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Old 04-02-2013, 03:54   #16
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Re: Fleming Wind Vane - Wont work ?

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Originally Posted by ribbony View Post
That is an awesome rundown ! Thanks

Will print out the whole thread and ponder the details on the boat when we next go to Sydney.

The control ring on the top can turn 360.

Our one and only vane (at this stage, we need to make some more) is symmetrical but it sits in a housing on top that does have a windward direction, at least from what we could see in the old photos of other units and the original units displayed by Fleming.

OK, the bold bits are important. Make the windward direction remains facing windward especially as you can turn it 360 and so get it backwards at times.

Unfortunately my windwane bible is on the boat in Tassie and I'm in Perth so I can't refer to it for fine detail - going on memory only

I should point out that I have never used a servo pendulum windvane but I did built (and partly design) my own horizontally pivoted air vane direct to tiller unit and it worked reasonably well

If you can remember (or check when next on board?), please advise which way the servo foil rotates (CW or CCW - from above) when the top of the air blade is pushed over to port (when correctly facing to windward). This will allow us to confirm if the steering line set up is kosher.
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Old 09-02-2013, 10:41   #17
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Re: Fleming Wind Vane - Wont work ?

couple of things; hard to tell from the photos but looks like the vane pivot is at a 10-15degree angle to horizontal - the high side always faces the wind.
start off trialing it on a reach or close hauled - the damned things take a lot of fiddling with sail combinations to work downwind, best not to start on the most difficult point of sail.
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Old 09-02-2013, 10:51   #18
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Re: Fleming Wind Vane - Wont work ?

Could a 2 part pulley setup be used to give it more power and to aid in not oversteering? Powering a wheel can be difficult in lower wind speeds. I had a Monitor on 3 boats and finally quit trying to use a windvane. But for long tradewind crossings some people love them. I just found I spent more tedious time trying to get them to work properly than they were worth.
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Old 09-02-2013, 13:29   #19
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Re: Fleming Wind Vane - Wont work ?

The boat was on a mooring what that photo was taken, so it is not indicative of what might happen in motion, also I had been playing with the control lines so I probably pushed it into that position.

You mentioned "10-15degree angle to horizontal", did you mean vertical ?

Thanks
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Old 09-02-2013, 23:40   #20
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Re: Fleming Wind Vane - Wont work ?

i mean the axle that the wooden vane pivots on - i cant tell from the photos but they are often angled up a little - makes the vane more responsive andf its an easy way to tell which side faces the wind - hope that makes sense...how many turns lock to lock on your wheel?
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Old 09-02-2013, 23:59   #21
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Re: Fleming Wind Vane - Wont work ?

Really, the number of turns lock to lock isn't very important. What matters is how much you have to turn the wheel whilst hand steering on whatever point of sail we're talking about. Compare that wheel displacement with what the vane can induce by swinging all the way out to it's max. If the vane can turn the wheel as far as you do manually, it should be ok as far as travel. And most servo pendulum systems can generate enormous forces on the wheel/tiller...

Keep trying... the older Flemings were good units and should be able to steer most any boat. If it happens that the vane can't turn the wheel far enough, then reverting to a stub tiller for the vane to work upon might be necessary.

Good luck

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Old 10-02-2013, 02:13   #22
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Re: Fleming Wind Vane - Wont work ?

The axle is angled up a bit, higher at the back (well that is the way I set it up).

A bit over two turns lock to lock.

Good the hear the old flemings do work well, I was wondering if I bought a lemon getting such an old unit. Kevin won a design award for them so I though they should be reasonable effecient.
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Old 10-02-2013, 06:02   #23
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Re: Fleming Wind Vane - Wont work ?

heres a quote from something i just read.
"In practice, the axes of such vanes aren't horizontal but are inclined at an angle of about 20. This is to counteract the characteristic of truly horizontal vanes to slam hard over from side to side producing a correspondingly dramatic effect on the steering. By inclining the axis, the vane's power diminishes as it's pushed over producing a much more sensitive steering effect."
i dont want to labour the point but what you describe is the opposite of this ie 'higher at the back'. Whether it matters...?
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Old 10-02-2013, 14:30   #24
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Re: Fleming Wind Vane - Wont work ?

Ummmmh, that's interesting. Now I really need someone who has used one of these old Flemings to say this is how it is, or not. A photo of one installed or working would be brilliant "a photo is worth a thousand words".

The only images we have are attached. The first is the brochure cover, it shows the Major on the left, the Minor on the right (we have the minor). Note the difference in the axes are the opposite in the two models ???

The other image is of a display of the two vanes at a trade show or similar.
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Old 12-02-2013, 21:01   #25
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Re: Fleming Wind Vane - Wont work ?

If you look a photos of an Aries, you will see the same (approx) 20degree slant to the windvane attachment point. I suspect that any directions refering to which way the vane should be pointed will be the same as an Aries. Another thing to think about is that none of the windvane systems were designed to be used under power. If you are trying to learn under power you may just be frustrating yourself. I tried to use my first windvane under power and was ready to throw it in the nearest dumpster. It took a few hundred miles of learning before it was really good, and then it served me well for about 9000 miles. Dont give up too soon.____Grant.
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Old 12-02-2013, 22:46   #26
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Re: Fleming Wind Vane - Wont work ?

I think both of these are your unit. There are a couple of places where you can see the rigging. Not sure I could figure it out, but since you have one in front of you...



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Old 12-02-2013, 23:54   #27
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Re: Fleming Wind Vane - Wont work ?

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If you look a photos of an Aries, you will see the same (approx) 20degree slant to the windvane attachment point. I suspect that any directions refering to which way the vane should be pointed will be the same as an Aries. Another thing to think about is that none of the windvane systems were designed to be used under power. If you are trying to learn under power you may just be frustrating yourself. I tried to use my first windvane under power and was ready to throw it in the nearest dumpster. It took a few hundred miles of learning before it was really good, and then it served me well for about 9000 miles. Dont give up too soon.____Grant.
Best idea ive seen to use a windvane under power - attach a light autopilot tillerpilot to the vane - you can use the smallest tillerpilot on the market because you get the benefit of all the power amplification from the windvane unit - usually you remove the vane and attach the tillerpilot to that pivot. there are photos somewhere on the web showing this setup - sorry i dont have a link.
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Old 13-02-2013, 09:57   #28
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Re: Fleming Wind Vane - Wont work ?

Great video ! I was surprised that it appeared like the leading edge of the vane was the side that had the lower end of the mounting bracket. I had thought it would be the other way around. My earlier comment about not trying to use it under power, was all about the learning process. They are designed to work under sail, not power. The adding of the small tiller pilot to use the vane under power is a nice addition, but for the learning process I dont think it is any help to have the engine in gear. I think that the OP has a very good vane , and once it is figured out, will work fine. I liked the proper boom gallows on that boat._____Grant.
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Old 13-02-2013, 16:00   #29
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Re: Fleming Wind Vane - Wont work ?

Brilliant, the video clips give us a good idea as to how much movement in the vane translates into movement at the wheel, etc. Thanks for posting those youtube clips !

Only thing we could not see int he videos was if there was a cord or rope running to the small pulley on the top ring gear (that we assume is to set course with). We looked and looked at the clips, pausing on the relevant frames but we can not see how the course control is set up.
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Old 18-02-2013, 21:03   #30
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Looks like you have the control lines screwed up to me. There should be two sets of lines, one to the drum on the wheel which is attached to the steering oar and a second set to the small gear on the vane to adjust course.
Can you not find a installation manual online? Should explain how to run the lines. Keep trying as it looks like a very well made unit
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