This Self-Steering system was designed using the latest SAILOMAT patented innovations and unique design concepts, together with advanced manufacturing techniques. The result is a world leading state-of-the-art Self-Steering device.


The SAILOMAT 700 systems are built and custom designed for sailboats in the range 24 - 50 feet LOA. It is designed to be used on all types of cruising or racing sailboats.

The SAILOMAT 700 is designed and built on the so called 'servo-pendulum principle', which is the most powerful and most sensitive self-steering principle. A light airvane is used as a 'signal' to detect the amount of sailing-course deviation (course error), a pendulum-type servo-blade positioned in the water stream behind the yacht to mechanically amplify the signal, and a line circuit with blocks connecting the SAILOMAT pendulum body to the yacht's main rudder (tiller or wheel connection). The function of the SAILOMAT is to sense a weak course error (signal), mechanically amplify this signal and to generate a strong mechanical force and motion of the line to the tiller or wheel, proportional to the course error. The yacht's main rudder performs the steering correction, under the SAILOMAT control.

Typically the weak aerodynamic 'signal' side force on the airvane may be of the order 0.040 kilogram ( 0.4 Newton, 1.4 oz.), the servo-blade side blade of the order 3 kilogram (30 Newton), and the line force to the wheel or tiller of the order 15 kilogram ( 150 Newton, 33 lbs). In this example the vane-to-line force amplification is then of the order 375:1. The energy required to move the wheel or tiller is thus extracted from the waterflow by the servo blade. Correspondingly there is a small and insignificant reduction in the yacht's speed in order for the SAILOMAT to perform the self-steering task.

Several different line circuits can be used with the SAILOMAT 700. In contrast to previous systems, the two pull-pull lines from the pendulum body are initially running upwards from two unique 'wing' lever arms attached to the pendulum. This permits simpler block positioning, and keeps the transom or walk-thru region more accessible and clean from 'line-clutter' often seen with other systems.

Santa Cruz

Installation of the SAILOMAT 700 on the yacht is particularly simple. Off-center mounting is possible with the SAILOMAT and indeed desired for modern walk-thru transoms, or to clear a center-located ladder. The new and unique mounting base of the SAILOMAT 700 is already positioned to one side (port or starboard) of the SAILOMAT main body, making off-center mounting even more feasible and attractive.

The unit can be mounted also on double-enders, using simple shimming. Custom-designed side-mounting on special sheet metal or tube platforms are possible for yachts with extreme transom hung rudder geometries.

The compact universal mounting base is simply secured with four bolts to the hull, at any transom slope angle. The main SAILOMAT unit can be simply and rapidly removed from the mounting base, for stowing when not in use for longer periods of time.

Large blade swing ability to the side and out of the water means overload safety and simple 'parking' of the servo blade when not in use.

Enhanced overall steering performance in light winds is achieved with a low-friction vane-to-servo-blade linkage, and a variable ratio mechanism (SAILOMAT patent).

The materials used for the SAILOMAT 700 are primarily extruded marine-grade aluminum and marine-grade aluminum sheet metal, with higher tensile strength and very much higher strength-to-weight ratio than previous aluminum castings of previous models and welded stainless steel (competitor) designs.

The overall weight is yet lower than the previous SAILOMATs.

SAILOMAT 700 Pendulum

All parts are safely bolted together with advanced fastener components, thus achieving accurate safe control and precise calculation of the strength of the individual parts and the overall assembly (not possible with castings and if welding is used).

Galvanic corrosion resistance is enhanced by a zinc sacrifice anode.

SAILOMAT 700 systems are manufactured and assembled in professional plants in Sweden.

Copyright © 1985-2023 SAILOMAT USA/Dr. Stellan Knöös
All rights reserved. Patents. Trademark.