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View Poll Results: Windex Relevant Today?
Nope, never look at it -- it's useless now that we have reliable electronic wind instruments. I would (or already have) take mine down if I could be bothered going up the mast. 7 11.11%
I look at it once in a while. Probably wouldn't miss it much if it were eaten by a starving seagull. 9 14.29%
Windex is a good thing to have. I look at it often. 27 42.86%
Windex is as fundamental as a compass. Don't leave home without it. 20 31.75%
Voters: 63. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 25-04-2013, 11:51   #1
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Windex Questions -- And Poll!

I'm trying to get my mast completed for my boat to go back in the water, and a few masthead engineering problems have cropped up.

I have installed one of those lovely Shakespeare Galaxy dipole VHF antennae recommended by Nick of Jedi, which means that my windex has lost its home. Now what? I bought a real Swedish Windex XL (extra large), and it needs 30cm of clearance in every direction!

So now I have the problem of constructing a crane to get it far enough away from everything else. So here's the first question: Is there any reason in the world not to mount it out to the side? This will be somewhat easier and sturdier than mounting it straight aft. The only problems I see are (a) it won't make as much sense -- you can't line it up with the mast; (b) you won't be able to see it as well from the side opposite to the one it's mounted on. Which starts to sound fatal, but what do you guys think? Anyone tried this?

And now for the poll:

Who thinks a Windex is needed at all anymore? I love my electronic gadgets as much as anyone (as anyone who has followed my refit thread knows), and I now have two -- count 'em -- separate electronic wind systems, since I left the old Raymarine system up as a backup.

I walked the docks in Cowes and noticed that quite a few cruising boats don't have Windexs at all -- even some obvious long-distance types.

But I sailed so many years with nothing but compass and windex -- I just can't imagine sailing without one. What do you guys think?
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Old 25-04-2013, 12:06   #2
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Re: Windex Questions -- And Poll!

I even have the lamp underneath it (Windex option) to use it at night

The picture I posted with the antenna showed how we checked clearance with the Windex
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Old 25-04-2013, 12:11   #3
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Re: Windex Questions -- And Poll!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
I'm trying to get my mast completed for my boat to go back in the water, and a few masthead engineering problems have cropped up.

I have installed one of those lovely Shakespeare Galaxy dipole VHF antennae recommended by Nick of Jedi, which means that my windex has lost its home. Now what? I bought a real Swedish Windex XL (extra large), and it needs 30cm of clearance in every direction!

So now I have the problem of constructing a crane to get it far enough away from everything else. So here's the first question: Is there any reason in the world not to mount it out to the side? This will be somewhat easier and sturdier than mounting it straight aft. The only problems I see are (a) it won't make as much sense -- you can't line it up with the mast; (b) you won't be able to see it as well from the side opposite to the one it's mounted on. Which starts to sound fatal, but what do you guys think? Anyone tried this?

And now for the poll:

Who thinks a Windex is needed at all anymore? I love my electronic gadgets as much as anyone (as anyone who has followed my refit thread knows), and I now have two -- count 'em -- separate electronic wind systems, since I left the old Raymarine system up as a backup.

I walked the docks in Cowes and noticed that quite a few cruising boats don't have Windexs at all -- even some obvious long-distance types.

But I sailed so many years with nothing but compass and windex -- I just can't imagine sailing without one. What do you guys think?

Doesn't the Windex tell you where the true wind is coming from, unconfused by apparent wind? The first boat i had did not have a Windex, and the one on this boat is broken. I learned to sail on boats that had no windex. And yet we were able to figure out where the true wind was coming from.

Then the two "wings" are supposed to tell you the edges of the "no go" zone? But that will vary tremendously according to your boat design, your sails, how well you have them trimmed, etc., etc., etc.

So to me, never having had one, it's just a vague indicator of what should already be obvious to you, and in fact, esp. regarding where to start and stop your tacks, misleading.

You know where the wind was coming from when you left the dock. Somehow, Dockhead, I think you would notice a wind shift, too.

'Course, I'm no expert, and I'm certainly not an expert on windexes, never having had one, but somehow I still manage to tack.

If I were going to have something on the mast, I would rather just have the wind direction indicators without the "wings," although I don't know if Windexes need those side parts to stay balanced or something.

I just know lots of people who learned to sail without them (because they learned on the same boats I did).
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Old 25-04-2013, 12:20   #4
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Re: Windex Questions -- And Poll!

A Windex is a nice to have item, but not mandatory. They make your neck hurt after a while and if you have a bimini you have to look around it, which is a pain. I would pass on the install myself.
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Old 25-04-2013, 12:23   #5
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Re: Windex Questions -- And Poll!

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Originally Posted by Rakuflames View Post
Doesn't the Windex tell you where the true wind is coming from, unconfused by apparent wind?
What? No, it doesn't. Your windex moves with the boat, so it sees apparent wind.
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Old 25-04-2013, 12:25   #6
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Re: Windex Questions -- And Poll!

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Originally Posted by Rakuflames View Post
Doesn't the Windex tell you where the true wind is coming from, unconfused by apparent wind?
No it only responds to apparent wind.

I almost never look at the windex given accurate electronic instruments. It's a useful backup, but two electronic wind instruments should be almost as good. (Maybe shroud telltails as a crude non electronic instrument may be worthwhile)

In some parts of Australia the parrots love destroying wind indicators, so sailing without any working indicator is not unusual, it is a minor nuisance, but not a great problem.
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Old 25-04-2013, 12:26   #7
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Re: Windex Questions -- And Poll!

A 'Windex' indicates apparent wind direction, as do threads on stays, and ears & cheeks on head.
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Old 25-04-2013, 12:34   #8
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Re: Windex Questions -- And Poll!

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Originally Posted by Rakuflames View Post
Doesn't the Windex tell you where the true wind is coming from?
No. Only an electronic device can do that, by calculating true wind from a) the apparent data and b) the boat's course and speed.

Ooops, posted this and then noticed I'm the fourth to offer the same answer!
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Old 25-04-2013, 13:02   #9
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Re: Windex Questions -- And Poll!

On our previous boat had a 37' mast and no electronic windy. I consulted the windex a fair bit. Our current boat has a 47' mast, and I hardly ever look up at it. We have an electronic windy, but the main reason I rarely use the Windex is b/c it's quite literally too much of a pain in the neck.

... I must be getting old .

I mostly use yarn in the shrouds, sail shape, and wind on my face and hand.
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Old 25-04-2013, 13:22   #10
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Re: Windex Questions -- And Poll!

Y'all aren't helping me any, by tempting me to ditch it altogether!

It's true that mine is not all that easy to look at, 75 feet above the deck.

And it's going to be PITA to install it. Hmmmm.


I was really surprised today, walking the docks in Cowes (beautiful day today, by the way -- 23 degrees), how many boats don't have them. It just seems so wrong
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Old 25-04-2013, 13:23   #11
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Re: Windex Questions -- And Poll!

Interesting that as of now, poll results are absolutely symmetrical. Two votes each for the extreme pro and con, and four each for the moderate pro and con. This could be the new anchor issue!
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Old 25-04-2013, 13:24   #12
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Re: Windex Questions -- And Poll!

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
Y'all aren't helping me any, by tempting me to ditch it altogether!

It's true that mine is not all that easy to look at, 75 feet above the deck.

And it's going to be PITA to install it. Hmmmm.


I was really surprised today, walking the docks in Cowes (beautiful day today, by the way -- 23 degrees), how many boats don't have them. It just seems so wrong
I would not install it with the tricks needed. Just put some telltales on the capshrouds... or, you have Windex (knock-offs?) that mount on a stay or shroud.
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Old 25-04-2013, 13:26   #13
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Re: Windex Questions -- And Poll!

since I don't have any electronic wind indication I do look at my windex

without it all I would have left is yarn tied to the stays and my wet tongue sticking out

But if I had electronic wind indication it wouldn't bug me to not have a windex
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Old 25-04-2013, 13:27   #14
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Re: Windex Questions -- And Poll!

...spraying himself with Windex...like in the Greek Wedding movie...takes care of the flu and anything else that ails you! Mauritz
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Old 25-04-2013, 13:29   #15
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Re: Windex Questions -- And Poll!

Quote:
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since I don't have any electronic wind indication I do look at my windex

without it all I would have left is yarn tied to the stays and my wet tongue sticking out

But if I had electronic wind indication it wouldn't bug me to not have a windex
No wind instrument?

Don, you will thank me for this advice -- go, right now, onto the Defender web site, and order a wind instrument of your choice. Something wireless like Tacktick might be good in your case because of the very simple installation. Trust me -- you will like it. Very much.
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