Hobie Cat Forums

It is currently Fri Aug 01, 2014 12:56 am

All times are UTC - 8 hours [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 24 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: Thermoformed Hulls
PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 7:18 pm 
Offline
Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Mon Oct 28, 2013 6:52 pm
Posts: 2
How long before Hobie buckles under and starts adding thermoformed hulls to their line of SOT kayaks for the reduced weight, greater construction consistency and reliability.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Thermoformed Hulls
PostPosted: Tue Oct 29, 2013 9:42 am 
Offline
Hobie Approved Guru

Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2005 10:46 pm
Posts: 2389
Location: Escondido
rtb61 wrote:
How long before Hobie buckles under and starts adding thermoformed hulls to their line of SOT kayaks for the reduced weight, greater construction consistency and reliability.
Probably never. I'm no expert, but rotomolding appears to offer several critical advantages that may not be immediately obvious.
1. Anchors, threaded devices and reinforcements can be imbedded in the plastic. There are a surprising number throughout each boat, some in locations that are otherwise inaccessible after the hull is formed.
2. Material can be drawn to regions where higher strength requirements exist like, for example, the drivewell. Thickness varies throughout the hull for strength and weight savings.
3. There are no seams to fail. The seam along the hull is simply a mold mark -- the entire kayak is one continuous formation.

Hobie does use thermoforming in certain applications where the advantages are more appropriately apparent -- take a look at their hatch liners, dollies and cradles for example. Of course, they also use injection molding for many parts and probably blowmolding as well. IMO, they take full advantage of a host of technologies to deliver their products. 8)


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Thermoformed Hulls
PostPosted: Wed Oct 30, 2013 9:29 am 
Offline
Site Rank - Old Salt

Joined: Sun Apr 20, 2008 6:18 am
Posts: 1208
Location: sarasota,fl
rtb61:
Interesting discussion.

There are many thing that can be done to improve on Hobies designs.

First and foremost they should be looking for ways to improve their mirage drive pockets in the hulls, this is by far their biggest weakness. The entire mirage drive pocket could ( and should) be designed as an inserted injection molded piece inserted into and bolted together after molding, it would be 10 times stronger than their current design (no more mirage drive cracks ever). The unit would look very similar to the insert they now use in their inflatable line of kayaks, the upper flange would bolt onto the lower flange/body (so it can be removed and replaced easily). The mirage drive mechanics would no longer have anything whatsoever to do with hull seal (hobies biggest issue). In reality going to such a design would reduce the cost of all Hobie Mirage kayaks considerably. Since all the mechanicals are in the injection molded piece it would be impossible to ever leak. The opening in the hull itself would be just a flange on the bottom, a flange on the top, and a simple oval thru the hull, no inserts, no fancy rotomolding tricks needed (besides a chilled core maybe). This separates the task of hull seal from the mechanical design aspects completely, making everything 100 times simpler, better yet injection molding is 10 times more accurate than roto-molding so the fits on everything could be much closer vs the loosie goosy design they have now. The best part is, (drum roll) all of their existing kayak molds could easily be retrofitted with this new design. The mirage pocket insert could be common across most of their lines of kayaks further reducing costs. And on the off chance there is a mechanical failure (something breaks in the mirage holder), they don't have to build you a completely new boat, they just send you a new mirage insert via UPS ($10 bucks shipping, or next day air if your in a rush LOL). You basically just slip out the old one and slap in the new unit by tightening 4 stainless bolts ( a 100x cost reduction). All secondary operations within the hull after rotomolding would be eliminated, and setup time prior to roto-molding would be reduced by eliminating those crazy brass inserts that have to be bolted into the mold prior to roto-molding.

Once that problem is solved they can then start thinking about hull materials.


I personally don't think thermoforming would be the answer on Hobies kayak line either. The materials typically used for thermoforming are materials like ABS, and I don't feel are superior to injection molded engineered resins.

First off, I feel Hobie's roto-molding process is pretty darn good just as it is, these days they have very few failures, they have become quite expert at chilled inserts, chilling strategic areas (like the scupper holes), and have their materials down to a science. And they know how to design the hull to take advantage of all the technologies strengths, and design around all of it's weaknesses. If you look at hulls like the Tandem Island hull, it is indeed a technology marvel, an obvious culmination of years and years of hard knocks learning on Hobies part.
These days the material sciences are very mature and they have complete families of plastic resins that chemically bond to each other. If you look at a tooth brush, or an electric drill, or a cell phone these are all great examples of chemically bonded resins. Actually your not limited to two different resins, as we have developed parts with as many as 6 different resins/colors all molded together in one operation. I should know the Swedish company I worked at for 30+ years invented 2 shot technology and held all the patents for it until 1985 (this stuff is pretty much what I've been doing my whole life).
I'm not in the boat business and have no association with Hobie, except as my hobby on weekends, and I like to putze around with my TI, kayaking and sailing is actually a pretty good exercise program for me, as I try to pedal/kayak/sail my TI 15 to 50 miles every weekend year round. I'm actually on my 3rd TI now with way in excess of 5000 pedaling/sailing miles on my TI's to date, with really no issues of any kind, I don't baby my boats and tend to push them more than most would, I consider the design of the boat to be very solid.
Now if I were to want to improve on the design slightly and want for anything else it would be more scratch resistance on the hull body, anyone who has moored at a dock in a marina, or gone over oyster beds and rocky rivers knows what I'm taking about with Hobie kayaks, such things typically scratch my hulls beyond recognition after a while (keep in mind I use the heck out of all my stuff).
My opinion is there is probably a way to improve the hull hardness on some of the higher end Hobie kayaks.

One option would be to spray an initial coat of some harder material into the hull mold bottom prior to rotomolding (like gelcoat). This would be sprayed in similar to the way they spray in gelcoat into fiberglass boat hulls. then spatter spray with fiberglass (like they make fiberglass boat hulls currently). Since you are spraying directly into the lower mold half, the process should be easy and quick, obviously a mold release agent will be needed. Basically you would gelcoat with some heat resistant (exo-thermal epoxy type thermoset material), The spattered fiberglass standing up on the surface is what would mechanically bond to the PE material during the roto-molding process. Once the parting line is cleaned up and the epoxy has setup, the mold is closed and the roto-molding process begins. The hull top and the rest of the boat is then roto-molded (just like they do currently). Once completed the entire completed boat is removed from the mold with a nice fiberglass hard gelcoat type hull bottom with a completely sealed SOT kayak (and happy customers). The water seal itself is provided by the PE roto-molded coating on the inside of the hull, so even if the hard skin gets damaged and cracked by a collision, water seal is maintained by the PE rotomolded inner hull (which can now be much thinner). Of course there is a couple tricks in designing it to insure it all works, but in reality, it should be fairly inexpensive and very reliable. ( Plus you could select two tone colors LOL)
The result would be a hard skinned rotomolded hull (they actually may already be doing something like this on some of their sail boat line already, I'm not familiar with all their stuff). Of course anything you do extra always adds considerable cost.

The second method would be to roto-mold each hull twice (not practical), once with the harder material(higher melt temp (ie... glass filled nylon)), which would be around 1/16-3/32 thick, then finish off with a standard rotomold process using PE, possibly their current material. Of course additives would be required for the chemical bond between the dis-similar resins.

A third process option (and probably the most expensive as well as not practical) would be to injection mold the hull bottom (basically all the high wear areas under the boat) as a thin walled injection molded piece(s) (about 2.5 mm thick) in a durable resin using sequential valve gating similar to the way we make automotive facias (the front and rear of most cars on the market). In the mold design on the inside surface there would be all kinds of protrusions that would create what we call a mechanical bond to the PE material, this way you would get both chemical and mechanical bonding to the PE material. This component would be the pre-mold and pretty much any durable engineered resin could be used (with the proper additive to give it some chemical bonding characteristics to PE). This pre-molded insert which only took about 60 seconds to mold (cycle time) would then be placed into the rotary mold as an insert (similar to how they now put the Hobie IML labels into the mold prior to molding currently), of course the chosen material has to have a higher melt temp than their standard PE. To make things easier they could break it up into 3-4 different parts, basically covering the bow, the stern, and around the mirage drives (or whatever they want to re-enforce). There are several ways to hold the inserts in during rotomolding, either mechanically, using vacuum, or any host of other methods. Since the injection molded resins like GF nylon are much stronger and the injection molding process is much more exact, this would enhance the structural integrity of the entire boat (the shell would be like the frame on a car, actually making the entire boat lighter and stronger, since injection molded engineering resins don't creep and sag like the PE does. A heat conductive ceramic additive might be required to the plastic so it can conduct heat a little better during the roto-molding process (because plastic is naturally an insulator), there are all kinds of these ceramics currently being used in thing like electric motors, armatures, etc.
The thing I like about all the above suggestions is they all completely separate the mechanical design and durability from the water tightness of the boat. for example if one of those hull plates cracks from a dock collision, the boat is still water tight (you still have the PE roto-molded inner area providing your water seal), to repair the crack you could just glue the crack back together or tape over it, because the hard skin or mechanicals have nothing to do with the water seal. To be honest I just don't see any of this happening.


You might be thinking why couldn't they use thermoforming to make the hull bottom (vs injection molding), then roto-mold with that thermoformed hull bottom already in the mold ( I suspect what you were alluding to) using a large thermoformed hull bottom insert. First off most thermoformed materials would be far inferior (ABS for example) to Injection molded plastics, and there would be no means to design in the mechanical bonds needed for the overmolding process via thermoforming, currently I know of no thermoforming materials that have been developed that are chemically compatible to PE (for a chemical bond to the PE plastic). Plus thermoforming is not even in the same realm precision wise to any injection molding process, accuracy wise it's even less accurate than rotomolding. Another big deal about thermoforming is in its name, the plastic is heated up and stretched to thermoform it, you wouldn't be able to thermoform, then rotomold over it (it would melt away, or worse yet shrink back to it's pre thermoformed shape just like the Hobie water bottles do (which are thermoformed) when you put them in the dishwasher.
There are a gazzilion options and ideas out there, all it costs is money to invent and develop them into products.

Hobie is a little stubborn in some ways, and prefer to come up with their own solutions internally, hopefully one of their guys will think of some of this stuff internally someday ( LOL). I think they prefer to learn via hard knocks, and are typically not interested in ideas from outside sources.

Bob


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Thermoformed Hulls
PostPosted: Fri Nov 01, 2013 9:20 am 
Offline
Site Rank - Admiral

Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2011 7:12 pm
Posts: 160
Location: Columbia, MD
...and the award for "Most Cathartic Post of 2013" goes to Bob for "Thermoformed Hulls" :)!

Wow Bob, great post!

I wondered about the mirage drivewell socket issue too after getting my inflatable. It seems like an opportunity for Hobie to unify their paddle-only kayak line with their mirage line. Why not mold-in a drivewell socket "receiver" (covered by a knock-out or removable panel), rudder mount (already in newer models), steering & cable mount, etc. into the non-mirage boats and market them as "Mirage Ready?" Add mirage drive, rudder, etc. and turn your Lanai into a sport, your Quest into a Revo? If you're not ready to commit to a mirage boat out of cost or paddling preference you still have the opportunity to add the mirage feature later.

I (believe I) know the paddle boats don't have the exact same hull shapes as their mirage counterparts, but that seems like a problem that could be solved. I suspect the real issue is Hobie's concern with people buying "hulls" instead of complete boats when they want a new mirage boat. If I want to get a "Revo" I could just buy a Lanai and use my "old" mirage drive, rudder etc. & save ~$700 or $800.

Or maybe sales of non-mirage boats would cannibalize mirage sales? I suspect the majority of people who buy mirage boats don't seriously consider paddle-only an option, but many paddlers might well consider adding a mirage in the future it it didn't mean buying a completely new boat. There's other marketing concerns I'm sure, but still seems like Hobie could sell A LOT of T&S rudders & mirage drives to offset "hull" upgrades.

Just a thought.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Thermoformed Hulls
PostPosted: Fri Nov 01, 2013 6:09 pm 
Offline
Site Rank - Old Salt

Joined: Sun Apr 20, 2008 6:18 am
Posts: 1208
Location: sarasota,fl
Yea read it back again, it's a little much.
Bob


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Thermoformed Hulls
PostPosted: Sat Nov 02, 2013 4:48 am 
Offline
Site Rank - Admiral

Joined: Wed Apr 14, 2010 3:04 pm
Posts: 170
fusioneng wrote:
rtb61:
Interesting discussion.

There are many thing that can be done to improve on Hobies designs.

First and foremost they should be looking for ways to improve their mirage drive pockets in the hulls, this is by far their biggest weakness. The entire mirage drive pocket could ( and should) be designed as an inserted injection molded piece inserted into and bolted together after molding, it would be 10 times stronger than their current design (no more mirage drive cracks ever). The unit would look very similar to the insert they now use in their inflatable line of kayaks, the upper flange would bolt onto the lower flange/body (so it can be removed and replaced easily). The mirage drive mechanics would no longer have anything whatsoever to do with hull seal (hobies biggest issue). In reality going to such a design would reduce the cost of all Hobie Mirage kayaks considerably. Since all the mechanicals are in the injection molded piece it would be impossible to ever leak. The opening in the hull itself would be just a flange on the bottom, a flange on the top, and a simple oval thru the hull, no inserts, no fancy rotomolding tricks needed (besides a chilled core maybe). This separates the task of hull seal from the mechanical design aspects completely, making everything 100 times simpler, better yet injection molding is 10 times more accurate than roto-molding so the fits on everything could be much closer vs the loosie goosy design they have now. The best part is, (drum roll) all of their existing kayak molds could easily be retrofitted with this new design. The mirage pocket insert could be common across most of their lines of kayaks further reducing costs. And on the off chance there is a mechanical failure (something breaks in the mirage holder), they don't have to build you a completely new boat, they just send you a new mirage insert via UPS ($10 bucks shipping, or next day air if your in a rush LOL). You basically just slip out the old one and slap in the new unit by tightening 4 stainless bolts ( a 100x cost reduction). All secondary operations within the hull after rotomolding would be eliminated, and setup time prior to roto-molding would be reduced by eliminating those crazy brass inserts that have to be bolted into the mold prior to roto-molding.

Once that problem is solved they can then start thinking about hull materials.


I personally don't think thermoforming would be the answer on Hobies kayak line either. The materials typically used for thermoforming are materials like ABS, and I don't feel are superior to injection molded engineered resins.

First off, I feel Hobie's roto-molding process is pretty darn good just as it is, these days they have very few failures, they have become quite expert at chilled inserts, chilling strategic areas (like the scupper holes), and have their materials down to a science. And they know how to design the hull to take advantage of all the technologies strengths, and design around all of it's weaknesses. If you look at hulls like the Tandem Island hull, it is indeed a technology marvel, an obvious culmination of years and years of hard knocks learning on Hobies part.
These days the material sciences are very mature and they have complete families of plastic resins that chemically bond to each other. If you look at a tooth brush, or an electric drill, or a cell phone these are all great examples of chemically bonded resins. Actually your not limited to two different resins, as we have developed parts with as many as 6 different resins/colors all molded together in one operation. I should know the Swedish company I worked at for 30+ years invented 2 shot technology and held all the patents for it until 1985 (this stuff is pretty much what I've been doing my whole life).
I'm not in the boat business and have no association with Hobie, except as my hobby on weekends, and I like to putze around with my TI, kayaking and sailing is actually a pretty good exercise program for me, as I try to pedal/kayak/sail my TI 15 to 50 miles every weekend year round. I'm actually on my 3rd TI now with way in excess of 5000 pedaling/sailing miles on my TI's to date, with really no issues of any kind, I don't baby my boats and tend to push them more than most would, I consider the design of the boat to be very solid.
Now if I were to want to improve on the design slightly and want for anything else it would be more scratch resistance on the hull body, anyone who has moored at a dock in a marina, or gone over oyster beds and rocky rivers knows what I'm taking about with Hobie kayaks, such things typically scratch my hulls beyond recognition after a while (keep in mind I use the heck out of all my stuff).
My opinion is there is probably a way to improve the hull hardness on some of the higher end Hobie kayaks.

One option would be to spray an initial coat of some harder material into the hull mold bottom prior to rotomolding (like gelcoat). This would be sprayed in similar to the way they spray in gelcoat into fiberglass boat hulls. then spatter spray with fiberglass (like they make fiberglass boat hulls currently). Since you are spraying directly into the lower mold half, the process should be easy and quick, obviously a mold release agent will be needed. Basically you would gelcoat with some heat resistant (exo-thermal epoxy type thermoset material), The spattered fiberglass standing up on the surface is what would mechanically bond to the PE material during the roto-molding process. Once the parting line is cleaned up and the epoxy has setup, the mold is closed and the roto-molding process begins. The hull top and the rest of the boat is then roto-molded (just like they do currently). Once completed the entire completed boat is removed from the mold with a nice fiberglass hard gelcoat type hull bottom with a completely sealed SOT kayak (and happy customers). The water seal itself is provided by the PE roto-molded coating on the inside of the hull, so even if the hard skin gets damaged and cracked by a collision, water seal is maintained by the PE rotomolded inner hull (which can now be much thinner). Of course there is a couple tricks in designing it to insure it all works, but in reality, it should be fairly inexpensive and very reliable. ( Plus you could select two tone colors LOL)
The result would be a hard skinned rotomolded hull (they actually may already be doing something like this on some of their sail boat line already, I'm not familiar with all their stuff). Of course anything you do extra always adds considerable cost.

The second method would be to roto-mold each hull twice (not practical), once with the harder material(higher melt temp (ie... glass filled nylon)), which would be around 1/16-3/32 thick, then finish off with a standard rotomold process using PE, possibly their current material. Of course additives would be required for the chemical bond between the dis-similar resins.

A third process option (and probably the most expensive as well as not practical) would be to injection mold the hull bottom (basically all the high wear areas under the boat) as a thin walled injection molded piece(s) (about 2.5 mm thick) in a durable resin using sequential valve gating similar to the way we make automotive facias (the front and rear of most cars on the market). In the mold design on the inside surface there would be all kinds of protrusions that would create what we call a mechanical bond to the PE material, this way you would get both chemical and mechanical bonding to the PE material. This component would be the pre-mold and pretty much any durable engineered resin could be used (with the proper additive to give it some chemical bonding characteristics to PE). This pre-molded insert which only took about 60 seconds to mold (cycle time) would then be placed into the rotary mold as an insert (similar to how they now put the Hobie IML labels into the mold prior to molding currently), of course the chosen material has to have a higher melt temp than their standard PE. To make things easier they could break it up into 3-4 different parts, basically covering the bow, the stern, and around the mirage drives (or whatever they want to re-enforce). There are several ways to hold the inserts in during rotomolding, either mechanically, using vacuum, or any host of other methods. Since the injection molded resins like GF nylon are much stronger and the injection molding process is much more exact, this would enhance the structural integrity of the entire boat (the shell would be like the frame on a car, actually making the entire boat lighter and stronger, since injection molded engineering resins don't creep and sag like the PE does. A heat conductive ceramic additive might be required to the plastic so it can conduct heat a little better during the roto-molding process (because plastic is naturally an insulator), there are all kinds of these ceramics currently being used in thing like electric motors, armatures, etc.
The thing I like about all the above suggestions is they all completely separate the mechanical design and durability from the water tightness of the boat. for example if one of those hull plates cracks from a dock collision, the boat is still water tight (you still have the PE roto-molded inner area providing your water seal), to repair the crack you could just glue the crack back together or tape over it, because the hard skin or mechanicals have nothing to do with the water seal. To be honest I just don't see any of this happening.


You might be thinking why couldn't they use thermoforming to make the hull bottom (vs injection molding), then roto-mold with that thermoformed hull bottom already in the mold ( I suspect what you were alluding to) using a large thermoformed hull bottom insert. First off most thermoformed materials would be far inferior (ABS for example) to Injection molded plastics, and there would be no means to design in the mechanical bonds needed for the overmolding process via thermoforming, currently I know of no thermoforming materials that have been developed that are chemically compatible to PE (for a chemical bond to the PE plastic). Plus thermoforming is not even in the same realm precision wise to any injection molding process, accuracy wise it's even less accurate than rotomolding. Another big deal about thermoforming is in its name, the plastic is heated up and stretched to thermoform it, you wouldn't be able to thermoform, then rotomold over it (it would melt away, or worse yet shrink back to it's pre thermoformed shape just like the Hobie water bottles do (which are thermoformed) when you put them in the dishwasher.
There are a gazzilion options and ideas out there, all it costs is money to invent and develop them into products.

Hobie is a little stubborn in some ways, and prefer to come up with their own solutions internally, hopefully one of their guys will think of some of this stuff internally someday ( LOL). I think they prefer to learn via hard knocks, and are typically not interested in ideas from outside sources.

Bob




Great stuff Bob, love it , i agree with everything you said . Better UV resistance and scratch resistance would be huge achievement.

Brushing up against anything leaves a permanent scar , lets call poly puncture resistant but it's very far from abrasion resistant.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Thermoformed Hulls
PostPosted: Sat Nov 02, 2013 8:01 am 
Offline
Site Rank - Old Salt

Joined: Sun Apr 20, 2008 6:18 am
Posts: 1208
Location: sarasota,fl
Actually if Hobie were to look into some of the newer rotomolding technologies (a lot of recent developments), they can likely improve upon their already great product without increasing costs.
Many rotomolding companies like Chroma actually recommend adding as much as 30% long glass fiber additives to improve strength considerably, and reduce shrinkage from .020"/in down to .006"/in, an added benefit is this increases scratch resistance considerably.
There are also new rotomolding materials out there that are simply incredible. I have a lot of experience with COC's (cyclic olefin copolymers), which might offer better properties, but I have no idea if they would be applicable for such an application (most of my experience with the material is in medical components). It would be really really cool to have a water clear TI. Or possibly switch over to some of the newer materials like Rotothane, which could reduce their cycle time from many hours down to under an hour (time is money).

A lot of what Hobie can do has a lot to do with their equipment, if they are using old technology (from the 50's) with things like walk in ovens their option might be more limited.

I don't pretend to know a lot about rotomolding as it is not my field, but I do know my plastics, and I do know my manufacturing, having built many factories and companies all over the world. And I do know the values of scale given Hobies huge volumes of like products, and am an expert in such manufacturing. I am only trying to open their eyes to what is happening out in the market, and how they can apply some of this really cool stuff to their product lines, Hopefully they sent someone to the K show this year in Germany.
Personally I don't really care what they do, but I sure like the idea of that water clear TI, and just a little more scratch resistance, and don't want to pay an arm and a leg plus first born to enjoy my hobby now that I'm addicted. ( LOL).

Now we can retire this thread ( LOL)
Bob


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Thermoformed Hulls
PostPosted: Sat Nov 02, 2013 10:23 am 
Offline
Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Mon Oct 28, 2013 4:00 pm
Posts: 18
fusioneng,

I started out reading your post and thinking... that Mirage Drive "pocket insert" deal is almost too brilliant. What's strange is some of that cracking seen on this forum, caused by increased stress at the specific Mirage Drive points, is exactly what's holding me back from buying a Hobie Mirage kayak!!!

And you are spot on about the ABS plastic being crap. I recently saw the "Rebel Cat 5" on YouTube and thought I'd try to design one. Looking elsewhere, someone suggested that ABS was stronger and easier to form than PVC.... but, in reality, PVC is definitely stronger.

Definitely spot on about the only way Hobie could improve over the polyethylene design is adding some type of abrasion resistent film / mixture, or what have you....

I hope that multiple people forward this thread to Hobie, and this guy in particular... http://www.zoominfo.com/p/Richard-Rogers/532818846

The one idea of "pocket inserts" is really worth several pounds of gold, and that's just in its undeveloped state.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Thermoformed Hulls
PostPosted: Sat Nov 02, 2013 12:07 pm 
Offline
Site Rank - Old Salt

Joined: Sun Apr 20, 2008 6:18 am
Posts: 1208
Location: sarasota,fl
DoctorBuzz :
I doubt Hobie talks much with outside consulting companies like mine, they tend to be internally motivated, and I believe they prefer to come up with their own solutions (from within). However this is not always a bad thing, for example via years of trial and error and hard knocks, they now have very low failure rates on their mirage kayaks these days (almost zero). I would say if you were to buy pretty much any of their mirage boats built after 2011, you can rest assured that the design is very sound, and very unlikely to fail in service. There were lots of hard knocks learning years on most everything prior to 2010 as they learned and developed their process's.
I think if you look at most of the hull failures on this thread you will see that 99% are on pre-2011 hulls.

I feel strongly that a boat like the TI is a really strong and robust design superior to most anything else out there (I'm on my 3rd TI with a gazzilion hard sailing miles on mine every weekend (year round because I can (LOL))).
I highly recommend you buy one, you absolutely won't regret it. Even just getting a Revo13 with a sail kit will change your life (that's what we started with and it changed ours). Let the Hobie adventure begin, it will only get better from here.

My opinion is the Mirage drive system is one of the best inventions in our lifetime, and exclusive to only Hobie kayaks and sailboats.
My opinion also is that their adventure line of boats is one of the freshest and novel ideas to come out in a very stagnant industry (they basically built an entirely new industry from scratch). I also feel their foresight to design in the sailing option into all of their mirage line of kayaks years ago was a truly brilliant move by inventing/creating a brand new base of new sailers into the industry. People who are just getting interested in sailing, like many on this forum became more interested in sailing because of their Mirage kayaks (truly brilliant move).

I feel strongly that a boat like the TI is a really strong and robust design superior to most anything else out there (I'm on my 3rd TI now with a gazzilion hard sailing miles on mine and am out every weekend just lovin it) I highly recommend you buy one, you absolutely won't regret it. Even just getting a Revo13 with a sail kit will change your life (that's what we started with and it changed ours). Let the Hobie adventure begin, it will only get better from here.
There really is something to the Hobie way.
Bob


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Thermoformed Hulls
PostPosted: Sat Nov 02, 2013 3:14 pm 
Offline
Site Rank - Admiral

Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2011 7:12 pm
Posts: 160
Location: Columbia, MD
Bob,

You can get a peek at the molds & ovens in this vid http://youtu.be/FNkzQu5mYMo from the owner's manual DVD. Probably 5+ years old I'm guessing?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Thermoformed Hulls
PostPosted: Sat Nov 02, 2013 3:36 pm 
Offline
Site Rank - Old Salt

Joined: Sun Apr 20, 2008 6:18 am
Posts: 1208
Location: sarasota,fl
Gas Yakker:
Actually I watched this episode of made in America on TV which highlighted Hobie's factory.



interesting stuff and what a great bunch of people.
Bob


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Thermoformed Hulls
PostPosted: Sun Nov 03, 2013 4:40 am 
Offline
Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Mon Oct 28, 2013 6:52 pm
Posts: 2
Excellent comment Bob. In the spirit of things I came up with a fourth method. Being a sit on top, with careful design for extraction from the mould, you could do an injection moulded solid expanded polyurethane core (density of core balance between weight and strength) with a dip coated or sprayed top finish (number of coats, being the balance of weight, cost and final strength).
Better design would be to eliminate the front and rear storage compartments, basically an open deck, with normal gunwales and a seat fitting. The front and rear storage compartments would be loose containers strapped into the hull, choices of size, nature, materials and added fittings.
I prefer the idea of positive buoyancy over a long nervous swim.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Thermoformed Hulls
PostPosted: Sun Nov 03, 2013 1:17 pm 
Offline
Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Mon Oct 28, 2013 4:00 pm
Posts: 18
fusioneng,

What about a Revolution 11??

I'm looking at buying a used (2013) Revolution 11 and a used (2012) Revolution 13. You recommended the latter, but what about the former??


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Thermoformed Hulls
PostPosted: Sun Nov 03, 2013 1:30 pm 
Offline
Site Rank - Old Salt

Joined: Sun Apr 20, 2008 6:18 am
Posts: 1208
Location: sarasota,fl
We have owned two revo 13's and they are our favorite kayak. Very fast like a sports car and it even banks on turns.
I have no experience on the revo 11, if it's anything similar to the 13 I'm sure it's another great kayak, hopefully someone who has one will chime in.
Bob


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Thermoformed Hulls
PostPosted: Fri Nov 08, 2013 6:29 pm 
Offline
Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Sun Sep 08, 2013 5:09 pm
Posts: 24
I just read the Cobra Kayaks ad in Canoe & Kayak mag, regarding their new line of kayaks that are now up to 30% lighter. Here's a tidbit:

"New Superlightweight Series Release Announced for 2013
Cobra will release an “Evolution” series of its current range using a new Super light (SLS) technology -which combines the strength of traditional polyethylene plastic with a light-weight closed cell lining branded as the Cobra “Feathercell”process."

Anyone familiar with this technology? I wonder about oil canning and durability....


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 24 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

All times are UTC - 8 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot] and 8 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group