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PostPosted: Sat Sep 11, 2010 9:39 pm 
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Location: ACT Region, Australia
I took my outback out today for a fish and tried out my new Hobie Sail.

My Outback has a Hobie eVolve electric motor mounted in the rudder option. I have quickly discovered that the surface area of the eVolve is not big enough to steer while under sail.

A good gust of wind and I started to scoot along but I had the rudder on full right lock but couldn't turn right. Luckily I had set up a roller furling mod and was able to furl the sail quickly.

So if I want to sail I guess I need to remove the eVolve and put on a sailing rudder. It is 6 bolts, so not too big of a drama to do at home. But if I want to switch between sailing and the eVolve out on the water it will be a PIA.

Anyone have any suggestions on how I could improve steering with the Hobie eVolve as my rudder?

Image

Image


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 12, 2010 2:32 am 
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Location: ACT Region, Australia
Just for comparison here is photo that shows a Standard Rudder, the Hobie eVolve and the Sailing Rudder.

Image

As you can see the eVolve doesn't have as much surface area as a sailing rudder.

It would be great if Hobie could make the top cover part larger so it has more surface area.
Image

Image

The bottom skeg fin on the Evolve could be made larger as well.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 12, 2010 6:26 am 
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Use your paddle as a rudder only when needed!!


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 12, 2010 2:21 pm 
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Using the paddle isn't really practical in my setup with fishing rods, depth sounder etc


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 12, 2010 7:22 pm 
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There would seem to be only a few possible permutations of options available to you and I do not think there are any magic bullets for you... unfortunately.

I reckon the best answer will probably be to convert your Evolve to the drive-well mounted version (assuming that it is possible to do this) and to use the sailing rudder all the time; that way you will have the benefit of the Evolve motor and the better steering capabilities of the larger rudder.

Of course you may not want to do this because you have clearly already decided that the rudder-mounted Evolve is the best option for you but I think you may have hit a drawback of your chosen option in relation to wanting to sail as well.

In my experience of sailing Adventures the small rudder is really not up to the job when sailing the boat as it does not exert sufficient leverage on the boat to be able to counteract the force of the wind in the sail. Clearly the same may also be true of the rudder-mounted Evolve and in both these situations the most obvious solution, however unpalatable that might be, is to replace the rudder with a larger one.

Another thing that I think you might like to consider is the amount of drag that a propellor creates when sailing - it is considerable and the reason why many yachtsmen opt for folding propellors on their boats. I am no expert but it may well be that the drag of the propellor is as much to blame for the poor sailing performance of the Evolve rudder as is the small surface area.

I think you may find the drive-well mounted Evolve a better all-round solution because it will allow you to take the prop out of the water while sailing and I suspect that this will make a marked improvement to your sailing speed compared with having it permanently immersed which is the only option you currently have when sailing.

There is a noticeable improvement in the sailing performance of my Adventure when I have a drive-well plug in place rather than the Mirage drive - I attribute this to the additional drag of the fins being in/out of the water and I always replace the drive with a plug if I am going to spend a reasonably long period under sail (pushing one foot forward to fold the fins up helps but I still sail faster with a drive-well plug)

The Adventure is a better sailer than the Outback by quite a margin and I think you will find that the drag of the Evolve and its propellor is likely to be much greater than that of the Mirage drive fins - my recommendation to you would be to get the Evolve prop and the mirage drive fins out of the water and use a drive-well plug if you want to get the best performance out of your boat under sail.

As I said: no magic bullets I fear :?


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 12, 2010 7:53 pm 
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If I wanted to mainly sail then moving the eVolve off the rudder would be a good option.

But I only want to sail as a secondary function so the ability to have a hybrid mirrage/eVolve propulsion system as the primary setup means it stays where is it.

Even with the sailing rudder, Hobie recommends having the mirrage drive fins pointing down to act as a dagger board. Are you recommending to just have the rudder? Wouldn't that make the kayak less controllable with the wind making it slip sideways?


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 12, 2010 10:15 pm 
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the Adventure has a daggerboard option so fins are optional when sailing.

Your best solution is to sail with your evolve running -- it adds plenty of authority to that rudder! Under hybrid power you won't consume much energy. 8)


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 13, 2010 1:20 pm 
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I'd put the motor in the Mirage drive well and leave the rudder alone.

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 18, 2010 12:04 am 
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Roadrunner wrote:
.....Your best solution is to sail with your evolve running -- it adds plenty of authority to that rudder!


I went out again today for a test sail. This time I left the eVolve running and the Outback sails and steers no problems.

I added a set of Hobie Sidekicks yesterday and I'm glad I did. At one point I had one of them almost underwater as I was scooting along under sail. Plus it is now great to be able to stand up a stretch the legs. :mrgreen:

If I want to sail without using the eVolve, I need to decide at the start of the day and put the sailing rudder on.


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