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 Post subject: Newest Turbofins!
PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2012 12:35 am 
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Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2005 10:46 pm
Posts: 2406
Location: Escondido
To most users, Turbofins are Turbofins -- they all look alike. But without a lot of fan fare, Hobie has been steadily improving this product.

I believe STTurbofins are now in their 5th generation. Here's a rundown:
-- spring 2006 first generation turbos appeared
-- second generation enlarged chain clearance notch for better fit
-- third generation changed black outer material for more durability. Identifiable by a small "T" (tough) near the upper right corner.
Image
-- fourth generation changed gray inner material for improved performance

The newest (fifth) generation again upgrades the outer (black) material for better puncture resistance, improved rip resistance, better cut resistance from fishing line and better shape retention on the trailing edge. I got to "torture" one of the new fins compared with the previous version recently and was thoroughly impressed with the differences. On the water, this new fin handles submerged strikes with greater resistance to punctures and require no patching if somehow you manage to puncture the fin anyway. So far I've had several strikes against submerged stumps and no tears at all.

Trailing edge stretch, while not seriously disruptive to typical fin performance, is unsightly and can cause uneven leg exertion (see picture):
Image
(photo by wndrfl)

It is caused by resting the trailing edge against surfaces for any length of time, particularly warm or hot surfaces. The new fins appear to be remarkably resistant to this stretch. I've had the new fins now for over 2 months and without any special handling or sleeving, they still look like new.

How about performance? Oddly, the new tougher Turbo is more flexible than the former version, allowing it to operate with a little less resistance. That said, you'll be running a slightly higher cadence to cruise at the same speed. The difference is very slight. In terms of efficiency, the net energy expenditure is virtually identical to its predecessor.

Since all Turbos look alike, how can you tell the difference? The current version has a small patent number near the clew adjustment screw as seen here:
Image
None of the earlier versions have this.

If your older turbos are looking and running well, you probably won't notice much difference in this latest version. But if they are looking a bit beat up, patched up or stretched out, take heart that your next set will be a great improvement! 8)


Last edited by Roadrunner on Thu Nov 29, 2012 11:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Newest Turbofins!
PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2012 1:33 pm 
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Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2007 2:25 pm
Posts: 2005
Location: Central Coast NSW Australia
Thanks Roadrunner for this info. 8)
Your 'tech bulletins' are much appreciated.
I'll know what to look for when I go to replace my 3rd gen fins.


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 Post subject: Re: Newest Turbofins!
PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2012 7:37 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jun 14, 2012 6:18 am
Posts: 217
Location: New Smyrna Beach, FL
I knew I should have Copyrighted that photo!!! :lol: :lol: :lol:

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 Post subject: Re: Newest Turbofins!
PostPosted: Thu Nov 22, 2012 10:09 am 
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Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2012 11:35 am
Posts: 220
Location: Ogden, Utah
Good to know. I think mine are fourth generation (2011 model) and as sturdy as they are I doubt I'll need replacements before Gen 6 or Gen 7 are out. Still, the steady improvements are comforting.

By the way, I hang my drive between uses. A simple cord loop that slips around the pedals and then over a hook does it.

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 Post subject: Re: Newest Turbofins!
PostPosted: Thu Nov 29, 2012 11:54 pm 
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Hobie Approved Guru

Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2005 10:46 pm
Posts: 2406
Location: Escondido
Stringy, thanks for the comments. I forgot to mention the new Turbos have a slicker leading edge that seems to cast off the sea grass and kelp a little better than the older version. They are by no means self clearing but any improvement is appreciated. It's easier to feel the difference than to see it, but in this photo the top fin edge is the new one:
Image

Wndrfl, I copied your picture some time ago and forgot who I stole it from -- thanks for coming forward on that. Now that your name properly graces the image, I'll know who to send the royalty check to. :lol:

Rocky, good suggestion on the hanging Drive to help keep the older fins from warping. You can also stand them on their pedals. 8)


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