent is back in the water now until autumn 2023 so I can't offer it to you so you can copy it. I do know that Sophia is out of the water and Peter Lowry showed me his cleaned up roller not long ago. You could take a copy of that if Peter has yet to refit it. He's away until December 5th and you can ask him then.
Martin Watson
Hi Ieuan and Ken. I redesigned and had fabricated, the front roller for Sophia last year, as Peter's previous version in stainless steel was useless and had worn a flat on the front of his keel. The new design has a wide roller with, If I remember correctly, a 10mm ( might be 12mm) stainless cross shaft with an Oilite bearing pushed into a Delrin roller which I turned up on my lathe. Pete had it off again on lift out this year and it is still looking good. I did make him a spare roller so if you need to know the dimensions, I can borrow the spare Delrin roller to get the dimensions from and pass them on. I made the cheek supports for the pin in 6mm stainless and the Delrin roller had more of a cotton reel profile rather than a classic waisted roller, a'la bow rollers. The important thing is that the roller is free to move which Sophies original roller was definitely not, as it was out of true and Stainless on stainless is never a good idea. Stainless steel is a 'sticky' metal which is why shroud turnbuckles are never stainless on stainless which will gall and bind and are instead made of stainless standing parts and chromed bronze for the barrel. Oilite bushes are made of sintered bronze that is compressed and oil impregnated, which keeps it lubricated, tends to resist corrosion and is naturally smooth, being bronze based. Another reason not to have a metal roller, especially stainless steel is the potential for getting the problem Pete had, ie, the stainless roller jamming and wearing the softer iron keel. At least with Delrin, it will only wear that, and it's easy to replace, the keel is not.
Martin Watson
Peter Scrivens
I agree that stainless on stainless is not a good bearing and likely to seize, but Delrin on Stainless with water as a lubricant, is ideal, although Martin's idea of a sintered bronze bearing should also work ok. Therefore my advice is to ignore the manual, which says to apply water pump grease to the roller, as this will pick up sand etc and stop the roller turning.
Peter (P235 Zephyr)
Hi There,
I bought a 285 and launched last year. Although the boat has had a keel out maintenance job at Suffolk Yacht Harbour in 2018, I am thinking of a survey / update this year at a convenient point. I’m not sure if the 285 is the same system as the 275 for the keel lift, bearing, sacrificial block and Delrin packers/sliders so any information would be great fully received.
I am thinking of replacing the consumables that wear. Reading the forum notes it looks like the front keel roller, rear sacrificial block, eye lifting bolts and lift wire are the vulnerable parts. Is Dynema a better option to SS wire? Again any useful information would be gratefully received.
Also, it may be a good idea for owners to measure any critical items that are removed or made up for replacement and then get a CAD drawing done ( by a bribable mate if necessary) as this would help all owners and allow for manufacture prior to removal…. Which would significantly reduce cycle time. Thanks, Jon.
hi Jon!
Welcome to the club! as I'm getting a new keel, I've looked into as much of this as possible, but there will be 'older hands' (some much older!) who may have more or just different experience. My thoughts are .........

1. I expected the front roller to wear. Surprisingly, when stripped, it was the12mm SS axle that wore more!
2. I'm getting new slides, front roller & rear Vee block made shortly. 'Delrin' or equivalent is needed. I don't know the cost for an increased quantity, but if your looking to buy, I can ask.
3. The 14mm lifting eyebolt should be bomb proof with the 700Lb 'small' loads we put on, but agree its cheap enough to replace.
4. I think there's several arrangements for a / the second eye to work depth gauges, hanging strops, etc, and I'm certainly replacing that, but don't know your arrangement (ours is not the same as the Parker handbook).
5. Dynema is for sure a better material. But, there's more fibres holding more water once wet. Do you want water on the winch? Ours is floor mounted, to a 5ft drain onto the winch, so Im going for 7x19 stainless if I can. There's arguments both ways, but if its steel now and you change it, I'd suggest the rollers need reprofiling to get a smooth finish for the Dynema, as the wire line will have scuffed the roller up.


p.s. Love to discuss this further, not least as I've tasks in the garden Julie is demanding done today, but sorry, got to go....,
Hello Ieuan,
Many thanks for the quick response.
I take your point on the SS wire so I’m now thinking I’ll stick with the SS. My set up is an electric winch system. I’ve yet to take the foredeck inspection hatch off to evaluate the lift mechanism.
Re your kind offer to see what the unit cost is of increasing the quantity of the Delrin components, yes I would be very interested.
I read this thread with interest as I have just hauled my recently acquired 275 out of the water. On the way to the hoist I lowered the keel fully as I needed it scrubbed. It didn't sound right, so I raised it and lowered it again. It sounded worse and then I heard a thump, as the keel dropped. what had happened, was the safety wire had become snagged on a halyard block and therefore prevented the keel from lowering, whilst the electric winch fed out wire as if to lower, but to now effect. I then wound it back in and then out, unbeknownst tangling all the slack wire around the winch. It then snapped and the keel dropped. (Fault No.1)
I had the boat hauled and inspected the keel box and sure enough the wire had snapped. Once the hull was washed off I then had her placed in a low cradle, requiring the keel to be retracted. Clearly I couldn't do this, but erroneously thought that lowering the boat on to the keel would work. The yard duly obliged, but the keel got jammed. A straight upwards push jammed it in the keel box. (Fault No.2)
The yard team then rested her in a high cradle and I placed some blocks under the jammed keel just in case. We tried a hammer on it and a jack, but to no avail. I then went up and removed the tangled web of snapped wire. As I removed the bolt clamping the wire to the winch it snapped, under no force at all. (Fault No. 3).
I then managed to fish the keel end of the wire out of the keel box and crimped an eye in to the free end. I persuaded the yard to come back with their manitou and attempt to lift using the improvised lifting wire, and with a bit of lateral persuasion with a lump hammer she came free. But so did the keel box for'd roller! (Fault No.4).
Eventually we managed to retract the keel fully and I removed the remaining wire.
I now have a new wire, (heavier gauge) and will reattach to the winch tomorrow.
The challenge I have, is it appears that the securing bolts for the for'd keel roller seem have been held in with nothing but sika.. My question is therefore, what size bolts would have been originally used, and are they in to captive nuts?
Also spotted on haul out, that the prop skeg had snapped. The haul out list is growing ever longer. I just hope I don't miss the season!

Martin Watson
If I can just chip in here Iaeun and Jon, The top of you keel would be above the waterline, even with the keel down, so the wire or strop should not get wet and if it did it would only be a few inches, unless youre sinking! I use 8mm covered Dyneema on my hydraulic keel lift on Frith and when I had the keel out just before I set out in April, it was still looking OK after four years and not does not get wet at all.


Martin Watson
AWJ 275
Hi all,
275 sail no:24 Peerless
Reading this post with interest as I’m doing the usual winter maintenance, to my 275 sail 24, and have decided to inspect the keel roller on the leading edge of the keel. The roller has a flat spot thou not to bad but presume once it starts it’s probably time to replace. It’s the wasted type made from Delrin or similar.
Did anyone get and spares made up, if so I would love to buy some.