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View Poll Results: Thoughts on wind meter displays
really important, wouldn't do without 0 0%
not important, don't need 1 7.69%
have one and would replace if it died 12 92.31%
have one, but wouldn't replace if it died 0 0%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 13. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 15-02-2015, 06:47   #1
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Wind Instrument/Displays

I don't have a wind meter on my boat, but keep thinking of installing one. But then don't do it as it is going to be around $1,300 plus a fair amount of my time. I also question my wanting one since I've sailed without one now for 8 years. My first boat that I sailed for 2 years had one, but only the speed worked not the direction. So for 8 years the only wind direction indication I've had is that stupid vane on the mast and (more useful) yarn tied to the stays.

So it pretty much is a given that a wind display is not needed. But I wonder how common/uncommn it is to have one.
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Old 15-02-2015, 07:01   #2
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Re: Wind Instrument/Displays

One more choice needed.

Don't have one but would add one after most everything else.

The biggest advantage to the wind instrument in my opinion is coupling it to the autopilot to sail the wind angle - useful for long times where you don't want to e at the helm or trimming the sails - i.e. overnight single handed.
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Old 15-02-2015, 07:25   #3
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Re: Wind Instrument/Displays

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Originally Posted by Ex-Calif View Post
One more choice needed.

Don't have one but would add one after most everything else.
Is it even really possible to ever get to that point with a boat?
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Old 15-02-2015, 07:52   #4
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Re: Wind Instrument/Displays

Ours dies last season. I missed it, and am getting it repaired. The wind speed is useful, but I missed direction mostly at night. Our windex is not illuminated so nearly impossible to see. Sailing through somewhat stormy conditions at night with no light other than headlamps made me sorely miss the direction indicator.

Running downwind is the other main time I missed it. It's harder (for me) to feel the wind while running.

Finally, I got a pain in the neck from looking at the windex. Our mast is around 50' tall. It's a steep angle up. On our previous 34' ketch I had no problem glancing up, but on out current boat it's literally a pain.

I don't "need" it, but I found that is sure like it.


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Old 15-02-2015, 13:07   #5
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Re: Wind Instrument/Displays

Not necessary but informative in this data flooded world. As a daysailer, I get most of my on board wind info from telltales and windex. A couple of streamers on the shrouds help. Still it's good to say that you were sailing at 7.5 knots in a 15.8 knot breeze. Even with a digital wind meter, I still spend a lot of time looking up to see how the top telltale is streaming
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Old 15-02-2015, 16:12   #6
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Re: Wind Instrument/Displays

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Originally Posted by sailorboy1 View Post
Is it even really possible to ever get to that point with a boat?
Let's see - 8 years with Relax Lah! - No wind instrument...

You have an excellent point - LOL...
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Old 15-02-2015, 17:07   #7
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Re: Wind Instrument/Displays

If you sail offshore, or at night, instruments are significant safety gear. I can't count the times when I've been caught in a squall or a storm offshore with no moon out and have had to rely largely on the instruments for better information on what's going on. It can be exhausting sailing by them, but it's better than not having them at all in those circumstances.

For coastal cruising I think they are nice to have but certainly not as important as offshore.
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Old 15-02-2015, 20:26   #8
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Re: Wind Instrument/Displays

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Originally Posted by sailorboy1 View Post
I don't have a wind meter on my boat, but keep thinking of installing one. But then don't do it as it is going to be around $1,300 plus a fair amount of my time...
I've dinghy sailed for 20 years without one. I've daysailed/cruised on my 25-footer for 5 years with just a Windex (plus depth, GPS, AIS receive, and autopilot). I'd never pay $1300 for an anemometer - that's just too much for something that's merely nice to have.

But for those interested in getting a wind gauge for less money, I was able to pre-order this newly introduced one for $350. The pre-order special is over, so it's now $449. And I can't fully endorse it, because I have not received mine yet.

This particular one is fully wireless and has no display. It transmits out NMEA wind data via Bluetooth 4.0. So you need a smartphone app, tablet, or Bluetooth-enabled PC to display the data. That's perfect for me, because I use OpenCPN on a Windows8 tablet in the cockpit, which will display wind data in its dashboard plugin.

It's a bit of a frill for me, since I've generally done fine with a Windex. But there are some times when the sun is directly overhead and I can't see the Windex due to the sun glare. I'd also like to be able to know the actual wind speed and direction (which the computer will calculate from the apparent wind speed and SOG).



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Old 15-02-2015, 23:09   #9
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Re: Wind Instrument/Displays

SB, let me add my opinion that if you sail offshore, at night and for long periods, the wind instrument is a big help. I have a hard time judging wind direction accurately in the dark if it is light... or even medium truthfully... and we are sailing deep angles. I went to a lot of trouble to fix ours when it crashed after ~15 years of good service.

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Old 16-02-2015, 07:24   #10
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Re: Wind Instrument/Displays

I agree that it is useful. Heck I sometimes have a hard time even during the day because with the swept back spreaders on my boat when you look up at the wind vane or at the yarn on the stays it is hard to judge when the wind really is.

Wet finger still seems to work, sometimes the old ways are best.
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Old 17-02-2015, 13:26   #11
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Re: Wind Instrument/Displays

We have a TackTick system on our boat that I'm pretty happy with. If I replace it, it'll only be so I can integrate the wind instruments with my chart plotter and autopilot.

They're a bit less expensive than some systems:
TackTick T033 Wind System
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Old 17-02-2015, 14:24   #12
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Re: Wind Instrument/Displays

Has anyone tried the Maretron or other sensor type wind speed/direction devices? No moving parts sounds interesting, more electronics sounds scary.

Any real world experience?


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Old 17-02-2015, 14:32   #13
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Re: Wind Instrument/Displays

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Originally Posted by blinkerfluid View Post
We have a TackTick system on our boat that I'm pretty happy with. If I replace it, it'll only be so I can integrate the wind instruments with my chart plotter and autopilot.

They're a bit less expensive than some systems:
TackTick T033 Wind System
I've looked at these. The only thing is there isn't a way to tie it into the Raymarine Seatalk of the rest of my system. But it may be possible to connect to the NEMA input and get it to the autopilot that way.
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