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PostPosted: Sat Jul 22, 2006 10:46 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2005 10:46 pm
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Location: Escondido
It looks so deceptively simple, it's almost easy to overlook. Who would guess this "tube" is a creative adaptation of one of the most fundamental aircraft instruments -- the pitot tube speedometer?
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Though not necessarily accurate, it is extremely consistent for your hull and weight, and can be calibrated with a GPS. But unlike GPS, it gives instaneous readings.

Regardless, whether you're working to improve your sailing technique, paddling style or pedaling speed, you can use this tool as a training device. Here are a few examples:

When sailing, used in conjunction with your "telltales", it helps you adjust the sail position that yields the most speed on any given tack. If you're beating into the wind, it helps you recognize if you're pinching (heading up a little too high into the wind).

Paddling, you can use it to refine your stroke pattern, reach and blade angle. As you experiment you get instant feedback.

Pedaling, it's great when traveling -- the more constant your speed, the faster you get to your destination. With a little experience, you can also use it to tell you how the wind is affecting your speed. Whether to push and pull on the pedals or push only -- your speedo will tell you!

Unlike GPS, it ignores tide and current and lets you focus on your actual performance against the water.

Like everything, it should be rinsed and cleaned occasionally so it doesn't get clogged up, especially in salt water. If you're having trouble seeing the marks, you can enhance them with a Sharpie permanent marker.

So don't leave home without it. Once you get used to using it, it will really help sharpen your skills! 8)


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 14, 2006 9:57 pm 
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Joined: Thu Oct 13, 2005 4:37 pm
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Location: San Francisco
Does the Pitot Tube measure in MPH or Knots?


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2006 11:13 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2005 10:46 pm
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Location: Escondido
Pretty sure it's MPH, but it's best to think of the marks as reference units, until you "calibrate" the scale with a GPS.

It depends on how far it sits in the water to begin with -- different with the Adventure than the Tandem, for example; body weight, placement of gear, etc. all have an effect.

Once calibrated for you and your boat, you can figure the correction. For example, at 180 #, with the Adventure, I add 1 mph up to "4", and 1.3 above 4MPH to approximate GPS speed (maybe the bow rises a bit)?


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2006 9:57 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2005 10:46 pm
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Location: Escondido
With the local lake closed for the winter, I've been spending more time in the local harbors/bays. Lately there has been a lot of seaweed grass fouling the fins and rudder.

The speedometer picks up on the drop in speed immediately before it would otherwise be noticeable. It's surprising how little debris it takes to slow the boat down by 1 to 1.5 MPH! 8)


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2007 11:29 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2005 10:46 pm
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Location: Escondido
Not to bring up an old topic again BUT, I've recently discovered a new use for the Hobie speedometer.

If you already have it calibrated, you can use it in conjunction with a GPS to detect currents and tides. For instance, If you already know your actual speed is .5 MPH faster than your speedo but today it is reading only a .3 difference, you are probably going against a small local current. You may be able to move to one side or the other and improve your headway.

Even in the lake I started noticing subtle currents that are not otherwise visible. It's a great instrument -- I use it almost constantly. 8)


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 28, 2007 6:35 am 
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Joined: Fri Nov 19, 2004 6:56 am
Posts: 822
Location: Tallahassee, FL
Hey RR,
Good information--thanks. However, I had heard Hobie was no longer providing those with the Mirage Drive, or was planning on discontinuing them. Anyone know??

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