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Old 30-06-2014, 03:54   #1
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Aries vane - when tacking ? = how ??

I have just become the proud owner of a 33' long keel cruising Monohull
(Photo's will follow)

the vessel has an Aries windvane. I have never used a windvane.

Question.
Imagine I have her set up - with the vane steering - plenty of sea room.

hard on the wind .... maybe 20kts

How do I tack?

She is a cutter.

Is the 1st step to simply disengage the Vane, Tack as normal - get her going on the new tack,

only then re-engage the vane?

'scuse me if this is too simplistic.
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Old 30-06-2014, 05:36   #2
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Sailing hard on the wind you shouldn't need an autopilot (wind vane) at all.
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Old 30-06-2014, 05:49   #3
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Re: Aries vane - when tacking ? = how ??

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Originally Posted by Scare_Rab View Post
.....

Is the 1st step to simply disengage the Vane, Tack as normal - get her going on the new tack,

only then re-engage the vane?

'scuse me if this is too simplistic.
That's the way I used to do it with my Aries.
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Old 30-06-2014, 08:08   #4
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Re: Aries vane - when tacking ? = how ??

You didn't mention having to re-set the vane for the new heading.
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Old 30-06-2014, 08:17   #5
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Re: Aries vane - when tacking ? = how ??

I have this setup, on my cutter rigged 33' too! : ) Aries Wind Vane self steering is typically for ocean-crossing use, in trade-wind sailing with the wind, not tacking into wind. I certainly wouldn't be using it tacking into 20 knot wind.

Unfortunately I've not yet used the Aries myself, but the previous owners gave me a bit of a rundown on it. Typical use will give a yawing course back and forth by about 5° plus wind shift. If there is a wind shift such that you need to tack, then of course you will need to reset everything for your new wind and adjusted sails for the correct course.

As always it varies from boat to boat and influenced by many factors, such as sail layout, helm balance and your specific wind vane gear.

Some reading sources:

http://www.morganscloud.com/2011/12/...opilot-part-2/
http://www.selfsteer.dk/html/how_it_works.html
http://www.oceannavigator.com/Januar...k-performance/

and I'm fairly sure it is out of print, but a Google search of:
"SELF-STEERING UNDER SAIL: Autopilots and Wind-steering Systems*By Peter Foerthmann" may turn up some interesting PDF docs ; )

I suggest to do a fair bit of reading and go out with plenty of sea room and trial the gear. As mentioned, I'm yet to do so. Keep us updated on how you go.

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Old 30-06-2014, 08:24   #6
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Re: Aries vane - when tacking ? = how ??

Scare!, when you start practicing with your Aries, it will seem to steer poorly. It takes a while to get used to them, and learn how to trim for it, and adjust the vane. They are a wonderful piece of gear. Learn how to take the paddle off, and breakaway coupling , and put lots of non-sieze compound on them so that if you need to do it out at sea, they wont be stuck. I always tacked the boat by hand, got her settled in, and then re-adjusted the vane and hooked the chain back up. I am assuming you have a tiller??? Good Luck. ______Grant.
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Old 30-06-2014, 10:12   #7
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Re: Aries vane - when tacking ? = how ??

On our W32, just switched the wind vane to the angle for the opposite tack and let the vane do the tack. I'd handle the sails while the vane did its thing. If I'd dialed in some some weather helm into the chain/tiller attachment, might move it to neutral before having the vane tack the boat. If the sails were up, the vane pretty much steered whether day sailing or making a long passage.

Do the same thing with the WindPilot Pacific Plus auxillary rudder vane on our current boat.

These are both long keeled boats that are fairly directionally stable. A Monitor pendulum servo vane wouldn't steer the Pearson below about 4 knots of boat speed. Too much friction/inertia in the wheel steering. Have since changed to tiller steering on the boat but now have an auxillary rudder vane that steers the boat independent of the boats rudder. The auxillary rudder is driven by a pendulum servo vane, though.

Don't know why people say wind vanes are only for passages. If the boat sails, the vane steers. I don't drive. The higher the wind, the better the vane steers.
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Old 30-06-2014, 15:11   #8
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Re: Aries vane - when tacking ? = how ??

On our previous boat, a retired IOR one-tonner, I built an auxiliary rudder/trim tab vane, and it steered us for thousands of miles. The tacking procedure was as PEter O described above: get lines ready, move the vane setting to the (previously marked ) opposite tack, and while the vane drove the boat through the wind's eye, swap the sheets and trim. Then, if necessary, make final adjustments on the new tack after the boat regained speed. When short handed, why would you not want the vane to handle the helm tacking whilst you worked the sails?

This was on a fin keel skeg rudder boat, and it worked brilliantly, from gale force down to a few knots, so we used it nearly all the time. If your Aries will not do at least as well, I'd think there was something wrong with it.

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 30-06-2014, 19:18   #9
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Re: Aries vane - when tacking ? = how ??

This is what makes CF such a wonderful source of information. Since I did my first 9K miles with a vane (Quartermaster) that you simply engaged when you were on the course that you wanted, I never tried anything different when I ended up with an Aries. I recently bought my third Aries, and if I end up with the boat that I think I will purchase, I will try the tacking with the steering control lines. Maybe old dogs can learn new tricks. _______Grant.
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Old 30-06-2014, 19:35   #10
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Re: Aries vane - when tacking ? = how ??

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This is what makes CF such a wonderful source of information. Since I did my first 9K miles with a vane (Quartermaster) that you simply engaged when you were on the course that you wanted, I never tried anything different when I ended up with an Aries. I recently bought my third Aries, and if I end up with the boat that I think I will purchase, I will try the tacking with the steering control lines. Maybe old dogs can learn new tricks. _______Grant.
It might not be such a great trick. It can be very sloppy & slow and I would rather do it myself most of the time.
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Old 01-07-2014, 01:00   #11
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Re: Aries vane - when tacking ? = how ??

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It might not be such a great trick. It can be very sloppy & slow and I would rather do it myself most of the time.
How do you handle all the sails and steer the boat alone?

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Old 01-07-2014, 10:41   #12
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Re: Aries vane - when tacking ? = how ??

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How do you handle all the sails and steer the boat alone?

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The Aires on our boat will not do a proper job unless the sails are trimmed. Most of the time I find fiddling with sails, helm and the vane at the same time too frustrating. I would rather get the boat going on the new heading with the sails trimmed and then mess with the vane. It's just one less thing to deal with.
As for tacking solo, it is something I learned to do on our boat.
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Old 01-07-2014, 10:56   #13
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Re: Aries vane - when tacking ? = how ??

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How do you handle all the sails and steer the boat alone?
If you're going upwind, the main takes care of itself. All you need to tend are the jib sheet(s). What's so hard?
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Old 01-07-2014, 17:11   #14
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Re: Aries vane - when tacking ? = how ??

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If you're going upwind, the main takes care of itself. All you need to tend are the jib sheet(s). What's so hard?
I can't tack the sail and steer the boat very well at all. Maybe due to winch location. I basically put the wheel over, release the jib, get on new tack, set autopilot, trim jib.

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Old 01-07-2014, 17:21   #15
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Re: Aries vane - when tacking ? = how ??

How many are using the vane with a wheel vice a tiller?? Usually a wheel interface limits the the throw of the rudder. Just so many turns you can wind/unwind with a wheel that is not a limitation with a tiller. The tiller is jest so much more efficient whether sailing with the vane or hand steering.

The only thing that was slow or sloppy with having the vane tack the boat is after the attack. The vane doesn't anticipate hardening up on the helm so will fall off a bit more before stabilizing on the new tack. A minor issue unless racing. The vane would certainly bring the boat through the wind without issue with tiller steering.
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