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Old 26-09-2010, 16:14   #1
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Sailomat vs Windpilot ?

Hey there,

We're looking for installing a windwane on our boat and can't decide between Sailomat and Windpilot Pacific... Anyone having longer experience with any of these?

Would be happy to get some insights. Thanks.
/Alex and Taru
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Old 26-09-2010, 17:57   #2
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Out of curiosity what do they they sell for?
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Old 26-09-2010, 19:05   #3
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Im sorry I do not have experience with either system.

I just want to comment on the beauty of the photos in your blog! They are spectacular!

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Old 26-09-2010, 19:18   #4
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Windpilot makes a model with its own rudder. Sailomat (?) does not.

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Old 26-09-2010, 19:48   #5
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The cheapest Windpilot is EUR 1400, then there are two more expensive models.

The top model has an independent rudder and I see it used a lot on boats with center cockpits or wheels.

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Old 26-09-2010, 20:05   #6
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Just another option for you to consider. In Jessica Watson's recent solo circumnavigation she used a Fleming Windvane that went through several knockdowns and also rollovers as well and was still working just fine at the end of her voyage which seems like a good recommendation for their overall performance and robust construction.

Here is their link if you would like to take a look.

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Old 26-09-2010, 21:37   #7
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autopilot/windvane priorities

I love to run the boat yet I hate to steer. After 15 minutes it becomes tedious and after over 30,000 sea miles I now have only an autopilot. For yourself, be realistic, if you do not spend time sailing around the world in high latitudes with minimalistic (translate: few amenities aboard) contrivances then a windvane should be lower on the priority of spending money list.

Keep in mind now that reliability of properly designed battery and electrical systems is very high you should first have a "real" autopilot (one that has horsepower on demand, and high efficiency, not a "toy" wheel one). Consider that I used to have a servo-pendulum windvane (and when everything is going well for you they work well) and sold it after installing a "real" autopilot. The "real" autopilot will work under ALL conditions and the windvane will NOT. I spend too many days on a beam reach in seas that would blanket the light winds affecting the windvane when the boat was down in the valleys of the seas, then the boat would yaw around (and you do not want that, for sure). Downwind when the apparent windspeed over the deck might be low you have a worse problem with potential broaching using a windvane that you WILL NEVER have with a good autopilot. You do not want to have to panic up on deck from a broach in the middle of the night and break something.

I sold the windvane.

For those consistent nay-sayers that love to tout the famous saying: "if it hasn't broken it will.." keep in mind that man never would have walked on the moon having that belief. I never would have left the mooring with that myth in my belly.
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Old 26-09-2010, 22:26   #8
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For those consistent nay-sayers that love to tout the famous saying: "if it hasn't broken it will.." keep in mind that man never would have walked on the moon having that belief.
Actually the folks that went to the moon did so precisely because they held that belief. They counted on things breaking and prepared for it. There was a lot of redundancy built in. Didn't work for all malfunctions that arose, Apollos 1&13, but you can't anticipate every problem when you are dealing with machines that complex. With Apollo 13 they got lucky and everyone got home. Not so much with Apollo 1.

Fortunately sailboats are a lot less complex and a greater percentage of potential problems can be prepared for and dealt with on the fly. The reality is that all parts of life, sailing or otherwise, is just playing the odds. A bit dark, but it works for my.
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Old 26-09-2010, 22:41   #9
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I think the OP has gotten a lot of opinion on different types of sailboat control devices, but they still haven't gotten an answer to their question....
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Old 26-09-2010, 23:46   #10
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Originally Posted by theworldtour201 View Post
Hey there,

We're looking for installing a windwane on our boat and can't decide between Sailomat and Windpilot Pacific... Anyone having longer experience with any of these?

Would be happy to get some insights. Thanks.
/Alex and Taru
No opinions on the vanes, but I love your blog. Gonna keep checking in on the recipes and fishing advice.
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Old 27-09-2010, 05:07   #11
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Thanks for insights. If anyone has more direct info of any of them two, it would be much appreciated. The price is around 5000 euros for any of them, were hoping to get away with it cheaper, but a well installed windvane is much needed and we decided to go for the best one there is to reduce problems.

Rick, we already have a well functioning autopilot onboard, but thinking we'll need a windvane as well.
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Old 27-09-2010, 05:47   #12
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For that kind of investment, I would get a backup electronic system instead

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I spend too many days on a beam reach in seas that would blanket the light winds affecting the windvane when the boat was down in the valleys of the seas, then the boat would yaw around (and you do not want that, for sure). Downwind when the apparent windspeed over the deck might be low you have a worse problem with potential broaching using a windvane that you WILL NEVER have with a good autopilot. You do not want to have to panic up on deck from a broach in the middle of the night and break something.
Wow never thought about that, super input.
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Old 27-09-2010, 06:22   #13
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I had a Windpilot on the back of my boat for several years, but can not claim to have real experience, because I preferred to use the autopilot.

The Windpilot was not able to steer my boat properly and I thought it was dangerous going downwind. the boat was all over the place and I always feared an accidental jibe.

Probably my boat was not well balanced enough. I would not buy it again. The only time it worked fine, was going upwind, but it would do this even without an autopilot or windvane.

The autopilot, a NKE, would perfectly steer the boat for about 1 Amp (so the boat does not seem to be that unbalanced), which seems an ok price for security.

Simon
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Old 27-09-2010, 09:51   #14
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I have a very VERY old make of Windpilot here that goes downwind OK ... off course, I also have long keel and a stern hung rudder.

I have used Aries downwind (in a Jeanneau 36) and it was OK too. (Not brilliant though)

There is no this / or that when it comes to wind vs. electronic pilots. If you can afford both, have both. But for any long distance cruising in the wind, I would pick up the wind system.

I also doubt (with all due respect to the poster) with the figure of 1 Amp as realistic for an electronic pilot. From my experience with 32-36 ft Benes, Bavas, etc. the consumption is in the range of 5 Amps and beyond (downwind).

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Old 27-09-2010, 10:01   #15
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you do not spend time sailing around the world in high latitudes with minimalistic (translate: few amenities aboard) contrivances then a windvane should be lower on the priority of spending money list....
The "real" autopilot will work under ALL conditions and the windvane will NOT. I spend too many days on a beam reach in seas that would blanket
Rick, Your opinion here is contrary to what a lot of people say. I respect your opinion and am interested in hearing more from you and others. I have a "real" autopilot, but have been under the impression it is not reliable enough to count on for long term cruising and have thus been considering a vane. Maybe we should start a new thread and discuss this.
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