A portrait by a friend

Recently my friend Peter Foerthmann, the owner of Windpilot, the world´s most successful windvane manufacturer, and we can say the authority when talking about windvane self steering under sail, was kind enough to present his view on my life´s trajectory and my connection to the sea and sailing world.

We developed a friendship over many years, started by my unconditional admiration for windpilot products, and my goal of one day seeing my boats steered by them. Lacking that I was always advising my customers and friends to purchase and use windpilot self steering units, until I finally managed to purchase my first unit, a second hand Pacific model, which had been bought on my recommendation by the owner of a Multichine 41 Sk built with one of our kits.

Pacific wind vane self steering unit to be installed on a customer´s boat. Later I would purchase this very unit second hand!
The same wind vane unit installed on Green Nomad, my own Kiribati 36.

After that I went on to purchase one brand new unit for a boat I was refitting in the USA and finally I acquired another Pacific unit for my current boat.

A Pacific, brand new this time, adorning the stern of Teresa!

We also started a cooperation when Peter needed some illustration work in 3D to demonstrate features that his systems could provide. The first of these works in cooperation was when we worked together to show the combination of a Pacific self steering unit with an SOS rudder unit, which could be used to satisfy the rules that demanded an emergency rudder from the entrants to the 2018 Golden Globe Race.

The combinaton of a Pacific wind vane and an SOS rudder, the best of both worlds, self steering that can be attached to an emergency rudder.
Same set with a traditional transom.

We met in person in Den Helder, the Netherlands, when Peter kindly delivered my Pacific system and we discussed the job to be done.

Again when Peter needed some images to illustrate his views and assessment of the performance of wind self steering devices in extreme conditions as can be expected to be met during an event like the Golden Globe Race, using the facts that emerged from the race itself, we joined forces to make the most direct demonstration possible of the ideas.

You can read his full post clicking here.

A full sequence showing the comparison of what can be expected when boats with two kinds of self steering units go through a broach and capsize or knock-down. The key factor here is that having a hard limit to hit is a weak point in units that have such design feature.

Click here to be directed to his blog and the post he made about our cooperation.

If you are interested in self steering and wish to learn more about the matter you can go to Peter´s website and get his book clicking here.

I really enjoyed to be called to integrate this team! Peter likes to work with like minded people, like he does with his cartoonist, a lady who also leaves on board her own boat! Here is one example of her prolific and amazing work.

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