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Date Posted: - Friday - 06/25/10 - 3:10pm
Author: Randall, Murre, M31
Subject: Monitor Wind Vane discussion

Have been researching windvanes recently and have, in the end, bought a Monitor due partly to easy access and general recommendations that it not only worked well with worm gear but also was more powerful than the seconday rudder type vanes.

I found that Terry and others on the Fuji bulletin board had posted some helpful comments over the years, helpful especially because our boats are so similar.

I posted questions there and got some responses you might find instructive if going through the same Q&A.

Here: http://www.fujiyachts.net/bbs/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=679

Note that install drawings are posted too ...



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[> Thanks Randall -- Jared Kibele, - Tuesday - 06/29/10 - 3:16pm

Thanks for posting that. I've got a few more projects in the queue to get to first but a wind vane is on the list and this information will definitely be useful.

When do you plan to head down to baja? We (the wife and I) are quitting our jobs on October 15th, finishing up our boat projects (for about a month) and heading south. It would be great to meet you and say hello if the timing works out.


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[> Heading South -- Randall, - Tuesday - 06/29/10 - 7:44pm

Hey, congrats you two...!

My resignation is effective end August. Murre will come out of the water for a couple months for some long overdue jobs. New chainplates for one (essential). New paint for two (vanity).

Estimated departure date, assuming I survive the refit, is mid Oct, but we'll see.

You launch from southern cal?

Would love to meet up at some point...

Will be in Baja the winter, then head to Hawaii in May/June.


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[> [> South -- Jared Kibele, - Wednesday - 06/30/10 - 12:38pm

If you leave in mid October, we should still be in Ventura when you get this far south. It would be great if you could stop by and see us. If you end up leaving a week or two later (or if you take the trip down here at a really leisurely pace), we might even be able to head further south at the same time and parallel each other for a while. Let's try to keep in touch as the departure dates get closer.

Speaking of chainplates... Do you still have the original chainplates? Have you measured their thickness at all? I was told that the deck was rebuilt on my boat back in 2000 or 2001 and that she was rerigged around the same time. The parts of my chainplates that I can see, look pretty new so I'm hoping they were replaced (hopefully with thicker SS) at the same time. We're going to replace the standing rigging in October and if I can establish that my chainplates are not the originals, I may opt to leave them as they are. I'd really like to avoid ripping them out if I can. It looks like a pretty nasty job.


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[> [> [> chainplates -- Randall, - Wednesday - 06/30/10 - 2:55pm

Bruce would be the guy to handle your chainplate question. On Murre the original plate is fairly thin. I replaced two chainplates in 03 with a thicker guage, but I don't remember either.


Hey, re the trip down, have you given thought to pacific side stopovers? I'm torn whether to do it in two or three big legs or gunkhole. I'd really like to explore the area around Scammons, for example, but Capt (forgot his last name) in MEXICO BOATER'S GUIDE strongly recommends against recreational craft getting themselves that far into a lee-shore bay. Not entirely sure why as Murre must be at least as weatherly as a fully loaded square rigged sailing ship. If just...

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[> Pacific stops -- Doug Wilson, - Wednesday - 06/30/10 - 6:08pm

I made a few stops on the way down.
Ensenada for paperwork, one stop shopping, Marina Coral did it all for $40.00 Nice people.Fuel.
First stop Cedros island, rested a couple of days.
Next Turtle Bay for fuel and internet, some supplies.
Then Asuncion bay, nice people, supplies,(no fuel), internet.
Had to go into Mag bay for fuel, went all the way to San Carlos, just to say I did it. Then to Cabo San Lucas, stuck waiting for the wind to quit. Stops at Los Frailes and Los Muertos again waiting for wind to stop. Don't fight the North wind, wait.
The newest guide by Heather and Shawn is better than the others, save your money, don't buy Charlies Charts.
I'm in La Paz for the summer.

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[> [> Thanks for the itin, doug -- Randall, - Thursday - 07/ 1/10 - 12:18am

Sounds like you didn't get to do much sailing. Mostly motoring???

Will check out the Heather and Shawn guide book.

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[> [> Sea of Cortez, a Cruiser's Guidebook -- Randall, - Thursday - 07/ 1/10 - 1:03am

Just bought it. Thanks for the recommendation. The book looks gorgeous. It was great to tool through the color photos on the web and remember again why I'm bustin my ass to make this happen. I know Baja is not everyone's cup of tea, but what a remarkable place! Fawn colored rock baked bare and blue sea.

I've read MEXICO BOATING GUIDE by Capts Pat and John Rains and can recommend it as very thorough as well--chartlets, gps coords, etc. Most valuable to me in its hints for negotiating the check in process and hidey holes in bad weather. Not a pretty book but well put together.

If you marvel at a well constructed book as I do, I can also recommend Capt Leland R. Lewis's SEA GUIDE TO SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA WATERS and BAJA SEA GUIDE. Big, hardbound books, meticulously researched and beautifully laid out--tons of ariel photos and neat and detailed, hand drawn charts. The books were first published in 1965, so are out of print and very dated at this point, but, to me at least, are all the more impressive because of the work required to do them so well (no computers, no gps, no NOAA, poor charts for much of the area).

Lewis captained working sail craft up and down this coast much of his career, so knew what he was about.
These opening remarks in the forward about Lewis are also suggestive of his skill as a sailor and are fun reading:

"It seems only a few afternoons ago that a sleek black 75 foot schooner tacked up the bay in the afternoon breeze. Wearing an ancient frock coat, the tails flapping, an agile boy moved easily up the deck dropping a sail on each tack. Teak gleaming, "Idalia" came neatly to anchor just astern of me. The single handed skipper smiled merrily in my direction and disappeared below. To a fifteen year old girl he was the essence of all adventure found in a book."
-Peggy Slater

Wow, no kidding!

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[> MONITOR INSTALLED--mostly -- Randall, - Wednesday - 07/ 7/10 - 12:49am

Got the thing on this weekend, including an alternate way of mounting the wheel adaptor.

I jury rigged sheet blocks and went for a quick sea trial sail on Monday. Jib only and close reaching, which Murre handles well anyway. And the vane sheet ropes were way too loose. But still, it worked.

Result on YouTube, here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=orrraZVZVrM

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[> [> MONITOR, more "tests" :) -- Randall, - Monday - 07/19/10 - 2:03am

The word "test" makes this sounds like work. Wish I could get paid for this kind of work!

This weekend I tried the Monitor on a few more points of sail, still jib only. NOAA reported wind in the bay was 30 - 35 knots at Pt Blunt. Don't know what it was on Murre (we passed directly behind the point) but would bet it touched 30. So the genny was about half rolled in.

For the broad reach, the boat was balanced with wheel amidships when locked to the Monitor. For the beam reach and quartering run, it was about half a turn to leeward.

The Monitor held the boat on course to within a point or two and always recovered. Each run was about 15 minutes long.

I shot the masthead to "prove" wind direction. Didn't show up too well.

TURN YOUR VOLUME OFF when viewing the videos. The sound of wind is ... deafening.

On a broad reach.


Wind on the quarter.


A beam reach.


This last tack was odd in that the Monitor was hard over the whole time but had apparently locked Murre into a balance for the wheel barely moved. The tack was only interrupted by a tanker that had the bad taste to cross our track.

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[> [> [> Glad to see it is working out -- Jared Kibele, - Monday - 07/19/10 - 12:16pm

I'm glad to see the monitor is working for you. ...both for your sake and so I know that servo-pedulum is an option for Architeuthis. I've read elsewhere on this forum that the Norvane owner was reluctant to sell one of his vanes for use on a Mariner because he thought it wouldn't work. I wonder if your experience with the Monitor might change his mind? I could just copy you and go with the Monitor but 1) they're so expensive and 2) I just spent a bunch of time and effort beautifying my transom and the monitor looks a bit like a jungle gym attached to the stern.

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[> [> [> [> Beauty is in the eye -- Randall, - Monday - 07/19/10 - 1:59pm

What's that nautical expression?, "Beauty is spray over the bows--leave the stern gallery to the ladies." (kidding)

Totally get you from an aesthetic point of view, but I'm not sure Norvane is all that much of an improvement from the jungle gym perspective. And one advantage of the jungle gym is it can be used to climb aboard; the thing is hugely strong for its weight (about 50 lbs?).

Don't know what the best system is--my experience is limited to this vane and about 3 hours on the bay.

But I've been tickled to begin to learn this one and see it work. Quite amazed, actually. Am still in the jib only stage, but I guess jib only in 30 knots wind and 6.5 knots over the water ain't too shabby.

What ever you choose, you are also required to deliver photos! :) Would love to see it working on your boat.

As to the cost, yes!--shockingly expensive--all of them. I bought this one used and under 1/2 retail. The entire unit is stainless except for the servo gear (bronze on mine--stainless on newer ones) and a few plastic, cheaply replaceable parts. So it doesn't really "wear out" in the normal sense.

Good Luck!


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[> [> [> [> [> I think my next boat will be ugly -- Jared Kibele, - Tuesday - 07/20/10 - 12:34pm

In general, I tend to agree with function over form and aesthetics be damned but, when it comes to this particular boat, I just can't get there. Several people have advised me to remove bright work or at least paint over it and they've made very good rational, compelling arguments. I can't bring myself to do it. The visual appeal is a large portion of what made Christine and I fall for this boat so regardless of how much of a pain it is, we're trying to keep it pretty.

Someday we may get a larger boat. I'm hoping that it will be ugly.

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[> [> [> [> [> [> Ha! Good luck buying an ugly boat. :) -- Randall, - Tuesday - 07/20/10 - 2:37pm

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[> [> [> [> [> [> Ugly -- Bruce, - Wednesday - 07/21/10 - 1:11pm

Heh - my guess is that after cruising for extended time that your definition of what is ugly and what is beautiful will evolve

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[> [> [> [> [> [> [> I'm not so sure -- Jared Kibele, - Thursday - 07/22/10 - 12:41pm

I could easily imagine owning a boat like the Tartan offshore cruising ketch (http://www.vesselexport.com/SB2/1.JPG) but I have a really hard time believing that I'd consider it pretty.

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[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> Oops, that link didn't work -- Jared Kibele, - Thursday - 07/22/10 - 12:46pm

How 'bout this one: http://www.vesselexport.com/sb2.html

And then there's this: http://ads.boatboss.com/13_Mobile/22615_MacGregor_26X_Motorsailer.html

I see those all over the place and there may be good reasons to own one (though I'm not sure what those reasons are) but they make me want to poke my eyes out.

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[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> OK, I get your point :) -- Randall, - Thursday - 07/22/10 - 7:06pm

...and I looked the the photos of Architeuthis and see your concern re hanging anything off the stern. What a beautiful wooden banner. Did you make it?

Where's the name come from? Giant Squid?


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[> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> [> I didn't make it -- Jared Kibele, - Friday - 07/23/10 - 12:43pm

Yep, Architeuthis is the genus name of the giant squid. I'm a bit of a cephalopod fanatic.

That banner was on the boat when I got it but I did spend a great deal of time stripping it, sanding off all traces of the old name, creating a stencil, varnishing, painting on the new name, and varnishing more. And because the paint got damaged while removing the old hailing port, we repainted the whole transom while we were at it.

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