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Old 06-21-2009
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mast falling over on a moored hobie cat

Anyone out there ever moored a hobie cat? I have a windrider rave, which is similar to a hobie cat. I was checking on my moored boat today and the mast had fallen over. Someone had warned me that a hobie cat that was moored eventually had its mast fall over too. Is there something about the design that doesn't like to be moored? Or did I not have my stays tight enough?

Troy
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Old 06-21-2009
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I just asked your question to my in-house hobie expert.
The hobie has a rotating mast. With a rotating mast the rig has to be loose to allow the rig to rotate.
If you have the hobie on a mooring and leave the mast up you would need to rig some kind of extra tension when the sails were not up.
For example running the main halyard to the bow and tying the side halyards together to introduce some tension.
Without the extra tension the slapping for hours, and hours will rather quickly cause some component to fail.

The boat is designed to have sails on when the rig is up. The sails act as a for and back stay.
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Old 06-21-2009
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I was thinking about this when I first bought my hobie but I decided not to for this exact reason, the problem is since the boat has 2 hulls and it is so wide the wave action is much worse and it doesn't roll with the waves it bangs more. On the hobie the rigging gets tightened a lot by the tension from hoisting the jib so when you don't have the sail up the rigging is pretty loose there are no turnbuckles to tighten it. So with the banging and the loose rigging it was a bad combination. I don't know how your boat is set up though.
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Old 06-22-2009
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david is right. i have a hobie at my house here on a lake - they dont call them "beach cats" for nothing. you have to drag them up on the beach. you leave a lot of slop in the shrouds so that the mast can rotate. The windward shrouds are tight when you sail and the leeward are loose enough that monohull sailors are nervous until they realize it is supposed to be that way. Having been marooned in the middle of the lake in a sudden calm I can tell you that any kind of a swell makes the mast jerk all over the place - It would be easy to pull the chainplates right out.
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Old 06-22-2009
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Loose shrouds = untuned rig

I can't say I agree with the loose shrouds for a rotating mast on any boat, Hobie included. I had a 15' Venture cat many years ago with a rotating mast and we kept all standing rigging tight/taught with no problem impacting the rotating mast. I currently have a MacGregor 26M with a rotating mast and the standing rigging is very taught/tight, I use a Loos Guage to set the shrouds at the correct tension. I also have what is called a mast base bearing that I have at the base of the mast to help it rotate more freely under tension, works like a charm. I used to have two large teflon washers the size of the bottom of a coffe mug to help with rotation but since replaced them with this bearing. It is esssentially three washers with the center one embedded with ball bearings while the outer two rotate over it. I can't for the life of me comprehend the logic of loose rigging for a Hobie, Windrider or any sailboat. The rigging should be tight, not so tight as to play music on it but still tight. Loose rigging is an invitation for trouble from my perspective. No wonder the mast finally failed, it was a foregone conclusion with loose standing rigging.
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Old 06-22-2009
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Like i said there are no turnbuckles to tighten it, you have a metal piece with 6 or so holes. You just get the shroud as tight as you can and you be happy then you tighten it the rest of the way with the jib. And the op made the mistake of mooring it so it fell but it is perfectly fine this way for trailering or beaching the boats.
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Old 06-22-2009
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just take your main halyard back to the traveler and tension it up. instant backstay...... the mast stands on the tripod of the fore and side stays but with the looseness and the right conditions I could see the mast jumping out of the socket and going over. how do you drain the hulls? mine always leaked even after a couple of hours........
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Old 06-22-2009
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The Hobie is designed for the rig to be tightened via the jib halyard. when the jib wire is properly tensioned, the forstay has about 12" (or so) of slack in it. Tightning the shrouds with the sail down will change the rig so that the mast rake is wrong when the main is hoisted. Using the main halyard as a backstay will rake the mast aft and further "loosen" the shrouds since they're aft of the mast step. That would, however, put some downward pressure on the mast - so it is an option. Best way to tighten the rig for mooring is to use the jib halyard - perhaps in conjunction with a "pigtail" to substitute as the jib luff - wire or low-stretch line. That will tighten both the forestay and shrouds.

Ultimately, this boat should be beached.
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Old 06-22-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davidpm View Post
If you have the hobie on a mooring and leave the mast up you would need to rig some kind of extra tension when the sails were not up.
That's only part of the problem. HobieCats are not meant to be moored - period. If you leave a traditional cat (fiberglass sandwich construction ie. the 16, 17 18...) in the water, it will become waterlogged. They don't have a barrier coat! I'm not sure what would happen with a rotomolded boat (ie. the Wave or Getaway).

My method (shown to me by a racer) of tensioning the rig is to shackle the jib bullet blocks to the forestay adjuster and tension to taste. That's held up through several tropical storms.

20060902_0002

My boat is not in the picture, but was properly sand anchored behind the dune.
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Old 06-22-2009
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moored windrider

Well, I found out today that the forestay broke. That is an interesting area to fail. I would expect the forestay to be one of the more resilient parts of the boat.

I need to modify the mast so it doesn't rotate while the boat is moored. I was thinking of some kind of pin that I could pull out when I needed to go sailing. Do hobies have this kind of arrangement?

Troy
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