I think it is more of an entry problem than a rudder problem as far as a following sea is concerned.
I know that a larger rudder certainly helps when backing down, going ahead you really don't need a whole lot. And when you think about it, a following sea is just pushing you along with more forward momentum - so with that thought, I don't see what a larger blade would do for you.
I would think the larger rudder would help in a following sea. The larger the rudder the better control the rudder will have on the keel which is the driving negative factor in a following sea. I also think that larger reduction gears with the max size wheel also helps in a following sea. Big wheel can act like a brake when you slow down. Push ahead and the large wheel can tell the keel what to do along with good back from the rudder. Prop size & rudder size two things that we have control of to make things work better.
when your talking about making a larger rudder, are you talking about the length of it, i guess it would be hard to change the height without messing with the keel. A longer bigger rudder would help with backing down? Travis, wheres a good place to get a stainless rudder in the area?!
And as far as backing down, someone sliced four inches off my trailing edge on my rudder. Couldn't back down worth half a damn, mostly because the propeller wanted to walk more than I could control with the stubby remains of the rudder. First chance I got I put it back on.
Don't leave people alone with power tools, that's all I have to say.
Not really, one would want to have the dimensions set so that the skeg would protect the trailing edge of the rudder so it doesn't unstep if, god forbid, you found some rocks while in close to shore. I've seen rudders with leading edges anywhere from a half inch to 8 inches from the center of the shaft. Everyone has their own theory as far as rudders go. And they all claim that they have the best method.