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Steve,

Reaching the helm from a seated position on the coaming (my preferred spot) is a bit of a reach for me too, but I've never considered a larger diameter wheel. I think it would be too awkward in the cockpit to move around.

But now that Lewmar makes those folding wheels, maybe there's a good option available? I think they come in 32" and 36" sizes. I don't know if the 32" would get you much (only 1" in radius), and I doubt the 36" would fit.

Another option is to attach a long tiller extension at the bottom of the wheel and steer like you have a tiller. It might give you just enough reach to hold course nicely when the helm is balanced.
 
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