Windvane Steering Necessary for Long Ocean Passages? - Page 3 - SailNet Community

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Go Back   SailNet Community > Skills and Seamanship > Seamanship & Navigation
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Seamanship & Navigation Forum devoted to seamanship and navigation topics, including paper and electronic charting tools.


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  #21  
Old 11-26-2006
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My vane works with no attachment to the wheel or tiller.

I have a auxillary rudder/trim tab vane that was designed by John Belcher and self-built by the fellow I bought my boat from. It works great and is strong as an ox. It can be used as a emergency rudder.

It is heavy and makes backing difficult.
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  #22  
Old 11-27-2006
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Jones...I would say that the majority of boats with windvanes out there have wheel steering. What is it you are trying to determine?
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  #23  
Old 12-10-2006
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YES!! It is. We have a 19000lbs 41 foot boat with a Monitor wind vane. It is among our most essential peices of equipment. I've spent enough time triming sails that I can sail a my boat reasonably well without using the rudder. It's true you can balance any real sail boat to hold a course but it requires constant attention and is generally slow. I dissagree with a post above saying that wind vanes work best at slow speeds. We use out electric autopilot below 3kts and the Monitor from 3 up. It works wonderfully at 9.5kts. Works well on all points of sail and it's steered the boat in 40+kts of air. I would not go offshore without it. We have the largest below deck hydrolic autopilot we could find and we carry a spare drive unit and I still wouldn't rely on it offshore. Not to mention the power consumption. Also, even with a crew of 6 or 7 steering gets tiring. Some will disagree but i find myself more alert in the long term when I'm not steering and I can focus on watching the sea, the sky, the horizon, and the boat. Helmsmen often make mistakes due to fatigue and tunnelvision
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  #24  
Old 12-10-2006
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Just to add on to hpeer. We also have an emergency rudder attachment for our Monitor. It works a lot better than some plywood on the spinnaker pole.
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Old 12-18-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Newport41
We have the largest below deck hydrolic autopilot we could find and we carry a spare drive unit and I still wouldn't rely on it offshore.
I'm looking at this scenario. I have a 41-foot full keel steel pilothouse cutter of 24,000 lbs. light load (no water, no cargo, full diesel tanks) with Marol hydraulic rotary actuator driving a ram that is attached to a transom hung rudder. This rudder also has a tiller head and a proper tiller. There are two steering stations, a wheel in the pilothouse and a small (30 inch) wheel in a "well" about 15 inches deep on the aft deck. The actuator is 19.3 cu. in. capacity and works well. I am leaning toward a ComNav Commander autopilot with a somewhat larger (25 cu. in) actuator. I want to pair this with a largely separate windvane and tiller arrangement for offshore. I figure to motor under autopilot, or sail coastal with autopilot, but to passagemake with windvane for reasons of power and wear. What size actuator would you recommend and what type of windvane would you favour?

What is the best method of hooking a windvane into a hydraulically driven autopilot? I would have thought the simplest method would be to avoid it completely and to just rig blocks and line on the tiller arm and watch for chafe...but I like to hear people's thoughts.
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  #26  
Old 12-19-2006
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I agree. The simplest was would be to rig the vave with blocks to the tiller. We have found the combination of autopilot and windvane to be god sent. As for actuator size. I can't say mutch except bigger is better. As for windvane. I would go with whatever Monitor recommends. They're easy to deal with and very upfront. I would deffinitly recommend Monitor.
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Old 12-22-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WHOOSH
Stormer, I think the ''bible'' on sheet-tiller steering was written by John Letcher some years ago (Self-Steering for Sailing Craft, I belive) - no doubt out of print but available sooner or later with a search. I think it''s excellent and I used those techniques on all points of sail aboard our first boat, a Vega 27, in Pacific coastal sailing with great success. However, the Vega was the sweetest sailing offshore boat I''ve experienced and this technique probably works less well with less responsive boats. (snip)
I may be a little late to this thread but, since I have a Vega and I hate to hang a large plumber's nightmare off the transom, I'm interested in the details of how you rigged your self steering on the Vega.

Chuck
http://americanvega.org
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Old 12-22-2006
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Vega...Jack Tyler of Woosh hasn't been on this board in over a month but often you can find him on the www.ssca.org site if you need a response.
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Old 01-30-2007
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If all your ports are down wind this will get you there http://www.simetric.co.uk/twizzle_rig/index.htm

randy cape dory 25d seraph #161
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