Frequently Asked Questions

Hi,

Please tell me how much cost all materials of Y&B standard ( no mounting kit - The boat have a swiming platform to installation ) for a diy construction.

Thank you,
best regards,
Altino C.

Mister Vee offer a few options for mounting Y&B to a swimming platform, which are available from the webshop.

But it is best to send us an email so we can exchange some picture to best advise you.

Hi,

I am interested in a windvane and i really like the idea of assembling it myself, it seems from your latest update that you now have the possibility to cut out the plywood with a cnc machine. When are you planning to start selling the "kits"? What is the price going to be for a diy system of the Y&B?

It is not yet clear if the idea is viable enough to go in to production.
As far as tooling is concerned, Mister Vee now has the bigger cnc machine required for the manufacture of WoodenB, but the details of the product itself need to be more detailed.

Please subscribe to the Mister Vee newletter to be kept informed.

Ik ben geïnteresseerd geraakt door de info over de DIY versie. Kunt u misschien iets meer vertellen over de status van deze ontwikkelingen?

Have there been any developments with regards to the DIY self steering system?

Since presenting the ideas there have been no new developments on "Wooden Bee" itself.

But one of the requirements to be able to start manufacturing this system has been met:
Over the winter period a new CNC machine has been built at the workshop, allowing for the plywood sheets to be milled in a more efficient way than would have been possible with the older CNC.

After reading about the mr. vee wisseltrofee and the review in "zeilen" I would like to add a vane rudder to my zeebaby( http://friesscheepvaartmuseum.nl/beeld/fsm-col1-dat1000006011 ). As i'm planning to sail the small ships race next year. Though not before next sailing season. My deck has to be repaired and that is a great time to add the vane rudder. Because of my boat type cnc plywood would be my first choice especially if the price is somewhat lower. Either way i will contact in december but wanted to let you know i would pre-order the diy-plywood pack if it is available. (antwoorden mag in het Nederlands maar ik wist het niet zeker omdat de site engels is) Thanks in advance. Kind regards Boy Griffioen

At this moment there are some issues with the design of the DIY self steering system Wooden Bee.
These make it unlikely that the system will be available for spring 2018

A lot of boats have equipment mounted on the transom, close to where the self steering unit needs to be.
Experience has shown that it is easier to remove this equipment, then mount the windvane self steering and then remount the other equipment.
But if you have some equipment that is really difficult to move somewhere else, please send us an email so we can have a look at the options.

On many boats there is equipment mounted on the transom that makes it difficult to mount a self steering system on the boats centre line.

It may be tempting to take the easy route and mount the system off centre so it clears the other equipment.
However, mounting the system off centre may result in the pendulum rudder surfacing on some courses, resulting in sudden loss of power and poor steering.

For the best results on all courses, always mount the system on the boats centre line.

For some situations on smaller boats using Mr. Vane with the optional off centre kit may offer a solution. This way the vane mast can be mounted off centre while keeping the pendulum rudder on the centre line.
As an alternative the vane base of Y&B can be made off centre. The vane base itself is moved a bit sideways making a little extra room to the side but the other components stay centred.

The vane mast can be shortened by about 70 cm to suit a specific situation.

But just to state the obvious, the windvane still needs to get wind.

To reduce the height of the vane mast, the pushrod that runs inside the vane mast needs to be shortened. It comes in two pieces, to be glued by the customer. Best to leave that to be the last task, after assembly and installation.

No.

Just as any other servo pendulum system the rudder is too small to be of any use if the boat becomes un-steerable through the boats main rudder.

The gears are part of the system that transfers movement from the windvane to the vertical axis of pendulum rudder.
The gears ONLY transfer movement, not force. And yes, they are strong enough.

But hang on, why do other brands use bronze or stainless steel?

The Mister Vee pendulum rudder is almost perfectly balanced. The forces that are generated by the rudder act on the centre of the pendulum rudder tube.
This means that the gears indeed only transfer movement and sheer strength is not an issue.

Some brands use less balanced pendulum rudders. These will require more force to be rotated and often have bigger windvane blades to generate this higher force. And this may require stronger gears as well.

But if you prefer your gears to be stronger for peace of mind, we now do offer stainless gears in the webshop.

The manual for using your Vee (and servo pendulum systems in general) can be found in the Mister Vee brochure in the download section.

The assembly manuals are available as PDF files. Access to these files is enabled when your system is shipped.
You need to be logged in to access them. They can be reached from a menu further down the website.

Your system comes pre-assembled. Final assembly normally takes about an hour in total. Watching the glue dry will take a day but you can do other stuff during that time too.

From the start in 2006 the Mister Vee self steering systems were shipped in parts to be self assembled. This allowed packing the systems by an external company at a very low rate.

In 2012 government policies on these kinds of companies changed resulting in turmoil.

This eventually lead to poorer quality and unhappy customers.

To get quality back up we took back parts handling. As it turned out it took relatively little extra time to actually assemble the systems in stead of just picking parts. As a bonus, parts get an extra check if they are up to standard.

From the start the Mister Vee self steering systems were designed to be light weight.

But how light is light?

There are brands that claim to offer "light weight" but do not mention the actual weight anywhere.
Or their claim to light weight dates back to the 1980's.

Let there be no doubt. Mister Vee offer the lightest self steering systems ever!

The standard version of Mr. Vane weighs just over 6.5 kgs or 14.5 lbs.
The standard version of Y&B weighs about 10 kgs or 21 lbs. This is also the lightest system ever. How?

To compare the two correctly they need to offer the same.

As Mr. Vane is aimed at smaller boats than Y&B, comparing them side by side requires heavier parts on Mr. Vane.
This means that Mr. Vane should have the long pendulum rudder, the long pendulum rudder tube and the complete mounting kit.
If you then were to mount Mr. Vane to a boat and Y&B on a similar boat, then Y&B would probably be a a tiny bit lighter than Mr. Vane.

Windvane self steering can not cope with constant acceleration followed by slowing down.

When the boat accelerates to a significantly higher speed, the direction of the apparent wind changes. The windvane will steer the boat away from the wind, changing the total balance of boat and windvane.
The boat can then easily lose power from the sails and the system starts to steer back in to the wind.
This means that it may not be possible to steer an ultra light displacement boat or multi hull.

Especially on fast accelerating boats this will lead to unsatisfying steering. This is why we will not guarantee satisfaction when you install a windvane self steering system to a multi hull or a boat that has the ability to plane.
Use headless Vee, a Y&B self steering system without the mast and windvane, plus a simple tiller pilot for this purpose.

If you have a (very) small boat you may wonder if it can be useful to set up a windvane self steering system.
Usually that will depend on two things: The kind of sailing you do how windvane self steering compares to the alternatives.
If you never go sailing for more than two hours then for most it would be pointless. But if you always get too tired when you sail longer that 2 hours but you actually would like to go futher, then windvane self steering may be the ticket to Vreedom.

Small boats are often very lively which means that when you leave the tiller the boat immediately goes somewhere you do not want it to go. That often means that you can not feed yourself or get enough to drink.
Also, sitting at the helm, in the same position, for hours on end makes you tired. Self steering can change all that, which opens up possibilities to go where you could not go before.

But is windvane self steering the most practical?

Most sailors turn to an autopilot first. And on short trips that is often a good choice. But you do need enough power from the boats battery to be able to keep the auto pilot going. And that is often where smaller boats have a problem, especially on longer trips. If the wind picks up, an autopilot consumes more power. And on a small boat that can amount to something like 70% of the daily power consumption! Draining the battery can break it. With windvane self steering you do not worry about power consumption.

The light weight Mister Vee self steering systems offer the best alternative to an autopilot, especially on a smaller boat!

Most plastics suffer from degradation due to the influence of ultra violet rays to some extent.
But the plastics used by Mister Vee are either in a position where actual strength is not much of an issue or a fibre reinforced version is used.
The fibres do not get damaged by UV so the only problem that may occur (after several years of use) is that the fibres become exposed at the surface of the tubes.
This is why you should NEVER clean the tubes with any kind of abrasive. The tubes are standard parts and can either be replaced cheaply or can even be painted to re-coat the fibres and lengthen the life span.

The only parts that are likely going to fail because of UV degradation at some point in time are the small gear and maybe the windvane blade. But using any other material would have involved serious design changes which would have resulted in a steep price increase. The complete wind vane can be taken off to be stored inside the boat when not in use to shelter from the sun.
Also note that since starting selling the Mister Vee systems in 2006 we have NEVER had to replace a windvane blade.

You may be wondering if windvane self steering will work on your boat. What weight will work, or what length?

Well, neither weight nor length are used as a general guideline.
Servo pendulum self steering systems were designed to take over the steering from a human helmsman. That means that the forces and movement that need to be generated by the system are comparable.
That leads to a two-part answer. If your boat has tiller steering, and the boat can be properly trimmed so that you do not have to fight the tiller to keep the boat on course, than a servo pendulum system like the ones on offer from Mister Vee should have no problem to do the same.
On a wheel steered boat there often is a reduction between the wheel and the rudder. If that reduction is too high it may be difficult or even impossible to set up self steering. However, if there is an option of connecting the self steering system to an emergency rudder, things get easier.
There is a separate FAQ about wheel steering.

Generally not. Usually once the course is set there is no need to change the settings unless there is a change in the balance of the forces at work. The most important change you will have to make is for a lasting change of windspeed or wind direction.

Ik ben aan het rondkijke naar een windvaan maar ik geraak er niet wijzer uit. Die van jullie is zeker de goeiekoopste maar ik wil volgendjaar met mijn spirit 32 nonstop de wereld rond. Waarom zou de mister vee dan de beste keuze zijn?

Meerdere klanten van Mister Vee hebben een Vee gebruikt voor grote tochten, inclusief wereldomzeilingen. Voor zover ik weet zat daar geen non-stop trip bij.

De Mister Vee systemen vloeien voort uit een behoefte aan zelfstuur op kleine schepen en die worden vaak voor "kustzeilen" gebruikt.
Daarvoor voldoet de 3 jaar break=replace garantie op onderdelen in verreweg de meeste gevallen.

Hoewel er niet vaak aanspraak gemaakt hoeft te worden op die garantie kan het wel gebeuren. Op een wereldomzeiling kan dat kostbaar uitpakken en ingewikkeld zijn om uit te voeren.

Een ander aspect is dat in de voorbereiding naar een grote trip het zelfstuursysteem vaak als laatste wordt gemonteerd terwijl er groot belang bij is het goed werkend te hebben.

Vaak wordt er overhaast vertrokken terwijl het zelfstuursysteem nog niet goed uitgeprobeerd is.

Met inachtneming van het bovenstaande kan Y&B nog steeds een prima keus zijn.

Hi,

I have a Marples 26 foot constant camber trimaran that to which I would like to fit wind vane steering gear, however, I note the comment in the guarantee information that the wind vane steering gear is not guaranteed for use with multihulls. I would be grateful if you could explain why as the Mr Vee Standard Y&B looks otherwise perfect for my boat.

All the best,

Simon

Windvane self steering can not cope with constant acceleration followed by slowing down. This means that it may not be possible to steer an ultra light displacement boat or multi hull.
A windvane self steering system uses the apparent wind direction to keep on course.
When the boat accelerates, the direction changes. The system will correct accordingly which will in the end make the boat slow down.
The course will again be corrected and the cycle starts again.

Hoi,

Is de mister vane ook geschikt om met een oude mini een COCO de oceaan over te steken. Laten we zeggen max speed 10 knopen.

Can a Mister Vee windvane self steering system steer a mini transat?

Ultra light displacement boats like Mini Transats generally are too fast to be steered by a windvane self steering system.

The boats apparent wind is cause by the boats speed as well as the true wind direction, and that makes course keeping unreliable, often resulting is big variations in course and continuous speed changes.

I stumbled on your site during a search for an affordable windvane and found your site. Will this system produce enough power to steer my Pearson 40 (modified balanced rudder) for extended periods in heavy weather.I was wondering if the SS gears would be more appropriate as well. Thank You. Bruce

The power a windvane self steering system can deliver is directly related to the size of the pendulum blade, and the height above the water. The higher the mounting, the longer the pendulum rudder, the higher the force the system can generate.

But the the actual force depends on how light the boats steering actually is. An un-balanced barn door rudder will require more force to steer the boat than a fully balanced spade rudder. The lightness of the transmission in the rudder system is also a factor.

Unless there is a high reduction or high friction in the transmission, in most boats Y&B with the standard length rudder (1450 mm) should work well.

Is it suitable for beneteau first 42 built 1982?

Generally speaking, Y&B in combination with a wheel adapter should be able to steer this boat. For the negative transom an extra mounting tube is probably also needed.

Do you have the attachments to fit this unit to a 9meter cable/wheel steering catalac catamaran?

Catamarans can be notoriously hard to get satisfying results from windvane self steering.
This is why we do not offer support for catamarans.

I have an Irwin 34 with dodger Bimini. Will your wind vane be able to be extended above the height without compromising it's function?

Kind Regards,
Michael

It would be possible to extend the height.

This requires a custom vanebase and some extra materials.
As long as the vanebase can be made together with the others for the spring batch, cost would not need to be very high.

I have a Cal 25 and would like to purchase self steering to be combined with a center mounted outboard engine.

Is the Mr. Vane sufficient and does the mounting kit come with the turning blocks I need to complete the system?

Thanks,

Mark

From pictures available on the internet it seems that most cal 25s have an outboard engine in a cut-out in the transom.

That allow for the use of a standard length outboard engine which would leave too little space for any windvane self steering system, including Mr. Vane.

Mr. Vane was designed to be used in combination with a centrally mounted outboard engine on a lifting outboard bracket.
This generally requires a long tail or extra long tail outboard engine.

It may be possible to fit Y&B around the outboard engine, but that would mean that the outboard can no longer be tilted up during sailing.

Generally speaking, Mr. Vane is intended for smaller boats, and Y&B is intended for any size up to 12 meters. Other sizes of boats may work too but hey, this is a general answer.

The other mayor difference is in the mounting options.
Y&B standard offers an integrated solution for the vast majority of boats, and the flat configuration of Mr. Vane ads some options for even more situations, primarily on smaller boats.

For the best comparison, please refer to the Mister Vee Product Brochure from the download section.

my 20 ft. sailboat has a transom held rudder. do i want Mr. Vane or Y&B ? thank you.

For a boat with a transom hung rudder I recommend Y&B standard with an extra mounting tube.
This system has a mounting kit included that together with the extra mounting tube allows for mounting around and behind the rudder.

For fitting to smaller boats Y&B can be ordered with a short pendulum rudder, which is a free option.

Is it possible to relocate the vane and mast horizontally aft to clear the mizzen boom, keeping the pendulum at the stern?

I have a clearance issue with my mizzen boom and sheeting. I have a wooden plank athwartships 560mm aft on top of davits about where I could mount the mast. I would need a horizontal shaft to connect the two parts.

Additionally my stern deck is 1270mm above the waterline.
I have wheel steering and did not find the section on wheel steering in the FAQ.
Is this possible?

That is a complicated puzzle to solve.
If I read the question correctly, the pendulum rudder would need to be in front of the vane mast?

At first glance, a system could be set up that way, but I'd have to study that setup to see if the geometry would actually steer the boat.
It would mean that the pendulum rudder can not be swung out of the water when at rest, as it would be between mounting tubes.

But the distance between the pendulum rudder and vane mast can be made "at any length"

There is a FAQ section on wheel steering from now on, but not all questions will show up there.

For more detailed study on this topic, please send some pictures of the boat to captain (a) mistervee.com

Hello,
The Navik on my boat has a broken vane ,lost counter weight,and destroyed turret adjuster/clamp.
Does the USD replacement fit this?
Please provide price with delivery to Melbourne Australia
Thanks

Rob

Tha Navik USD conversion kit replaces the Navik connecting rod and the complete Navik windvane section atop the stainless steel mast.

So indeed, the USD conversion kit would be a solution for your situation.
Prices for the kit and 5 kilogram shipping are in the webshop:

http://www.windvaneselfsteering.com/catalog/3

The price for the USD conversion kit includes 21% sales tax wwhich is not charged for shipments outside the EU.

I am interested to know what the price would be for a wheel adapter if delivered to Canada or if you have a Canadian or US. distributor? Also is there a better set of photos for the wheel adapter that I can access.
Thank You
Bob V.

The price can be found in the webshop under accessories. The wheel adapter requires 5 kilogram shipping.
Prices for shipping can also be found in accessories.

Is it possible to relocate the vane and mast horizontally aft to clear the mizzen boom, keeping the pendulum at the stern?

I have a clearance issue with my mizzen boom and sheeting. I have a wooden plank athwartships 560mm aft on top of davits about where I could mount the mast. I would need a horizontal shaft to connect the two parts.

Additionally my stern deck is 1270mm above the waterline.
I have wheel steering and did not find the section on wheel steering in the FAQ.
Is this possible?

That is a complicated puzzle to solve.
If I read the question correctly, the pendulum rudder would need to be in front of the vane mast?

At first glance, a system could be set up that way, but I'd have to study that setup to see if the geometry would actually steer the boat.
It would mean that the pendulum rudder can not be swung out of the water when at rest, as it would be between mounting tubes.

But the distance between the pendulum rudder and vane mast can be made "at any length"

There is a FAQ section on wheel steering from now on, but not all questions will show up there.

For more detailed study on this topic, please send some pictures of the boat to captain (a) mistervee.com

Generally, No, unless there is a bypass valve and an emergency tiller option.

The servo pendulum systems that are on offer from Mister Vee can not overcome the internal friction of a hydraulic transmission of steering input. Only auxiliary rudder type systems, which Mister Vee do not offer, will do in this situation.

hi, is it right that you have a windvane in stainless steel that i can built my self, and what is the cost of that?

We did offer a kit for a stainless steel version in the past, for integration in to a custom stainless steel mounting.
We no longer offer it on the website but can supply the most important parts for it.

Please contact us through the email form directly so we can make you an offer for those parts.

Hi,

I have a Marples 26 foot constant camber trimaran that to which I would like to fit wind vane steering gear, however, I note the comment in the guarantee information that the wind vane steering gear is not guaranteed for use with multihulls. I would be grateful if you could explain why as the Mr Vee Standard Y&B looks otherwise perfect for my boat.

All the best,

Simon

Windvane self steering can not cope with constant acceleration followed by slowing down. This means that it may not be possible to steer an ultra light displacement boat or multi hull.
A windvane self steering system uses the apparent wind direction to keep on course.
When the boat accelerates, the direction changes. The system will correct accordingly which will in the end make the boat slow down.
The course will again be corrected and the cycle starts again.

Hoi,

Is de mister vane ook geschikt om met een oude mini een COCO de oceaan over te steken. Laten we zeggen max speed 10 knopen.

Can a Mister Vee windvane self steering system steer a mini transat?

Ultra light displacement boats like Mini Transats generally are too fast to be steered by a windvane self steering system.

The boats apparent wind is cause by the boats speed as well as the true wind direction, and that makes course keeping unreliable, often resulting is big variations in course and continuous speed changes.

I stumbled on your site during a search for an affordable windvane and found your site. Will this system produce enough power to steer my Pearson 40 (modified balanced rudder) for extended periods in heavy weather.I was wondering if the SS gears would be more appropriate as well. Thank You. Bruce

The power a windvane self steering system can deliver is directly related to the size of the pendulum blade, and the height above the water. The higher the mounting, the longer the pendulum rudder, the higher the force the system can generate.

But the the actual force depends on how light the boats steering actually is. An un-balanced barn door rudder will require more force to steer the boat than a fully balanced spade rudder. The lightness of the transmission in the rudder system is also a factor.

Unless there is a high reduction or high friction in the transmission, in most boats Y&B with the standard length rudder (1450 mm) should work well.

Do you have the attachments to fit this unit to a 9meter cable/wheel steering catalac catamaran?

Catamarans can be notoriously hard to get satisfying results from windvane self steering.
This is why we do not offer support for catamarans.

Ik vaar met een victoire 34, met een stuurwiel. Twee jaar geleden heb ik een tweedehands navik op de kop kunnen tikken. Door omstandigheden heb ik er nog niet mee kunnen varen.

Nu ik me wat beter in windvanen heb verdiept begin ik te twijfelen of de navik wel een goed systeem is op mijn schip en overweeg toch wat anders te kiezen Komend jaar vertrekken we voor een rondje atlantic... dus ik kan de navik niet uitgebreid testen voordat ik vertrek.

Is er ooit een Navik / Y&B op een victoire 34/1044 geplaatst en was dit succesvol? Zo nee, enige indicaties of dit succesvol kan zijn of niet?

Groeten,

Mark

Navik self steering systems have generally been used for for smaller boats with tiller steering.
But as long as the wheel steering is purely mechanical, the forces that need to be generated are more or less similar to tiller steering, except for the power to accelerate the steering wheel, if very quick and rather big movements are needed.

So in general, a Navik should be able to steer a boat with a steering wheel.

But if there should arise a need for the boat to be steered with bigger forces, like in a sudden gust of wind, with no time to adjust the trim of the sails, the system will try to provide that bigger force, and the way the paddle is designed may prove too weak.

Mr Fleming of Scotland told me you can supply a steering hub to suit the Fleming self-steering wind vane.

My boat is 30ft long. What size hub and associated gear do you recommend I buy and how much please, including post to Australia?

Thanks and best wishes.

The wheel adaptor available from Mister Vee has a diameter of 16 cm (about 6.5"), which is more or less a standard dimension for most brands.

Pricing can be found and orders can be placed in the webshop, under "accessories"
Shipping to Australia by post is eu 35.--

Self steering systems are designed to be used when the boat is going forward. But what happens when you (need to) reverse the boat?

With a servo pendulum, the blade will be unstable when reversing the boat and it will want to swing to the side.
If it can do so freely then there is no problem. It will float to the surface and will not affect the boats manoeuvring.

But it is very different when the pendulum rudder can not float to the surface freely.
The swing can be limited by design, like with monitor, Aries and Beaufort self steering systems, or by set-up, for instance the steering lines do not allow a full swing.

If the swing is limited by design, there will be a pull to the side that needs to be compensated the opposite way.

If the swing is limited by the steering lines, VERY BIG LOADS may act upon parts of the steering line guidance which can cause damage or dislocation to the mounting. Proceed backwards with caution. Contact Mister Vee for advice.

Generally, No, unless there is a bypass valve and an emergency tiller option.

The servo pendulum systems that are on offer from Mister Vee can not overcome the internal friction of a hydraulic transmission of steering input. Only auxiliary rudder type systems, which Mister Vee do not offer, will do in this situation.

A boat with a centre cockpit requires longer steering lines and more guide blocks than a boat with a normal cockpit.

This can easier lead to more stretch and less responsive steering. Combining that with wheel steering kan make things even more complicated.
On a wheel steered boat there often is a reduction between the wheel and the rudder. If that reduction is done with hydraulics, Mister Vee do not offer self steering for your boat. The hydraulics have too much internal friction for a standard servo pendulum system to overcome.

If your boat has a connection for an emergency tiller that can be used for windvane steering, that is by far the easiest option. The systems from Mister Vee require a tiller of about 35 cm (just over 1') and if it would make things easier, it can even point to the rear of the boat. If there is no E-tiller, then a wheel adapter is required. This is connected to the centre of the steering wheel and the steering lines are connected to the adapter.

The manual for using your Vee (and servo pendulum systems in general) can be found in the Mister Vee brochure in the download section.

The assembly manuals are available as PDF files. Access to these files is enabled when your system is shipped.
You need to be logged in to access them. They can be reached from a menu further down the website.

On a wheel steered boat there often is a reduction between the wheel and the rudder.

If your boat has a connection for an emergency tiller that can be used for windvane steering, that is by far the easiest option. The systems from Mister Vee require a tiller of about 35 cm (just over 1') and if it would make things easier, it can even point to the rear of the boat.

If that reduction is done with hydraulics, Mister Vee do not offer self steering for your boat unless there is a bypass valve to switch off the hydraulics.
The hydraulics have too much internal friction for a standard servo pendulum system to overcome.

If there is no E-tiller, then a wheel adapter is required. This is connected to the centre of the steering wheel and the steering lines are connected to the adapter.

A lot of boats have equipment mounted on the transom, close to where the self steering unit needs to be.
Experience has shown that it is easier to remove this equipment, then mount the windvane self steering and then remount the other equipment.
But if you have some equipment that is really difficult to move somewhere else, please send us an email so we can have a look at the options.

Windvane self steering can not cope with constant acceleration followed by slowing down.

When the boat accelerates to a significantly higher speed, the direction of the apparent wind changes. The windvane will steer the boat away from the wind, changing the total balance of boat and windvane.
The boat can then easily lose power from the sails and the system starts to steer back in to the wind.
This means that it may not be possible to steer an ultra light displacement boat or multi hull.

Especially on fast accelerating boats this will lead to unsatisfying steering. This is why we will not guarantee satisfaction when you install a windvane self steering system to a multi hull or a boat that has the ability to plane.
Use headless Vee, a Y&B self steering system without the mast and windvane, plus a simple tiller pilot for this purpose.

If you have a (very) small boat you may wonder if it can be useful to set up a windvane self steering system.
Usually that will depend on two things: The kind of sailing you do how windvane self steering compares to the alternatives.
If you never go sailing for more than two hours then for most it would be pointless. But if you always get too tired when you sail longer that 2 hours but you actually would like to go futher, then windvane self steering may be the ticket to Vreedom.

Small boats are often very lively which means that when you leave the tiller the boat immediately goes somewhere you do not want it to go. That often means that you can not feed yourself or get enough to drink.
Also, sitting at the helm, in the same position, for hours on end makes you tired. Self steering can change all that, which opens up possibilities to go where you could not go before.

But is windvane self steering the most practical?

Most sailors turn to an autopilot first. And on short trips that is often a good choice. But you do need enough power from the boats battery to be able to keep the auto pilot going. And that is often where smaller boats have a problem, especially on longer trips. If the wind picks up, an autopilot consumes more power. And on a small boat that can amount to something like 70% of the daily power consumption! Draining the battery can break it. With windvane self steering you do not worry about power consumption.

The light weight Mister Vee self steering systems offer the best alternative to an autopilot, especially on a smaller boat!

You may be wondering if windvane self steering will work on your boat. What weight will work, or what length?

Well, neither weight nor length are used as a general guideline.
Servo pendulum self steering systems were designed to take over the steering from a human helmsman. That means that the forces and movement that need to be generated by the system are comparable.
That leads to a two-part answer. If your boat has tiller steering, and the boat can be properly trimmed so that you do not have to fight the tiller to keep the boat on course, than a servo pendulum system like the ones on offer from Mister Vee should have no problem to do the same.
On a wheel steered boat there often is a reduction between the wheel and the rudder. If that reduction is too high it may be difficult or even impossible to set up self steering. However, if there is an option of connecting the self steering system to an emergency rudder, things get easier.
There is a separate FAQ about wheel steering.

Generally not. Usually once the course is set there is no need to change the settings unless there is a change in the balance of the forces at work. The most important change you will have to make is for a lasting change of windspeed or wind direction.

Is it suitable for beneteau first 42 built 1982?

Generally speaking, Y&B in combination with a wheel adapter should be able to steer this boat. For the negative transom an extra mounting tube is probably also needed.

my 20 ft. sailboat has a transom held rudder. do i want Mr. Vane or Y&B ? thank you.

For a boat with a transom hung rudder I recommend Y&B standard with an extra mounting tube.
This system has a mounting kit included that together with the extra mounting tube allows for mounting around and behind the rudder.

For fitting to smaller boats Y&B can be ordered with a short pendulum rudder, which is a free option.

I have been researching these wind vanes till my eyes are cross and my brain is fried. I tried looking at you site and you advise to move the swim ladder but you say the vane was designed for a centre motor, so I am confused. so here is my question. Is it worth me examining further your vane for a Catalina 36 with wheel, about 16,000 lbs with sugar scoop stern and center swim ladder? If this is a 'probably yes" I will look into it further.

The system that is advised for a centre motor is Mr. Vane, but that is for a centrally mounted outboard engine.

For a central swim ladder on a scoop Y&B standard + an extra mounting tube may work, but that depends on how the ladder deploys.
The blue boat on the Y&B product page has a telescopic slide out ladder:
http://windvaneselfsteering.com/YB-std

If the ladder has to swing up over the top before it passes the system, it will depend on how high the system can be mounted compared to the swing height of the ladder.

Greetings
I REALLY hope your self steering will work with my boat.....

I have a sailboat with outboard engine mounted to a vertically articulating hinge arrangement, at center of transom.
I noticed your mounting apparatus that accommodates a low mounted swim platform, and it gave me hope that self steering may still be possible without removing or relocating my existing engine.
What do I need to present to you to proceed with a decision as to whether your self steering will work?
Desired outcome: Maintain tilt arrangement of outboard engine.
Add self steering. Achieve self steering system with no problems between the engine and self steering.
Questions: Does this sound like something that will work? Will turbulence and thrust of engine damage/destroy blade of self steering/ cause other issues? Does/can water blade retract for engine operations?
Please indicate whether you can advise how to proceed. Thank you.

The Mr. Vane self steering system was designed to be mounted below and in front of an outboard engine fitted on a specific type of outboard bracket.

For this purpose, the vane mast can be fitted to the vane base off centre, allowing the engine to be lifted up (outboard bracket) and tilted (engine mechanism).

This can be seen in the Mister Vee brochure available from the download section.

If this does not suit the situation on your boat, please use send us an email to explain the situation.

Hello
Do you have experience of these units fitted to Mini650?
I am in the UK , North Essex, if you think your product would be suitable are there any localy I could inspect?
Regards

The mini 650 type of boat has the ability to plane.
This allows for big changes in speed with small wind speed increase, and that gives a big change in apparent wind direction.

This leads to a zig-zag course which is very unsatisfying.

This is why a windvane self steering system is not recommended for this type of boat.

My boat is a jeanneau sun shine 38, built 1986. I will be sailing her around the world and want to know if Mister Vee is right for me.

The mounting kit that is included with Y&B standard does allow for the kind of mounting a sugar scoop requires. From the pictures on the internet it is unclear if you would need just 1 extra mounting tube or more, the scoop seems to extend quite a bit.

If your boat has wheel steering, you would also need a wheel adapter. But if the boat has an option to connect the self steering system to an emergency tiller, that would be easier to realize and easier to use.

The emergency tiller would need to be about 30 cm/1' long and can point backwards if that makes things easier.

Sven, I'm getting ready to order a Y&B. Think I may be on the edge of needing an extra mounting tube. Top of transom to water at rest is about 30". Transom type 3 with approximately 16 degree angle, so it's about 8" from vertical at top of transom. What's your thoughts?

For the transom described in the question the single tube that is included with Y&B standard should be enough.
The Y&B vane base is about 200mm/8" long so the pendulum rudder will well behind the rear of the transom.

As long as the rudder does not stick out behind the transom, that distance should suffice.
If you like to examine these kinds of questions before contacting us, there is a drawing with dimensions in the download section of the website.

There is a veedeo available of mounting Stainless WALT, the predecessor of Y&B. It can be found on Youtube and the video section of this website.

The best advice would be to remove the ladder, then fit self steering, then find a new solution for the boarding the boat, either by relocating the old ladder or fitting a new one.

Trying to combine self steering with an existing ladder almost always means much more work to fit, less satisfying performance or use of the self steering system and more difficult use of the ladder.

The vane mast can be shortened by about 70 cm to suit a specific situation.

But just to state the obvious, the windvane still needs to get wind.

To reduce the height of the vane mast, the pushrod that runs inside the vane mast needs to be shortened. It comes in two pieces, to be glued by the customer. Best to leave that to be the last task, after assembly and installation.

The manual for using your Vee (and servo pendulum systems in general) can be found in the Mister Vee brochure in the download section.

The assembly manuals are available as PDF files. Access to these files is enabled when your system is shipped.
You need to be logged in to access them. They can be reached from a menu further down the website.

Your system comes pre-assembled. Final assembly normally takes about an hour in total. Watching the glue dry will take a day but you can do other stuff during that time too.

You may be wondering if windvane self steering will work on your boat. What weight will work, or what length?

Well, neither weight nor length are used as a general guideline.
Servo pendulum self steering systems were designed to take over the steering from a human helmsman. That means that the forces and movement that need to be generated by the system are comparable.
That leads to a two-part answer. If your boat has tiller steering, and the boat can be properly trimmed so that you do not have to fight the tiller to keep the boat on course, than a servo pendulum system like the ones on offer from Mister Vee should have no problem to do the same.
On a wheel steered boat there often is a reduction between the wheel and the rudder. If that reduction is too high it may be difficult or even impossible to set up self steering. However, if there is an option of connecting the self steering system to an emergency rudder, things get easier.
There is a separate FAQ about wheel steering.

Hi there,
Interesting windvane! Are you still doing the "early orders" 20% discount for delivery in 2017?
Pls provide the details.
thanks,
Joao

Yes, the discount is still available!

Details are in the terms of sale:
http://www.windvaneselfsteering.com/terms_of_sale

I have a Van der Stadt 30 model Zeester, i am looking to fit a self steering wind vane system. i would like to know the price for the full system including ropes and chains etc.

All prices for the Mister Vee self steering systems can be accessed through the picture links on the home page, below the big pictures at the top.

Please click on the Mister Vee logo top/left to visit the home page.

I have recently bought a yacht which appears to have a Mister Vee vane fitted to a Navik pendulum servo blade, except that the two are not connected to each other. I cannot work out how to get this setup working, can anybody help. I am in Australia.

The manuals for the Mister Vee products are only accessible to people that have an account for the Mister Vee website, with access to the manuals actually enabled.

Please make an account for the Mister Vee website and then send us an email by clicking on the email address further down where you filled out "ask a question", including your username for the Mister Vee website.

Your account will then have access to the appropriate manuals enabled.

On every page with a (frequently asked) questions overview, there a form where you can ask a question.

The FAQ section is primarily meant for question you may have before placing an order.

If you ask a question this way, it is placed in an overview at the top of the website, only visible for yours truly but he will also receive an email mentioning the question has been asked.

As soon as the question has been answered it will appear in the FAQ section.

If you were logged in when asking the question, or you included your email address with the question, you will receive an email that the question has been answered.

For question after purchase there is a forum to which you get access when the system is shipped.

The webshop uses cookies to keep track of your entries in to the order system.

If you have disabled cookies or use Google translate to browse the Mister Vee website, ordering from the webshop will not work.
Please open a second window in your browser and order from the untranslated English website.

If you use the English website, enabling cookies should allow you to place an order. Please refer to your internet browsers help menu for more information.

I have placed an order but could not see how to pay for it, how does that work?

All orders are processed manually.
During that process you will receive a payment request that takes you to a webpage that shows the details of your order and that allows you to chose from several payment options.

The options differ from country to country but include major credit cards.

These payments are handled by payment provider www.multisafepay.com

The manual for using your Vee (and servo pendulum systems in general) can be found in the Mister Vee brochure in the download section.

The assembly manuals are available as PDF files. Access to these files is enabled when your system is shipped.
You need to be logged in to access them. They can be reached from a menu further down the website.

Hi

I would like to buy a Mr Vee Y&B windvane for my boat. Will you be able to send one straight away if I order now or will I have to wait for one to be built?

With thanks in anticipation.

Simon

We try to keep parts in stock throughout the year, usually there are no assembled systems in stock.
Spring is the usually the busiest time and stocks may suddenly run out.
At the moment of writing this answer, lead time is probably 2-3 weeks.

I have a Van der Stadt 30 model Zeester, i am looking to fit a self steering wind vane system. i would like to know the price for the full system including ropes and chains etc.

All prices for the Mister Vee self steering systems can be accessed through the picture links on the home page, below the big pictures at the top.

Please click on the Mister Vee logo top/left to visit the home page.

I have ordered a self steering system today but did not receive a payment request for the down payment, so I can take advantage of the 20% discount.

Vandaag heb ik een Mister Vee Y&B Std (incl. mounting kit) besteld en wil ik graag profiteren van de 20% korting. Ik heb echter nog geen "payment request" gekregen via email.

All orders from the Mister Vee website are processed manually. So a few hours may pass between placing the order and receiving the payment request.

Alle orders via de Mister Vee website worden handmatig verwerkt. Daarom kan er een paar uur zitten tussen het versturen van de bestelling en het ontvangen van het betaalverzoek.

In the order process you may come across the term "Free order"
This does not have any particular meaning to you as a customer, you can ignore it.

The batched delivery discount can only be used for standard self steering systems as they can be ordered from the webshop, including non custom mounting parts.

Everything else, like a wheel adapter, shipping and customization can not be purchased with the discount.
Customization may not be possible to be delivered in the batched delivery months. In that case your system will either be shipped without customization (which will be sent later) or in different month, together with the customization, depending on options and your preferences.

No.
The down payment that you make to be able to order a system for batched delivery is non refundable.
However, you can use the down payment on any order from the Mister Vee webshop within 24 months after the month your system was due to be delivered.

The earlier you order, the higher the discount you can get on ordering your system: 20% off for ordering 3 months in advance and 15% off for ordering 2 months in advance.

The webshop uses cookies to keep track of your entries in to the order system.

If you have disabled cookies or use Google translate to browse the Mister Vee website, ordering from the webshop will not work.
Please open a second window in your browser and order from the untranslated English website.

If you use the English website, enabling cookies should allow you to place an order. Please refer to your internet browsers help menu for more information.

Complete self steering systems are shipped via fedex and generally take about one week to reach you.

Navik parts are shipped by post which is the cheapest option. If you need you part urgently you may consider paying extra for extra secure and speedy delivery.

Mister Vee self steering systems are made in batches, in the most efficient sequence. These batches are shipped in April (but may change from year to year).

Shipments are in order of payment. When the system is shipped it usually takes no more than a week to arrive.

All order that are shipped outside the European Union are sold without VAT, the European local sales tax.

Usually you will need to pay import duties and local sales tax when taking delivery. These are usually paid to the person delivering the shipment to your door.

I have placed an order but could not see how to pay for it, how does that work?

All orders are processed manually.
During that process you will receive a payment request that takes you to a webpage that shows the details of your order and that allows you to chose from several payment options.

The options differ from country to country but include major credit cards.

These payments are handled by payment provider www.multisafepay.com

Hi there,
Interesting windvane! Are you still doing the "early orders" 20% discount for delivery in 2017?
Pls provide the details.
thanks,
Joao

Yes, the discount is still available!

Details are in the terms of sale:
http://www.windvaneselfsteering.com/terms_of_sale

I would like to get 2 Navik Jointed connectors but I am not in a hurry to get them. When should I place my order to get the 20% early order discount?

Only the Mister Vee self steering systems are eligible for the Batched Manufacturing discount.

More information about this can be found in the terms of sale

Navik parts are made year round and can be ordered at any time.

I have ordered a self steering system today but did not receive a payment request for the down payment, so I can take advantage of the 20% discount.

Vandaag heb ik een Mister Vee Y&B Std (incl. mounting kit) besteld en wil ik graag profiteren van de 20% korting. Ik heb echter nog geen "payment request" gekregen via email.

All orders from the Mister Vee website are processed manually. So a few hours may pass between placing the order and receiving the payment request.

Alle orders via de Mister Vee website worden handmatig verwerkt. Daarom kan er een paar uur zitten tussen het versturen van de bestelling en het ontvangen van het betaalverzoek.

The batched delivery discount can only be used for standard self steering systems as they can be ordered from the webshop, including non custom mounting parts.

Everything else, like a wheel adapter, shipping and customization can not be purchased with the discount.
Customization may not be possible to be delivered in the batched delivery months. In that case your system will either be shipped without customization (which will be sent later) or in different month, together with the customization, depending on options and your preferences.

The difference between immediate delivery and batched delivery comes from your payment.

To use the batched delivery discount you make a down payment of € 50.-- before the end of the month. You will be notified when your system is (almost) ready so you can pay the remainder. After the remainder has been received your system is shipped.

After placing your order you will receive a payment request for the down payment.

The earlier you order, the higher the discount you can get on ordering your system: 20% off for ordering 3 months in advance and 15% off for ordering 2 months in advance.

I have placed an order but could not see how to pay for it, how does that work?

All orders are processed manually.
During that process you will receive a payment request that takes you to a webpage that shows the details of your order and that allows you to chose from several payment options.

The options differ from country to country but include major credit cards.

These payments are handled by payment provider www.multisafepay.com

Hello,

I'm interested in purchasing a replacement Under water Paddle Reference number 61-16-702 with Trim tab. Are these available and at what price?

The trimtab is more or less ready for a first order, and digital tooling for the rudder blade is in the works.
If you also need the rudder shaft, this is not on offer but there is something brewing there.

Please make sure to subscribe to the newsletter for Navik replacement parts.

Can you supply the Navik windvane blade itself? Mine has cracked on the pivot point and would like a replacement.

Many Thanks

Tom

We did do some development on a replacement blade but found it was easier and thus cheaper to make the conversion kit that uses the Mister Vee UpSideDown windvane instead.

This set is available from the webshop.

I lost my pendulum rudder of the navik vane. Horrible!! My vane is now useless. How do I get a new vane pendulum rudder

Currently Mister Vee have a replacement rudder "In the planning stage"
The trim tab is about ready to enter production.

However, the rudder blade only exists in a digital form, and can not be made available on a short term.

Please send us an email through the contact form so we can discuss a time frame.

the moulded aluminium part that connects to the swinging navik 'rudder' is broken: can you offer this part and if so, what would it cost, including shipping to las palmas?

regards,
alex

All parts that are on offer as a standard product are available from the webshop.

There are a few parts that are not currently available but are within the manufacturing options of Mister Vee.

Unfortunately, most metal parts that include welding or casting of aluminium are too complicated to set up for the very small numbers that might be sold resulting in a price that would be too high anyway.

The only part that is welded stainless steel in the original Navik that may get a Mister Vee replacement is the trim tab.

I would like to get 2 Navik Jointed connectors but I am not in a hurry to get them. When should I place my order to get the 20% early order discount?

Only the Mister Vee self steering systems are eligible for the Batched Manufacturing discount.

More information about this can be found in the terms of sale

Navik parts are made year round and can be ordered at any time.

Ik vaar met een victoire 34, met een stuurwiel. Twee jaar geleden heb ik een tweedehands navik op de kop kunnen tikken. Door omstandigheden heb ik er nog niet mee kunnen varen.

Nu ik me wat beter in windvanen heb verdiept begin ik te twijfelen of de navik wel een goed systeem is op mijn schip en overweeg toch wat anders te kiezen Komend jaar vertrekken we voor een rondje atlantic... dus ik kan de navik niet uitgebreid testen voordat ik vertrek.

Is er ooit een Navik / Y&B op een victoire 34/1044 geplaatst en was dit succesvol? Zo nee, enige indicaties of dit succesvol kan zijn of niet?

Groeten,

Mark

Navik self steering systems have generally been used for for smaller boats with tiller steering.
But as long as the wheel steering is purely mechanical, the forces that need to be generated are more or less similar to tiller steering, except for the power to accelerate the steering wheel, if very quick and rather big movements are needed.

So in general, a Navik should be able to steer a boat with a steering wheel.

But if there should arise a need for the boat to be steered with bigger forces, like in a sudden gust of wind, with no time to adjust the trim of the sails, the system will try to provide that bigger force, and the way the paddle is designed may prove too weak.

Hi, Im sure you get this question often..

I was givin a navik windvane. I want to know if ALL parts are still available before I spend alot of money installing it.

I have heard Navik is a great windvane so Im hoping I can service/replace parts for years to come.
Thanks
Jai

The parts that are readily available are listed in the webshop.

Besides those, plans are in the works for developing tools for the pendulum rudder blade.
The trim tab is more or less ready to go in to production.

The parts that are very unlikely to be made available are all remaining parts made of metal.

Only the parts that are mentioned in the webshop are on offer as a standard product. Have a look at the Navik parts in the webshop.

If you need another part we still may be able to help, please let us know.

All Navik replacement parts sold by Mister are new designs made from the same or better quality materials.

There are a few websites that offer new spare parts for Navik.
But as far as we can tell, Mister Vee is the only company that can actually deliver.
That is because Plastimo no longer make parts but Mister Vee does.

Hello
Do you have experience of these units fitted to Mini650?
I am in the UK , North Essex, if you think your product would be suitable are there any localy I could inspect?
Regards

The mini 650 type of boat has the ability to plane.
This allows for big changes in speed with small wind speed increase, and that gives a big change in apparent wind direction.

This leads to a zig-zag course which is very unsatisfying.

This is why a windvane self steering system is not recommended for this type of boat.