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Still love your AI as much now as when you first got it?
Yes! 92%  92%  [ 22 ]
Not Quite as much. 4%  4%  [ 1 ]
No 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
Yes But I would want changes to Design. 4%  4%  [ 1 ]
Total votes : 24
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 Post subject: Hobie Purchase.
PostPosted: Thu Oct 23, 2008 6:36 pm 
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Joined: Sun Sep 21, 2008 5:04 pm
Posts: 227
Location: Wilmington, North Carolina
I checked w/ a local Kayak rental site that carries the Wave and the Hobie Adventure Kayak for rent. I asked about the AI and they said no they didn't have it. They said if I wanted to sail I should just rent a Wave cat from them and not buy the AI as it would be cheaper. They said that all of the Hobie Mirage drive Kayak owners they knew spent more time fixing them than going out in them. They loved the Catamarans But felt the Kayaks were trouble prone. I don't like the Idea of only going out when I can rent from them. I want to go out when I want to go out and not have to rely on others to Crew. I have no yard to speak of, cannot have a trailer in Driveway want to sail but the boat must be car top able. The AI sounds perfect for what I want to do. I have already gotten permission to acquire one this spring but do not want to get a $3400 boat that will need repair and extensive maintenance Right away. I also do not want to out grow it too soon either. I have read all of the posts here and most of you seem very happy with the AI and it's performance for the most part. But you must admit there are plenty of threads pertaining to repair, leak stoppage.....etc.. Not MoD's. I just want to be sure I am not going to be getting a hole in the water to throw money into. This is not a bash at Hobie in any way. I am so interested that I check this site for new threads/replies almost daily. Am I just being Paranoid and should just get one and enjoy it and stop worrying. Thanks. E :)

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 23, 2008 6:56 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 25, 2006 5:17 pm
Posts: 203
Location: Ettalong Beach, Central Coast, Australia
Well its a great boat, and I don't hear any complaints about maintenance. I tend not to fit the Mirage Drive anymore, if there is decent wind, as its quicker without it. Unless you peddle and sail, which is really quick.

Geoff.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 23, 2008 8:00 pm 
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Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2007 2:25 pm
Posts: 1966
Location: Central Coast NSW Australia
G’Day E,
The AI is the most versatile and best value sailing kayak around (IMHO). :wink:
It is easy to transport, quick and easy to set up, gives an exhilarating ride and can handle just about any conditions. What other sailing boat takes about 10 minutes to rig and be on the water?
You are also getting a very nice 16’ kayak when used without the sail, aka’s and ama’s.
The mirage drive is a brilliant bit of engineering that can easily handle conditions that most paddlers would baulk at. I commute to work in mine a couple of times a week (mostly in kayak mode) and have experienced conditions that vary from no wind to 70km/h gusts. I am not aware of any other boat that would work as well. Paddle, pedal or sail I am confident I can reach my destination no matter what the conditions.
My 08AI has been pretty much trouble free. A minor mast drum problem was fixed without question by my dealer.
The 09 is even better and Hobie now have a 2 year warranty on the improved mirage drive. The problems you may have read about have been addressed. You can buy with confidence as Hobie’s warranty support is second to none.
My only negative with the AI is that it is only a single (although you can add an extra seat in the rear cargo well)
I am very close to getting another one which I hope to have by next month.
Highly recommended!! 8)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 23, 2008 8:37 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 23, 2007 8:12 am
Posts: 419
Location: Florida
ElementAI

In all honesty, the guy that suggested that Hobie kayak owners spend more time fixing them then going out in them didn't know what he is talking about. Take it from someone with 5 mirage Hobies in the barn, inculding 2 Islands purchased in Oct of 2006.

Both Islands get truck-topped everywhere, be it the boat ramp a few blocks away or a vacation spot hundreds of miles away.
I go out an average of 2wice a week or more. My average sail is about 20 miles per outing and I have been know to skip work and even meals to spend more time on the water.

Being an early adopter of the new Islands - even pre-ordering - there were issues. There were a few design modifications that were needed. For each Island Hobie gave me: a new rudder, new mast collar, new up/down handle, and finally a new complete up/down line system. These were all improvements, and are now in use on the new Islands.

In my almost 5,000 miles of sailing in all kinds of weather I have managed to break 2 rudder pins and a few cotter pins (using older steel sprocketed drive). I also broke a rudder - but that was because I modified it. Very minor stuff

I get on the water and go. 5min washdown and spray drive with WD-40 afterwards. Drive needs some periodic adjustments and worn parts replaced - but no big deal. The 2 drives I use on the Islands are both over 6 years old.

I sail often with some companions. One has a Wave, one a Bravo, and one has a Sunfish. They all eye the Island with envy on how easy & fun it is to sail and respect for how well it is engineered.

My wife, who thought she would never-ever sail, easily mastered the Island and we now sail all over the place.

On days with no wind I take out the Island as a kayak (Adventure mode - no sails/amas ect) - or I take out one of the Hobie Sports for fishing.

Anytime I want to get my "grin on" I load up the Island for a day in 15knt winds.




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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2008 3:57 am 
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Joined: Fri Jun 22, 2007 9:49 am
Posts: 42
Location: Dahlgren, VA
1. Your poll needs another category. I appreciate and enjoy my AI more now than when it was new.

2. The Hobie AI design has matured since it was introduced - not the basic boat but fittings and equipment. Hobie had the fundamentals right in the beginning

I purchased the AI primarily to sail. Sailing is my passion. If you enjoy sailing or anything else that can be done with the Ai platform, you will find it to be the best value on the market. It is the most versatile boat for the money on the market.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2008 4:37 am 
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Joined: Wed Dec 19, 2007 4:07 am
Posts: 598
Location: Punta Gorda, FL
We bought our boats in April and have used them a couple of times a week. We seek out windy days, with the windiest being a day I went out in 30 knot winds with higher gusts.

I lost my Mirage Drive overboard once, and my wife broke a couple of rudder pins. I had to adjust her mast base V-brace once. Other than that, the boats have been easy, fun, and trouble-free. I squirt them off and shove the trailer under the house. If we have gotten salt on the sails, I rinse and dry them.

We love our AI's and I think the Mirage Drive is a revolutionary technology. For the first time in history, we have human power that is better than a paddle.


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 Post subject: Love my Hobie!
PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2008 6:48 am 
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Joined: Wed Nov 21, 2007 8:19 pm
Posts: 72
Location: Jackson Hole, Wyoming
Howdy!

Can't blame you for asking whether the boat is worth 3400 smackers.

It is!

One thing to remember is that this Hobie sponsored forum will garner every problem, real and imagined. Matt & Hobie monitor what's going on, and major glitches have been corrected.

Contributors are "hands on" people who use 'em very hard, and continue to love'em. Many have decades of experience sailing other craft.

Don't worry about leakage into the hull. While it may take on some some water, it's an annoyance and not hazardous. I've done 2 major camping trips and been in some very rough water; I know what I'm talking about.

It's unbelievable a dealer would say "most people spend more time repairing them than sailing them." It's simply not true.

It's fall. Shop around, call dealers. I'll bet you can find 2008 models on sale somewhere.

Happy Trails!

Chris

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the love you take,
is equal to the love,
you make...
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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2008 7:31 am 
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Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2007 6:14 pm
Posts: 1861
Location: South Florida
ElementAI,

I am not a sailor. I'm a sea kayaker, and I bought my AI to extend my range when I kayak-camp and fish. You can read about my experiences to date:
http://www.hobiecat.com/community/viewtopic.php?t=7276&start=0

From my posts you can see that my main complaint is leakage of saltwater into the hull. I think I am gradually getting that under control (in my case, I believe leakage is almost totally related to the round, twist-n-seal hatch covers.)

Seeing all the complaints on this site and others about things breaking, certainly can make you wonder. However, the posts on this thread are probably the norm. In my 1-yr experience, NOTHING has broken on my AI. Nothing. Nevertheless, I do most all of my sailing solo--no sailing partners (good friend Bill Waller (Polecat) has accompanied me on several trips, but we live 235 miles apart.) So, equipment reliability is very important. I have no complaints on that point.

The fact that the AI has 3 modes of propulsion--sail, pedal, paddle--means that we can get to safe harbor under most situations. To me, that is a lot of comfort.

I also agree with the other posts: the AI is a lot of boat for the money.

Keith


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 Post subject: Hobie AI
PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2008 7:38 am 
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Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2007 6:39 pm
Posts: 101
Location: Venice, Florida
Hey ElementAI!

Re: Purchase?

The Dealer you talked to is NUCKING FUTS.

Yup! The AI can be improved! Many on this forum have described in detail its weak points as well as possible ways of correcting them. Don't take this to mean we've lost faith in Hobie, or we aren't, in most cases, extremely happy with our AI purchase.

That being said--a NEW FORUM where Hobie -
1) acknowledges a need for an improvement.
2) places it on a priority list.
3) estimates cost of Mod/Date of availability.
4) provides updates on progress toward availability.

Posts by Roadrunner, Yakaholic, Aloha Dan, Appalach, and many, many others (IMHO) provide better customer support than we get from Hobie. If Hobie is as loyal to its customer as we are to them, Hobie will be even more profitable--and we'll all be just happy as clams. :D

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Hobie AI & WS Tempest 180 Pro
SW Gulf Coast: Sarasota to Keys

I'm not completely useless. I can always serve as a bad example.


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 Post subject: Thanks
PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2008 6:12 pm 
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Joined: Sun Sep 21, 2008 5:04 pm
Posts: 227
Location: Wilmington, North Carolina
Thank you all for your participation and replies!! :D

Your replies have solidified my desire to purchase the AI. I should have known better than to trust what the owner of a Kayak rental Business said about it Just because he wants me to rent Hobie WAVES from him. I am sure I would enjoy taking out a WAVE on occasion as they sure look fun too. I am just the type of person who wants to go out when they want to go out ..... not when someone is open. Plus I am relishing the thoughts of all of the places I could take the AI for FUN times. I have very little sailing experience at all ....but love the Idea of Sailing and have been flying Traction foil kites for years before getting the sailing bug. My Mother says it is in my blood as my family heritage is full of sailors.
My local dealer is a little light on Hobies at the moment and only has a Outfitter on display. The Dealer has been very helpful with all of my questions though even when I show up at the store regularly to play with the Mirage Drives. The dealer states that they have never had an AI in stock or even ordered one for anyone. There are none in the area to his knowledge which when I look at the versatility of this boat surprises me. He states that all efforts will be made for 09 to carry the AI in there store. I think that maybe I should suggest that I get a break on my price if I agree to advertise for them. I think once people in the area see one for the first time and in action as I will be out in it a lot once acquired.. there business should increase by quite a bit with people asking me where I got it.??

I am glad to hear that the AI is really that durable and relatively Maintenance free. Sorry the Poll was not as good as everyone would have liked.....but I am liking the results none the less. I
I really enjoy reading the stories you all post and the video clips no matter what they are of as they must sustain me until Spring and My purchase date so keep them coming.
Thanks again. E AI
P.S
The Handle was chosen in advance negate a change later. :D :D :D

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2008 6:45 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jun 10, 2007 3:36 pm
Posts: 171
Location: Rockford, Illinois
Hi ElementAI,

I purchased a Sport and a Revolution in early 07. Reading this forum I purchased the sail, big rudder and turbo fins. I know nothing about sailing but am having a blast. I plan on getting an AI soon. These guys are having too much fun and I want in on it.

The problems with the AI that are posted here are very detailed. Reading the forum I can see where someone new might think there are a lot of problems. A lot of it is repeated. And that is good as everything get discussed. Also see the postings where Hobie takes care of their customers and hears what they are saying.

You might want to look at the Rack and Roll trailer. I purchased one and love it. Much easier that roof top. It folds up and stands out 12" from the wall. It's pricey but I think it is worth it. Take a look. www.rackandroll.com

Bruce

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