1) Are the current Hobie mast steps better suited for greater mast rake that the standard one on my '82 boat?
2) If so, is there a difference between the two current offerings other that one being drilled?
I believe the undrilled 14 step is the original design, so it is not optimized for maximum mast rake.
3) I don't plan to drill holes in my crossbar to accomodate the H16 style dolphin striker. If the drilled step, part number HC20200011 offers a better set-up, what effect does having an unused hole in the bottom of the mast step have on the teflon bearing or the mast base? I'd appreciate any suggestions from active H14 racers.
You don't want to use it without filling the hole. A plug made from a cut off bolt would work well.