Just a question?
Thinking of getting a wind indicator…
Is it possible to make one EASILY?
or better to buy one? buying one means shipping for me…and thats my worry!

Any ideas on this?

here some links I ve found about to buy one

Thanks for the help


if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it!

i’m sure others will have better ideas, but…

i have made several for real size boats and one for my r/c boat. this is how i made it for the little guy:

*one coffee stirring straw
*silly putty
*one brightly dyed feather (the kind found in *old school fountain pens)
*two medium sized beads
*one s.s. 1/16" rod
*one tube superglue
*white lithium grease/duralube/something slick

-embed about a 1/4" of putty into one end of tube
-stick pointy end of feather into other end and glue it there
-find the straws new balance point
-drill a hole that is 1/64th larger than the s.s. rod through the balance point
-glue one bead (best to buy beads with pre drilled holes…its hard as hell to hold a little bead and drill it[:D])below where the straw will go, leaving enough room for a bead on the top.
-place grease/duralube/slick stuff on shaft where the straw will go (this will need periodic maintenance)
-apply straw
-glue bead on top

straw should be a contrasting color (black is good)to the feather, and the tip (or front) of straw should be another bright color (different from the feather.

not perfect, but it works and is cheap as hell to make


Thanks for the tip. Will give a try.

if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it!

My masthead wind indicators are typically VCR tape. I sailed an EC12 with one of those fancy-dancy rotating GBMY things last year and didn’t like it as much. It worked fine - no issues - but especially with the weird air we have at our pond, I couldn’t tell the strength of the breeze - which, at noon at our pond, varies from non-existent to a zephyr…

There is nothing - absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats. Kenneth Graeme, Wind in the Willows.

I glue the smallest aluminum tubing (crimped at bottom) to the crane 90 degrees to water line.I find a large white pigeon feather and put in a piece of paper clip or similar pin bent at a 90. Punch it into 1/4 back on feather super glue in place. Cut off front tip of feather. Lay boat on side insert #9 shot into front hole till feather balances flat. Glue shot in place. Sometimes the wind in a up draft will pull it out. They float.

Silver mylar children’s baloon; cut into strips approx. 1/2 inch wide and six inches long; attach to backstay with scotch tape.

I like using audio tape on my full sized boat. But be careful because when you get in the groove, the tape will start playing whatever music you have on it, so make sure it is something you don’t mind listening to.

But seriously, I have one of those fancy wind indicators from Great Basin. I sail regularly with guys that have their own home made mylar strip type telltales.

I find that in really light wind, the wind indicator will respond with a direction while the mylar strip is still hanging pretty limp. This allows me to detect wind shifts sooner and adjust my sails accordingly. Yes, I give up in strength measurement but I would rather know the direction than the strength since I cannot do much about the strength, but I can make changes to my trim when the direction changes.

  • Will

Will Gorgen

by the way, the wind indicator that I have is this one from Cap Maquettes:

I have the big one which is $14 and and works very well. They also have a smaller version for $8.

  • Will

Will Gorgen

Thanks for all the tips…will try to build one…if its not working…then time to order one…anyway thanks


if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it!

I have that wind indicator from GBMY and am very happy with it so far. I have used mylar strips in the past. In medium to heavy winds the mylar worked great, however it would tangle with the rigging now and then. In light airs a wind indicator like the one listed above rules.


I bought the one Will was suggesting from GBMY…very easy to install (just one screw)…and it looks fine.
Now just have to wait to hit the water.
Thanks for the ideas


if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it!

It is very easy to make a good masthead pennant. I make one similar to that discussed by Skiffy.

One brightly colored plastic straw (mine come from the Sonic drive-in), a bright paper (cut oversize), some beads for bearings and a screw counterweight glued into the opposite end. Scotch tape the flag to the straw. Trim the oversize flag to match the finished counterweight for balance. Tape the staff to the masthead.

Simple to make, and so cheap you can give several away to all your friends.

Download Attachment: pennant1.jpg


I do similar but with a dyed feather. These (your type and mine) are superior to the any other indicators out there I think. I really don?t like the Bantock or the one that Wis is getting. Way to heavy, hard to read, slow to react and just plain not that accurate.