Tiller shortening

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paul.paul
Posts: 9
Joined: Fri May 05, 2023 7:00 am

Tiller shortening

Post by paul.paul »

Thought I'd ask for people's thoughts before I did something irreversible. I wonder if there'd be any reason not to cut the tiller down by 5 or 6"? I find it an inconvenience as currently, and think even such a small reduction would make passing through the companionway much less awkward. There's be less leverage on the rudder obviously, but would it be so very noticeable?
samphire2014
Posts: 66
Joined: Tue Jul 18, 2017 12:47 pm

Re: Tiller shortening

Post by samphire2014 »

I think to enable us, to help you, it might be a good idea to put up a picture of the offending item, preferably with a tape held against it so we can see the length. All boats tend to be different, so without a starting point, it will be hard for any of us to comment.
paul.paul
Posts: 9
Joined: Fri May 05, 2023 7:00 am

Re: Tiller shortening

Post by paul.paul »

Yes, I made the mistake of assuming that all out tillers would be alike! Mine leaves only 30cm between it and the companionway lip - seems an unnecessarily tight squeeze sometimes.
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ken endean
Posts: 43
Joined: Wed May 10, 2017 11:11 am

Re: Tiller shortening

Post by ken endean »

On London Apprentice we have the mainsheet track across the middle of the cockpit, immediately forward of the locker lids, and the tiller is aft of that, so considerably shorter than yours. It obviously gives less 'leverage' than a longer tiller but if we have excessive weather helm it is better to reduce that by shortening sail, rather than attempting to resist it. Generally, if we eliminate weather helm by (say) reefing the main, the boat actually goes faster to windward. If you are not sure, why not try a test: simply sail your boat while not using (holding) the last few inches of the tiller.
paul.paul
Posts: 9
Joined: Fri May 05, 2023 7:00 am

Re: Tiller shortening

Post by paul.paul »

Thanks Ken, that's a darn good idea! (Although, as a solo novice I'm presently taking care to only find myself sailing in modest winds so there's been little pressure on the tiller.)
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