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PostPosted: Sat Jul 25, 2009 12:12 pm 
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I'm going down to Cape Hatteras shortly, and wanted the sun protection of the dodger. Bought one, but encountered the following problem with how the attaching bungees and line loops are sewn. In fact, one bungee was largely already parted on opening. To be fair, the nice carrying sack had thin strips of yellow tape around it--so maybe this is a second, and shipped my mistake. Regardless, I think the design is such that the attachments will not hold.

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Notice above that the blue attachment loop leads towards the inside of the dodger. This means that when used to attach the thing, the line is attempting to rip itself off of the cloth, instead of laying flat along it and just needed to be "clamped," so to speak, by the thread.. It may be easier to manufacture this way. But I think it is going to fail. Now look at the bungees

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Here you see first the starboard middle bungee starting to separate on opening package, and the port literally already "hanging by a thread."

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Now, on the outside of the dodger, here is a look at a very tiny piece of yellow fabric which is apparently meant to serve as a kind of "back up plate." I don't see how this can possibly hold up. I love the boat and think the company is great, but I would hope this can be addressed. I'm returning the dodger I bought. WHAT ABOUT YOU OTHER DODGER OWNERS?? WHAT DOES YOURS LOOK LIKE.

Also, the instruction to "thrubolt" the snaps to the hull seems ludicrous. Possibly two people could accomplish this, but I'm not sure...


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 26, 2009 8:46 am 
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Here's a better way of explaining why leading the attachments back in towards the dodger, as opposed to out away from the dodger, will be prone to early failure--when the pull on the line or bungee is 180 degrees opposite to the way the attachement leads, then the stress is placed on one set of sewing thread loops at a time, as oppose to all of them at once. Once the first loop breaks, the whole thread unravels. Led the other way, all the threads work together and share the pull equally.

I know some of you AI mavens have a dodger--did your's look like this? Was I shipped a bad one???


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 26, 2009 9:00 am 
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I bought one, got it home and took it out of the bag, wasn't really impressed and returned it. It just didn't seem worth the money...
It also had some blemishes in the stitching which looked like they could give me some problems in the future.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 28, 2009 1:13 pm 
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I'll have our engineers take a look at your notes. These are the first complaints I have heard on dodgers.

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 8:45 am 
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Thank you for responding.

Perhaps a supplier sewed a batch differently? And they weren't always made this way??? I honestly cannot imagine how stitching the attachment loops and bungees leading 180 degrees from the direction of the pull can hold very long. Again, all the load goes onto one or two loops of thread while the others do nothing.

Hey you people who have had AI dodgers for a long time: how are your attachment lines and bungees sewn?


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 4:45 pm 
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Mine were done the same way. I talked about it in an earlier post. Also the fiberglass rod broke on the front. I resewed mine by hand with waxed sail twine all which way and it has been ok but looks like crap. I am glad the tramps are put together better than the dodger!
I also sewed in some leather chafe guards where needed.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 30, 2009 3:26 am 
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mikereddy wrote:
Thank you for responding.

Perhaps a supplier sewed a batch differently? And they weren't always made this way??? I honestly cannot imagine how stitching the attachment loops and bungees leading 180 degrees from the direction of the pull can hold very long. Again, all the load goes onto one or two loops of thread while the others do nothing.

Hey you people who have had AI dodgers for a long time: how are your attachment lines and bungees sewn?


The stitching pulled away in one corner on mine almost as soon as I had first installed it :shock: :cry:
I haven't used it very much since but guess I should either see whether it can be replaced or take it to my local upholsterer & get him to repair it. :roll:

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 4:54 pm 
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mickeymouse wrote:
mikereddy wrote:
Thank you for responding.

Perhaps a supplier sewed a batch differently? And they weren't always made this way??? I honestly cannot imagine how stitching the attachment loops and bungees leading 180 degrees from the direction of the pull can hold very long. Again, all the load goes onto one or two loops of thread while the others do nothing.

Hey you people who have had AI dodgers for a long time: how are your attachment lines and bungees sewn?


The stitching pulled away in one corner on mine almost as soon as I had first installed it :shock: :cry:
I haven't used it very much since but guess I should either see whether it can be replaced or take it to my local upholsterer & get him to repair it. :roll:


Same with mine too. Very poor quality stitching with little reinforcement to protect the fabric from tearing around the stitching. I too got disgruntled with the quality and have been leaving it home though I bought it to use it. Is there a solid warranty on these items Matt?..Pirate

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 01, 2009 9:17 am 
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The original dodger design was not supposed to endure wave action over it. For the AI, we use a standard dodger and cut away at the aft then added some fasteners and reinforcement. I think these are being stressed more than what was designed for with heavy wave action.

I believe a sail loft or upholstery shop can easily fix these.

If you feel warranty is required, contact your dealer. They can help you get it repaired.

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 01, 2009 10:32 am 
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mmiller wrote:
The original dodger design was not supposed to endure wave action over it.


Seems a tad unrealistic to not expect it to get hit with waves! The AI doesn't exactly ride over waves. :wink:

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PostPosted: Sun Aug 02, 2009 10:29 pm 
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mmiller wrote:
I believe a sail loft or upholstery shop can easily fix these.

You can fix these yourself with sail twine and a large needle, or with a sewing awl. Regardless.... It seems like any attempt to fix would start with re-orienting the direction of the lines and bungees so that they are pulled in the direction they are sewn--not in the opposite direction.

I'm emphasizing this not to be grouchy or anything--but rather in the hopes that a simple design fix in the way the dodger is produced would make it a much more durable product. What I saw was coming apart before it was even used, much less under stress from wind and waves.

Look at how any tent is sewn together. Attachment loops are always led in the direction of the pull on the loops. :-)


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 02, 2009 11:03 pm 
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mikereddy wrote:
mmiller wrote:
I believe a sail loft or upholstery shop can easily fix these.

You can fix these yourself with sail twine and a large needle, or with a sewing awl. Regardless.... It seems like any attempt to fix would start with re-orienting the direction of the lines and bungees so that they are pulled in the direction they are sewn--not in the opposite direction.

I'm emphasizing this not to be grouchy or anything--but rather in the hopes that a simple design fix in the way the dodger is produced would make it a much more durable product. What I saw was coming apart before it was even used, much less under stress from wind and waves.

Look at how any tent is sewn together. Attachment loops are always led in the direction of the pull on the loops. :-)


I think it's true to say that neither Pirate nor myself thought that the Dodger was constructed or designed to the same high quality that we expect from the Hobie brand name. It really isn't acceptable to expect the consumer to take a relatively expensive product to their local upholsterer or sailmaker and pay them to rectify a faulty product.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 25, 2009 2:02 pm 
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I have used mine recently and now consider it to be an excellent accessory. I have discovered that it has many useful attributes and once you work out how to deal with the restricted access it causes to various functions/mechanism, it has a lot to offer.
I think all the premature wear/damage issues can be avoided by not following the instructions that come with it to literally.
I installed mine before Pirate did and once it was on it was very evident that there was far too much tension in places and we then modified our installation accordingly. We also did it in such a way that the dodger can be folded forward to facilitate entry and exit into the cockpit - as well as access to the mirage drive and sail lines.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 25, 2009 6:30 pm 
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I can see that folding it forward would be a very handy feature. How long does it take? Can you whip out the Mirage Drive quickly if need be?
Any pics? :wink:

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 26, 2009 12:58 am 
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Cowsgomoo wrote:
I can see that folding it forward would be a very handy feature. How long does it take? Can you whip out the Mirage Drive quickly if need be?
Any pics? :wink:

Sorry - no pics right now but will see what I can do in the next week.
The way we have ours set up it's simply a matter of releasing the rear dodger bungees - takes maybe 10 seconds.

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