General > Kayak Sailing

Self-steering Hobie Island?


I like sail-trolling in my AI, not to mention speed-sailing, when conditions allow. But, the one thing I don't like about either, is the constant need to adjust the rudder.

So, I looked to see what "real" sailboats do, steering-wise, and self-steering windvanes are popular. Here's a Youtube video that shows a DIY version in action:

This guy also has a website with detailed info on how he built his self-steering thingy.

Do you think a scaled-down version of this might work on an AI/TI? My guess is that trolling might be too slow for it to be effective, but at slightly faster speed, I can't see why it wouldn't work...

I've watched some youtube videos showing the self steering wind vanes and even watched instillation videos and they are certainly an interesting concept.  Although i'm certainly not a expert, I think that the more wind the better to get them steering for you, and you need constant wind.  Adapting to have a secondary rudder that does the self steering, or adding a fin to your existing rudder to give the windvann steering control would be challenging, but knowing your crafting skills I bet you will come up with something.

But I came across some other videos on doing sheet to tiller self steering like this one:

Since you have a jib this method looks to me like it would be easier to adapt to your AI setup.  However all of the self steering stuff needs a way to control the rudder, and the Hobie rudder controls are so stiff, I think that it might even make sense to start fabricating a tiller control for the rudder to use instead of the original.

If you had a tiller you could also install an autopilot  :smt044


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