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Dotan Rudder - dinghy/small boat 'auto' kick up/down

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On 2/23/2021 at 10:53 PM, CapnK said:

Well, maybe not exactly "automatic". but damned close. Has anyone here used or seen these in person? Seems the only way to get them in the USA is from the OEM in Latvia.


Bought one recently, but haven't used it yet.  Looks good, though.

On 2/24/2021 at 10:12 AM, European Bloke said:

If you have a rudder and head, and just want the rudder to kick up, that cam cleat is a perfectly adequate and much cheaper solution.  But I can't build a rudder that stands up to that kind of load: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hDeI-SIM7No&feature=emb_rel_end






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Hitting the bottom while trying not to broach when sailing in through surf.  The more the load is sideways, the more friction there is between rudder blade and rudder head, and the less force there is to trigger the kick up.  The rudders are designed for beach cats, so this is very much an expected load case.  The moment you ground, the load is no longer limited by how much force the water can exert on the foil.

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I used the Dotan rudder system on my 18HT in the first Tybee 500.  There are always a ton of weeds/seagrass as you pass each of the inlets the would get caught on the rudders.

With the Dotan's, squat in, flick the tiller arm up/down the pivot the blade up, flick it a second time and lock it down.  Took 2-3 secs to clear the weeds.

Initially we had a 2:1 pull down using the clamcleat release system.  With the clam cleat system, come in off the trapeze, release the pull down line, clear the blades, pull/cleat it back down, back on the wire.  Took closer to 30 secs, and if the line slipped more than a couple of mm as it bit into the cleat, weather helm...

We were almost always double trapping with the spin at the time or sailing with one rudder up to reduce the amount of weeds being caught.



03 T500.jpg

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I've got an older boat I'm working on, it has an old, flat-plate AL blade rudder system. I was thinking the Dotan price would be pretty much 'cheap' when compared to the time I would spend DIY'ing something else, and would definitely be MUCH more esthetic. :) The easy up/down would be a bonus.
I sailed beach cats for many years, work and play - that sideways blade strength test is impressive.
Thanks for the replies!

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