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The Twin Tiller Extension kit is a great improvement for boat handling since you can just drop the active tiller and with one hand holding the mainsheet you have the other to assit in crossing the boat where you can pickup the new tiller.
TIP: Try not to hold the tiller in front of you as this is likely to cause problems when you tack unless you remember to put it towards the stern first and drop it on the tramp before tacking.
However, there are a few issues which you may come acrross.
1. The inactive tiller can catch on the straps on the tramp edge, padding or frame at the edge of the tramp preventing you from bearing away
– Use bungee or a line to tie the rear strap handles on the tramp edge to the rear upright arm so that it is below the surface of the tramp.
– Make sure the tramp lashing underneath is really taught also ensure the tramp ties to the hull are taught
– Use thicker padding under the tramps (25mm thick EVA closed cell foam) to take up the slack in the tranp and make it a smoother surface
– Extend the tiller extensions to 2 metres so they extend beyond the tramp edge. The inner diameter of the tiller extension tube is 17mm so you will need 2x 16mm tube segments 45cm long (allowing 5cm for overlap).
- Obtain 16mm tube – you can buy carbon tube online (2mm wall thickness recommeded) or use a straight length of 16mm plastic plumbing tube from a hardware store (e.g. PEX pipe).
- Remove the plug from the end of the tiller extension.
- Wrape some tape around it around your extension segment to provide a tight fit in the tiller extension
- Wrap tape over the join (you can glue it after rubbing down both surfaces once you are happy with the length) and roll the rubber grip back over the join.
- Apply cloth backed external tape (eg Duct tape) lengthwise down the new segment to provide some grip but also allow it to slide over the tramp edge. A tennis racket type overlapping wrapping is likely to cause it to catch.
– Another alternative if you don’t want to extend the tube is to replace the plug in the end with a Riley Anti Fouling Tiller Extension Knob
2. The bungee is too loose/tight for the wind strength.
3. You need to remove the bungee from the ring especially for light wind sailing
Replace the plastic ball supplied to attach the tiller extension ring with a plastic bungee clip so it can be released and reattached to the ring as required.
3. The extensions keep getting swept off the tramp edge
You may also find that a wave will sweep the inactive tiller off the opposite tramp and the extension ends up dragging behind the boat with the bungee ring trapped in the universal joint. It won’t slow you down much (some classes always have the inactive tiller dragging) but it can affect your steering. You can prevent the ring from sliding all the way down the line by taping a segment of pool noodle towards the tiller end of the extension to prevent the ring from sliding all the way down or tighten the bungee using the olive described above.
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