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Maxi 120

“We had good winds pending 20-30 knots, we sailed on a broad to beam reach and activated the rudder and after some adjustments it kept Ayla on course, consuming zero electricity.”

From Hydrovane installed – Sailing Ayla (syayla.se):

“Our Hydrovane had been at home in our living room all spring. So now it was time to install it. We did have good contact with Hydrovane in Canada who quickly answered our questions prior to installation. There is also a very detailed installation guide and many good videos that shows and explain the installation.

We put many hours in preparation for the installation. Lots of reading and measuring on the boat. A lot of new terms to translate to Swedish to get the whole picture.

 With the help by Thomas (Roberth’s father), we mounted the rudder in a few hours.

 The most difficult thing was the lower `E` bracket that had fixed angels, so we had to work with the timber pad for along time to get it right. It’s important that the pads follow both the contour of the hull and that all angels is 100% correct. The mounting must be totally rigid.

 Now we were excited to see what our new crew member could do for us, so after midsummer we had perfect conditions to try it out. There was an offshore wind and we left Fjällbacka, Sweden, and went out a bit and set course down towards Smögen, we had good winds pending 20-30 knots, we sailed on a broad to beam reach and activated the rudder and after some adjustments it kept Ayla on course, consuming zero electricity.

 We have previously written about why we have chosen to have this solution and we look forward to many nautical miles and crossings that our windvane will steer us across  oceans towards new continents and countries. According to tradition, you usually have a name on the rudder as it is an extra crew member who do the hard work and steers the boat.

 The question is just what should we name ours?”

Hinckley 42 - VIDEO

“I have to say the ride under Hydrovane was much more comfortable because there was erupted jerky movement comparing to the Raymarine autopilot. And there was never an accidental gybe under Hydrovane comparing to about 5 times of accidental gybe under Raymarine autopilot (set to heading).”

“For the 2019 LongPac race, I attribute leading the race because of the Hydrovane’s continuous closehauling at the precise wind angle at the Gale Alley. I didn’t win because of losing the upper bearing of the main rudder at the last few miles.”

From: William Lee
Sent: July 20, 2021
To: Will Curry
Subject: Re: Hydrovane on Hinckley 42

Hi Will,

I had to lock the main rudder to centerline position to reduce any stress because it was dropped a couple of inches due to loose set screws on the upper bearing. The Hydrovane was jury rigged because of a missing bolt at the beginning of the race. I replaced the missing bolt with a Dyneema soft shackle and with the support of two lines port and starboard winched from the lower bearing of the Hydrovane. The two winched lines were essential to holding the Hydrovane in place. They were as tight as a steel cables and there were still sub millimeter movements which contributed to chafing of the two lines. I think that’s why adding this “A bracket” would properly hold it in place without any sort of movement.

I have to say the ride under Hydrovane was much more comfortable because there was erupted jerky movement comparing to the Raymarine autopilot. And there was never an accidental gybe under Hydrovane comparing to about 5 times of accidental gybe under Raymarine autopilot (set to heading). The only downside during the TransPac is that the Hydrovane steered the course with more distance traveled than the Rarmaine autopilot which steered very straight.

For the 2019 LongPac race, I attribute leading the race because of the Hydrovane’s continuous closehauling at the precise wind angle at the Gale Alley. I didn’t win because of losing the upper bearing of the main rudder at the last few miles.

Happy to provide more background on my use case of the Hydrovane.

-Will

C&C 35-MK3

“Your device is a God send for the single and or short handed sailor(s).”

From: Robert Cass
Sent: June 25, 2021
To: John Curry
Subject: Re: Joint Mechanism to Lift HV Rudder Up When Not in Use

Hello John,

Thanks for getting back to me so quickly. Actually I have a Hydrovane on my C&C and love it. I bought the boat in May 2020 in Honolulu and it had the Hydrovane already installed. In fact, it was a big reason I bought it. I single handed the boat home to San Diego in late May and early June of 2020 and I was infinitely grateful to have the Hydrovane as the Raymarine Wheel Pilot broke on the first day. I used the Hydrovane in all conditions except motoring which was minimal. I recently returned from Las Islas Marias in Mexico and again the Hydrovane was key. Before the trip I installed a large solar panel on Bimini and that interfered with the device’s downwind capabilities. I will be ordering a Stubby soon and I also need a new vane knob.

Your device is a God send for the single and or short handed sailor(s).

The only reason I would like to have a way to stow the rudder without removing it is that I like to sail offshore often, either to northern Baja or the Channel Island here in SoCal so removing it is a bit of an effort for this 62yo but it is not that big of a deal.

Again, thanks for writing back and your rational for not wanting to introduce any potential weakness into the system makes sense.

Best,

Robert


From: John Curry
Date: Jun 27, 2021
Subject: RE: Joint Mechanism to Lift HV Rudder Up When Not in Use
To: Robert Cass

Hi Robert

Thanks for that glowing report. We never tire of such.

If you do leave the rudder on  be sure to paint it with anti-fouling or at least go swimming to clean off any growth.

Cheers

John

Contact

Bavaria 30 CC

“Thanks for keeping the course around the globe.”

From: Niklas Krantz
Date: May 17, 2021
Subject: Just another circumnavigator.
To: Sarah Curry

Thanks for keeping the course around the globe. Hafsorkestern, a Bavaria 30 C homeward bound.
Niklas Krantz

Rustler 36

Twice on the Atlantic crossing we encountered 60 knot winds yet the Hydrovane didn’t falter. It’s a wonderful piece of kit and amazing in its simplicity and effectiveness!

From: Bill Davis

Sent: October 21, 2020
To: John Curry
Subject: RE: Query

Many thanks, John. Much appreciated.

Like everyone else who uses them, I’m VERY impressed with the Hydrovane. I helped a friend bring his Rustler 36 back from the Caribbean to the UK a few years ago, then down to the Mediterranean and back subsequently, much of which was done using a Hydrovane. Twice on the Atlantic crossing we encountered 60 knot winds yet the Hydrovane didn’t falter. It’s a wonderful piece of kit and amazing in its simplicity and effectiveness !

Best wishes,

Bill

C&C 40

“Coming home the Hydrovane drove the boat in 20-25 kts at 27-32 degrees awa with 6-10 ft breaking waves.(and even worse off Kaena Point!)”

From: Rick Value
Sent: July 12, 2020
To: John Curry
Subject: From Rick and PJ Value

Aloha John,

We have been meaning to write you for some time now.

We just returned from a 3 week trip to Kauai from Honolulu on our C&C 40 tall rig deep keel sailboat.

The Hydrovane drove the boat flawlessly downwind in 15 kts of breeze and a 115 AWA.

The Kauai Channel is notorious for being extremely rough especially off Kaena Point.

We had a reef in the Main and our 80% get home jib

Coming home the Hydrovane drove the boat in 20-25 kts at 27-32 degrees awa with 6-10 ft breaking waves.(and even worse off Kaena Point!)

It drove up on the puffs and then back down the way I would have been driving the boat!

We were amazed at how well he was driving!

Thank you for your GREAT product!

We are really happy to have him as our third crew member!

He did a great job!

Rick and PJ Value

SV Demasiada

Contact

Moody 36

“Steered me across the Atlantic all the way to Colombia without any problems.”

From: Anthony Cadd
Date: Dec 17, 2020
Subject: New standard vane cover
To: Sarah Curry

Hi Sarah,

Hope you are well.

Very happy with my hydrovane fitted at the end of 2019.  Steered me across the Atlantic all the way to Colombia without any problems.  I’m after a new standard vane cover please as the original is starting to show signs it may need replacing soon.

Many thanks,

Anthony Cadd.

Outbound 46

“We have made two passages with the Hydrovane and she works perfectly.”

From: David Luskin
Sent: January 14, 2021
To: Will Curry
Subject: Offshore

Hi Will,

We have made two passages with the Hydrovane and she works perfectly. We sailed from Norfolk, VA to Bermuda then to Puerto Rico.

In fact we are naming her either:
Willomatic or

Hydrowill, or

The Willomaker.

Which one do you like?

Also can you quote the larger Watt & Sea generator and brackets for us?

Thanks,

David

Have a Nice Day!

Westsail 33

“Surprised to see how relaxed it seems to be even when the rest of the world was experiencing chaos.”

From: Otto Pagel
Sent: October 10, 2020
To: Will Curry
Subject: Re: Hydrovane shipment

Took her out for seatrials today; had 25 knts  gusting 35. Hydrovane is a breeze it works perfectly. Surprised to see how relaxed it seems to be even when the rest of the world was experiencing chaos. I’m sure if that was my first try I’ll only get more familiar with it moving forward . Well designed bit of kit my friends. Thanks

Thanks again; Otto

 


From: Will Curry
Date: Oct 12, 2020
Subject: RE: Hydrovane shipment
To: Otto Pagel

Hi Otto,

Good to hear the first test sail was a success.  Can we add your email and installation photos to the website?

For the vibration under power you can attach a heavy duty bungee/snubber to the rudder handle and stern cleat.  Cinch it as tight as you can and it should dampen the vibration.  There is more on this towards the end of the operation manual.  Let me know if it helps.  Cheers

Kind Regards,

Will Curry, BBA

Van De Stadt Norman 40

“Firstly I must say how pleased I am with my new crew member. After a couple of trips around the Bristol Channel, the Hydrovane has now brought me across Biscay and onto the West Atlantic Portuguese coast safely and with no fuss.”

From: onthepitch
Sent: August 20, 2020
To: Will Curry
Subject: Feedback/new rudder

Hi Will,

Firstly I must say how pleased I am with my new crew member. 

After a couple of trips around the Bristol Channel, the Hydrovane has now brought me across Biscay and onto the West Atlantic Portuguese coast safely and with no fuss. 

Unfortunately  I have had a little mishap and lost my rudder.

Would it be possible to send me a new one to Portugal please.

Kind Regards, David Phillips.

Contact

Sovereign 32

“Hydrovane smile of confidence!”

From: Frank Hillebrand
Date: Sep 17, 2020
Subject: Sovereign 32
To: Sarah Curry

Hi Sarah

My wife’s smile says it all really given the unexpected forecast and Hydrovane confidence!

Title:  Hydrovane smile of confidence! – even when a sudden F7+ is forecast in Biscay…

Frank

Contact

Sun Odyssey 49

“It’s only fantastic.”

From: Roger Bauer
Sent: August 27, 2020
To: Will Curry
Subject: Re: Hydrovane shipment BAUER

Hi Will,

Our new crew member has beginning to work.

Very simple to understand how is working.

It’s only fantastic.

A big compliment to all of you for the care;  at the beginning of the planning, the dispatch of the goods and the installation assistance. Thank you very much.

Best regards

Roger&Brigitte&Hydrovan

Alliage 48 CC

“At the first instance, she did all the steering and we rapidly learned how to optimize and balance. During the following weeks, we had between less than 10 and more than 25 knots of wind, from close hauled to running, in flat sheltered waters and in ocean waves.”

From: Thomas Sileghem & An Verstraeten
Sent: August 29, 2020
To: Will Curry; Sarah Curry; Gloria Anderson
Subject: Re: Thomas Sileghem – Alliage 48 CC – Hydrovane model VXA2D L-5/A/H STUBBY

Gloria, Will, Sarah,

Thank you for your support in installing the Hydrovane on Aspro.

The first day we took Aspro out on the sea after the Hydrovane was installed, our old Raymarine autopilot broke down. We were expecting a day of frustrating trial and error to get Claudine, as we call her, to work.

None of that! At the first instance, she did all the steering and we rapidly learned how to optimize and balance. During the following weeks, we had between less than 10 and more than 25 knots of wind, from close hauled to running, in flat sheltered waters and in ocean waves.

Claudine kept Aspro perfectly on course.

We extended the leading lines all the way to the back of the center cockpit and use them to make course changes as we would with our autopilot. Minus the irritating “windshift” beeping.

A big thank you to Alfredo and Alberto from Astilleros Lagos in Vigo, Spain for their patience, thinking and perfect installation!

Attached a few pictures of the installation.

Thank you again!

Thomas and An

Malö 38 - Video

“We have now mount, test and used our Hydrovane and are very happy with the investment.”

From: Tyrbjörn Boström
Sent: August 24, 2020
To: Will Curry
Subject: Malo 38

Hello again!

We have now mount, test and used our Hydrovane and are very happy with the investment.

I made a small movie on Youtube as promised, but i’m not Ingemar Bergman so it is what it is. Hope you have some use of it.

Regards // Tyrbjörn

Contact

Lotus 9.2

“I have done some testing and got out into Cook Strait in 20-25 knts and she just performed fantastic at no stage did I feel the need to take over as she was helming that well in conditions with wind over tide with 1-2 mtr seas.”

From: Kerry kirk
Sent: June 20, 2020
To: Sarah Curry
Subject: Kerry Kirk

Hi Sarah,

I have installed the Hydrovane. It looks good, but is just hitting the solar-arch, when the wind is from the side, we cannot lower the unit anymore any thoughts on how to fix this. Sorry I did not take a photo of this happening. I can take some if that will help.

Our thoughts are to pad out the lower H bracket to bring it out about 100mm from the boat, and extend the tubing on the upper bracket.

If you need more photos to understand what is happening or how the install was done just ask.

Many thanks

Kerry Kirk


From: Sarah Curry
Sent: June 23, 2020
To: Kerry Kirk
Subject: RE: Kerry Kirk

Hi Kerry,

Thanks for the photos. You’re right, it looks like a nice installation.

If the Vane makes contact with the arch towards the end of its deflection, it won’t affect performance. You should put a piece of neoprene or rubber where it makes contact.

Could you please measure how much it overlaps? Push the Vane over next to the point where it makes contact and measure how much deflection you loose.

If needed, yes, a longer E Stay Tube and H Spacer Pads are the answer.

Cheers,
Sarah


From: Kerry Kirk
Sent: June 30, 2020
To: Sarah Curry
Subject: RE: Kerry Kirk

Hi Sarah,

I checked the vane and she goes over about 700mm in most angles when it hits the arch it is about 500-600mm but I can change the angle of the vane by tilting it back a bit. When it is vertical it hits almost straight away but tilting the vane back 10mm is enough to miss it. I will keep testing and see how it goes.

My first test sail went very well and I am very pleased with her.

I do have one question though: how do you move the remote course adjuster, this unit is offset at an angle, and I would like to move it towards the center line a bit more so that the line doesn’t chafe on the exit holes.

Thanks

Kerry


From: Sarah Curry
Sent: July 7, 2020
To: Kerry Kirk
Subject: RE: Kerry Kirk

Hi Kerry,

Sorry for not getting back to you sooner.

Assume no issues on a beam reach or with the wind forward of the beam. But yes, the interference would be when broad reaching on one tack. If you are getting most of the travel before it hits, you should be fine. We recommend to keep sailing with it and see how it goes.

Great to hear you’ve enjoy using the Hydrovane already!

You can rotate the Worm Box Casting:

  1. Note the vertical clearance of the casting
  2. LOOSEN Worm Box Stud #88
  3. ROTATE the casting until the fairleads point in the desired direction.
  4. POSITION – Leave half a mm (0.5mm) clearance (use feeler gauge if necessary) between the #16 Heading Collar and the top of the #85 Worm Gear Wheel that extend ups inside the casting. Photo attached.
  5. RETIGHTEN Worm Box Stud #88

I hope that helps.

Cheers,
Sarah


From: Kerry kirk
Sent: August 7, 2020
To: Sarah Curry
Subject: Re: Kerry Kirk

Hi Sarah,,

Thanks for the info on how to adjust the worm box casing. I have done some testing and got out into Cook Strait in 20-25 knts and she just performed fantastic at no stage did I feel the need to take over as she was helming that well in conditions with wind over tide with 1-2 mtr seas. I have attached a  photo as I pass the Brothers Island with Cape Koamaru in the background.

Thank you for all your help and advice. I have decided to leave her where she is as I think it works fine. If you need any photos for your gallery or a testimonial just ask.

Thank you again

Capt Kirk

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