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Old 13-02-2013, 15:26   #31
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Re: Downwind Running On A Windvane - How Do You Get It To Work?

The tiller pilot method works well also. ANd if you have a networked wind instrument on the masthead of??? you can integrate the tiller pilot to that and the windvane. That way you can still steer by the wind instead of the compass. I do all the above methods, windvane only, windvane to tiller pilot compass and wind instruments.My tiller pilot also can steer by my attachment to the wheel, but that is another thread.
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Old 13-02-2013, 22:45   #32
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Re: Downwind Running On A Windvane - How Do You Get It To Work?

I would like to comment on DDW and the reference to the Twizzle rig. I have recently put 2 110% jibs sewn to a single luff and installed on my profurl. I constructed 2 20 foot poles and a universal joint that is hoisted approximately 7 feet off the deck. I have rigged a downhaul to my staysail stay that allows me to position the universal a couple feet forward of the mast. Broad and DDW points of sail are on the twizzle rig only. The clews are cut high positioning the center of effort higher up helping lift the bow. The floating poles allow the rig to swing left to right as a result of the following sea roll and dampens the roll. If winds pick up I simply sheet out allowing the sails to ballon forward and then furl in a few turns. The next great feature is connecting the sails at the clew and flying the rig as a conventional headsail...I would like to hear more about what others have done similar.
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Old 14-02-2013, 01:39   #33
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Re: Downwind Running On A Windvane - How Do You Get It To Work?

Quote:
Originally Posted by deecochran View Post
I would like to comment on DDW and the reference to the Twizzle rig. I have recently put 2 110% jibs sewn to a single luff and installed on my profurl. I constructed 2 20 foot poles and a universal joint that is hoisted approximately 7 feet off the deck. I have rigged a downhaul to my staysail stay that allows me to position the universal a couple feet forward of the mast. Broad and DDW points of sail are on the twizzle rig only. The clews are cut high positioning the center of effort higher up helping lift the bow.
Do you have any picture to show us?

Taco.
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Old 14-02-2013, 04:14   #34
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Re: Downwind Running On A Windvane - How Do You Get It To Work?

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I would like to comment ... turns. The next great feature is connecting the sails at the clew and flying the rig as a conventional headsail...I would like to hear more about what others have done similar.
In Knysna, RSA, we experimented beating with the twizzle jibs laid over each other and joined at the clews and managed about 50 to 60deg. off the wind which for a motor sailor is pretty much what we get anyway. As the jibs were not exactly the same (one bought seconhand) we sheeted to a block that ran on a strop linking the clews which balanced the load.

If the clews are cut too high they are difficult to reach from deck - but it depends on the size of the yacht I suppose.

That experiment became a bit redundant when we fitted a second, inner, furling gear. The original outer stay carried the twizzle jibs and the inner furler the 120% genoa. Just a matter of swapping over the sheets from Trades running with the twizzle for weeks on end to beat/reach/run in the ITCZ.

Although we used an Autohelm 7000 and not a vane, auto was not working too hard under twizzle.

What did you use for a universal joint for pole ends+up/down haul?

Mid South Atlantic
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Old 14-02-2013, 05:20   #35
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Re: Downwind Running On A Windvane - How Do You Get It To Work?

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for reducing sail i allways drop the genoa behind the main first,and run with deeply reefed main and poled out jib.
+1, I did several windy crossings that way.

Dave
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Old 14-02-2013, 13:31   #36
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Re: Downwind Running On A Windvane - How Do You Get It To Work?

I do have discriptive information and photos on the my Twizzle rig. Send me an e-mail and I will forward them to you. I don't know if I can post it to the Forum.
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Old 14-02-2013, 22:44   #37
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Re: Downwind Running On A Windvane - How Do You Get It To Work?

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Originally Posted by smacksman View Post
In Knysna, RSA, we experimented beating with the twizzle jibs laid over each other and joined at the clews and managed about 50 to 60deg. off the wind which for a motor sailor is pretty much what we get anyway. As the jibs were not exactly the same (one bought seconhand) we sheeted to a block that ran on a strop linking the clews which balanced the load.

If the clews are cut too high they are difficult to reach from deck - but it depends on the size of the yacht I suppose.

That experiment became a bit redundant when we fitted a second, inner, furling gear. The original outer stay carried the twizzle jibs and the inner furler the 120% genoa. Just a matter of swapping over the sheets from Trades running with the twizzle for weeks on end to beat/reach/run in the ITCZ.

Although we used an Autohelm 7000 and not a vane, auto was not working too hard under twizzle.

What did you use for a universal joint for pole ends+up/down haul?

Mid South Atlantic
The u-joint is suspended from the staysail halyard and a downhaul is connected at the staysail stay lower fitting. Also have a preventer connected to the lower downhaul loop and secured to the mast.
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Old 15-02-2013, 01:09   #38
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Re: Downwind Running On A Windvane - How Do You Get It To Work?

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Smacksman, I agree that cruisers spend far more time at anchor than off shore, But I have never heard of people at anchor getting to the stage of mind numbing fatigue and making dangerous errors that comprimise safety. There are many tales of that sort of thing when auto pilots or even the whole electrical system packs up on a passage ,and the small crew, or single hander has to steer in all conditions. Auto pilots are wonderful, but they are not as reliable as a vane. I would put a vane above an auto pilot on the(What am I going to spend my money on?) list. Having both is ideal if you can afford it. A coastal cruiser is a whole different situation, and I would go for the auto pilot first. As you said different opinions (and that is what all of this is) make for interesting reading. ______Grant.
+1

I wrote a whole eulogy in the log book when our autopilot Al gave up the ghost in the middle of the Atlantic. In fact, out of 25000+ ocean miles 5 were hand steered due to auto pilot breaking, most of it was pretty fun b/c we had plenty of crew, but it did disrupt our night watches as there needed to be two on deck due to needing a constant helmsman.
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Old 15-02-2013, 03:18   #39
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Re: Downwind Running On A Windvane - How Do You Get It To Work?

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The u-joint is suspended from the staysail halyard and a downhaul is connected at the staysail stay lower fitting. Also have a preventer connected to the lower downhaul loop and secured to the mast.
I realise it is getting a bit off-topic but I'm interested to hear about your universal joint construction, deecochran. By the sound of it, it is a rigid stainless construction. We started out with a stainless crucifix from the Canaries to Rio and modified it from Rio to Cape Town but didn't have much use for the twizzle on that leg. From Cape Town to Saint Helena we still had chafe on the pole ends even though I leathered them in CT.

The final and most successful and cheapest was a rope cricifix which allowed the pole ends total universal freedom of movement, laterally; torsionally; axially.

@Ocean Girl
We used to knock off the autopilot and steer by hand in the wee small hours just for something to do and stay awake! Jolly handy though to have it there to take over when needed.
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Old 20-02-2013, 20:32   #40
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Re: Downwind Running On A Windvane - How Do You Get It To Work?

I have up-loaded a pdf document contaning descriptions and photos of the twizzle rig. go to pdfcast.org/pdf/twizzle-rig to view the information.
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Old 20-02-2013, 22:42   #41
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Re: Downwind Running On A Windvane - How Do You Get It To Work?

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Originally Posted by deecochran View Post
I have up-loaded a pdf document contaning descriptions and photos of the twizzle rig. go to pdfcast.org/pdf/twizzle-rig to view the information.
URL didn't work for me.
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Old 20-02-2013, 23:14   #42
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Re: Downwind Running On A Windvane - How Do You Get It To Work?

This is the URL that I posted the document to. I just tried it and everything worked fine. Send me you e-mail and I will send t to you as an attachment. Twizzle Rig - PDF *
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Old 21-02-2013, 00:31   #43
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Re: Downwind Running On A Windvane - How Do You Get It To Work?

Twizzle Rig - PDF *

Taco.
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Old 21-02-2013, 03:18   #44
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Re: Downwind Running On A Windvane - How Do You Get It To Work?

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Originally Posted by deecochran View Post
This is the URL that I posted the document to. I just tried it and everything worked fine. Send me you e-mail and I will send t to you as an attachment. Twizzle Rig - PDF *
That rope universal is exactly the conclusion we came to in 2004. After it was in use from St. Helena to the Amazon it had no chafe and was good for another crossing.
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Old 21-02-2013, 04:41   #45
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Re: Downwind Running On A Windvane - How Do You Get It To Work?

My roberts 34 sails well downwind with a rollerreefing genoa poled out on a overlong telescopic pole, this flattens it and reduces much of the rolling. In light airs it actually overpowers the main and she has slight leehelm and is very course stable, if she sails by the lee the main blankets the genoa and she seems to want to come back up, to far towards a reach and the genoa powers up and pushes the head back down.

I also like to have a big light drifter hanked on the removable solent stay and sheeted off the boom to leeward. This helps with any rounding up issue and gives extra speed. If this is set I come up just far enough for it to set nicely, it normaly only takes 10-20 degrees, with the genoa feeding wind into it, and it in turn powering up the main.

This often requires the windvane control lines to be set slightly to leeward to actually steer the boat onto a reach with the windvane upright. This is important in light air (less than 5-10 knots) as it ensures the boat will not gybe in a lull, instead she steers up as the wind goes light and down in the puffs, as a good helmsman would.

As the wind picks up I roll away some of the genoa to flatten it and angle it forward. both help enormously, but it needs either a long pole, or a small sail to achieve. I then progressively reef the main, drop the drifter and roll away more headsail.

The other half of it is to get the self steering working properly, going to a tiller rather than a wheel helps enormously, as does roller blocks and spectra lines and such, but I have found the vane size and balance is critical.

I usually have my very tall light nylon covered wind vane on the flemming, it has been very carefully balanced to slowly return to vertical. And is made from 6 mm ply with large tapered lightning holes cut in it. I kept cutting the holes out until it balanced just right, then painted it.. duh and had to cut out some more holes!.

A light nylon sock slips over it, and gets removed if the wind picks up to much (about 25 knots). For regular stronger winds the best vane I have is a tall tapered 6mm ply one, it goes from normal width at the bottom, to about 50mm at the top, and flexs nicely. It is more strongly balanced to return to vertical. On a horizontal axis vane short fat vanes to fit under a mizzen don't work well downwind, height is king.

Adjusting the tiller lines to dial in the right weather/lee helm is also very important, as is the right position for the lines to make fast on the tiller, to far aft and you get wicked oversteer. To far forward give a nice smooth fast ride but not enough helm to cope with puffs and waves pushing the boat off course. Once you get this right it shouldn't need changing. It's much harder to get this ratio sorted if it goes to a drum on a wheel. In this case you might need a reverse tackle to get more movement at the helm, or a normal tackle if it is oversteering.

I added a small delta shaped wing to the bottom of Snow Petrel's rudder which helped her steering in all conditions, and I have seen a few boats improved considerably by lengthening and reshaping the rudder.

Sydney would be a hard place to get one working right, the conditions always seems quite lumpy outside. Also, even on the best set up the wind vane will still often wander more than a good helmsman and it can take time to trust that it won't gybe or broach.

Good luck with it. It's wonderful when it's sorted out.
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