Shorthanded long-distance sailing started with just a few hardy pioneers - Joshua Slocum was one of the very first with his legendary Spray. It is said he could keep the boat on a fairly steady course using an ingenious sheeting arrangement or simply by lashing fast the wheel. This manner of self-steering willingly sacrificed a certain amount of sail power to free up a portion of the sail area just for steering trim. Of course, Spray had a natural tendency to sail straight, as her keel was almost as long as her waterline.
Hambley Tregoning described in a letter to Yachting Monthly in 1919 how the tiller of a boat could be connected to a windvane. Upon publication of his letter, owners of model boats rushed out to fit their craft with wind-guided steering. They found they could achieve admirable results with even the most simple mechanical connection between the tiller and a windvane. This type of system did not transfer very successfully, though, since the forces generated by a windvane are too small to move the tiller of a full-size vessel directly.
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Lets start by identifying what exactly certain boats are. Sometimes the terminology can get lost on beginners, so well look at some of the most common boats and what theyre called. These boats are exactly what the name implies. They are meant to be used for fishing. Most fishing boats are powered by outboard motors, and many also have a trolling motor mounted on the bow. Bass boats can be made of aluminium or fibreglass.