I'm a Westsail 32 owner and I'm doing a refit
for long distance cruising. I want to upgrade my autopilot
, but the options for the tiller are few. I've been using a Ratheon ST4000+ for years. It has worked well in most conditions, but I needed to replace the control head
twice in the past 8 years. Unfortunately, the control head
is no longer available, because the unit has been replaced by Raymarine
with the SPX-5 tiller pilot, which appears to be the same equipment
, but for the control head, which is now two separate pieces (the computer and the display). In any event, I would need to purchase
the whole package ($2,500) to replace what I have.
also makes a tiller pilot, the TP32, which have been used on sister ships with some success. It's a cheaper option, but I'm looking for something more robust.
Is there any reason why a hydraulic liner ram unit couldn't be mounted above deck
and attached directly to the back of the tiller? The motor
could be installed below deck
and the hoses routed through water-tight fittings. A large pin could be slipped through the back of the tiller at its lowest possition, which would allow for a quick disconnect to free the tiller for hand steering
Has anybody seen this done or have any ideas on the subject?