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post #30 of Old 10-28-2010
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Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: The house is in Kingsport, TN. Boats are on Watauga Lake and in New Bern, NC
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Before buying Irish Eyes in 2004, my wife and I considered several PSC 34s. All were wheel steered but one. My wife liked that one because of the tiller. We bought the one she liked. In the years that we have owned the boat including three 5 month trips to the Bahamas, two 3 month trips into the Chesapeake Bay, a couple of months coasting in North and South Carolina, and who knows how many weekend and week trips in North Carolina, we have never wanted a wheel. I hate to say it, but she was right. The tiller was the better choice.

So far the wheel or tiller argument has centered around the differences underway. We have never had a problem sailing with the tiller, but I am sure that our hours anchored far exceed our hours sailing, and it is while anchored that the tiller really shines. We just push the tiller up out of the way, put in a rod between the Simrad TP30 autopilot socket and the rudder head locking the rudder amidships, and enjoy a completely open cockpit which we do not have to share with a pedestal and wheel.

I have been working on a prototype table, made from pine and bits of hardware from Lowes (and table top hinges from West Marine), that folds away, stores in the quarter berth, and works for drinks for six or a meal for four. Someday I’ll replace it with teak… My ever practical wife says pine is fine and covers it with a table cloth.

The table has three legs. The aft two clamp to the underside of the stern seat locking the table in place. The single forward leg allows people to slip their legs under the table. (Some booths in restaurants have a similar outside leg.) The three legs fold flat against the underside of the table making a package that is 2¼” thick. Unfolded, they are held in place with aluminum diagonals.

The table top has two 7” leaves that fold over the top of the table. Folded it is perfect for resting your drink and a bowl of nuts while you read a book or chat with friends. Opened to a 28” width there is room for dinner.

From time to time I take a saw or a drill to the table and change something, but the basic design has remained unchanged for a year or so.

Bill Murdoch
1988 PSC 34
Irish Eyes
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