SEAKEEPER RIDE: Automatically-operating Trim Tabs to Reduce Roll and Pitch

A conversation among Whalers
jimh
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SEAKEEPER RIDE: Automatically-operating Trim Tabs to Reduce Roll and Pitch

Postby jimh » Sun Oct 16, 2022 11:55 am

The SEAKEEPER company that has been producing gyroscopic stabilizers for larger boats is about to introduce a new product suitable for smaller boats, branded as the SEAKEEPER RIDE. The product will use two trim-tab-type actuators to control the pitch and roll motions of the boat. The actuators will be controlled by a sophisticated control system that will result in a reduction in pitch and roll motion in seas on smaller boats.

The SEAKEEPER RIDE 450 system for boats 19 to 26-feet will be priced at $4,500.
The SEAKEEPER RIDE 525 system for boats 27 to 30-feet will be priced at $7,500.
The SEAKEEPER RIDE 600 system for boats 31 to 35-feet will be priced at $10,500.


Based on an exploded-view illustration, the actuator unit is to be through-bolted to the transom with four or more long bolts. Installation of the actuators might not be particularly simple on a Boston Whaler Unibond hull due to the nature of the hull at the transom at a location outboard from centerline.

I believe the expectation at this time is the system will mostly be installed by OEM boat builders as a build option. SEAKEEPER has indicated in the future it plans to expand sales to individual boat owners who want to install the system themselves on their own boat.

For more information on how the SEAKEEPER RIDE system works, see

https://ride.seakeeper.com/how-it-works/

The operating principle that makes SEAKEEPER RIDE distinct from manually controlled trim tabs is the position of the SEAKEEPER RIDE trim tabs can be changed in 0.01-second in response to input from a sophisticated control system. The actuator position change speed is 300-mm-per-second or about 1-foot-per-second, or about 0.12-inch in 0.01-second.

While operating the SEAKEEPER RIDE is described as consuming about 7 to 10-Amperes (of what is assumed to be 12-Volt DC power). This means a very robust battery bank must be available to power the device. Unlike the gyroscopic stabilizers, SEAKEEPER RIDE will not work when the boat is not underway. The systems only begins to operate when the boat speed reaches about 10-MPH.

The maximum benefit from the SEAKEEPER RIDE occurs in a boat speed range of 20 to 25-MPH. For many Boston Whaler moderate V-hull designs, an on-plane speed below 25-MPH is often not particularly easy to maintain in rough seas, although in rough seas with the stabilizer working it might become tolerable.

kjang
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Re: SEAKEEPER RIDE: Automatically-operating Trim Tabs to Reduce Roll and Pitch

Postby kjang » Wed Mar 22, 2023 2:51 pm

I await SEAKEEPER RIDE to come down in price. SEAKEEPER RIDE sounds like a great option to get. Having a smoother ride is always good.

Jefecinco
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Re: SEAKEEPER RIDE: Automatically-operating Trim Tabs to Reduce Roll and Pitch

Postby Jefecinco » Thu Mar 23, 2023 10:58 am

For coastal and inland boaters, except for those boating on large lakes and bays, it's difficult to believe the price will become low enough for the devices to enjoy many sales.
Butch

padrefigure
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Re: SEAKEEPER RIDE: Automatically-operating Trim Tabs to Reduce Roll and Pitch

Postby padrefigure » Fri Mar 24, 2023 10:17 am

Count me as a skeptic on this concept. If the seas are rough enough to need stabilization assist, they are too rough to run at anything above minimal planing speeds. When I have a guest suffering from mal de mer, it is generally while we are drifting, beam to and the best remedy is getting the boat moving. I often turn the helm over to the sufferer and that seems to help quite a bit. Sometimes jumping in the Gulf for a quick swim provides almost immediate relief. This is probably not a viable option for boaters from a more Northern climate.

But we will see. If there is a motion control solution that works for small boats that generally sport price tags in the six figure range, adding a 5k-10k option might work.

Jefecinco
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Re: SEAKEEPER RIDE: Automatically-operating Trim Tabs to Reduce Roll and Pitch

Postby Jefecinco » Fri Mar 24, 2023 11:07 am

The several user reviews I've read on Seakeeper have been very positive. However, after spending several thousand dollars to have a device permanently installed in one's boat it may be difficult to admit it may not be as good as hoped for.
Butch

jimh
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Re: SEAKEEPER RIDE: Automatically-operating Trim Tabs to Reduce Roll and Pitch

Postby jimh » Thu Apr 20, 2023 11:23 am

kjang wrote:Having a smoother ride is always good.
There is no argument to your assertion that a smoother ride is more desirable. The notion of how to obtain a smoother ride is a subject of continual interest. One of my greatest insights into how to obtain a smoother ride occurred during a passage in which a smoother ride would have been much appreciated. Let me relate the circumstances.

I was aboard an OUTRAGE 18 with three other adults. We were heading south on Georgian Bay into head seas and headwinds, and as one might expect with an 18-foot open boat, the ride was not particularly "smooth." The fetch of Georgian Bay at his point was greater than 50-miles, so the wind had ample opportunity to create significant wind waves.

As we labored south, another vessel appeared on the horizon, coming northward. As it happened our course lines were going to create a close pass. This afforded me the opportunity to observe the ride characteristics of the other vessel. This vessel was a very long and rather narrow classic motor yacht of over 100-feet in length, with a classic rounded stern or fantail. On the stern and under a nice overhead canvas, several older people were enjoying breakfast and tea. With the following seas and the much longer and relatively high length-to-beam ratio, I could not discern any pitching motion on their yacht. From this I learned several important elements of obtaining a smoother ride.

First, always sail downwind.

Second, use a boat whose water line length is many multiples of the wave length of the wind waves. Having the hull of the boat stretching across the tops of four or five wave fronts will dramatically reduce the tendency of the hull to pitch up and down on a single wave.

Third, have a relatively high length-to-beam ratio in the hull, with a fine entry forward.

Fourth, operate the boat at a speed below hull-speed, that is, not on hydroplane.

Now, back to the ability of a SEAKEEPER RIDE device: could it have improved the ride of the OUTRAGE 18 in the conditions described? I cannot say. I will have to wait for someone with an OUTRAGE 18 to invest in the SEAKEEPER RIDE and report the outcome.

kjang
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Re: SEAKEEPER RIDE: Automatically-operating Trim Tabs to Reduce Roll and Pitch

Postby kjang » Wed May 03, 2023 3:04 pm

I would agree with you on your assessment. I do want to ride in a boat that has these interceptor blades on it.

Seakeeper Ride seems to work very fast compared to competitor's model.

I have down-sized to a 190 MONTAUK. In most situations there is no need from trim tabs. With a previous boat I owned, I had to have trim tabs, and I often used often.

Keys
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Re: SEAKEEPER RIDE: Automatically-operating Trim Tabs to Reduce Roll and Pitch

Postby Keys » Tue Nov 28, 2023 9:31 pm

To see a recording of the effect of the SEAKEEPER RIDE 450 on a 22-foot Boston Whaler boat, visit

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aPiOHKT0jIM