The whole point a rubber universal is to keep the extension upright and weightless. when you tack/jibe/drop it, it stays within reach. You don't want to store it in a bent position. It will fatigue faster and loose its stiffness.you've definitely got to keep it out of the sun - but it is typical to have a tiller cover for that (as most tillers are varnished) - which fits easily enough over the collapsed extension as well.
agree. having a weightless extension so - very - cool. Please see my photo above for Forespar's solution.The whole point a rubber universal is to keep the extension upright and weightless. when you tack/jibe/drop it, it stays within reach. You don't want to store it in a bent position. It will fatigue faster and loose its stiffness.
The rubber joints are good for quite a while but I know at least one person that has fallen overboard from a failure, if you replace them annually you will never have an issue. Most people leave them on for years, I think they are ok for about 5 so annually is very conservative.My 31ft Nantucket has tiller steering. A previous owner must have had an extension as there are holes in the tiller for one, but there was no extension when I bought it. I'm trying to decide what sort of extension/fitting to get. In my racing dinghy days (many years ago), I've use various extensions and my favourite was the bendy plastic universal joint type like the Ronstan below, but I'm not sure how suitable that type will be for a bigger boat. My boat has the rudder post right at the front of the rudder - while it is well balanced in most conditions, the helm is heavy in a following sea so I suspect something a little more heavy-duty would be needed. Can anyone offer suggestions - both what to avoid and what works well?
View attachment 477970
I have a thirty footer. Ronstan dinghy extension works just fine. If you're halling that hard on the extension you have other problems.The type of extension in your picture is typically used with a dinghy or smaller keel boats. Without knowing much about your specific boat you're probably going to want a more robust tiller extension