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PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2010 4:38 am 
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Matt, hope you are having fun in China. I understand that a reply will be delayed due to the Hobie commitment in China.

We took the TI out for a sail over the weekend. We were encountering 2 to 3 foot swells and 15 mph wind in the open ocean. About 1-1/2 miles offshore, I felt a slight pop in the rudder control, then could not steer the TI. A visual confirmed that the rudder was still in place and swiveling side to side. After about another 10 minutes, I felt a second pop, but this time, the rudder control became totally loose. A visual at this point revealed that the rudder was non-responsive.

We radioed the other two Hobie's on the outing, and they both accompanied us back to shore, with one of the TI's towing us back in.

When we reached the shore, an inspection revealed that the whole rudder assembly came off the hull, and was dangling by the spectra lines. We also noticed that the rudder assembly was attached to the hull by two 3/16" dia. bolts (which had worked itself off). We screwed the bolts back in place, and the rudder was good to go.

I investigated further this evening, and found that the length of the two bolts securing the rudder to the hull seems to be undersized (too short). One of my bolts has about 3/16" and the other 1/8" of exposed threaded bolt that is available to thread into the hull fitting.

The hull fittings however, can accept bolts up to around 3/4" long.

Are the bolts being used now too short. If they were longer, the rudder connection to the hull would be bullet-proof.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2010 7:14 am 
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Wow - that's the second one! Any photos? I'm glad I replaced my Hobie paddle with a flatter blade model - I expect I'm going to have to use it for steering again at some point.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2010 9:54 am 
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I have photos that I'd like to post, but couldn't figure out how to upload it. Assistance requested.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2010 10:19 am 
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Hopefully this will help: http://www.hobiecat.com/community/viewtopic.php?f=21&t=12574

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2010 11:37 am 
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Hi Honu,
I didn't know how to load a picture either. I found a "storage site" called photobucket.com which I registered with (free). The site is self-explanatory. When the picture is uploaded select "share" (over the picture) and then "get link code" and copy one of the links under "IMG for bulletin boards & forums" and past it to your message.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2010 2:33 pm 
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Our Hawaiian Kayak Sailing Club reported this failure on one TI last week, and found loose screws on a second TI.

How are yours holding out Bob?

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2010 3:30 pm 
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Thanks for the tips on posting photos. Will try it tonight.

Also, my wife and I are the ones in HKSC, who experienced the rudder failure as was reported earlier by JollyGreen. So I think its just us so far.

Would be interesting to see if something similar happened to others.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2010 3:41 pm 
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So far, so good. I just checked the rudder screws, cleaned out the extra plastic and added loc-tite and re-tightened. The lower screw seemed to have dried blue loc-tite on it from the factory, but none noticeable on the upper screw. Both were still mostly tight.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2010 8:08 pm 
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I have tightened the bottom one several times. tomorrow, I will use some Loc-tite on it.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2010 9:58 pm 
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Thanks for the tips on posting pictures. It worked !


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This view shows the rudder bracket which is bolted to the hull. To get to this point, remove the rudder pin and slide the rudder off the bracket. The rudder bracket is held in place by two bolts. On our sail, the lower bolt worked itself free, then after about 10 minutes, the top bolt pulled out.

Note: In the fully assembled state, the bolts are hidden/covered by the rudder pin. To check the tightness of the bolts, the rudder pin needs to be removed first.


Image

This is the rudder bracket. Not sure the reason for the short amount of bolt which is threaded into the hull fitting. Only thing I can think of is that this serves as another built in point of failure meant to protect the hull from cracking. Don't think that is the case though, as the rudder pin should fail before then, releasing the rudder assembly from the hull.


I really would like to replace the existing bolts with longer ones. This should pretty much prevent the whole assembly from separating from the hull, but am not sure if this would void the warranty.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 18, 2010 1:51 am 
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Honu wrote:
This is the rudder bracket. Not sure the reason for the short amount of bolt which is threaded into the hull fitting.

??? That's it? That's all there is? I'm speechless.

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    2010 Tandem Island
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 18, 2010 5:42 am 
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Did not realize they are so short? How strange. You gonna replace with longer ones?

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 18, 2010 9:29 am 
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Yes, would feel so much safer with longer bolts. Just need to get confirmation that the warranty would not be voided if the bolts were changed.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 18, 2010 12:36 pm 
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Location: Hilo, Hawaii
Just seems there should be more than two small screws holding a larger rudder assembly to the hull. Did anyone try using some type of silicone adhesive to help provide more holding support and protection from corrosion? At the least, I think longer screws and loctite is a good idea.

Thanks for the share,

c2y


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 18, 2010 2:42 pm 
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My TI screws seemed to quite a bit longer than you are showing. Could there be scrap plastic holding it back? Maybe Hobie changed either the screws or the holes in the plastic piece somwhere in production?

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