Just another Moderator
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: New Westminster, BC
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Some boats have, over the years, been notorious for developing excessive weather helm. The Catalina 30 and Rawson 30 come to mind as a couple of examples. Excessive weather helm can lead to reduced speed due the the extra drag of the rudder, can fatigue a helmsman and in some cases pull the helms person off their perch, and can lead to unintended round-ups in puffy conditions.
Many people have added moderate bowsprits to move the headstay forward and move the overall centre of effort forward to try to ease this problem. In some cases these mods are quite successful if properly executed.
Some sort of anchor holder or small platform is often incorporated into the design to give some added practicality. I'm not sure if Jeff's objection would extend to this sort of arrangement.