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 Post subject: Hobie 18 Downhaul
PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2012 9:22 am 
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After having considerable trouble finding a suitable downhaul for our Hobie 18. We contacted Murrays Sports, and they were nice enough to put together a parts list for us. Some of the parts for the 8:1 downhaul pictured are no longer available from Harken, so this setup offers a nice workaround.

There are installation notes on the parts list. We just received all of the parts, and I am hoping to install everything this weekend. I will post a picture when the install is complete.

The only addition is that instead of tying the downhaul to the sail (as shown in the picture) we will use two downhaul hooks, which are readily available online.

Image Image

The only alternative I was able to find was also available through Murrays, and is seen below. This is a less expensive option, but I was not happy with the idea of a 5:1 downhaul. I think the option above is much nicer with more power, and is controllable from either trapeze. We saved a bunch of money by shopping around for some of the parts.

Image

Hope that helps.

Also, here is picture of our boat - just for fun :D

Image

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Aaron
1981 Hobie 18
Fleet 250
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 Post subject: Re: Hobie 18 Downhaul
PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2012 12:47 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2005 10:13 am
Posts: 720
Location: Nepean S.C. Ottawa, Canada
I bought (and love) the 5:1 downhaul.
I think the 8:1 is overkill....
What I really like is how easy it is to use....
Not that it helps us win any races!!!

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1989 Hobie SX18 Sail # 1947
'Only two things are infinite, the universe, and human stupidity. But I'm not sure about the former.'


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 Post subject: Re: Hobie 18 Downhaul
PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2012 1:02 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 09, 2005 10:25 am
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Location: Jersey Shore
For racing, I think having the downhaul led out to the traps is a definite advantage. We use 6:1 purchase which I think is sufficient for the 18's mainsail. We can yank the tack down to the gooseneck if we need to.

sm


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 Post subject: Re: Hobie 18 Downhaul
PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2012 3:15 pm 
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Any chance you guys could post a picture for reference? I struggled for a while to figure out what the best setup is.

We will be racing occasionally, but most importantly we just want to get to boat to it's peak performance.

I'm very interested in how much you guys downhaul your sails. I have one of those sticker gauges to experiment with once I get this system on, but I noticed I can already get a almost scary amount of mast bend with the stock system. It seems that I only need to go about 3.5" to 4" down into the lower mast track to get the mast to bow.

I am very interested in how much we should be adjusting our sails btw the upwind and downwind legs to get the proper fullness, or flatness. I understand it will depend on conditions, but I have not found much on what the range should be in general conditions.

We have about six 18's at our club, but unfortunately we seem to be to only one who sails it regularly, so there isn't really anyone to ask there.

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Aaron
1981 Hobie 18
Fleet 250
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 Post subject: Re: Hobie 18 Downhaul
PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2012 3:55 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2005 10:13 am
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Location: Nepean S.C. Ottawa, Canada
Depending on the amount of chop....

Upwind,
mast rotator pointing at the shrouds,
outhaul snug
downhaul tight,
Traveler centered,
and crank the mainsheet
Move as far forward as it is safe
Trap out, depending on wind.

Downwind
Boards up
mast rotator as loose as it gets
downhaul loose (which is why we find it useful)
slacken off the outhaul
traveler and main...it depends, usually we are 'tacking downwind'....
which is another story....we are glued to the tell-tales....
stay as far forward as it is safe.

Agreed, SRM and HobieRich?

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1989 Hobie SX18 Sail # 1947
'Only two things are infinite, the universe, and human stupidity. But I'm not sure about the former.'


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 Post subject: Re: Hobie 18 Downhaul
PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2012 4:03 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 09, 2005 10:25 am
Posts: 2620
Location: Jersey Shore
I don't have a picture handy to post for my system, but it has dual exit blocks riveted to the mast, then I have an eye strap secured to the mast track with a double harken micro block shackled to it. On the tack of the sail I have a triple harken micro block tied on as tight as possible to the bottom of the sail. This gives 6:1.

For tuning, upwind basically just enough tension to pull out the wrinkles until you're overpowered. Once you're overpowered, pull on more downhaul until the boat settles down, you will also notice as you pull on more downhaul the helm will get lighter. Once you reach the point of max downhaul, let off the jib just a hair, after that, begin easing the traveler to further depower.

Downwind, ease the downhaul fully in all conditions except thermo-nuclear.

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 Post subject: Re: Hobie 18 Downhaul
PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 5:20 am 
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Thank you guys. That is very helpful. I feel like I have a good handle on it now. srm I think our setup will be similar to yours, but ours will be a little more complicated. I'm hoping to put it on Sunday.

When you totally ease the downhaul do you do you worry about the bottom of the tack coming out of the lower mast track? With ours when we ease the downhaul too much the bottom of the tack comes out, and we have to pull the tack forward while we pull down on the downhaul to get it back in.

Does your system the pull the tack back into the lower mast track, or do just not worry about it?

Thanks for the help!

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Aaron
1981 Hobie 18
Fleet 250
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 Post subject: Re: Hobie 18 Downhaul
PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 6:22 am 
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Posts: 2620
Location: Jersey Shore
When the sails are new, you definintely have to watch that the bottom of the bolt rope doesn't pull out of the opening in the luff track when you release it. Don't ease it so much that it comes out since it's a pain to put back in on the water. My sail has a couple years on it now, so it's not an issue anymore for me (although it would be nice to get a new sail).

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 Post subject: Re: Hobie 18 Downhaul
PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 8:07 am 
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wow, yeah, our sails are new as of December. Your really know you stuff. Thanks for the info. I feel I am downhaul prepared now.

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Aaron
1981 Hobie 18
Fleet 250
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 Post subject: Re: Hobie 18 Downhaul
PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 10:31 am 
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Joined: Wed Jan 27, 2010 12:38 pm
Posts: 225
Location: Roswell, GA - USA
I have the Murrays 5:1 kit and it works well for me. I have not been worrying about the luff rope going in the mast track at the bottom, I just sits to one side and seems to work fine. I have a solid aluminum mast (no comp tip) and I do not see much mast bending with a lot of downhaul. Maybe I just need to look better.


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 Post subject: Re: Hobie 18 Downhaul
PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 10:51 am 
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Really? I have a solid aluminum mast as well. Can I ask what you mean by a lot of downhaul?

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Aaron
1981 Hobie 18
Fleet 250
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 Post subject: Re: Hobie 18 Downhaul
PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 11:34 am 
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Location: Roswell, GA - USA
aaron-hobie wrote:
Really? I have a solid aluminum mast as well. Can I ask what you mean by a lot of downhaul?


pulling very hard on the 5:1 downhaul, I believe it brings it within a few inches of the boom. I have a 1983 boat and the sails are about 5 years old, Hobie brand. As I said above maybe I was not paying attention and sighting up the mast to look for bend. I used to windsurf so I know what downhaul does to the mast when it is applied properly. I have read elsewhere on this forum that the solid masts have much less bend than the comp tip masts.


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 Post subject: Re: Hobie 18 Downhaul
PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 6:20 am 
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Joined: Wed May 17, 2006 7:49 am
Posts: 1073
Location: North Carolina
My system is 8-1 and very similar to what SRM describes. I use a tiger heart shackle to attach the two blocks to the main sail instead of tieing them on as illustrated. My system has cams on the mast which I use to set initial downhaul tension. From there I can control it from the wire through the exit blocks on each side of the mast.
I have one of the 5-1 Murray systems and it is more than adequate for a stock pin top sail, I sail a custom squaretop that needs more power.


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 Post subject: Re: Hobie 18 Downhaul
PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 8:23 am 
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Location: Saratoga Springs, NY
Chet3 wrote:
aaron-hobie wrote:
Really? I have a solid aluminum mast as well. Can I ask what you mean by a lot of downhaul?


pulling very hard on the 5:1 downhaul, I believe it brings it within a few inches of the boom. I have a 1983 boat and the sails are about 5 years old, Hobie brand. As I said above maybe I was not paying attention and sighting up the mast to look for bend. I used to windsurf so I know what downhaul does to the mast when it is applied properly. I have read elsewhere on this forum that the solid masts have much less bend than the comp tip masts.


Try adjusting the downhaul while sighting up the mast, and you should notice it. It's a much less dramatic bend than what you might be used to with a windsurfing mast.

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 Post subject: Re: Hobie 18 Downhaul
PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 8:41 am 
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Location: Roswell, GA - USA
SNovak wrote:
Chet3 wrote:
aaron-hobie wrote:
Really? I have a solid aluminum mast as well. Can I ask what you mean by a lot of downhaul?


pulling very hard on the 5:1 downhaul, I believe it brings it within a few inches of the boom. I have a 1983 boat and the sails are about 5 years old, Hobie brand. As I said above maybe I was not paying attention and sighting up the mast to look for bend. I used to windsurf so I know what downhaul does to the mast when it is applied properly. I have read elsewhere on this forum that the solid masts have much less bend than the comp tip masts.


Try adjusting the downhaul while sighting up the mast, and you should notice it. It's a much less dramatic bend than what you might be used to with a windsurfing mast.

I will check it out the next time I have the boat out. Thanks


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