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tkay11

How long is a tiller - notably on the 1763 cutter Sherbourne?

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Notice, not a piece of string.

 

No, it's the tiller on my Sherbourne I'm questioning. The kit's tiller measures 35mm from the rudder top. That equates to 2.24 metres full size, or 88", or 7.3ft.

 

The reason I ask is that I noticed on the original plans what seems to be a companionway at the very rear of the deck. Not so unusual you may say, and I have in fact just built one to the same dimensions.

 

However, measuring the back of the companionway on the plan to the edge of the rudder gives 1.62 metres or 64" or 5'4". That means the rudder would have to be a foot shorter than the dimensions given in the kit to give the helmsman some freedom of movement.

 

It is also shorter than the tiller on the Alert which seems to be 2.56 metres long, or over 8'.

 

I note from the Cutter Trial at the NMM that the tiller on that seems very short from the photo.

 

The actual question is how long a tiller would be on a cutter of this size to allow for freedom of movement as well as strength of leverage?

 

I attach two drawings. The top is from the original plan, the lower is with my inked out tracing of what I take to be companionway and scuttle. If you think I'm wrong about the companionway and that it should just be a scuttle as others have interpreted it, then I'd be glad to be corrected as that leaves plenty of room for the tiller.

 

Another possibility is that I make the scuttle go to the back and the companionway take the place of what I take to be a scuttle.

 

Thanks again, everyone, for tolerating my questions, and I look forward to any answers except 'as long as a piece of string' -- although that may well be closer to the right answser!

 

NOTE: IF YOU CLICK ON THE PHOTO IT WILL ENLARGE SO YOU CAN SEE THE DETAIL]

 

post-229-0-56974900-1417102588_thumb.jpg

 

Tony

Edited by tkay11

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Tony,

 

Do what I did, and as you suggest, and scrap the after scuttle. Place the companionway where it would have been and you have ample room for a longer tiller.

 

The tiller for the Alert was 10' long and I used this measurement, scaling it of course to 1:64, when replacing the tiller on my Sherbourne. The kit tiller is far too short, and in any case it should have a tenon joint with the rudder head, which is how mine fits, rather than the odd arrangement of the one provided.

 

In passing, and having sailed and helmed on a cutter (actually Jolie Brise) fitted with one, I can tell you that better leverage is obtained with a longer tiller, allied with deck treads.

 

post-427-0-98741800-1417181835_thumb.jpg

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Aaah! I'm really sorry, Kester, as I hadn't remembered your companionway (though I had remembered your deck treads) and forgot to look up your build when thinking about what to do with mine. Excellent advice, as usual, so thanks very much! I'd already made my tiller to the dimensions of the Alert, and slotted it into the rudder head, but unfortunately in my haste I've already cut it down -- so another one may well be in the making!

 

Just two points further:

  1. Your companion way seems a bit lower in height than mine. Is it about the same height as the capping rails on the bulwarks? Mine is a bit higher than that and I'm thinking of cutting off 5mm to make it level with the rails. All the cutter models I've seen seem to show the housing at the same height and never above -- making me think that this would be important.
     
  2. Whatever decision made, the question remains as to why the plans are as they are. To my mind that companionway in the plans is still stuck right close to the stern, and doesn't leave much room for the tiller. So I'd be glad of your thoughts on this. Do you think I'm wrong about the companionway, or is it that the plans are wrong? If they are wrong, they are consistently wrong across all the views of the ship as well as the link in the plan to the captain's cabin below.

Thanks again for the thoughtful reply. Im including a photo to show you the current situation (these aft two hatches are not yet fixed to the deck). The positioning follows the plans exactly -- or as I have interpreted the plans!

 

post-229-0-38682000-1417183491_thumb.jpg

 

Tony

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Tony,

 

No need to apologise, after all your model is your model – and very good she looks too. :)

 

The roof of my companion slopes down from the aft to the fore side. The forward end is level with the caprail, the after is a little above it, but not by much.

 

I noticed that the positions of the scuttle and the companion on your Sherbourne look rather close together, so wouldn't cutting 5mm off the bottom of the companion, mean that the doors would hit the forward hatch? If you shifted them both forward, and there looks to be space for it, I think that might get over both this problem and the accomodating of the tiller. I agree, perhaps your companion does look a little high. (I remember I did try to keep all the deck furniture as low as possible – the boat is the highest – so as not to impede the boom.)

 

As you can see, I omitted the hatch altogether and replaced it with the companion, just aft of the boat, giving rather more deck space. It may not have been on the original plans, but I thought that the entrance to the commander's cabin also needed a little more refinement. (Perhaps it was on the 'as fitted' drawings!) ;)

Edited by Stockholm tar

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Nice reply, Kester. I'd forgotten about the 'as fitted' plans, so maybe this is the way to go. I have been oscillating between doors of the companionway facing fore or aft. I've seen both on 18th Century cutter models that are on the web. It makes much more sense for them to face aft, but I was wondering about the interference of the entrance with the tiller. I agree about shifting both hatchways forward -- a practical solution. I look forward to my visit to the two Science Museum models of contemporary cutters in December to see what they have to offer.

 

In thinking of refinement, that's my excuse for maintaining my glass-topped hatch just fore of the companionway -- otherwise I'd have to make another grated hatch, so subjective considerations apply, as always.

 

Anyway, Kester, I very much respect the experience and pragmatism that goes into you replies. I'll just have to figure which cuts and changes I have to apply.

 

Thanks again!

 

Tony

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Tony,

 

On my Sherbourne, there is more space between the companion and the end of the tiller than you might think from the earlier photo. This one perhaps shows it better:

 

post-427-0-66883600-1417249097_thumb.jpg

 

The after end of the roof also lifts, so there should be enough space for the commander to access his cabin should you want to have the doors facing aft.

 

Just a thought. It would also be interesting to hear what you find out re. your visit to the Science Museum. ;)

Edited by Stockholm tar

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Thanks, Kester, and good points. It's nice that putting your ship's boat above the main hatch also hides the other hatches to some extent, and because it is a lovely model in its own right distracts from pedantic probing (such as mine) as to the plans! If I were to place my own ship's boat in the same position it would, on the other hand, draw attention to its crude build.

 

Ah well, stuff to ponder on -- along with all the other pondering I am up to at the same time concerning other aspects of the model. It's gradually coming together, though.

 

Tony

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