VectaVane was conceived out of the frustration experienced by the inventor (‘Rusty’ Lea) at the impracticability of leaving the helm of his 20’ Bermudan sloop unattended for any more than few seconds at a time so there was/is an obvious need for a steering device suitable for the medium to small sailing boat. The parameters are that it be:- efficient, affordable, simple, easily installed (without lots of adjustments) and easily removable. As a professional clockmaker, Russ Lea is well used to dealing with mechanical problems, and consequently his evolution of a self-steering gear proved so successful that its commercial possibilities began to emerge. Vecta Vane is the result.
Our mounting bracket came about as a result of there being no outboard brackets on the market suitable for stern configurations other than flat or sloped. It has since proved to be able to cope with the smaller outboard motors quite successfully.
for those who have Agility Difficulties or simply like Sailing in Comfort.
Regrettably a close relative of mine became disabled which resulted in her being restricted in her ability of being able to take part in any sailing activities. Some time ago she attended a disabled sailing day organised by one of the Isle of Wight sailing clubs where she tried out a variety of specially designed boats for the disabled. After studying what was on offer and the prices of such I determined to design a simple adaption for our Mirror dinghy. This type of boat was chosen because firstly, we had one, and secondly they are among the cheapest and most popular of dinghy's.
The design criteria was :- that any adaption should be easily removed and the boat returned to normal, the boat should function as near to normal as possible, it will be easily assembled by purchaser and finally to be easily affordable, we are confident that we have achieved this in our plans.
We took our boat to a recent "disabled sailing" day where it was tried by a variety of people with agility problems and some with not, who were unanimous in praise of its comfort and ease of use. One of the many advantages of our "modification" is due to the operator being seated nearer the floor than one would otherwise be in normal use, giving far greater stability and nullifying the need for weighting the dagger board. The inventive user can also carry out mods. of their own, such as adapting a small anchor for use from the seat (See Pics. in relevant section), leading ropes aft (halyards) etc., there are all sorts of possibilities. The two yellow ropes that can be seen running down each side of the dinghy are "painters". The idea being is that the user can approach a pontoon from either side and be able to have a "painter" at the ready.