Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Annapolis, Md
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If you sail long distances single-handed or even if you simply sail short-handed, a wind vane is a marvelous device and a well maintained Monitor is one of the best of the windvanes in that they offer a great mix of being robustly built, reasonably easy to maintain, about as sensitive as a windvane can be that generates the kind of turning force that a Monitor can generate.
And if you own a boat that can be balanced to be nearly self-steering and requires sufficiently low force steering inputs to allow vane steering, this can mean that you can have long periods of trustworthy self-steering with minimal loss of speed and without adding anything to the vessel's electrical or fossil fuel energy drain. This is a very good thing! Enjoy it.
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Curmudgeon at Large- and rhinestone in the rough, sailing my Farr 11.6 on the Chesapeake Bay