The stuff I have found on our new-to-us J/109 amazes me.
When I first inspected the boat, we found that someone had siliconed the hatch over the rudder-shaft head. I guess it leaked a bit so, instead of replacing the O-ring or the hatch, they glued it down.
So after we fixed that with a new hatch, I figured I should check the emergency tiller, actually a better design than found on many production boats, except that the threaded rod that was supposed to hold it in place was misaligned so it would not stay attached in use.
No, not bent, misaligned. It had been like that since the boat was built and no one—particularly TPI who built the boat, or the two surveyors who had inspected her since—had ever thought to check whether it actually fitted.
In half a day I both fixed the misalignment and improved the design of the retaining bolt and its bracket to make it more secure.
Check your emergency tiller and, while doing so, assume that everyone who came before you was an incompetent, uncaring idiot. And if that turns out not to be the case, be happy.