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Anyone put a Tiller Tamer or Tiller Clutch on their dinghy?

Winston29

Active Member
This question is for people with dinghies less than 16' in length.

I ask because the website for the manufacturer of the Tiller Clutch, WaveFront Marine, says it's designed for boats a little larger than my C-14.2. That has me wondering if it's because shorter boats don't tend to track as well as longer boats, and so would't stay on course with their tillers locked. At $83, it's an expensive test to see if it will work with my little Capri or not.

And while I'm sure some would argue that a tiller lock is unnecessary on a dingy, where most things are within easy reach, my 14.2 is a bit of a handful when singlehanded.
I can't let go of my tiller, even for a split-second, without it slamming to the side and tossing my happy arse into the drink.
It would be nice to be able let go of the steering once in a while, should I want to grab a snack out of the cuddy, straighten up the lines, or furl/deploy the jib while underway.
Being able to use both hands for these tasks would be a real plus.

I also don't know which would be better for my boat: The "Tiller Tamer" with its ability to add friction to the steering but cumbersome locking mechanism, or the "Tiller Lock" with its ease of use but no option for adding friction to slow the steering.


I'm considering trying the method shown in the photo below, but I'm concerned that because it's not adjustable, and the Capri having a tendency to spin like a top when turning, it won't work on a short boat that might not like to stay in a straight line.

If you were sailing along, and found you had to input constant pressure on the tiller to keep going straight, wouldn't slipping a length of bungie around the tiller, holding it more or less in the center, simply cause the boat to turn in a slightly wider arch when you let go, than it would if you just let go of the tiller all together??

Inquiring minds want to know. :D

- W
 

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I have the same problem with my Sunfish, likes to throw me off whenever it can, had a horse like that once. I took a long bungee cord and looped it once around the tiller arm and zip-tied the hooks to the traveler wire cleats. It just happened to be the right length to add enough friction to hold the tiller in place but still have enough stretch to allow the tiller to move freely.
 

Wavedancer

Upside down?
Staff member
If you want to take a break from sailing while on the water, 'park' your Sunfish (roughly) perpendicular to the wind and let the sail out.
 
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