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mojoaudio 05-21-2013 04:45 PM

Sailboat Wooden Steering Wheels
Sailing community,

I am seeking to identify how much of a desire there is out there for wooden steering wheels for the sailing community out there. I have seen two or so sources of high quality wheels that are very nice, however, limited in variety or potentially high in cost.

The offering I am seeking a reply to is one of high quality and exotic wood wheels, beyond the typical Teak.

Would love to hear some opinion on this subject.


priscilla 05-21-2013 06:31 PM

Re: Sailboat Wooden Steering Wheels
The Edson Corp. makes a nice wooden destroyer wheel but its expensive as its costly to make...and its one more item to varnish. Worm and rack & pinion steerers often have wooden spoked wheels but those spokes catch on things and bang off your knees. I like the cold stainless destroyer wheel spinning thru my hands (an no maintenance.).

mojoaudio 05-21-2013 06:59 PM

Re: Sailboat Wooden Steering Wheels
Thank you Priscilla - I have seen the Edson wheels and am mostly focused on wheels that are 24" and up in size. Is this what you were responding to or were you referring to diameters less than 24?

The coating finish that would be used would be highly resistant to sun so this would not be as big an issue as in other parts of the boat made of wood. I do understand that the stainless does provide less of a concern, also a different look than what the wood provides.


Siamese 05-21-2013 07:40 PM

Re: Sailboat Wooden Steering Wheels
No wood wheels for me. I don't like any exterior wood.

By the way, what's this "coating finish" you mentioned that's highly resistant to UV? If it's a clear wood finish and it's outside, it will need regular maintenance.

tdw 05-21-2013 07:43 PM

Re: Sailboat Wooden Steering Wheels
Are you thinking of tradition spoked timber wheel ? If so I'd suspect the market is very small indeed. Spoked with a timber rim may be the way to go but even so I wonder if there would be much demand. Probably depend on quality and price. A very high level product may well appeal to the full tilt restoration market but it seems to me most people who try and do up a classic might not have the dosh for a fancy new timber wheel.

PaulinVictoria 05-21-2013 08:25 PM

Re: Sailboat Wooden Steering Wheels
If you are talking about a "traditional" salty-style spoked wheel then count me out. A Nardi type one might be OK, but I basically hate all exterior wood.

steve77 05-21-2013 08:30 PM

Re: Sailboat Wooden Steering Wheels
I recently bought a new wheel for my new to me Catalina 34. I considered an Edson teak rim destroyer wheel but went with the leather wrapped wheel instead. Mainly because I didn't want to have to maintain the varnish on the teak rim. Fwiw.

mojoaudio 05-21-2013 08:40 PM

Re: Sailboat Wooden Steering Wheels
Please see the below link to see what kind of wheels I am referring to- how much of a demand do you think there is for this type of wheel? I work with a company that specializes in high end wheels for old classic cars and they are looking to branch out.

I appreciate all the feedback, thank you so much!

ikibro . com


T37Chef 05-21-2013 08:42 PM

Re: Sailboat Wooden Steering Wheels
I have a Edson Teak spoke wheel and love it, especiually in cold weather :) In 8 years I have only had to refinish it once, and with it covered I doubt it will need another finish anytime soon. 3 Coats of Epifanes Natural follwed by 5 or 6 coats of clear :)

If I were to buy another wheel I would consider wood, the leather wrap s also nice but will need to be redone at some pioint as well

chucklesR 05-21-2013 09:38 PM

Re: Sailboat Wooden Steering Wheels

You mean like this?

I've seen precisely one boat (mine) that has a wood wheel.

I have no idea who made it, or how much it cost. I've seen wheels like it used at for about 700 bucks.

FYI, I have the stainless original wheel in the v-berth storage compartment.

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