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Old 10-06-2016, 08:33   #31
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Re: Wind Vane: To Have or Not?

As a footnote to the above, our Simrad AP was the biggest user of electricity on long passages when we couldn't use the WV (it was old and finally gave out). We had a lot of solar but it couldn't keep up with both the AP, refrigeration, and running lights. It was very common for boats out there to turn off their running lights which I consider extremely dangerous and stupid. That was before LEDs of course. I have LED running lights now because of this previous experience.

We found the power requirements to be less in calm seas and favorable winds. But even so the power usage was a big factor. Any one planning on using an AP alone should take great care to ensure they have enough battery capacity and charging capability. If you don't have experience with your particular set up on longish passages you really don't know for sure what you will need and may underestimate what you will need. Day sails will not give you that information. You can calculate it if you have all the data but should put a healthy margin of safety in your installation.
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Old 10-06-2016, 08:39   #32
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Re: Wind Vane: To Have or Not?

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Originally Posted by Sandero View Post
Wind vane is not much use in motor in no wind... then you would be better served with an AP...
When there is no wind, some wind vanes can be operated by a simple tiller pilot with very low current draw.
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Old 10-06-2016, 08:48   #33
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Re: Wind Vane: To Have or Not?

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Originally Posted by Sandero View Post
Wind vane is not much use in motor in no wind... then you would be better served with an AP. I use the AP to motor head to wind to raise and lower the main... and it pretty critical.
Yes, which is why I have both. Basically, anytime we have enough wind to sail, we have enough wind to use the windvane. I just wanted to counter this persistent story that vanes are not useful, or somehow more difficult, for coastal sailing. Simply not true in my experience.

I would love to connect our tiller pilot to our vane... just haven't figured out how to do it without boomkin setup.
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Old 10-06-2016, 09:55   #34
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Re: Wind Vane: To Have or Not?

We have both, I can say we use our autopilot much more than our Flemming major wind vane. The biggest reason for this is so far our cruising region did not really permit using the vane, not enough wind for long enough to keep the vane going long enough. Im hoping once we get into the trade we can use the vane more. Our AP (Alpha 3000) is just so easy and works so well. The way our vane is set up its a pain to remove the sheer pin and swing up the foil out of the water. Our boat really doesn't like motoring with the foil in the water so for little passages I don't see us using it in the future, but for 50+ mi trips Id set it up if there will be constant wind.
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Old 10-06-2016, 11:55   #35
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Re: Wind Vane: To Have or Not?

[QUOTE=Terra Nova;2140878]When there is no wind, some wind vanes can be operated by a simple tiller pilot with very low current draw


Very true. Should have mentioned that. I want both for offshore.
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Old 10-06-2016, 12:27   #36
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Re: Wind Vane: To Have or Not?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike OReilly View Post
Yes, which is why I have both. Basically, anytime we have enough wind to sail, we have enough wind to use the windvane. I just wanted to counter this persistent story that vanes are not useful, or somehow more difficult, for coastal sailing. Simply not true in my experience.

I would love to connect our tiller pilot to our vane... just haven't figured out how to do it without boomkin setup.
Mike, I talked with a Tayana 37 who had just come in from Hawaii and basically used the windvane all the time with a cheap tiller pilot. i am going to manufacture mine soon. (Just getting into a welding shop) Will send you photos to see if you want one.
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Old 10-06-2016, 15:22   #37
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Re: Wind Vane: To Have or Not?

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Originally Posted by s/v Beth View Post
Mike, I talked with a Tayana 37 who had just come in from Hawaii and basically used the windvane all the time with a cheap tiller pilot. i am going to manufacture mine soon. (Just getting into a welding shop) Will send you photos to see if you want one.
Thanks s/v Beth, that would be great. I've heard of folks doing this. Our problem is our vane hangs off a boomkin, with no other structure around it. I'd have to build some sort of platform for the tiller pilot to sit on.

Love to see how yours turns out.
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Old 10-06-2016, 18:46   #38
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Re: Wind Vane: To Have or Not?

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...I'd have to build some sort of platform for the tiller pilot to sit on...
Only a bracket to secure the tiller pilot. And a 12-volt outlet.
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Old 10-06-2016, 20:02   #39
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Re: Wind Vane: To Have or Not?

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Only a bracket to secure the tiller pilot. And a 12-volt outlet.
Here's our arrangement TN. Any thoughts?
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Old 10-06-2016, 20:14   #40
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Re: Wind Vane: To Have or Not?

Yes, don't do it this way.

Windvane Variations

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Old 10-06-2016, 21:04   #41
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Re: Wind Vane: To Have or Not?

Mike, our friends with the Rafiki have such a setup IIRC. Next time we're with them I'll try to take a photo of how they have done it and fwd it to you. Should happen within a few days max.

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Old 10-06-2016, 21:35   #42
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Re: Wind Vane: To Have or Not?

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Originally Posted by Terra Nova View Post
Yes, don't do it this way.

Windvane Variations

Yup, not the way...
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Old 11-06-2016, 00:44   #43
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Re: P.S... Clarificatio of Question

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Originally Posted by OneLeggedParrot View Post
So I suppose in the end, it really depends on how easy it is -and the particular boat- to balance the rig and set up a vane on a double-ender that will essentially steer itself most of the time.

The question then is: If you have a double-ended full-keel boat, DO you use a 'vane, and why- or why not?
I delivered a near sistership to Suhali 800 miles once. It took some fiddling but I managed to get her to steer herself pretty well most of the time. However this is a pretty unique vessel, and she had a very long bowsprit that definately helped her, as the long jibboom did with spray.

I don't think every long keeled double ender will selfsteer downwind easily. Even Robin knox Johnson took a while to get it all working well, and Bernard Moitessier used a wind vane. So its not a given that you wont need something to help, be it a windvane, autopilot or some sort of sheet to tiller system.

The biggest advantages of windvane over sheet to tiller or lashed helm is the ability to steer reliably during sail changes, in gusty conditions, and its ease of use and adjustment. And the relitively quick learning curve. Even on a natural selfsteering boat like Suhali it would be much easier to sail singlehanded with a vindvane of some sort.

Operations like reefing, setting and stowing sail become very simple with the windvane. Gybing is straightforward and it is quick and easy enough to use a windvane in inshore waters. I often sailed in and out of an anchorage or harbour with the windvane steering while I got everything ready, or tidied away.
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