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PostPosted: Sat Mar 17, 2012 8:21 am 
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The last time I went sailing I had trouble getting the main down on my 18. I could not get the freaking ring off the hook. The real problem was my mast sail track needed to be lubed it. Anyway to get the sail down I pulled the boat on its side and walked to the tip of the mast and unhooked it.
In the process of getting it UN-hooked and putting the sail away I got mud all over the bottom of the sail and the boat, the mud was up past my knees. Its going to rain all weekend I thought I could just leave the sail out in the rain for a few hours then let it dry in the garage later.

Would the rain water be bad for the sail?
Also does anybody have a photo of mast hook flapper on the 18? Mine is missing a rivet and Id love to see what a properly working flapper looks like. I have lubed my mast sail track and the sail with silicone spray and dish soap and now the sail comes down easy. Id still like to see the flapper.

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 17, 2012 11:46 am 
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One of the first things I did with my flapper was drill out the rivets and throw it in the trash. What a PITA! Much easier dealing with the hook alone.

As for rain water, I don't think it can do anything bad - it's a boat, after all... Only real risk is the wind catching the sail/boat while unattended.

I think a gentle scrub with a broom might help in addition to the rain. Perhaps a very mild detergent, although exactly which ones are gentle enough but still effective is probably open to debate.

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 17, 2012 12:38 pm 
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remember to rotate the mast all the way in one direction to release.

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 17, 2012 1:36 pm 
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I don't agree with doing away with the flapper. I wouldn't have one without it. Which rivet if missing? Tie the halyard with one tight half-hitch held by a stopper knot.) They often came with too big a loop in the line tied with a bowline whose loop, which would often get caught on the hook requiring you to lay the boat over.) Before hooking it to the sail, twirl the halyard a couple of times so the ring rotates towards the hook side, and put the stopper knot to the side away from the hook. This way the ring pivots around and rides up the underside of the hook, and the stopper know is out of the way of fouling the flapper. This won't work good with the welded ring and twist shackle. It works best with a separate ring and twist shackle, which doesn't rely on the strength of the weld to hold the sail up anyway.

Since you have a flapper, you probably also have a sail feeder. I also won't be without a sail feeder, but it requires proper tuning too. If the jaws of the feeder are too far apart, the bolt rope will get caught in the feeder jaws. The sail has a luff curve in it, so the bottom of the sail boltrope will go towards the rear of the boat, and get caught in the feeder jaws. The jaws need to be close enough together that you can barely get the head of the sail up through it.

If you squeeze the jaws together too much and have to open them up a bit, make sure you don't turn up a "meat hook" on the metal, or it will tear the sail.

Since you are now properly holding the boltrope into the feeder, it's VERY important that the screws holding the feeder in the track don't have any meat hooks on them either. They used to come from the factory with meat hooks about 1/4 of the time, so I kept a box of proper sized screws and put them in with a good screwdriver that was used for nothing other than running in screws. You don't need any more torque on the screws other than enough to run them all the way up. It's MOST important not to deform the head of the screws because they have ripped many sails.

With these simple things, you can raise and lower the sail with ease, and not have to fool with rotating the mast to drop the sail. Heck, you can raise a sail that is not unrolled, with heavy batten tension, by simply walking back with the halyard. You can also raise and lower the sail easily on the water to change batten tension, or for any other reason. I don't think I ever unrolled the sail on my 21 to raise it, nor did I on any 17 or 18 I had assembled.

You also never have to worry about lubing a boltrope.

If I bought one of these boats that didn't have the flapper, or sail feeder, those would be the first things I would put on the boat. I even kept some new/old stock ones just in case.

If you absolutley need a picture of the hook with flapper, I can send you some. Good luck cleaning the sail. I'm sorry I don't have any advice for you on that. If the window is fogged up, you can spray it with water, leave it up in the sun to dry, and it should clear up.


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 17, 2012 6:20 pm 
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jmecky wrote:
Id love to see what a properly working flapper looks like.


No such thing exists...the flapper, by definition, is a flawed design.

Seriously, ditch the flapper. Hobie did away with it over 25 years ago and for good reason...it's not needed. It just makes raising/lowering the sail more difficult. If you point the bows directly into the wind when raising and lowering the mainsail, you don't need a flapper, just rotate the mast to hook or unhook the ring.

As far as using rain water to wash the sail, there is no harm in doing that. Just be sure the sail is fully dried off before rolling it up otherwise you're guaranteed to get mildew on your sail.

sm


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 18, 2012 5:45 am 
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Anyone who has tried my way does not want to go without the flapper and feeder. I sold hundreds set up my way, and never had a single customer complain of having trouble raising or lowering a sail, including 16s and 14s I assembled, which of course don't have the flapper, but did have the feeder. Going to the welded ring sent things backwards in the process. The welded rings do not work worth a damn with the flapper. Nothing flawed about the design, only the lapse in the education process.

Someone who has one of the boats with flapper, separate ring and shackle, and sail feeder, set it up my way and report back. I'll post a youtube video this spring when a boat comes out of winter storage in a separate thread with a 24 year old 21 with original setup.

In the meantime, don't believe the nay-sayers and grind off the flapper. It shouldn't be too long before I get a boat out of the shed.

I'll also post a video of how to simply tie in battens with the original line that comes with the boats, so that you can never loose a batten, but can easily release all the tension and still have full adjustment capability. I may need reminding on that one though, so if anyone is interested, and you don't see it later this spring, remind me. It's just a way I came up with of tying a figure8 knot that doesn't require any more time.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 18, 2012 8:29 am 
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I'm a casual day sailor so take my thoughts for what they're worth. I've got an original ('84 no comptip) mast with a flapper. I used to have all kinds of problems raising it and getting to hook. I replaced the original 1/2" cotton halyard with 1/4" poly double braid and now it works like a charm. I can hear the "clink" and know it's hooked. Hoist again (listen for the "clink" ) and throw the rotator to the left and it comes free every time .

The feeder on the other hand is useless. My main is an original Cat Fever and the bottom of the bolt rope gets caught in it making my 8-1 downhaul useless. It holds a spot of honor in my toolbox if the next owner wants to play with it.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 18, 2012 1:59 pm 
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The feeder is indeed worthless if the dealer left it like it came from the factory. (Half inch cotton has never been original anything on a Hobie)Properly sized, it makes the whole business of raising the sail MANY times easier. Properly set up, it's impossible for the boltrope to get caught in it. And once set correctly, it should stay set. I never remember touching one on any of my boats after initial boat assembly, and they go from 24 years old and older. Also, over the years when I was a dealer, and hundreds of boats sold, I don't remember ever having a customer for one of my boats come back, nor did I ever have to help anyone of my customers on the beach with raising or lowering of a sail.

Anyone who hasn't had one that works correctly, would probably think they are useless too.

I once found 8 slide-hammer nail pullers in a building supply store that had been on the shelf for years. I took one to the counter to pay for it, and the guy behind the counter joked about how "no one could do anything with those things, and it was almost impossible to catch a nail with one". It was a busy afternoon in the store with many customers. I bet him that if I could sell every one in his store in a few minutes, that I wouldn't have to pay for mine or I'd pay double. He laughed and said sure thing, thinking he had an easy bet.

I called out that I was going to give a demonstration of something that every builder was going to want one of. I laid out the other seven on the counter as the flanneled shirt crowd gathered round, and told them that these were new old stock of a tool that was no longer produced. The counter top was varnished 3/4 plywood nailed down with 16 penny nails. I set the puller in place over a nail in the counter. The guy behind the cash register had a panic attack, yelling to not tear up his counter. I tapped lightly, quickly pulling the nail with almost no damage to the wood, little skill required, and the salesman's mouth dropped open. There was a small skuffle over the other pullers laying on the counter as I walked out with mine.

Skepticism with belief is sometimes an entertaining thing.

Anyone laying bets whether you will want a sail raising setup the old way after seeing my youtube video, before I post it? A fair test would be to get some new boat owners to see both methods, and after seeing both methods presented, vote on which they would rather have. I'm willing to bet on my old way.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2012 11:07 am 
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Well I'm certainly looking forward to the video (And I had to look up the slide hammer nail puller. I'd love to see some video of that as well!).

The sheets were 1/2, the original halyard was probably 3/8 but all the lines on my '84 were at least partially cotton and looked to be original. They soaked up water like crazy!! I replaced all the running rigging last year. I used 3/8 on the main and 5/16 on the jib. The new stuff runs through the blocks much better but is a bit harder to flick out of the cam-cleats from the other side of the boat.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2012 11:14 am 
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Location: Clinton, Mississippi
Tom King wrote:
Properly set up, it's impossible for the boltrope to get caught in it.


A note regarding sail feeders on the Hobie 16.....

I used one with great results for years on older sails that have the bolt rope continuing around the tack and that were more blown (foot was lower). On newer sails, the bolt rope ends above the tack (on the luff) and aft of the tack (on the foot) and the foot is generally higher. With these conditions the luff bolt rope can indeed get hung on top of the feeder and lead to a ripped sail if when downhauling hard.

The good news is that newer sails tend to run up and down the mast much easier and you don't even need a feeder.

I just wanted to point out that, like so many issues discussed on these forums, there are few universal, one-size-fits-all truth. Often the best way for one to handle a specific issue will be highly dependent on ones specific equipment, sailing conditions/location, experience, goals, etc.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2012 6:09 pm 
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Here are some pics of my broken flapper. Normally I wedge a ring ding into the flapper to keep it up and out of the way. Id like to try it for a few months with it working right before I ditch it. I like the fact of not turning the mast to lower the sail.

Id still love to see pics of a working flapper.
How do I fix mine.

I have aluminum rivets and a rivet gun.

Image
Image
Image
Image
Image

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ALLEY CAT 1984 RED LINE HOBIE 18 MAGNUM
Sail # 10505 or 277
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2012 2:40 pm 
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Send me an email, and I'll send you some pictures, and a little how-to on fixing yours. tomandpamking@gmail.com

It might be a day or two before I get the pictures back to you.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2012 5:29 pm 
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You can waste your time trying to get the flopper thing to work, or you can save yourself a lot of hassle and just cut the stupid thing off. I've been sailing 18's for over 25 years. We struggled with the flopper for the first few years, then when we switched to the comptip masts without the flopper and learned how to rotate the mast to hook or unhook the halyard, there were no sail raising/lowering issues anymore.

You point the bows directly into the wind, hoist the sail, and the ring clicks into the hook. To lower it, point the bows directly into the wind, rotate the mast, release the halyard, and down she comes - no issues. I can do it single handed.

There is no advantage to the flopper - none.

sm


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2012 8:09 pm 
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srm wrote:
You can waste your time trying to get the flopper thing to work, or you can save yourself a lot of hassle and just cut the stupid thing off. I've been sailing 18's for over 25 years. We struggled with the flopper for the first few years, then when we switched to the comptip masts without the flopper and learned how to rotate the mast to hook or unhook the halyard, there were no sail raising/lowering issues anymore.

You point the bows directly into the wind, hoist the sail, and the ring clicks into the hook. To lower it, point the bows directly into the wind, rotate the mast, release the halyard, and down she comes - no issues. I can do it single handed.

There is no advantage to the flopper - none.

sm



Yeah Ive heard it before.
But Im the type of guy who can't learn from other peoples mistakes, I have to make the mistake my self 3 times before I can learn anything. I want my few years with the flapper before I dump it.

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ALLEY CAT 1984 RED LINE HOBIE 18 MAGNUM
Sail # 10505 or 277
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2012 8:46 pm 
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get a tarp bigger than the sail or 2 smaller ones that together are bigger. layem out on the lawn/driveway. Get the hose and rinse it off. Easy peazy. If you don't want to get the tarp and you have a pretty clean driveway you can probably do right on the cement or hang it over a vehicle and rinse away.

I wouldn't leave it for the rain. If you have rain you probably have wind so leaving it outside might be a bad idea.


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