Center Helm Location?

Wheel, tiller and autopilots
Post Reply
Posts: 34
Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2010 3:57 pm
Location: Oregon, USA

Center Helm Location?

Post by jaleel_da_sheik » Fri Dec 16, 2011 8:38 am

Spirited designs has a new model called the "Synergy" that is a flat panel build. Craig has emailed me the study plans for the boat - as expected, quite stylish and some different design features I had not seen before.

Most notably was the center helm position on the Synergy compared to the dual helm on most all other modern sailing cats I've come across.

Question #1: would you consider the single, centered helm position a black mark in this new design?

Question #2: how nice is it to have a dual helm on a sailing cat?

- sheik

Posts: 135
Joined: Wed May 26, 2010 3:01 am

Re: Center Helm Location?

Post by mikeb » Fri Dec 16, 2011 9:35 am

I like the idea of a sheltered helm station, that would be a big plus for me. Not sure how the visibility would be or being able to see sail trim. It's an interesting idea & worth a look if you ask me.

Smooth Cruiser
Posts: 583
Joined: Thu May 11, 2006 1:51 am
Location: Brisbane

Re: Center Helm Location?

Post by Smooth Cruiser » Fri Dec 16, 2011 2:57 pm

One thing to really consider with the helm position is ease of berthing - particularly if you will be sailing single or short handed. For berthing you want to be able to access the motor controls easily - have good visibility, preferably of all 4 corners of the boat and, if short handed, you also need to be able to quickly leave the helm and cast lines or step off onto marinas. Some of the centre helm stations I have seen aren't very conducive to this. The Lightwave style helm in particualr with a seat up in a bubble is pretty hard to jump in and out of to tend sheets or for berthing.

Generally in a cruising cat the position while sailing isn't too critical and a single helm would be fine for most people - racing you want a bit better visibility of sails and around you and twin helms are good then.

Also consider how much room the central helm position takes up in your cockpit for when the neighbours drop over for a sundowner . . .

Post Reply