I picked up a set of tramps and tried them out today. First and foremost was color selection. I picked black since it is easier on the eyes, doesn't show dirt (mud), I'm more likely to get cold than hot sailing and, oh yes, that's the color they had available.
Once installed on the forward akas, they can stay there permanently. So the most important question is, will they fit in the bag? Yes, with a little repacking. The foam separators are no longer necessary, nor will they fit:
The next question is, do the tramps need to be set up before launching? No. You can launch in any manner and set these up at any time. Same with breakdown and roll up. Yak
, you could set up one side, start the other side and finish after getting in the boat. I like to launch "compressed" and set up as I pedal to deeper water. Once you have initially adjusted the buckles, you can unroll and buckle up from the boat if you like. The only stretch is the outboard buckle which you can lean out to get (once the others are done). Or, you can set up everything first then hop on the tramp then to your seat.
Once the bungees are released, they can be snapped together to keep them out of the water. Nice touch, Hobie!
Unroll the tramp with the ama free, then lock up:
Buckle up starting with the inboard side. Note the sewn in fibreglass rod to keep the material from bunching:
How about weight support? At 180 lb, I can sit...
Whoops, who's sailing the boat?
Last but not least, what really happens if you strike an object? I frequently sail in and out of a buoy line and have had several near misses. So rather than wait till the unexpected happens, I decided to check it out while the weather was warm. I rammed a buoy on the lee side at about 5 MPH (after first disconnecting the aka brace, heh, heh):
Then it disappeared ''' wait, could this be it?
Yes! Now if I can juuussst pass this...
AAH, that's better!
AND, much to my relief, nothing collapsed, and no damage. I was so pleased I did it again! Same result. The tramp flexes to absorb the shock but keeps everything in place. I was able to disconnect both aka braces and sail around just fine.
Overall, robust construction, excellent quality and great versatility!