We installed ours offset. Here is a post I wrote about the offset (for the Wauquiez group) that I'm putting here because it incluldes a link to a SSCA discussion about offsets.
Also, here is a link to a post on our blog that isn't about the Hydrovane but shows the installation
: SV Estrellita 5.10b: All hail the new hailing port
In our limited experience with it we haven't found an issue on a port tack (when our blade is more out of the water). We are only offset approximately 300mm.
We installed a Hydrovane on our Pretorien but we've only been out using it for one crossing of the Strait of Juan de Fuca and one 4 day sail out the Strait and off the W Coast of Vancouver Island. So, our review is fairly limited.
- It was exceedingly simple to use. We aimed the sail, changed the gear
setting to "go", locked our rudder
and it steered.
- We love not having cords everywhere. We love not having moving parts
that can break stuffed down in the lazarette.
- Our first attempt at heat bonding the remote steering
cord (so we can alter course from the companion way) failed while in rough weather
in the Strait but a second heating
seems to have fixed that.
- They don't give torque settings and warn about overtightening and so we undertightened the bolts holding the shaft and on the first use the shaft worked itself cock-eyed. This was easily fixed by re-aligning and tightening and on the second, longer use we had no problems with this.
- We are able to take the rudder out without a dinghy
in flat seas but otherwise need to use the dinghy
, or I suppose, in warmer water
, get in the water
. We motored with the vane rudder in while on the 4 day sail and didn't have a problem...so far. We asked Hydrovane about motoring with it in while at sea and were told it wouldn't hurt anything. Take that with a grain of salt
because we haven't experienced it.
So far, we are happy. I'll try to post a better review when we've used it more.
Some interesting discussion on the installation
SSCA Discussion Board • View topic - Hydrovane offset + bimini