I like your faired in rudder hardware
idea, and considered it carefully...
(Seen some that didn't go so well when NOT inspected, though).
The way you remove it regularly (at haulouts), to inspect for corrosion
, it works great for you I'm sure. I must be lazy. I find that stripping the paint
& primer, and re-painting, is all I can bring myself to do. Also, with my 5 to 6 year haulout schedule, I'd worry too much. You do have less drag AND less time spent in maintenance
, though. Perhaps it all balances out? Mine are such a pain to get the growth off of.
If I had my druthers... It would be hardware
made of titanium, with titanium bolts. The straps would be recessed into groves in the rudder/skeg, and with tapped threads in them for "no nuts needed". The heads would be flat head
& recessed. It would all be totally corrosion
proof, strong, PERMANENT, and glassed over within the foils... for a totally flush setup. Maybe someday???
I like a true/accurate and gently upswept WL. To mark this, (on the hard), get the boat
as level as possible side to side, and for n aft, and then tip the bows down 1".
You will need a 1/2" clear hose 30' long, full of dyed water for this... AKA a "water level".
Next put tick marks every 2' all along your chosen paint line, (about 5 or 6" above the true WL), and using a full length scarphed together 1X2" batten, mark a line through these tick marks.
Next hold the aft half of the batten FIRMLY along your marked line's aft half, and secure it with 2 friends, or whatever. Now bend the forward half of the batten up at its forward end, above the first WL mark by 1", and mark it. This is a long gentile curve...
The result (when the boat is trimmed level), will be a paint line that actually starts out 1" higher of bottom paint
showing in the front of the hulls VS the back, but with a gently bent additional 1" of upsweep on the forward 1/3rd of the hulls only. The effect is subtle, but pleasing...
The higher paint line forward, with gentile upsweep, is just right to my eye. A truly straight WL, (= parallel to the water), looks to me to be bow down, which always hurts the look of a boat, IMO.
These are easy to build but VERY time consuming, so building your own is the only way to go, unless you can spend thousands on one.
I built working models of my previous two boats, and both would self steer a windward coarse with windvanes and rubberbands connected to the jib
and tiller. The SC28 model took about 300 hours to complete! It would haul ass into the waves off of the beach in Key West
, and I would do my best to catch her later in my rowboat, CRASH!. It was great fun.
RC was rare back then, but now, that would be way cool!
WINDVANES ON SEARUNNERS:
A few folks have historically had great success with these, (Mark Hassel's), but most did not. None of the Searunner standard windvanes that I have sailed with, including the first one on La Una, worked that well. (Down wind, or in very light air, not at all).
With all of the trimtab hardware and stuff, it puts more metal in the water to corrode and rattle from the engine's prop wash too. I just wouldn't do it. Technology has changed.
With modern Searunners... I would use an electronc autopilot
, like my RayMarine
. (They have tiller units too). The boat's house batteries will presumably be on board anyway, right? The solar
panel on its rack, (in place of the windvane), and the wheelpilot
together, weigh far less than a windvane
with its hardware, and the wheelpilot/solar solution is both FAR more useful, and more reliable, with a > 20 year lifespan for most. This one 110 W panel pictured, produces many times the power that is sipped by the autopilot
. The rest of the energy is stored for night time steering
When moored in catagory 4 winds, my solar
panel & rack made it, where as my friends sistership, 500' away, lost
. The solar panel has less windage!
I have put over 20,000 miles on this one, and never even replaced a belt! It works on any point, even motoring, in any wind, (or lack of it).
Searunners, FAR more than most boats, really lend themselves to wheel
pilots, because of the way they track straight, and their yawing is mnimal. The wheelpilots don't tend to "hunt" on Searunners, and hardly work at it at all. The SRs level platform, VS say, a monohull
, means that the steering load, (= power required), might be 1/10th that of the monohull
When I cruised with a windvane in the 70s, we futzed with it constantly to try to get results. Not so with the new highly developed wheelpilot
. On both Delphys AND Mana Loa
, they have steered us through thick and thin, in ANY sea state so far, (EASILY up to 15' waves & 40 knot
winds). For true world cruising, one might carry a spare, but I never have felt the need.
On a large monohull, or a less well mannered multihull
, (without a skeg rudder), OR for a circumnavigation
, I would indeed have both.