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 Post subject: Winterizing your H17
PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 8:16 am 
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Site Rank - Old Salt

Joined: Thu Jun 23, 2005 12:55 am
Posts: 356
Location: Rapid City, South Dakota
While Talking to my Dad the other day, he told me that he was planning on filling the wing tubes of his 17 with antifreeze to keep them from freezing and cracking.
Has anyone else done this?
Were there any problems?

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1992 Hobie Cat 18 #16943
Hobie Fleet 198, Rapid City, SD


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 Post subject: Re: Winterizing your H17
PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 9:11 am 
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Joined: Mon May 09, 2005 10:25 am
Posts: 2568
Location: Jersey Shore
I would think it should work as long as your outside temp doesn't get below the freezing point of anti-freeze (whatever that is) and as long as your wing tubes don't already leak.

On my boat, I stick a rag into the wing tube to absorb any small amounts of moisture that might get into the tube and prevent it from pooling in the bottom of the tube. Then I stick the wing socket covers in. Then I duct tape plastic over the sockets and covers. Last is a tarp over the tramp area which also ends up covering the wing sockets.

I think this is an area where going a little overboard on preventing damage can save you a lot of hassle in repair work.

Just looked on mcmaster.com and they have some tapered rubber plugs in the 2" diameter range that might work quite nicely. Could be a lot better than the lousy socket covers that came with my boat.
sm


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 Post subject: Re: Winterizing your H17
PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 9:56 am 
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Joined: Mon Sep 20, 2004 12:36 pm
Posts: 758
Location: Tri-Cities, WA
Hobie sells plug inserts and they work great. :wink:


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 Post subject: Re: Winterizing your H17
PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 10:53 am 
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Joined: Mon May 09, 2005 10:25 am
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Location: Jersey Shore
fastcat wrote:
Hobie sells plug inserts and they work great. :wink:


The older ones were a pretty firm plastic and they worked ok.

At some point, Hobie must have changed the material spec because when I got my new boat (2007) it came with plugs/covers made of a very soft vinyl. They suck. They're not firm enough to hold their shape so they let water in. No way I would trust them alone for winter storage. I'm not sure what Hobie is providing for replacement plugs these days, but if they're the soft ones, it's not worth it. I'm going to see if I can get some large rubber stoppers- I think they would work the best.

sm


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 Post subject: Re: Winterizing your H17
PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 11:37 am 
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Joined: Sat Feb 24, 2007 8:45 pm
Posts: 1664
Location: Northfield Minnesota
straight glycol has a pretty damn low freezing temp. I don't know what it is, but I'd be more concerned with the approaching apocalypse than my wing tubes. Keeping it in there would be another tricky SOB. Flipping the boat over was mentioned once, I thought that was a pretty good solution, storing your boat somewhere that doesn't freeze is a better one though.

edit- according to a website, a 60% Ethylene Glycol/ water mix, freeze's at -70*F. Wikipedia also says that straight it will freeze at 9*F, that doesn't sound right to me though, but I ain't no chemist.


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 Post subject: Re: Winterizing your H17
PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 11:51 am 
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Joined: Thu Jun 23, 2005 12:55 am
Posts: 356
Location: Rapid City, South Dakota
Let me clarify a bit, I believe his plan is to fill the tubes half way with antifreeze and then "try" to seal the tops with tape and the soft tube covers (which hasn't worked well in the past, no cracks, but water in the tybes) The antifreeze would get diluted a little bit if water came in, but not cancel the overall effect.
I dont want him to damage the tubes, because I know that is a time consuming/expensive repair.

Will the antifreeze harm the gelcoat, if so to what extent?

Thanks

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1992 Hobie Cat 18 #16943
Hobie Fleet 198, Rapid City, SD


Last edited by Tom Machette on Fri Oct 02, 2009 11:53 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Winterizing your H17
PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 11:53 am 
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Joined: Mon May 09, 2005 10:25 am
Posts: 2568
Location: Jersey Shore
You could flip the boat over, but I think you'd want to tape over the centerboard opening so that water doesn't collect in the well (since the hole for the rope handle is the only opening in the deck to let the water drain). Also, any water that gets in the hulls will not be able to drain out since the drain plug hole will be at the top. Still might be a reasonable solution.

I have also considered taking some foam pipe insulation, cutting it to the length of the wing socket, sticking it in and then putting the cap on over it. This would take up most of the space inside the tube so not much water could get in, and if it did, when the water froze and expanded, the foam would compress rather than the wing tube cracking.

sm


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 Post subject: Re: Winterizing your H17
PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 12:33 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2003 9:57 am
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Location: Clear Lake Iowa
I was just going to tarp the whole boat and see how that went.


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 Post subject: Re: Winterizing your H17
PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 12:39 pm 
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Joined: Mon Sep 20, 2004 12:36 pm
Posts: 758
Location: Tri-Cities, WA
The plugs I use are the soft vinyl ones and with practice seal just fine (with a rag stuffed in each). That being said, my current storage method is to disassemble the boat and store both hulls under my deck together wrapped in a tarp upside on risers (short padded saw horses). The rest of the boat is stored in a shed. It takes about a day to either disassemble or assemble. 8)


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 Post subject: Re: Winterizing your H17
PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 12:50 pm 
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Joined: Thu Oct 25, 2007 7:04 am
Posts: 853
Location: Clinton Lake Kansas
one word...

racquetballs

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 Post subject: Re: Winterizing your H17
PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 2:31 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 14, 2003 7:11 pm
Posts: 4611
Location: Detroit, MI
I've always used antifreeze in the wing tubes whenever my 17 was stored outdoors in the winter (Michigan). Done it for going on 20 years now with no damage to the wing tubes from the ice or the glycol.

Straight ethylene glycol will freeze long before a 50/50 mix with water. That's why you mix it.

The newer wing tube plugs don't work very well. They're too soft and let water in.

I wouldn't trust my wing tubes to just a plug, through. I use 50/50 antifreeze/water, filled about 1/3, then plugged with rubber stoppers.


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 Post subject: Re: Winterizing your H17
PostPosted: Mon Apr 12, 2010 5:47 am 
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Joined: Wed Nov 25, 2009 11:58 am
Posts: 9
Rather than glycol, I've been using windshield washer solution (alcohol based). Cheaper than glycol, no staining, less toxicity problems. It only has to last 6 months, so evaporation hasn't been a problem (especially in winter).
I also duct tape over the holes, to prevent dilution from rain/snow. 3M has a very good tape, that can be removed without leaving any residue for up to 6 months after application (just the right timing).


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 Post subject: Re: Winterizing your H17
PostPosted: Sun Nov 14, 2010 7:23 am 
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Joined: Thu Sep 17, 2009 12:35 pm
Posts: 305
Location: Lake Champlain, Vermont
a bit of anti-freeze and custom pool noodle plugs. Image

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 Post subject: Re: Winterizing your H17
PostPosted: Wed Nov 24, 2010 11:13 am 
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Joined: Mon Sep 20, 2004 12:36 pm
Posts: 758
Location: Tri-Cities, WA
I winterized my boat just in time to beat the snow and cold (-2 degrees F last night). Got out 46 times last year, still trying to break 50, may be next year. All that is sitting on the trailer are the 2 hulls and the mast. The rest is in the shop or a storage shed.
I noticed several post about how the soft (hollow) Hobie wing tube plugs don't work well. I have to disagree. I too initially had difficulty installing them, but have developed a method for getting a good seal. First get ALL the water out of the tubes. I use one of those 2 ft long push button remote grabber things with a paper towel. Then dampen the sides of the tube plug and insert into tube making sure you have a seal (the end will puff out from the back pressure). Slowly work the plug back and forth applying pressure on the top. It will slowly work its way down and there you have it. :wink:


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