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PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2012 5:33 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 09, 2005 10:25 am
Posts: 2570
Location: Jersey Shore
I recently had to replace a couple of the luff protectors on my mainsail. Several years ago, Hobie changed from a four-rivet luff protector to a new design with five rivets. The earlier version of this protector had a tendency to crack apart after a few years (but the problem has supposedly now been resolved). One of the main problems is that the Hobie luff protector replacement kit comes with rivets which require a special tool for installation. I chose to instead use machine screws to install the new luff protectors. This may be of some help to anyone else who has to perform this repair.

Three of my luff protectors were severely cracked to the point that I thought the batten tip would be in danger of poking through the sail. A couple others had less severe cracking.
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The first step is to VERY CAREFULLY drill out the rivets. The rivets are aluminum, so they drill out easily, but you don't want to slip and damage the sail. I started with a 3/16" bit and then used a 1/4" bit to finish the job.
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Once the ends of the rivets are drilled off, use a shop vac to clean all the aluminum shavings off of the sail.
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And very carefully remove the protectors and rivets from the sail. Be careful not to tear the sail with the sharp edges of the rivets.
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The Hobie kit comes with both sides of the protector and five aluminum rivets which require a special tool for installation.
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In my case, I used machine screws with nuts, washers, and loctite in place of the rivets. I ordered these fasteners from McMaster Carr. You need to use specific size washers and nuts in order to fit into the recesses of the protector. The main problem with using McMaster is that you generally have to buy way more than you need, but you probably won't be able to find the right size parts at your local hardware store.
Screws: 91400A196 http://www.mcmaster.com/#catalog/118/3047/=jht4pw These were a little long, I probably should have used 1/4" long.

Nuts: 90205A309 [url]http://www.mcmaster.com/#catalog/118/3185
/=jht5lo[/url]

Washers: 90945A725 http://www.mcmaster.com/#catalog/118/3220/=jht68d

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Install the new protectors by aligning the holes in the protector halves with the holes in the sail and insert the screws. Put the nuts and washers on with a drop of loctite and snug everything up. In my case, I would have been better off with 1/4" long screws rather than 5/16" which were a little too long.
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To cover the sharp edge of any long screws, I just added a second nut.
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The end result is newly installed luff protectors with no worries of the batten tip poking through the sail.
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We'll see how long these hold up.

sm


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2012 7:58 pm 
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Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2007 1:20 pm
Posts: 213
Location: Panama City Beach, FL
Five years ago I replaced my batten protection caps with the following type:

Image

I used SS nuts and bolts and the holes in the caps are designed to lock the nuts. Two bolts point in and the other two point out. The caps and hardware are designed so the bolts and nuts are recessed and flush with the outside of the caps (so they will not snag anything).

The bolts make it a lot easier, than the rivets, to remove a pocket protector if you need to do any repairs to the luff.

I think this type is still sold by Hobie as:
Batten Pocket End Protector Kit, part no. 80550005.
See the top left corner of page 55 of Hobie's Spring 2012 Parts and Accessories Catalog.



I bought mine through E-bay from a guy who sells sailing supplies in Flagler Beach, FL.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/2-sets-HOBIE-CAT-MAIN-SAIL-BATTON-PROTECTION-CAPS-stainless-hardware-included-/160888403721?pt=Boat_Parts_Accessories_Gear&hash=item2575b23709

_________________
Tim
82' H16
Sail # 88863
Panama City Beach, FL
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2012 5:09 am 
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Joined: Mon May 09, 2005 10:25 am
Posts: 2570
Location: Jersey Shore
Tim H16 wrote:
Five years ago I replaced my batten protection caps with the following type:


Those protectors are great for older sails, but the newer sails come with a five rivet protector. The only way to install the protector you show in a newer sail is to add two more holes on the sail (only two of the five rivet protector holes line up with the four rivet protector holes) which equates to a lot of holes in the luff of the sail.

Also, as I said in the previous post, a 1/4" long screw would have been better suited for most areas (only the very bottom protector needed the 5/16" screws). If I were doing the job over, I would have bought both 1/4" and 5/16" lon screws and used whichever length was better for a flush fit.

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