The Hebridean wind vane is a very affordable DIY servo pendulum self-steering gear that has a few (at least somewhat) unique details compared to the competition. I have been researching affordable alternatives for a few years now and considered different DIY solutions but this is the first one that speaks to me.
Some features of the Hebridean wind vane worth mentioning:
- Highly affordable (most DIY solutions costs more, not to mention commercial ones)
- Comes in one unit that is easily detachable (my current boat has an offset transom mounted outboard engine which wouldn’t play nice together with the servo-pendulum)
- True horizontal pivot, the vane pivots with the rest of the assembly, providing damping
- No bearings used
- Weighs 12 kg
- No way of remotely adjusting the vane (the course is adjusted by looseing two wing nuts and rotating the vane platform), I would like to try improving this aspect of the design
Kit or plans?
The Hebridean is sold as either a kit or plans. The kit costs £330 (plus £40 shipping to the EU) and comes with the stainless steel parts cut to length, nuts and bolts, lead weights as well as the carbon fibre tubes for the vane and the push-rod. The only thing not included is the timber, which won’t add a lot to the final costs. The plans only option will set you back £150. I have now decided to buy the kit and will build the self-steering gear during the spring. I will probably make some reinforcements, at least reinforce the wooden parts with GRP.