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PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2015 3:38 am 
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An update for those of us who prefer sailing our AIs in Adventure mode...
Image
After getting slightly frustrated with the limited performance of my boomed 35 sq ft Solway Dory sail set up in light airs on my aka-less 2014 AI, I finally tried out the standard Hobie sail yesterday in 6 to 9 knot winds (mostly reaching). Bit tame in 6 knots (see photo) but later, when the wind picked up to around 9 knots with 1 to 1.5 foot wind waves, it was an absolute hoot! In those conditions I sat across the yak on the edge of the hull semi-cross legged with my leeward foot under a hiking strap. I was sailing diagonally down the wind waves and was able to surf them a fair bit.
Compared to my boomed 35 sq ft sail set up (http://www.hobiecat.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=69&t=52685), it's a only marginally more tender due to the slightly higher weight aloft but still perfectly manageable in the conditions I was in. I did notice however the extra friction in the mainsheet due the standard Hobie routing, and found the yak harder to manage downwind with wind waves due to the lack of sail control. I fitted a sprit type boom made from oversize fishing rod sections and held to the mast with a prussic knot, but without a vang the boom lifts anyway so I'll try it without the boom next time.
If I'm still not happy with downwind sail control I'll think about having a boom end pocket sewn into the sail by the mast so I can use a leg-of-mutton type auto-vanging boom set up for light airs with the sail fully unfurled

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2015 7:33 am 
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Location: Sarasota,Key West FL
Simon:
I've done quite a bit of similar stuff to you with my TI (sailing in kayak mode with no AMA's). We are more traditional long time kayakers and have always preffered tandem yaks over singles even though pretty much all tandems are bulkier and harder to car top. I always felt it easier to load and prepare just one boat vs two complete boats and it didn't help my marrage any when i would leave my wife 5 miles from launch exhausted (lol), so we just tandem anymore. Typical conversation, i yell back are you pedaling, the answer is always yes, i yell back again are you pedaling, yes again. I stop pedaling and the boat stops, i know her game, i dont care i enjoy the company either way.
However our favorite part of kayaking is kayak sailing, since 2007 we never took our kayaks out without the hobie kayak sails strapped to the side of the boat. Worked great on our revo's but only marginally on our tandem oasis (the hobie kayak sail was a little small). However when we traded in the Oasis for the TI in 2010 we found the TI as a kayak to be way superior and way faster than our Oasis ever was except in one area,,, kayak sailing with the standard hobie kayak sail which is way too small for such a large kayak. We tried kayak sailing with the regular TI mainsail planning to keep it furled a fewcturnd in but found the weight aloft to be too much for us. Even with the sail fully furled if the boat tilted more than 20-25 degrees or so it would just keep going over and we couldnt stop it. Also once we turtled (which was often) we found it near impossible to re-enter the kayak without going over again even with the sail completely furled, we would have to take the sail out. Then the next problem we ran into was trying to get that massive mast in while on the water, we couldnt do it.
Our favorite place is the sante fe river near gainseville fl that meanders between about 15 natural springs for about 15 miles, your just not going to take a fully rigged TI with AMA's up that (would border on rediculous). Thats just one of a dozen equally cool areas in that region. The crystal clear water is a sight to be seen.
One solution would be for hobie to come out with a slightly larger kayak sail for tandems and PA's (hint)

We tried a 50 lb weighted swinging keel but that was pretty useless in the shallow rivers and thru any types of weeds. I thought about building aka extensions with hiking tramps (like you see on moths) then sit sideways in the boat (may still do that).
I had the best luck with my 33 sq ft wing sail which has almost zero heeling moment when not engaged, however that particular sail was too tall (weight aloft) and couldnt be used without the weighted keel so that pretty much restricts its use to offshore or big saltwater (big waste of time, because we would just the the big rigged TI instead).
I am interested in what you come up with.
Good luck
Bob


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2015 1:00 pm 
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Bob, have you considered fitting an old AI sail on a sleeved AI mast to your TI? With the bigger centreboard and wider hull of the TI it'd be a lot more stable than on an AI without akas

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 16, 2015 1:14 am 
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Now that's a real eye-opener Simon. Well done!
All these years of sailing my AI in kayak mode with the small sail because I'd always thought the Island sail too big without ama. I'm going to have to try that myself. Mind you, the winds we get here are often too strong for the small sail without furling so I'm not sure how often I'll be able to use it, but I'll have to give it a go now!


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 16, 2015 4:58 am 
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Provided you are small/agile enough to sit across the yak on the edge of the hull semi-cross legged with a foot under a hiking strap, and it's not too rough, this set-up was fine (correction, great!) in the 9 knot winds I experienced (I weigh around 73 kg). Mind you, I've had quite lot of practice with my smaller, more adjustable/controllable 35 sq ft sail.

And remember, you can always try the mini outriggers I referred to earlier (viewtopic.php?f=69&t=52685)for higher winds :-)

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 16, 2015 5:05 am 
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Yea Simon:
stringy and i are probably the most experienced kayak sailers on the forum, i think just seeing your pic has humbled both of us (lol).
I usually have several hobie kayak sails laying around my garage, along with several versions of jibs wing sails and spinnakers (I usually make my own sails), but since I've never owned an AI (or even sailed one) I don't have any AI parts laying around to try. I think the perfect square top furlable kayak sail for the TI (and maybe the AI, and the PA) in kayak mode would need to be short (under 12ft) of course furlable and around 35 sq ft. Similar design to the hobie kayak sail which seems to be one of the best kayak sails i have tried (99% of all the others I have seen are downwind only). The AI sail is around 60 sq ft, which might still be a little large for my TI in kayak mode unless i had a fifty lb keel weight, would be worth trying though (maybe in real light winds).
By far the coolest feature of all Hobie Mirage kayaks is every one of them is designed from the ground up as a very capable sailing machine. If i had to guess, probably 80% of the Hobie mirage owners don't know this and haven't tried it (...kayak sailing...just speculation on my part). Keep in mind everyone at Hobie is a sailer (it's in their blood) and it shows in everything they make. My personal opinion is this puts them light years ahead of every kayak maker out there selling recreational kayaks (just my opinion)
I still wish Hobie would come out with a furlable wing sail for kayaks. My opinion is a wing sail has 1/4 of the heeling force of conventional sails (the force trying to tip you over), and typically has 1/3 more power per sq ft. the nicest feature of the furlable wing sails is if the wind picks up you just furl the sail in one turn (covering the air inlets), then it's just a plane old sail as wind increases you just furl in more (really no different from their current kayak sail).

Maybe someday....
Bob


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 16, 2015 5:50 am 
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For sailing in kayak mode downwind in anything but flat calm, the biggest single improvement you can make IMHO is to add a sail with a boom AND vang (or add a sprit boom, which is self vanging, if you can work out how to do this well on a Hobie type sail). This not only gives you a much more predictable response downwind, but also means you can "sail by the lee", enabing you to control heel much more effectively.
See http://www.storerboatplans.com/wp/design/rig/sails/sailing-unstayed-cat-ketches-and-cat-yawls-safely-and-efficiently-downwind-in-strong-winds/ for an explanation of controlling heel this way.
If I ever muster the courage/stupidity to go out in 3+ foot wind waves and 15 knot tail winds in kayak mode with the stock AI sail fully unfurled, it'll be with a sprit boom! :D

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 2015 7:08 am 
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I still think you're nuts, but good for you.
I won't be doing any sailing without my amas any time soon :lol:


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 2015 9:23 am 
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I suspect that if you try it in light airs, you'll be amazed at how much faster it is without the added drag of the two extra hulls in the water :-)

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 2015 10:15 am 
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siravingmon:
I don't know much about the AI, as I have never ridden in one, but on the TI when I'm sailing, my AMA's are not usually touching the water at all (maybe just a smidge of the back of one of them just barely touching the water, I doubt there is much drag if any). I hike out on my tramps and try and balance the boat so the AMA's are out of the water when I'm underway. Sometimes when really pushing the boat on a hard reach it takes two of us hiked way out with our tippie toes against the main outer hull to keep that AMA out of the water,ok my TI is a little modified with a little extra sail area (260 sq ft), but the same principle should work the same on a stock AI/TI. We steer with a hiking stick.

Tom Kirkman is the one that taught me on a tri, (like his Weta 'awsome boat btw') the whole point on any tri is to keep those AMA's out of the water alltogether.
Thats one reason I like tri's, you can really push it and if you balance everything right there is no downside to the AMA's, or you can go into veg mode (I do that a lot), and just stay in the seat, and let the AMA's do what they do to keep you from capsizing (at the cost of sheer speed), I have never capsized my TI, but have gone over a lot kayak sailing, personally if I'm in open water I prefer the tri.
Bob


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 2015 1:12 pm 
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My understanding is that on the AI both amas are in the water when the boat is level. See viewtopic.php?f=69&t=43938&start=0

Of course I have no personal experience in this area :lol:

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 17, 2015 1:54 pm 
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I would still like to see a nice kayak sail setup for bigger kayaks without having to make all your own crap (gets old).
Bob


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