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PostPosted: Tue Nov 27, 2012 11:40 am 
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ftlauderdale16:
Hobie is already promoting through social media with their Adventure series of boats which are hugely popular in the markeplace. If you go to their main website you will see the link to the Hobie Island club.
I know I'm repeating myself from earlier in this thread but think about it, for HobieCat company to get enough revenue to play in the elite racing market, they need to have a profitable and large existing customer base, paying the bills for R&D and that elite cutting edge market, where top in the world compete.

If you do a google or youtube search for Tandem Island it will get 12 million hits, where hobie 16 only gets 1.7 million hits. There are thousands of people (families) posting their videos on youtube showing them having a fun time with their Hobie Adventure type boats. Nothing in history compares to this.
The Hobie Kayak market is already huge (Hobie makes unquestionably the best kayaks on the market), and the Adventure type boats are the next logical progression for these people when they start getting a taste of sailing with their standard Hobie sail kits on their kayaks ('the Adventure feeder market'), just about every kayaker I have spoken with says when looking at my TI ' boy I wish I had one of those, or thats going to be my next boat). The Adventure boats use the mirage drive system, once someone has owned one, there is nothing out there that compares, I would not own a boat without a mirage drive system.
I still think the culture today is families wanting to get out onto the water and do as much as possible, (ie... fishing, sailing, kayaking, snorkling, scuba diving, island hopping, camping, river excursion, etc) but with the huge costs of fuel, maint, and storage on powerboats and jet ski's these are no longer the preferred way to get out on the water. Plus everyone wants to be green. People want to just get the boat from the garage,throw the boat on the car and go somewhere where there is water with the whole family, that in my opinion is todays market. I don't know this for sure but someone told me that Hobie's Adventure line of boats are the most popular boats on the market today.
Now how does this relate to your one design discussion. My opinion is that in a year there will be a desire by a large group of these new people, a 300 times larger group than current HCA, to start to organize and possibly want to compete in organized events and club gatherings such as river excursions, EC events, combo Kayak/sailing adventures/endurance races, etc.
Now here is where my opinion differs from everyone posting here.
I feel Hobies next one design boat should be a competitive version of Tandem Island, called the Super TI. Which is upgradable from the current 'on the market' version. Such a boat would have 3 sails mainsail, jib, spinnaker, this boat would be comparable to the Windrider 17 and Weta type trimarans (but way better). The mainsail would need to be slightly taller and larger (125-150 sq ft), but still boomless and furlable. The furling jib (30-40 sq ft) would definately help especially in upwind performance, and for downwind either a furlable Assemetric spinnaker (130-150 sq ft) or a similar sized furlable screacher. To support the additional sail the boat would need to be a couple feet wider (extensions on the AKA's, or new AKA bars). The boat would also need a bolt on re-enforced bow sprit added. The boat can still be used as a kayak, or standard TI, and easily car toppable (unlike anything on the market today). Such a boat I think would capable enough to satisfy more advanced sailers need for speed, yet remains versatile enough that it can be used for family outings and excursions, and fishing (I don't see too many H16's out there fishing), or just as a kayak. (design would remain versatile)
My opinion is such a boat as a one design, would have the biggest market potential feeding off of the already huge kayak, and Adventure lines of boats which have already proven themselves in the marketplace. In addition as sailers get tired of rebuilding over and over their vintage 70's and 80's H16's, H18's, such a boat would be technical, and fast enough to peak current cat sailers interest as well, which obviously the current TI does not.
With a much larger group to work from, I'm hoping HobieCat company will be able to finance Hobies next great fast catamaran "one design" for that world class elite group that want to go fast as lightning, and compete on the world stage, which as we all know takes major money. "basically turning the great HobieCat design team loose, saying design us the fastest world class next generation cat possible please, here is a big bag of money to make it happen". When this new super cat becomes available there will then be potential for thousands of unit sales (verses the current hundreds) because of this large influx of new age Loyal Hobie sailers and families just getting into sailing now.
This is of course all just my opinion, and Hobie will do what makes money in the marketplace, after all that's why they are in business, and in my opinion they are doing a pretty good job at it in this changing world.
Bob


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 27, 2012 12:11 pm 
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fusioneng wrote:
If you do a google or youtube search for Tandem Island it will get 12 million hits, where hobie 16 only gets 1.7 million hits.

You're a bit flawed there. Google "Tandem Island" (with the quotes) and you get 124,000 hits, not 12M. "Hobie 16" (with the quotes) brings up 374,000 hits.

fusioneng wrote:
Nothing in history compares to this.

Yes there is. Hobie 14 / Hobie 16 in the late '70s / early '80s. Before the internet.

fusioneng wrote:
(T)here will be a desire by a large group of these new people, a 300 times larger group than current HCA, to start to organize and possibly want to compete in organized events and club gatherings such as river excursions, EC events, combo Kayak/sailing adventures/endurance races, etc.

Really? Over 1,000,000 people? I don't think so.

fusioneng wrote:
Now here is where my opinion differs from everyone posting here. I feel Hobies next one design boat should be a competitive version of Tandem Island, called the Super TI. Which is upgradable from the current 'on the market' version. Such a boat would have 3 sails mainsail, jib, spinnaker, this boat would be comparable to the Windrider 17 and Weta type trimarans (but way better). The mainsail would need to be slightly taller and larger (125-150 sq ft), but still boomless and furlable. The furling jib (30-40 sq ft) would definately help especially in upwind performance, and for downwind either a furlable Assemetric spinnaker (130-150 sq ft) or a similar sized furlable screacher. To support the additional sail the boat would need to be a couple feet wider (extensions on the AKA's, or new AKA bars). The boat would also need a bolt on re-enforced bow sprit added. The boat can still be used as a kayak, or standard TI, and easily car toppable (unlike anything on the market today). Such a boat I think would capable enough to satisfy more advanced sailers need for speed, yet remains versatile enough that it can be used for family outings and excursions, and fishing (I don't see too many H16's out there fishing), or just as a kayak. (design would remain versatile)
My opinion is such a boat as a one design, would have the biggest market potential feeding off of the already huge kayak, and Adventure lines of boats which have already proven themselves in the marketplace. In addition as sailers get tired of rebuilding over and over their vintage 70's and 80's H16's, H18's, such a boat would be technical, and fast enough to peak current cat sailers interest as well, which obviously the current TI does not.
With a much larger group to work from, I'm hoping HobieCat company will be able to finance Hobies next great fast catamaran "one design" for that world class elite group that want to go fast as lightning, and compete on the world stage, which as we all know takes major money. "basically turning the great HobieCat design team loose, saying design us the fastest world class next generation cat possible please, here is a big bag of money to make it happen". When this new super cat becomes available there will then be potential for thousands of unit sales (verses the current hundreds) because of this large influx of new age Loyal Hobie sailers and families just getting into sailing now.
This is of course all just my opinion, and Hobie will do what makes money in the marketplace, after all that's why they are in business, and in my opinion they are doing a pretty good job at it in this changing world.
Bob

Keep dreaming . . .


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 27, 2012 2:10 pm 
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We absolutely compare Hobie 14 and 16 success to the current interest in the Islands... They are selling at high volume and seeing huge support out there. They are also very unique in that you can do so many varied activities. There is NEVER a day that you can't use an Island or some portion of it due to the MirageDrive. No wind to High wind. No problem.

There is certainly interest in the boat Bob describes and I suspect that something along those lines will be built when the right hull is designed.

But... an Island is not a Catamaran. When you get the need for speed, only a cat is gonna give it to you, so we will continue to look at what the next cat is as well.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 27, 2012 2:14 pm 
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MBounds:
I obviously misread the numbers at the top of the search page. Here are screen dumps of my search, they must use a multiplier or something, maybe the real number is 1/1000 of the number they show, I didn't actually count them (it would take a while).

tandem island search
Image

hobie 16 search
Image

Back in the 70's and 80's I had a sunfish but spent most of my hobby time (and money) designing and builting hydroplanes, so I never got into the Hobie way back then.

Down here in Florida there are at least a dozen kayaks just on my block, kayaking is very big down here. There are also a lot of Kayak fishermen, and the AI/TI from what I am told is the ultimate platform for kayak fishing (ability to go further, and in open water) is a huge desire to many that have stopped to talk to me, admiring my TI. After selling our Sea Ray (which was wicked expensive to store amd maintain) we took up kayaking and sailing, and have way more fun. We still like to get out on the water, and I don't think we are the only one's, why would someone live in Florida who doesn't like to be on the water. If you look at the US stats, about 300,000 kayaks are sold each year as compared to under 50,000 personal water craft. In 2011 there were around 15,000 outboard powerboats sold. In 2011 there were 82 million people involved in recreational boating in the US alone ( http://www.statista.com/statistics/1845 ... l-boating/). The sailing kit is available as an option for every Hobie kayak sold. I would call this a huge market potential to get people hooked into sailing. Verses waiting with baited breath for people to wander into sailing clubs, saying I've never tried sailing before but I want to buy an F18 class rig to start out "nothing else will do".
I'm not dreaming for the Super TI (already got one), I just thinking others might want such a boat.


Last edited by fusioneng on Tue Nov 27, 2012 2:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 27, 2012 2:31 pm 
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I agree with Matt 100% even a super TI is not even close to a well designed world class cat. I was trying to outline a way for Hobie to get the next generation of sailers wanting for such vessels, so Hobie would have the market potential (and $$$) to make it happen.
MBounds I'm not against you I'm with you. I'll buy one for myself when it's ready (new world class Hobiecat)
Bob


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 27, 2012 2:36 pm 
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fusioneng wrote:
MBounds:
I obviously misread the numbers at the top of the search page. Here are screen dumps of my search, they must use a multiplier or something, maybe the real number is 1/1000 of the number they show, I didn't actually count them (it would take a while).


before you start getting snarky, perhaps you should go reread MBound's post, and then go learn the basics of how Google searches work. Your search returns every website that has both the words "tandem" and "island" in it, even if they're paragraphs apart. typing "island tandem" (without the quotes) in will return the same number of results. What MBounds did was enclose "Tandem Island" in quotes, which returns only results with that exact phrase. If you don't believe me, go play with the advanced search page. Matt's numbers are correct.

Also, go read Matt Miller's post. I don't think anyone is going to dispute that the AI/TI series is a great design and immensely popular. However, it is NOT a performance catamaran. This discussion about the next performance racing catamarans, and the AI/TI is not going to be it.

EDIT: looks like we posted at the same time. I agree with you that the AI/TI/sailing kits are a great way to introduce people to sailing and build the potential customer base, but at the end of the day they are performance race boats by any standards.

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Last edited by SNovak on Tue Nov 27, 2012 2:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 27, 2012 2:38 pm 
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fusioneng wrote:
I obviously misread the numbers at the top of the search page. Here are screen dumps of my search, they must use a multiplier or something, maybe the real number is 1/1000 of the number they show, I didn't actually count them (it would take a while).
The problem wasn't with what you were reading - it's what you were searching for. By using tandem island (without the quotes), you got results for "tandem island" (words together) as well as hits for documents with "tandem" and "island" in them, but not necessarily together.

For example, your search would have brought up results from riding tandem bicycles on Mackinac Island as well as Hobie Tandem Island kayaks. Google puts results with the words together at the top, figuring that those are the most relevant.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 27, 2012 2:55 pm 
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MBounds:
Whoops sorry about that.
I am honestly not trying to be snarky.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 27, 2012 3:52 pm 
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Image

:mrgreen:

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 27, 2012 9:39 pm 
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mmiller wrote:
But... an Island is not a Catamaran. When you get the need for speed, only a cat is gonna give it to you, so we will continue to look at what the next cat is as well.


That's all I needed to hear. I like Matt. :P

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 28, 2012 5:51 am 
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hobiesrock wrote:
Image

:mrgreen:


That's Hilarious! :lol:

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 28, 2012 7:10 am 
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fusioneng:

There are a couple things I want to say about what you wrote. First is that I appreciate your passion for your TI. Hobie make great products that work really well, and it's easy to become extremely loyal to the Hobie brand. Understand that the passion you have for your TI is the same passion we have for our catamarans. The longing that you have to see an even more modern "Super TI" as you call it, is the same longing we have to see a new generation of cat, and is what this discussion is all about.
I think you need to realize that 'sailing' is a broad term. Sailing on a kayak is not the same as sailing on a beach cat, as sailing a beach cat is not the same as sailing an AC72 or a Volvo open 70.

Quote:
Hobie is already promoting through social media with their Adventure series of boats which are hugely popular in the markeplace. If you go to their main website you will see the link to the Hobie Island club.


I agree with you - Hobie is promoting their kayak range, however they are not promoting their catamarans with the same vigor.

Quote:
for HobieCat company to get enough revenue to play in the elite racing market,

Quote:
I'm hoping HobieCat company will be able to finance Hobies next great fast catamaran "one design" for that world class elite group that want to go fast as lightning, and compete on the world stage, which as we all know takes major money.


Where are you getting all this 'elitist' vibe from? I'm really sorry that some cat sailor somewhere said or did something to you to make you feel bad, and made it seem like we are 'elitists'. If you believe that racing Hobie Cats is for the elite, then you just don't understand Hobie's roots, history, or the 'Hobie way of Life'.

We want to race our catamarans because it's fun, thrilling, builds community, camaraderie and makes us better sailors. Through racing we can hone our skills and teach each other. It's a gathering for like minded people who share the same enthusiasm for being on the water.

Quote:
Such a boat I think would capable enough to satisfy more advanced sailers need for speed, yet remains versatile enough that it can be used for family outings and excursions,

Quote:
In addition as sailers get tired of rebuilding over and over their vintage 70's and 80's H16's, H18's, such a boat would be technical, and fast enough to peak current cat sailers interest as well, which obviously the current TI does not.


A faster TI with a spinnaker sounds like fun, and will be more challenging, but as Matt said, it still will not be comparable to a cat. Plus it will be missing one huge the thing - the ability to trapeze. Refer back to the picture I posted... Try to imagine the sensation of flying above the water like that. It's not just about speed Bob.

Quote:
because of this large influx of new age Loyal Hobie sailers and families just getting into sailing now.


I think the idea that AI's and Ti's will feed potential sailors into the catamaran market is a nice idea in principal, but I don't think it's working. I don't know if that was the intent? I certainly don't know all the facts and figures, but I don't think there has been a huge surge in sales of cats due to the popularity of the AI and TI. I stand to be corrected though...

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 28, 2012 9:30 am 
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I understand the point of this discussion was meant to center on the idea of a new generation of cat. But I would like to point out that the AI and TI may indeed be growing the next generation of cat owners.

Sailing was not something that had ever really entered my mind. Then I put a sail on my Revolution, which led to buying an AI and shortly afterwards a TI. Now I have begun tinkering with the idea of something bigger and faster. Maybe a cat. Maybe something else. Only thing I can say for sure is that my current interest in sailing stemmed from just trying it, which I would not have done if my only option had been to drop $10,000 on a cat or similar. Surely not all AI/TI owners will ever move beyond their current boats, but at least some will.

And since we're talking about boats we'd like to see Hobie get involved with, what about a larger, beefier, faster trimaran? Something on scale with the 18 and 20 foot cats? I'm not aware of anyone producing anything like that in the under $10,000 to $12,000 range (OK, the Windrider counts, I guess). It could open up a new market for Hobie.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 28, 2012 9:41 am 
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ftlauderdale16 wrote:
I think the idea that AI's and Ti's will feed potential sailors into the catamaran market is a nice idea in principal, but I don't think it's working. I don't know if that was the intent?


Actually, it is the intent to build interest in sailing through kayak sailing products. We are a sailing company at heart.

Hobie Kayaks started as a way to help support cat dealers in lean times. Kayaks have quickly become what we do as a primary product. That is because they sell... and of course the MirageDrive is really the unique product driving this. It is an awesome combination we have hit on.

We started in the early 90's to build sailing from the bottom again. First the Wave, then Bravo and Getaway. Kayaks came along... and every Mirage kayak can mount a sail kit. As I have said before, we have sold 10s of thousands of kayaks and sail kits. We are seeing interest in Cats increase.

I know Bob did Google searches to show just how popular Islands are, but he missed a point... Islands have been on the market for about 6 years. Hobie 16s have been at it for over 40 years.

Doing a Google search:

"Hobie 16" brings back 369,000 hits

"Hobie Adventure Island" brings back 950,000 hits.
"Hobie Tandem Island" brings back 323,000 hits

Forums activity is huge for Islands as well.

Cat sailors would be best served to embrace these new sailors. Show them some Hobie love. Then show them what real sailing speed is all about.

It is a natural progression that will repeat itself. Sailors ALWAYS want to go faster.

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 28, 2012 10:17 am 
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Although...

Thinking about this more. Sailing speed is not always the goal for everyone. Personally, at this point, I am pretty happy to sail anything... Wave, H16... Islands. I don't really have an interest in a Wild Cat or F18 due to the complexity of rigging and needing qualified crew. My choice for something on that end would be 17-18 feet with a furling third sail. Centerboards or Getaway-like keels.

I'm pretty spoiled though. My buddy Mike has a Hobie 20 for those days when it is 12-18 on Mission Bay or a Wave when it hoots or I get to go to the Bitter End. Nothing better than screaming around on a Wave when it is blowing 18 plus. Simple, safe fun. I love the Islands for being able to go anywhere anytime... and they give a good speed rush! Let alone the lot full of other boats we have here at Hobie Cat, So I don't really HAVE to choose what the best boat is... I choose what is best for the day and crew situation. Like I said... spoiled.

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