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Old 23-01-2008, 15:47   #1
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windvanes again

According to the list this subject was last discussed in 2004.
I do not care to hand steer from Longbeach to Hawaii. The boat is a Cross 38 inboard rudder wheel steering. The wheel has autohelm steering plus a backup from the same manufacturer. I'm not sure the autohelm is up to the rigors of water sailing">blue water sailing What about a windvane?
What is the current thinking regarding wind vanes off the wind.
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Old 23-01-2008, 16:01   #2
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We have a Monitor Windvane from Scanmar in Point Richmond, California.

It works great off the wind as long as the wind over the deck (apparent wind) is over about 5 knots with the light air paddle. It will work even better with stronger wind.

We highly recommend the Monitor.

Many friends of our used Monitors to go to Hawaii and back. They've always worked great!

A number of non-stop solo circumnavigators have also used them with great results, especially in the Southern Ocean.

Best wishes,

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Bill
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Old 23-01-2008, 17:29   #3
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Try putting "windvane" in the "search" window.

Windvanes are discussed quite frequently on this forum, almost daily.

I've done 2 circumnavigations with the same Aries windvane. There are several brands on the market. They all work pretty well the same.

Do some research and pick one that fits you and your vessel the best. I highly recommend "servo-pendulem" windvanes.
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Old 23-01-2008, 17:40   #4
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windvanes

I forgot to mention a Cross 38 is a Trimaran, windvanes are not generally considered for multis.
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Old 23-01-2008, 17:56   #5
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Steering to apparent wind works much better on slower boats than it does on fast ones. A fast boat can have the same apparent wind angle, but be sailing on widely differing headings. That's why windvanes aren't generally recommended on multihulls, and the same would apply to fast mono's I would think.

The answer for you might be to invest in a high quality autopilot.
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Old 23-01-2008, 18:07   #6
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Originally Posted by 44'cruisingcat View Post
Steering to apparent wind works much better on slower boats than it does on fast ones. A fast boat can have the same apparent wind angle, but be sailing on widely differing headings. That's why windvanes aren't generally recommended on multihulls, and the same would apply to fast mono's I would think.

The answer for you might be to invest in a high quality autopilot.
Actually apparent wind is apparent wind. It doesn't matter if you are in a barge or driving in your car.

I think that the real issue is acceleration. A multi-hull tends to respond to wind gusts faster than a mono-hull. This is what tends to change the apparent wind angle and cause a windvane to have a harder time.

As the vessel accelerates, the apparent wind angle and will cause the windvane to correct to an "Off-(magnetic)course" position.
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Old 23-01-2008, 18:31   #7
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I was debating steering for my Tayana for a long time and after lengthy research decided on wind steering instead of the hydraulic auto pilot .
I choose Hydrovane because it steers with the auxiliary rudder ,so in case of a rudder failure ,you still have steering. Less complicated ,no lines in the cockpit. Doesn't stick so far out like Monitor .With any windvane one can also use an ordinary tillerpilot attached to the vane itself for motoring or steering in light winds . It usess little power and you can also synchronize it with your AWI or GPS . I'm going to try this set up for a year and if it's going to work for me ,I'll be more than happy ,if not, will have to think about hydraulic steering too.
The thing is, I would never go offshore without the windvane.
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Old 23-01-2008, 18:53   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kanani View Post
I think that the real issue is acceleration. A multi-hull tends to respond to wind gusts faster than a mono-hull. This is what tends to change the apparent wind angle and cause a windvane to have a harder time.

As the vessel accelerates, the apparent wind angle and will cause the windvane to correct to an "Off-(magnetic)course" position.
Which is exactly what I said. With a fast boat, the apparent wind angle won't be as reliable to steer by, and windvanes steer to apparent wind angles.

An owner of the same boat I'm building told me of how he went out for a sail on a day with light breezes, varying between 5 - 10 knots. He was sailing close hauled, about 35' apparent, going around 5-6 knots. Whenever the wind died, the apparent angle came forward, so he bore away. When the wind picked back up, the boat would accelerate, bringing the AWA quickly back to around the 35' he was aiming for. After doing this a few times he found he was sailing much faster - around 11-12 knots, still at 35' apparent, and thinking he was doing really well. Then came the reality check - he was sailing at a true wind angle of around 90' - his VMG to windward was pretty much zero.
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Old 23-01-2008, 19:01   #9
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I have been looking into windvanes a lot in the past weeks, and I found some valuable information and advice on this forum.

For my Dix 43, which is being built in South Africa right now, I was looking for a servo-pendulum based windvane system.

I boiled the choice down to Aries, Monitor, or Cape Horn. They all follow the same principle, only the Cape Horn seems easier to customize.
I studied their web sites, and sent emails for more information.

In the end I made the choice for the Monitor, because the information they gave me was fast, accurate, and to the point.

The Aries rep in S.A. replied my email with a link to their web site (which I has used to find them in the first place). The Cape Horn people never bothered to answer.
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Old 23-01-2008, 19:05   #10
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Trimarans have good directionable stability so a vane should work well for you. I remember reading a comment by Chris White about sailing his Searunner 31 with a vane. Off the wind or beam reaching it was like riding on rails, no course deviation. Granted, these vanes were designed specifically for the Searunner and it's outboard rudder. I have seen a few Hydrovanes on trimarans also. Might be worth checking out. Better looking and lighter than a Monitor or Aries. Nice boat, your Cross 38.
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Old 23-01-2008, 21:31   #11
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I don't want to say that Monitor is better or worse than other vains ,but they surly have good marketing and customer service . Look the Raymarine ,their electronics have the most defficincies ,but are the best sellers, thanks to a good marketing and customer service. If would be me, I would rather go with Fleming ,better constructed than Monitor ,less bulky and I heard only good things about it.
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Old 23-01-2008, 23:37   #12
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From what I have seen and read the servo tab on the main rudder or auxillary rudder is the way to go with a trimaran. The Monitor/Aries are a servo pendulum type and may develope to much power at higher speeds. The problem cruisingcat desribes can be an issue in light air and so there may be times when you will have to rely on an electric autopilot.
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Old 24-01-2008, 08:30   #13
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And this is when you hook up the tiller pilot to your vane.
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Old 24-01-2008, 09:26   #14
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We debated the decision of wind vane or AP. There are certainly advantages and disadvantages to both. We ended up with a hyd auto for one reason, the ability to sail a compass course rather then ap wind. We felt it was more important to maintain compass course then to have the sails drawing correctly relative to the wind angle, especially so when cross-track errors could result in navigation hazards.
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Old 24-01-2008, 09:45   #15
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Originally Posted by 44'cruisingcat View Post
Which is exactly what I said. With a fast boat, the apparent wind angle won't be as reliable to steer by, and windvanes steer to apparent wind angles.

An owner of the same boat I'm building told me of how he went out for a sail on a day with light breezes, varying between 5 - 10 knots. He was sailing close hauled, about 35' apparent, going around 5-6 knots. Whenever the wind died, the apparent angle came forward, so he bore away. When the wind picked back up, the boat would accelerate, bringing the AWA quickly back to around the 35' he was aiming for. After doing this a few times he found he was sailing much faster - around 11-12 knots, still at 35' apparent, and thinking he was doing really well. Then came the reality check - he was sailing at a true wind angle of around 90' - his VMG to windward was pretty much zero.
That is also very true, with the ability to shift awa a windvane may or may not keep you going where you want to go. We must watch twa and targets when sailing upwind to avoid giving up vmg by driving off.

Upwind numbers.

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