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PostPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2012 4:11 pm 
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Joined: Sun Aug 12, 2007 5:17 pm
Posts: 512
Location: Auckland NZ
I wonder if someone from Hobie/a Mirage drive Guru can help me out with a couple of questions as follows:

I have just done a 'waterline up' upgrade to my old "stainless sprockets" drive to equip it with the newer cable routing system which is easier to adjust and will, I hope, result in fewer cable breakages.

I am wondering if it is easy and cheap to perform a similar 'waterline down' downgrade to my other drive (a version 2) to swap out the existing 'set screw' plastic sprockets for a set of stainless sprockets which makes replacing a broken fin mast so much easier, especially at sea.

Then I would have two drives each equipped identically with the older cotter pin stainless sprockets and the newer cable routing system.

I assume that the stainless sprockets themselves are part number 81130001 SPROCKET MIRAGE - STAINLESS (I guess I need 2 of these). I think I might not need to buy any other parts than these but before I commit myself I wonder if someone can confirm this for me?


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2012 8:37 pm 
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Hobie Approved Guru

Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2005 10:46 pm
Posts: 2391
Location: Escondido
You need a pair of bushings for each SS sprocket. You'll also notice differences in the sprocket guards, outhaul clews, longer clevis pins. Don't forget to pick up a couple of cotter pins (and a spare or two). Make sure your masts have the cotter hole in them. A close examination of both styles (which I think you have) should clarify exactly what you need and what you can move over.

All part numbers are listed on P. 45 (in box, upper right)) of the Spring '12 online catalog:
http://static.hobiecat.com/digital_asse ... alog_1.pdf

Or you can epoxy your v-1 masts (and Allenhead screws) together and replace them later or keep them as spares. I've been real happy with the V2 sprockets/masts -- finally sold my SS versions a couple of years ago and haven't missed them. SS sprockets were always dependable for me, but the V2s have been also and without the mast wobble.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2012 2:58 am 
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Joined: Sun Aug 12, 2007 5:17 pm
Posts: 512
Location: Auckland NZ
Roadrunner, thanks for your recommendations on this question...

From your reply I take it that I need all the items labeled "SS SPKT" plus some Sprocket Guards shown in the box on P45? Any idea how many Sprocket Guards I would need ? (Are these really essential?!). I already have a supply of marine grade s/s cotter pins and finmasts in my spare parts inventory.

FWIW the problem I am trying to get around is that my other half has lost confidence in her Hobie Adventure, not because of any issues that she has experienced but because she has witnessed me experiencing a catalogue of mirage drive breakages in my Adventure.

There was a period of a couple of months last year during which I suffered from breakage after breakage (several cables and fin masts breaking on one or other of our two drives and/or masts coming loose on the "set screw" drive we have) to the extent that it seemed like as soon as I got one problem fixed another occurred one weekend after another. It should be said that I was using the drives pretty hard so I would not expect the breakages I suffered to be typical of more normal usage. She witnessed some of these breakages being a real PITA to fix in the garage, not to mention the frustration associated with the long lead time for the supply of parts here in NZ. The upshot was that she now has a fear that one day I/we will suffer another breakage and won't make it back to shore and/or that she will never be capable of fixing a drive breakage if we became separated or if she were ever to go out on her own.

So to reduce the likelihood of a cable breakage I upgraded my drive to the newer cables & routing which, I understand, put less stress on the cable-chain joints and should make a cable failure less likely. These cables are also much easier to change/adjust than the old version.

Personal experience has shown me that repairing a fin-mast breakage on a "set screw" drive is almost impossible in the garage, let alone at sea, unless the whole sprocket assembly is removed/replaced - I understand this is what "screw-in" drive users also suggest if their masts break. This is far too fiddly a task to risk attempting without returning to land IMHO, probably requires a larger toolkit than I would want to carry on board, and is definitely beyond my wife. By comparison, changing out a broken mast on a drive with stainless sprockets (the "cotter-pin" system) even at sea is a doddle.

While I accept that the "screw in" masts may well be very reliable, IMO the simplicity of maintenance of the "cotter pin" system in the event of a mast failure far outweighs any disadvantage associated with a bit of play in the masts (in fact I see a bit of play as a good thing since it allows the stub of a broken mast to be extracted easily - which is the issue with both the "screw-in" and the "set-screw" systems). Hence the reason for wishing to 'downgrade' the sprockets. At best I might be able to train the other half to change a fin mast and insert a new cotter pin :lol: but at least least I hope that fewer cable breakages and easier maintenance will give her a bit more confidence in her boat!

The other practical advantage I am hoping to benefit from is two almost identical drives - same cables, same masts, same mast retaining system, meaning a common set of spares & (minimal) toolkit on board for maintaining both drives.

Thanks again for your help & guidance.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2012 9:20 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jul 20, 2004 7:34 pm
Posts: 65
Location: Australia
stobbo wrote:


the frustration associated with the long lead time for the supply of parts here in NZ.



John from the Watershed (NZ) can help. The Watershed took over from Boat Bits and have made a great effort to carry parts and provide service. They spent 3 days in Australia to attend the Hobie Dealer training course.

Steve Fields
Hobie Cat Australasia PL

_________________
Steve Fields
Hobie Cat Australasia
Huskisson NSW Australia
http://www.hobiecat.com.au


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2012 11:28 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2005 10:46 pm
Posts: 2391
Location: Escondido
Stobbo, I would say the sprocket guards are not essential, but if you decide to get them there would be 4 (2 front, 2 rear) for one Drive. You do need 2 of the longer clevis pins and 2 outhauls (one per sprocket).
Image

Most parts give a warning before failing, except cables and masts. For your heavy use in salt water, you might consider changing out cables after about 800 miles. This is not to say they would fail at that point, but the risk of failure goes up beyond that. You can keep your old ones as spares. IMO, V2 masts should also be changed out at about 800 miles of hard use. Normal users who aren't pushing their boats all the time might consider a preventive change at about 1000 miles. The idea here is to minimize the chance of failure due to excessive undetected parts wear, not predict the average parts failure rate, which probably averages at least 50% longer.

Another option if you're wandering far from shore solo, is to bring a spare Drive along. You can take the crank arms off, bring a wrench and stow your spare in the forward hatch if necessary -- fairly easy to install the pedal cranks on the spot. 8)


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