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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest > General Discussion (sailing related) > Tiller vs. Wheel
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Thread: Tiller vs. Wheel Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
11-03-2010 07:42 AM
PCP
Quote:
Originally Posted by puddinlegs View Post
... but you could easily enough. It's just a trip to a fabricator, some holes drilled, bits bolted, bedded, and there you go!
That's not so easy and there are disadvantages. If it was as plain as that, all modern tiller boats would come with that stuff as standard

You would have to have those metal parts mounted on each side of the boat, and it would take a lot of space to the cockpit, interfering with the seating space (those parts are for having a support while steering from the upper part, near the rail), and those metal pieces would probably also interfere with opening parts of the boat (I don't know how you call it) I mean the place under the seats where you have the storage on the cockpit.

Yes you can have ones, but they have a cost and not only in price. There are tiller boats (modern ones, with large transom) that doesn't even offer them as an option, none that I know off offer them as standard and some, like the new First 30 offer them as an option (nice ones) .

Regards

Paulo
11-02-2010 08:50 PM
HeartsContent
Quote:
Originally Posted by IslanderGuy View Post
My take on the "Why do so many American boats have wheels" is simply...

1. Most people who by brand new boats in America are not really sailors, just people with money looking for something new to do. (Not all, but most, as evidenced by all the new boats that never get sailed)

2. To a non-sailor, tillers are old-school and low tech. Seeing a tiller makes some people wonder if they are still using natural fiber sails and tar sealed wood hulls as well. Wheels are new and high tech and fancy. Cars have wheels, power boats have wheels, why would a sail boat be stuck in the old days of a tiller?

3. If the people with the money are turned off by the sight of a tiller, then no tillers will be installed, regardless of all the finer points either way. Most large manufacturers will go with what sells first, without regard for which would be better for this particular hull, shape, size, weight, design of boat. Only your more specialized manufacturers who tailor to the real sailors with lower volume boats will take that into account.

Not saying wheels are always bad, and tillers are always good, I think the points of what makes sense and when have already been covered by far more knowledgeable people then me. But for me, I am happy with the tiller I have, mostly because it is on the boat that I have.
LMAO!!!

I am so surprised that you would come out "for" the tiller!

In dinghy's where a wheel cannot fit, they are the only choice. Where the option exists, the wheel is always preferred. The barrier is cost.

I have no fond memories of the chaos created by tacking, with a tiller, with guests in the cockpit. If you wish to entertain friends on your boat, the tiller olympics is not really the way to go.
11-02-2010 07:33 PM
Sabreman IslanderGuy - I disagree with the first 2 points.

I think that wheels are easier to use for many novices. Just like a car. I also think that a wheel takes less space while underway. Wheels certainly are more costly to manufacture and can breakdown (at the most inopportune times). With that said, I'm equally at home with either. As other said, there are pros and cons.
11-02-2010 06:58 PM
ffiill On my old 28 foot Bermudan sloop it was a tiller.On my 33 foot motor sailer its a wheel.Hydraulic pumpactuated by wheel operates a hydraulic ram through non return valve.
You can steer with your index finger and once balanced take your hands off the wheel and do something else like navigate.Very useful when like me you are single handed.
11-02-2010 04:39 PM
sailjunkie
Quote:
Originally Posted by mitiempo View Post
With a tiller you know when you are over canvassed or trimmed incorrectly - the weather helm is a lot more obvious.
Sorry Brian, but I disagree. We just went from tiller steering on Catalina 27's to wheel steering on a Mirage 29. Weather helm and trim are very discernible.

The BIG advantage of tiller steering is that there are fewer moving parts to break.

I tend to like tiller steering on smaller boats; wheel steering on bigger (+ 30 ft?) boats. As for room in the cockpit, my experience suggests that it is six of one; one half dozen of another. They both take up room--just in different ways.
11-02-2010 01:37 PM
IslanderGuy My take on the "Why do so many American boats have wheels" is simply...

1. Most people who by brand new boats in America are not really sailors, just people with money looking for something new to do. (Not all, but most, as evidenced by all the new boats that never get sailed)

2. To a non-sailor, tillers are old-school and low tech. Seeing a tiller makes some people wonder if they are still using natural fiber sails and tar sealed wood hulls as well. Wheels are new and high tech and fancy. Cars have wheels, power boats have wheels, why would a sail boat be stuck in the old days of a tiller?

3. If the people with the money are turned off by the sight of a tiller, then no tillers will be installed, regardless of all the finer points either way. Most large manufacturers will go with what sells first, without regard for which would be better for this particular hull, shape, size, weight, design of boat. Only your more specialized manufacturers who tailor to the real sailors with lower volume boats will take that into account.

Not saying wheels are always bad, and tillers are always good, I think the points of what makes sense and when have already been covered by far more knowledgeable people then me. But for me, I am happy with the tiller I have, mostly because it is on the boat that I have.
11-02-2010 12:12 PM
BenMP One other consideration is physical size. My wife is on the slight side and really likes the mechanical advantage of a wheel. She has no problem using a tiller but prefers the wheel.
11-02-2010 07:36 AM
puddinlegs
Quote:
Originally Posted by PCP View Post
Racing boats have solved this with some metal supports for the feet that unfortunately you don't have on cruising boats.

Regards

Paulo
... but you could easily enough. It's just a trip to a fabricator, some holes drilled, bits bolted, bedded, and there you go!
11-02-2010 06:06 AM
PCP I like tillers and they have many advantages, but one of the disadvantages I found is that on really bad weather you can not "hold" on to a tiller. That is specially a problem in modern boats that have large transoms. When the boat is bouncing around in waves, up and down with some lateral jerks, I find some support on the wheel (and its pedestal), that I can not find in a tiller boat.

Racing boats have solved this with some metal supports for the feet that unfortunately you don't have on cruising boats.

Regards

Paulo
11-02-2010 01:26 AM
mitiempo Better feel for what the boat wants/needs with a tiller. I think it comes down to balance rather than displacement though. A wheel will give you better mechanical advantage and less feel. With a tiller you know when you are over canvassed or trimmed incorrectly - the weather helm is a lot more obvious. With the wheel you are more isolated and less in tune with the boat.
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