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Tiller length

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Post Options Post Options   Quote H2 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Tiller length
    Posted: 19 Feb 18 at 3:38pm
A while back I fell onto my tiller mid gybe and long story short ended up taking an inch or two off its length whilst fixing it in my workshop. I was about to replace the tiller extension anyway so just bought a longer extension so that when hiking the overall length of tiller plus extension is the same as before but obviously a greater percentage of the total length is in the extension rather than the tiller.

Have not really noticed any difference - is there any reason why having a shorter tiller / longer extension would cause an issue?

Thanks
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JimC View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote JimC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Feb 18 at 3:43pm
I honestly doubt you'll notice much difference. I've seen huge variations in tiller length in some of the development classes. I wouldn't be concerned in the least.

Edited by JimC - 19 Feb 18 at 3:44pm
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Sam.Spoons Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Feb 18 at 3:45pm
A shorter tiller will make the steering more responsive/twitchy (i.e. it will take slightly less movement in the extension to achieve the same rudder blade angle. Unless it was a good few inches though you probably won't notice much difference.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote H2 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Feb 18 at 3:57pm
Thanks gents - that is what I figured but good to have the devil off my shoulder nagging away!
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Time Lord Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Feb 18 at 5:54pm
When i swopped my older Merlin for a (new to me) Winder, i found that the tiller was a couple of inches shorter and had to adapt my position in the boat when hoisting the spinnaker as otherwise i could not locate the end of the tiller between my legs while hoisting the kite. Otherwise not a problem as it was easy to lengthen the adjustable tiller extension to allow for the shorter tiller. Didn't notice any increase in twitchiness between the two boats - both Canterbury Tales designs.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Mike Holt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Feb 18 at 6:00pm
There is no right or wrong answer, but some things to think about. 
1. Shorter tiller will fatigue you faster as more load
2. Longer tiller will give you better damping of your steering
3. Longer tiller needs more space for tacks/gybes


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Post Options Post Options   Quote Wiclif Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Feb 18 at 6:52pm
If you have to swivel the tiller extension “round the back” as you tack then the shorter tiller will pull you back in the boat.

There was one boat that i sailed that this just felt wrong, as I wasn’t happy having to move aft as I tacked.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote snowleopard Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Mar 18 at 11:16am
A short tiller will encourage the helm to sit too far aft when beating. If you are aware of the problem you should be able to avoid it. I've just rigged up an adaptor for my Finn so I can use a lifting Laser 2 rudder in place of the fixed rudder specified in the class rules. The tiller is around 6" shorter so it will be interesting to see how I get on.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote davidyacht Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Mar 18 at 4:15pm
In Solos there is a case for a shorter tiller since this gives room for a leg between the back of the centreboard case and the tiller to brace yourself against the leeward tank on a screaming run.

I have never discerned the difference in effort required with regard to the shorter tiller.

Having made the adjustment to the tiller, I am currently on a campaign to shorten the tiller extension just enough to make tacking easier and to force me to use a pan handle grip, which I am told will prevent me using the rudder as a break, though I am not sure that I can change 45 years of bad habits!
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Post Options Post Options   Quote bicrider Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Mar 18 at 4:44pm
Originally posted by snowleopard

A short tiller will encourage the helm to sit too far aft when beating. If you are aware of the problem you should be able to avoid it. I've just rigged up an adaptor for my Finn so I can use a lifting Laser 2 rudder in place of the fixed rudder specified in the class rules. The tiller is around 6" shorter so it will be interesting to see how I get on.


Hi Snowleopard,
               I would be interested how you get on with the Laser 2 setup on the Finn. I have just got a lifting Wayfarer rudder for my Finn as I am scared of ripping the transom out being a wooden one. Had to move on of the pins on the stock to get it to fit. Have only tried the Wayfarer set up twice both in light winds. But appears to work ok seams to be a similar size too.

Chris
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