THE TRIM TAB, A KEY PERFORMANCE DRIVER
The trim tab plays an essential role in optimising outboard performance. The trim tab modifies the propeller's thrust angle in relation to the hull; this trims the boat, thus optimising both speed and comfort. Trim tab control buttons are placed directly on the throttle control; using them should feel as natural as operating your car’s indicators.
Nowadays, most boats with a BENETEAU motor (outboard and inboard) include trim tabs. So, how can they be used most effectively to improve the driving experience?
A negative trim lowers the bow and gets the boat off to a good start by optimising propeller thrust. When making high-speed turns the trim keeps the propeller under water, thus making it easier for the pilot to control the boat. A negative trim also maintains the boat’s comfort in rough seas by limiting hull impacts when facing waves in a head sea.
A neutral trim is best when sailing at cruising speed and helps control fuel consumption.
A positive trim lifts the front of the boat, minimising friction between the hull and the water thereby increasing the speed and making it easier to change direction. When sailing with a back wind and with the waves, a positive trim also provides greater comfort by easing the bow and reducing hull impacts.