We’ve now heard from Circa and Avatar‘s owners about the newly installed get-home system. The news is good.
Get-home systems which only work in light winds and smooth water are a negative in our opinion, as they increase drag and complexity without any real benefits. Afterall, if the winds are light you can use the dinghy as a tug, or anchor and fix your problem. So we are happy to report that the get-home system on Avatar looks like it will give a long distance cruising speed of 7.5 knots, with moderate RPM and sound levels. And while the system has only been tested in 20/25 knots of breeze, it appears as if good progress into wind and sea can be made up through 30 knots or more.
Maneuvering at slow speed on the main engine has been reported as minimally impacted, except for in reverse where the tendency to pull to starboard has almost totally been eliminated.
The track in the photo above shows an offshore turn in both directions. Turning to starboard, where the get-home prop is on the outside of the turn, is the tighter of the two. Maneuvering in port under get-home is not as crisp as with main engine, but certainly acceptable.
Finally, performance under power with the main engine does not appear noticeably degraded. Avatar has had a stern extension added, and her gain from this has more than offset the loss from the second prop skeg drag.
Circa did a nice job on the installation, with minimal impact on access to the other systems.
We are impressed with how well this turned out, as retrofits are never easy. Thanks are due to Carol Parker for sharing her photos with us.