I'm just back from vacation after 3 weeks at the beach house, spending some time with my H14T that I bought this winter and for which I bought many parts to make it "safe" and "almost" like new. All the advices, picture, experience from people of this forum where a great help for me as there is no local fleet here, all the hobie cat on the water belong to sailing schools or are used temporarly by vacation houses.
I bought this boat (H14 from 1973 converted to Turbo) for several reasons :
- hulls in good shape (checked by a gel coat professional working in a local boatyard)
- sails in good shape along with the rudders
- 5 miles drive to take it in the yard...
- good price
I did my list of parts to change according to the many usefull posts of this forums and bought locally or online (thanks to Jeremy of Surf City Catamaran) so I have new rigging, mast tang, monel rivets, rudder components... in fact every parts I thought was necessary to sail safely with my kids. We really had fun during these vacation and I just had to have locally built a new forestay since the old one was "old" and the local boatyard had everything to build the right one with the right equipment (they use a 23 Tons hydrolic press for the rigging joints)
Here is what happened during my sailing days :
- Second time out with windy afternoon with kitesurfs everywhere, during a jib, I hear a kind of "tAC" and the traveller really exploded with those small plastic pieced everywhere on the trampoline... I lost the direction control and was about to sink an anchored boat, luckily, by catching the boom and pulling the stick, I was able to change of direction and go toward the wind to stop and build a temporary fix with a piece of line (reattach the lower block).
I came back to the beach and reordered a new car plastic thing. I think, I'll get a new track and traveler for christmas...
- Once I dismantled everything for the winter, I had a big surprise and don't know if this is common : the sidebars have these stainless things on which the rigging is attached. Under the trampoline there is the cable where are attached the jib blocks. At the point of the sidebar where there are the rivets, I have a big crack and could expand it just by pushing it with my hands and knees. I'll buy new ones for next season and it's not too expensive so that's fine (already found a pair of almost new ones in black for 150 euro)
- Any suggestion (reference) for the traveler and track to replace the old original one (1973) ?
- is that common ? (for a 1973 boat, I'm ok with a such damage since it seems due to the location, I imagine there is a lot of stress on this area). I'm glad that the crack didn't open and the sidebar didn't break in two parts while I was crossing the harbor with my son or daughter, I don't even imagine what would have happen with the mast falling down, the trampoline in the water and some power boat not very far...
- is it possible that I'm the one who made these cracks ? the cracked aluminium had this white color that looks like it was cracked for a while in salt water. maybe I didn't tension enough the trampoline ? (I tensionned it again after a few days and it seemed tight)
As an advice to anyone buying an oldboat, check everything, I was afraid of some issues in the hulls, mast or other and it's the sidebars who break...