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curious about one of the articles
The wheel steering on Sam''s boat was a factory installation. From June, 1972 through June, 77 I was general manager of a boat yard here in Northern Michigan. We were a pearson dealer. I would have to do a little research, but I think it was in 1974, and probably the first year the 10M was out, we sold one to a customer that I had known for quite a while. In fact, I had looked after - taken care of - and sailed his Pearson Renagade for a couple of years before I went to work at the boat yard.
He bought the 10M with the understanding that I would race with him. We tricked the boat out with just about everything the era would allow, including a full complement of the best sails that North Sails could build during that time. When it was launched as I remember, the cost was just over $80K. It was the most expensive boat the yard had ever sold at that time.
The wheel was in the same location as Sam''s. I liked the boat a lot and I loved where the wheel was mounted.
Sure, you have to walk around the wheel when going below, but no big deal, we are walking around and over things every time we move around on a sail boat.
While moving the boat on Lake Michigan, I think about 45 miles, to the start for an over-nighter, in a black, hard as you can imagin rain, with the squals moving through storm, it was real nice to be able to hunker down behind the bulkhead with a compass right in front of me. The two compases and the chart was all I had, and going down into Grand Traverse Bay you better have a pretty good idea of where you are, when you cant see past the bow.
You could check with Jeff H, but I believe that during that era most all of the wheels were placed on the boats similarly. It was not long after that the big, flat out, race boats started putting the wheels way in the back of the boat. That makes a lot of sence, all the helmsmen does is steer the boat. And; the whole big show is in front of him, he can see everything that everyone is doing. And: most of all, he is out of the way. If I were going to be sailing with 12 guys working the boat and doing everything for me, I would stand back there and take it as it comes at me. Otherwise, I like that nice warm bulkhead.
I have more thoughts to offer on this subject, but this is getting long and I just may have opened a big can of squiggely things. So lets see what crawls out of the can.
Please excuse any spelling and typo errors, I sail better than I operate this thing.