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PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 7:43 am 
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I had the older Hobie Outback and learned to handle the "instability". I loved it and used it for years, but I traded it in and now have a new 2012 Outback and it has some good things and some bad things about it. I live and fish in Florida (I am the head honcho of the Kayak Fishing Club of the Palm Beaches) and the older (like your 2005 model) turns in a much tighter radius than the new one (big difference so a plus for the 2005). If you get into weeds (and we do here in Florida) or go over grass flats, your 2005 model rudder just comes up to clear the grass or weeds and just goes back down, but the newer 'twist and stow' rudder sometimes gets so much weed on it that you need to call someone over to help you get unstuck. When you can pull it (the rudder) up, the kayak turns left and comes to a screeching halt and makes a lot of noise (really really good when sneaking up on Reds - yeah, right) both coming up and going down. You need the larger rudder for your Outback to be able to move about hands free in the new one and then it still requires a lot of 'tweaking' while moving. Your older one will go straighter much longer and is so much more able to be "hands-free". My son weighs almost 275 pounds and the older Outback was extremely stable for him, but I could not turn my body around to see behind me and had to turn the kayak for that (yes, I am an old guy and my arthritis will not allow me to turn my head very far and I weigh about 175). My new one is so stable that I can move around, turn sideways, even put both feet in the water on one side with no problems, and stand up in it to get my lure back from the trees when I seem to be fishing for squirrels. When people talk about their Hobie Outbacks, it is important for everyone in the discussion to know about these and other differences in the model years before giving "advice". And I wish I could change back to the older style simple up and down rudder. Learn to use your 2005 model and you will enjoy it for a long time (be sure to check for cracks near the Mirage drive fittings inside the hull though).


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2013 9:49 am 
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Thanks all for the replys!

I am just going to keep at it like most people were saying and hopefully get used to it. I guess i am just used to being on a boat where this is not comparable, il make sure to let you know if i make a few splashes or conquer the kayak ! :lol:


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 21, 2013 7:27 pm 
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Hi Travis,

I also recently purchased a used 2005 outback SUV. I took it out on the lake for the first time last weekend, and I have the same question you originally asked. After reading some reviews, I expected to feel much more steady than I did. I'm not disputing the consensus that the kayak is unusually stable - and that it may take a bit to appreciate its stability. That being said, I also wondered whether adding some extra weight might be helpful for those of us who weigh considerably less than 200 lbs. (I got the idea after reading some threads where people suggested that a heavier person might sit a little lower in the outback and find it to be more stable.) I'm curious to know if you ever tried adding some weight (and what did you use), and/or now that you've likely spent some time on the water, what do you think about that idea?

Thanks!


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 22, 2013 9:29 am 
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Adding weight is an option and I may do that now in the back (stern) of my 2012 outback to get the front (bow) out of the water. It is the flat vertical area at the bow that creates the steering problems. For your 2005 model, I would recommend making some simple floating device (outrigger if you will) to give the Outback more initial stability. I was working on some ideas for that when I got my new Outback so do not need that now (the 2012 has other problems to overcome).


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 23, 2013 7:24 am 
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Hmmmmm... when you get out and it tips to the side...it must have a lot of water in it or sometin'

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 09, 2013 7:06 pm 
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The older model Outback rides on a long circular middle section of the hull. It is almost round, so even a little bit of weight on one side or the other will make the kayak tilt quite a bit when empty. For me, it was the weight of the paddle on the left side that caused the kayak to tilt until the side was in the water. At 175 pounds, I was riding on the round bottom with both sides of the kayak not touching the water and that took getting used to. Once I learned to balance OK, and learned how much I could let it tilt, it was working fine. My son weighs 250 pounds so both sides were in the water when he used the Outback and it was extremely "stable" for him. That same round bottom also made steering much better on the older model Outbacks. My new 2012 model does not track straight at all and I have to keep my left hand on the steering control so it is not "hands free" peddling at all. The older modes was much better that way. Also the older model will turn in a much tighter circle, again because of the long round bottom in the water, where the flatter new model does not have anything for the rudder to push against except the verticle bow way up in the front. In many ways, I wish I still had my older model Outback.


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 10, 2013 12:17 pm 
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I find the newer Outbacks to track very well and i rarely need to attend to the steering handle , adjust it right and it tracks perfectly straight .


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 10, 2013 1:57 pm 
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jervis_bay84 wrote:
Tom are you referring to new comers like me who found the rev et al's primary stability too unstable to even carry out the most basic of tasks like open the hatch directly infront of you on the calmest of water?.

I had the pa 12 out yesterday in around a 2 meter swell, the thing was magic....going dead horizontal with the prevailing waves was no match to tip me over while happily going about my business on the centre platform preparing baits and jigs



The problem wasn't with the boat - it was with your expectations. The Revo has a 28 inch beam. The PA 12 has a 36 inch beam. If you want to experience real intitial stability, get yourself a 14 foot jonboat with a 48 to 56 inch beam - you can literally stand on the gunnel and not turn it over.

Everything in boat design involves a compromise. If you want to go fast and have a boat that is more capable in bad water situations, you will have to give up something, one of which is initial stability. If you want a boat you can stand up and walk around in, be prepared to go slower and have a tougher time handling it in rough water.

Everything is relative. Traditional kayaks are not "stable" and this is what allows them to do what they do so well. Often, however, all it takes a bit of getting used to a particular boat. The boats I once felt uneasy in I can now stand in. I was the problem - not the boat.


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 10, 2013 3:36 pm 
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Tom Kirkman wrote:
jervis_bay84 wrote:
Tom are you referring to new comers like me who found the rev et al's primary stability too unstable to even carry out the most basic of tasks like open the hatch directly infront of you on the calmest of water?.

I had the pa 12 out yesterday in around a 2 meter swell, the thing was magic....going dead horizontal with the prevailing waves was no match to tip me over while happily going about my business on the centre platform preparing baits and jigs



The problem wasn't with the boat - it was with your expectations. The Revo has a 28 inch beam. The PA 12 has a 36 inch beam. If you want to experience real intitial stability, get yourself a 14 foot jonboat with a 48 to 56 inch beam - you can literally stand on the gunnel and not turn it over.

Everything in boat design involves a compromise. If you want to go fast and have a boat that is more capable in bad water situations, you will have to give up something, one of which is initial stability. If you want a boat you can stand up and walk around in, be prepared to go slower and have a tougher time handling it in rough water.

Everything is relative. Traditional kayaks are not "stable" and this is what allows them to do what they do so well. Often, however, all it takes a bit of getting used to a particular boat. The boats I once felt uneasy in I can now stand in. I was the problem - not the boat.

X2


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 10, 2013 8:27 pm 
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Re: "I find the newer Outbacks to track very well and i rarely need to attend to the steering handle, adjust it right and it tracks perfectly straight."

It is not if the rudder is true, or "adjusted right", it has to do with the verticle part at the very front that causes the Outback to keep changing course with even the smallest chop, current, or even wind. Picture a surf board with the skaig in the front instead of the back. Now when I put a lot of weight in the stern and nothing in the front hatch so that the bow is completely out of the water, the tracking improves greatly, but still nothing as good as the older model Outback. With the older model I could peddle along side of another kayak fishing in a Florida canal, only having to ocasionally make small adjustments to the rudder. With the new model, I am zig zagging back and forth trying to stay close to the other kayak without hitting it. It really cuts into my fishing time. How do you figure why you can track well, and everybody else I know with new model Outbacks can not? Before I got my new one, I could not understand all the people saying the Outback was not "hands free". Now I know. The older one certainly was, but the new one certainly is not. For sake of clarity, I have been kayaking since the 1950's and have six of my own kayaks and am the head of a kayak fishing club in South Florida with over 450 members and a lot of them have a varity of Hobie kayaks. If you have a secret method of making a new model Hobie Outback track "perfectly straight" or track like the older model, or even track fairly well, please let me know so I can spread the word.


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2013 1:39 pm 
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For that matter, if anyone has a method of getting any boat to track straight please enlighten the boating world. Millions of boaters the world over would no doubt be interested.


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2013 2:22 pm 
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No tricks involved, maybe what i consider tracking straight is different than what you call tracking straight, i rarely need to have my hand on the steering control though, once i move it in the direction i want to go it goes that way until i move the handle again.


If i ever obtain a waterproof camera i'll post the video.


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2013 2:25 pm 
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Let me play devil's advocate for just a moment, and be assured there is no ill intent here.

Are you saying you can pick a spot, several hundred yards, heck even 50 yards away, and simply point your boat at it and then have it track directly there with no further steering input?

If you can do that, you have set hundreds, perhaps thousands of years of maritime knowledge on its head.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2013 8:42 pm 
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Tom Kirkman wrote:
Are you saying you can pick a spot, several hundred yards, heck even 50 yards away, and simply point your boat at it and then have it track directly there with no further steering input?

If you can do that, you have set hundreds, perhaps thousands of years of maritime knowledge on its head.
I don't know, Tom, but I tend to agree with cnnashman on this. A properly adjusted rudder should deliver good tracking with minimal input, barring wind, chop and tide of course.

I did an experiment with the PA a few years ago amid all the gripes about the hair trigger steering (before the steering drum was modified). I think you'll agree that boat has to be one of the most sensitive when it comes to steering stability. The Outback has approximately the same size (large) rudder, better postiioned and without all the over-correction issues. Here is the report:


I agree the rudder is extremely sensitive. There is a lag time also, which makes it even more challenging (a tendency to over-correct). You will learn to anticipate it's actions. If your rudder system is properly adjusted it should be easy to operate and stay exactly where you put it. Take the time to learn how to center it and adjust the tension to get the results you want. Shown below is a track of about 4.5 miles that I ran with the PA while adjusting the rudder only once (doing a 180 at the dam at bottom). The boat lean-steers (edges) reasonably well and that's how I maneuvered. I admit this is not practical, but mention it here only to demonstrate that the rudder has sufficient authority to stabilize the boat's direction and can be mastered.

Image

Case in point. :wink:


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 13, 2013 1:03 pm 
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Tom Kirkman wrote:
Are you saying you can pick a spot, several hundred yards, heck even 50 yards away, and simply point your boat at it and then have it track directly there with no further steering input?

If you can do that, you have set hundreds, perhaps thousands of years of maritime knowledge on its head.


I'd say... when in wind or swell... it can be difficult to hold the nose straight at an object... on ANY vessel.

Some conditions will cause a boat to turn in a single direction, such as a crosswind which typically turns you into the wind. Some slight corrective helm input is required. This input will vary as the wind intensity varies.

Sometimes the seas will cause you to roll and then turn. How you react with helm input can exacerbate the turn rather than help. In swells, sometimes you can just let the boat roll / turn and it will come back on its own. Your course can be kind of a snake wake, swinging left and right of the destination. This is normal and not worth fighting with lots of helm input.

I believe this is the typical problem people have on the Pro Anglers due to the smaller amount of rudder in the water. They over-react. Slowing down the input and sometimes even ignoring the boat's changes in direction that are caused by swell can make the over-all effort of getting from point A to point B easier. You just need to be aware of it. Don't expect the boat to track in a straight line.

Seas change, winds change. It's always a challenge!

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