Blog Comments

  1. toddster's Avatar
    Thanks. It seems like the exact meaning of the serial number may remain a mystery. Various sources put the production dates of the 3040 as 1974 - 1981. (Or sometimes 1976 - 1981). If they were on #334 in 1979, I'm not sure how they ever got to #749. A few units produced after that were apparently sold as "Stayer" brand from England.

    I got a lot of technical and comparative information about these Windvanes from "Self-Steering Under Sail" by Peter Förthmann. (I'd forgotten that he mentions the rudder angle, pondered above, was to provide yaw-damping.) Just now, when I was looking for the link, I found this other more colorful version of the history.

    The boat is still in the farmyard. Windvane untested. Contingencies and non-boating matters competing for my time and cash. I did leave the whole thing mounted for several weeks, through some fairly spirited weather. With the control lines unattached, it freely moved with the wind. IDK why one would ever do this normally, but I wanted to put the mechanism to a bit of test. The only adverse thing that happened was that the little stainless ball-fitting at the end of the push-rod unscrewed itself and disconnected. Not difficult to replace, in the workshop, but it would be a royal pain to try to do that while hanging over the end of the transom at sea. But I suppose there would be no reason for that to ever happen in actual use - the control lines would prevent the vane from rotating repeatedly through 360°.
  2. ignacio's Avatar
    A little more info: The main housing on my Sailomat 3040 has number 334 stamped on it, and the sales and installation correspondence I have are all dated April and May 1979. The stamp itself looks uniformly applied.
    Updated 06-19-2019 at 02:51 PM by ignacio
  3. TKBLACK's Avatar
    Thank you Toddster for sharing this detailed info! (Your You Tube videos r great). This is an inspirational and practical solution in several ways.
    Karin on Achates. 1993 PSE 34
    Updated 06-13-2019 at 03:11 PM by TKBLACK
  4. Christian Williams's Avatar
    Looks like the next design series was in the early 80s.

    More here:
  5. toddster's Avatar
    Finally got the new rig back! Now to find a couple of quiet days to put everything back together.
    At the last minute, I discovered that all the original chainplates had different hole sizes! Although all the shrouds were attached with 3/8" pins, the forestay has a 3/8" hole, the shrouds had 7/16" and the backstay had 1/2" ! Since I didn't do the "hands on" attachment at the boat yards in the past, I never noticed before.

    Also found a lot of corrosion during disassembly. There is some clean-up to do there. Will use lots of tef-gel and insulating tape upon reassembly.
  6. toddster's Avatar
    I have seen mention of Naomi James’ problems in the course of researching the 3040, but have not read her book to date. I wonder if some of her troubles might have something to do with her boat being much larger than the 3040 was designed for? My boat, on the other hand, is at the small end of the range.

    I did get a spare set of break-away couplings with the unit. And in addition to the backing plates, I’m planning to glass in a pair of stringers across the transom. Access and interference from the chainplate are slowing this measure however. It’s in the “not required for launch” category for now.

    Veronica is a little bit different from most of the other 3040’s seen in Google searches (but there are others like her out there) or in the manual. Main differences are in the air vane and counter-weight. But also some differences in the casting, lubrication points, etc. I don’t know if this means she’s an early model or a late model. The serial number is 749. If this means the 9th unit produced in 1974, she’s a very early model. If it means the 749th unit (were there that many?) she’s a very late model. The “74” is stamped much deeper than the “9,” if that means anything.
  7. ignacio's Avatar
    I did the same as you: Disassembly, cleaning, re-grease, change fasteners, repaint. I paid Mr. Stellan Knoos a visit in La Jolla and came away with an extra rudder, break-away safety tube, and various internal components. He's got spare parts for the 3040 (and later models) in his garage. To me, the Achilles heel is a plastic ball/socket linkage inside the housing, for which Stellan gave me a machined brass replacement. I also fabricated a spare servo oar and spare blades from polycarbonate sheet. The auxiliary rudder design puts big loads on the transom, which led me to install a 3/8" thick, 24" x 24" sheet of G10 as a backing plate.

    If you haven't already, I'd suggest reading Naomi James' circumnavigation account using the Sailomat 3040.

    Here's a short video taken while I was headed from Monterey to Morro Bay in 2015:
    Updated 04-08-2019 at 05:08 PM by ignacio
  8. Christian Williams's Avatar
    Well, I think it is more that there was trouble with the old castings and the aux rudder capability, hence the change to plate aluminum. Not to say your rig isn't fine for local use.
  9. toddster's Avatar
    While Dr. Stellan Knöös (Sailomat USA) was one of the duo that designed the 3040, he declined to provide any support for it. (I only asked to purchase a copy of the manual.) I'm sure he'd like to sell an up-to-date new unit instead. Actually, I find it pretty amazing that he's still doing business after all these years. Somewhere, I read that when the original company split up, the rights to the model 3040 went with the other guys, so I suppose it's possible that he's legally constrained from 3040-related business. A descendant of that other branch of the company appears to still exist in the UK, but they no longer have anything to do with sailboats. Inquiries in on-line forums lead me to another member who provided photos of the manual pages.
  10. Christian Williams's Avatar
    The late-model Sailomat design has changed, but wind-vane sailing techniques haven't.

    More on that topic here:
  11. sgwright67's Avatar
    Well done! It looks really sharp, and I'll be interested in how it works.
  12. Afrakes's Avatar
    Glad to see an older piece of machinery brought back to life with the use of some good old "seat of the pants" figuring out and elbow grease. A trait that I fear is getting rarer and rarer.
  13. Geoff W.'s Avatar
    The blue paint looks really great, and helps offset some of the general "sh*t on the stern" necessary evil of the vane. Nice work.
  14. Loren Beach's Avatar
    More info:

    I recall that at least one Olson 34 used a later model of that vane to solo race to Hawaii.
  15. Geoff W.'s Avatar
    Here's a pic of my dog bones, mine look whipped. I've not noticed a problem with the sail shape while reefed, but I'm not overly picky.

  16. toddster's Avatar
    I wonder whether raising the "tack" a few inches will do something weird to the sail shape? Not that it's particularly stellar at this point. Also, I'm a little unsure about the SailRite design. It seems like all the force is depending on the stitches, where it would be better to double the strap over again, so that the stitches only need to keep it from unwrapping. But that made an awfully thick stack. If it comes apart, I'll re-do it that way, perhaps with flat strap instead of tubular.
    But I've got an organizer plate to slip under the mast step before re-launch. Might also play around with single-line reefing at some point.
  17. Geoff W.'s Avatar
    I love my "dog bones" on the main sail reefs. I think you'll enjoy them quite a bit.
  18. toddster's Avatar
    Duh... Of course those shrouds had toggles. My helpers during the haul-out simply pulled the pins at the top of the toggle instead of the bottom. The toggles are still attached to the boat. And my measurements are off by two inches. :roll eyes:
    So that doesn't explain the bend.

    Another dumb discovery of the day: My Rule 2000 bilge pump requires a 15 Amp fuse. But the (sold separately) Rule bilge-pump switch panel comes with a 10 Amp fuse. Spares for neither of which were on board, so far as I could discover. I think I need to replace that thing with a circuit breaker... Fortunately, still sailing the back yard and supplies are but a ladder-climb away.

    Corollary: I have a long way to go in fixing deck leaks.
    Updated 02-18-2019 at 03:31 PM by toddster
  19. toddster's Avatar
    Maybe... I've been contemplating retirement and extended low-budget cruising. The hypothetical use-case is Alaska to Baja. It's a little hard to make a big life decision, but meanwhile I'm doing some "prepping" when the opportunity presents itself. I've accumulated quite a collection of gear that represents other peoples cast-off and recycled dreams. Considering that it may be several years (if ever?) before the boat is back at the workshop again, I'm trying to do as much of the work I'd conceivably ever want to do that requires bottom-out and mast-down access. (Subject to reasonable budget, that is...) E.g. I don't really need the wind vane or the scuba compressor mounted all the time in the local marina, but I'd like to have the hardware and reinforcements in place so that I could simply bolt them on when they're needed.

    (Last winter, the wind vane was disassembled, de-salted, repaired, and painted. Now it's time to get it off the workbench.)
  20. Christian Williams's Avatar
    Just catching up and--say, what's going on here? Steps on the mast, wind vane on the stern?

    Something you're not telling us about cruising plans?

    And by the way, as you already know, many folks wrap the rudder with something reflective, as apparently they don't do well in the sun when drying out.
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