Low tech self steering, tiller. Pics? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 18 Old 03-19-2009 Thread Starter
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Low tech self steering, tiller. Pics?

How do you guys do it? I know, a tiller pilot would be the best thing, but I have other projects that'll take up the $400 a pilot would cost. I'm looking for something to hold a course if I need to get a drink, trim a sail, raise the jib, go foreward, etc. Not lookingn for something that'll take long to adjust or set up, or cost me a bundle.

The layout is fairly simple, I already have 2 cleats at the corners of the stern, and a toe rail the entire length of the boat. I was thinking of using a heavy duty shock cord or bungey instead of regular line. Does this work or should I stick with a no stretch line? Anyone have pics of their setup?

Merit 25 # 764 "Audrey"
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post #2 of 18 Old 03-19-2009
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How 'bout a "tiller comb".... if that would work with your setup.

Tillers: Information from Answers.com

Ron

1984 Fast/Nicholson 345 "FastForward"

".. there is much you could do at sea with common sense.. and very little you could do without it.."
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post #3 of 18 Old 03-19-2009
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I just did a quick google because this topic also interests me.

I found this link which looks like a plausible scenario

DaySailer.org - View topic - homegrown, cheap tiller minder

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C&C 25 MKI, Hull No. 039
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post #4 of 18 Old 03-19-2009 Thread Starter
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Faster, thanks for the link. I like the idea, but I don't think it'll work in my boat.

Don, I saw that site, it is interesting and I like it better than just looping line around the tiller and then going back to the stern cleats. I think I'll have to try out a couple things next time I'm on the boat. I'm not crazy about drilling more holes in the tiller, or having lazy line and a block dangling around though. But it doesn't look like I can get around drilling.

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post #5 of 18 Old 03-19-2009
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To have your boat sail itself simply by tying off the tiller you are going to need a very well balanced boat and have the sails adjusted perfectly or not be gone too long. Anything else will require some sort of input to the tiller, like electronic autopilot, mechanical windvane or sheet-to-tiller arrangement. Sheet-to-tiller is clearly the least expensive but takes a while setting up.


who is staring at the sea is already sailing a little
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post #6 of 18 Old 03-19-2009
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Cajun Tiller Tamer

This is what I use. The first one was made with cotton (non-coated) clothesline.
My current version is shock cord and works better.
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post #7 of 18 Old 03-19-2009
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Tiller Tamer

Not "self steering" but the Tiller Tamer worked well for me on previous boats. A quick twist of the knob and the tiller is locked. http://www.defender.com/images/613015.jpg

Stan
'Christy Leigh'
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post #8 of 18 Old 03-19-2009
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I use the "Cheap tiller tamer" as described in don's link. It works well for me. Sure you have to drill a couple of holes, but a bit of silicone leak proofs the system.

Steve


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post #9 of 18 Old 03-19-2009
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You might want to look at getting one of the books on self-steering for small sailcraft, like Lechters.

Sailingdog

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post #10 of 18 Old 03-19-2009
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I've used my Tiller Lock for one season now, and I love it. It's rigged with shock cord instead of regular line, so I can make small corrections without even disengaging the lever.

It's the one design I've found that can be disengaged instantaneously. Like from a floating line clipped to the Tiller Lock lever and tossed over the stern railing to trail behind when I'm singlehanding. Nothing like a little insurance to keep the boat from sailing on by itself.
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