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Tiller Extension “Hardware”

Don Silsbe

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I’m making some tweaks to Two Bits’ rudder and tiller today, so I thought I’d take a moment and share my tiller/tiller extension connection with you.  I got the idea from Geoff Kerr, the owner of Two Daughters Boatworks in Vermont.  All he uses is a short piece of knotted cord.  I saw this in a video about sailing his Ian Outred Caledonia Yawl.   It is cheap and easy.  (I’d like to say “like my women”, but I chose “sweet and uncomplicated”.) Somebody once told me “I need more precision than that.”  I laugh about that every time I go sailing.  If the knots are tight, there is no more slop than a stainless steel fitting, and it is totally silent. Make one using scraps, and I think I’ll win you over.


Here it is, with the extension in park.  I use a rubber band to stow it.



Here it is, deployed.



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I put one like that on a Clint Chase Caravelle we built with some veterans at our volunteer boatworks.  As an extension, it works swell, as they say.  But it has a standard tiller clip on top to hold it in park that always snags the mainsheet.  Now that I see yours, the clip is coming off and a rubber band is going on.

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I took this video today, for the proponents of the precision philosophy.  

Also, if you notice that the end of my tiller looks a little rough around the edges, that’s because it is.  I’d like to make up something about aerodynamics, but it is really because I shortened the tiller by about 6”.  It kept hitting me in the shoulder, so I had to cut it off.  It’s rough because we’re camping, and  I only brought a hand saw and a knife.BA4B912D-CA6E-42D7-BA40-B11C7444EF35.thumb.jpeg.9b11cdc39280ede9f54d4a24e3919e48.jpeg

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