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 Post subject: Mirage Fin problem?
PostPosted: Sat Feb 16, 2013 9:20 am 
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I wonder if any one might have some advice concerning the fins on a Mirage drive. I have a 2013 PA 14 and used it for the first time last week. I was cleaning the mirage unit and found the long shaft has broken thru the bottom of the rubber fin on both sides. I was able to get the rod back in the right fin but I think I will have to somehow lower the forward side of the left fin to get the rod completely back inside the fin. I would think that they will certainly find the way back out and I am concerned that the fin could rip the whole way to the top and as they do that become useless. Is this a valid concern and is there any fix for this fin tearing/wear problem? Thanks for any help.
I would also like to get some extra "water proof wire connectors" that are used to put the transducer cables thru the interior hull on the 2013 PA. Any advice on where to order them? Can you buy parts from Hobie? They do not seem to make it easy to do so.

edred


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 Post subject: Re: Mirage Fin problem?
PostPosted: Sun Feb 17, 2013 7:55 pm 
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Joined: Sat Feb 16, 2008 9:14 pm
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Location: Gales Ferry Connecticut
Edred,

I have the same problem with my fins tearing, at the rod tips. Adjusting the amount of "Slack" in the fin can minimize the issue. What I have done is order a new set of fins (rubber only) at the Hobie dealer and repair the old fins with tire tube patch or boat "Rescue Tape". I always carry a spare set when fishing (and the tools needed to swap them out.

Your Hobie dealer can also help you out on the connectors.

Tim

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 Post subject: Re: Mirage Fin problem?
PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2013 6:05 am 
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Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2012 7:16 pm
Posts: 158
Location: vero beach, fl
the fins extend an inch or so beyond the end of the fin shaft. when pedaling in shallow water, and you strike the bottom with your fins, the end of the fin can 'flex'--that one inch that the shaft does not extend into. this is certainly a design feature, like the rubber clutch in the hub of an outboard propeller. if it hits something, it flexes instead of breaking the metal part propeller. same concept with the Mirage Drive fin. you hit the bottom, the end flexes, and keep you from bending the shaft. but, because it can flex, the find can tear where rod ends.

in short, this is a common occurrence and most anyone who has ever used their Mirage Drive in shallow water has encountered this. a lot of people (me included) use gorilla tape on the ends, to reduce wear and tear on the fin tips, but there is really no complete 'repair' for his.

fins are wear items--like fan belts on a car. they are rubber and plastic. you bang them into oysters, sandbars, weed beds and stumps and the like and they are going to wear out, bend and tear. fins are like 20 bucks. about the same price as a fan belt.
if you take care, and dont hit stuff (i know, impossible to do), but try to be careful, and whenever the rod does poke out, put it back in and dont use it while its poking out, i think the life of that fin is nearly indefinite. i know we had one drive that had somewhere in the 300 hour range, with the tips torn as you have, before we replaced the fins. the only reason we really did, is because we had the drive serviced and i thought i'd just go ahead and do it. i still have those fins for back-up, and wont have any problem using them.

as far as the electronics thru-hull plugs, why are you not just getting them from your local dealer? he has the part numbers and can get them straight away.

cheers.
drew

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 Post subject: Re: Mirage Fin problem?
PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2013 8:27 pm 
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Joined: Sat Oct 09, 2010 7:35 pm
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Location: Savannah Ga
Great Reply Drew....Less typing for me. I usually check my fins regularly and just dab lexel on any nicks or cuts on the Fins. Make sure if your in skinny water and poling or paddeling, lock your fins in the up position to minimize/eliminate damage!

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 Post subject: Re: Mirage Fin problem?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 7:44 am 
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Joined: Mon Apr 26, 2010 6:06 am
Posts: 735
Location: Amelia Island, FL
Simple fix and they are good as new. Loosen the fins and slide them back on the rod. Then take a dab of Marine Goop to cover/repair the hole where they tore out. Then cover with Gorilla Tape. I have fins that tore 2-3 years ago and are still working like new.

Like mentioned above, I cover the lower half and ends of my fins with Gorilla Tape. It works great in protecting the edges of the fins. The tape will get ragged looking at some point (because it is the tape taking the beating not the fins). Simply remove the tape and replace with new.

No need to over-think this repair. It's like a tire. If you get a hole in your tire, you put in a plug, fill it with air and hit the road.


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 Post subject: Re: Mirage Fin problem?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 8:14 am 
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Joined: Thu Jan 31, 2013 2:26 pm
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Islandspeed...

Do you wrap the entire fin with tape or just the front of the fin?


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 Post subject: Re: Mirage Fin problem?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 9:06 am 
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Location: Oceanside, California
One clarification on mast positions in fins.

When pedaling, the masts seat all the way into the fin. When not under load, the fins ride up a bit. The tears are caused by the fin striking the bottom, stretching and pulling off the mast and then finally tearing on the sides if the loads continue.

Newer Turbo fins have tougher materials to take more abuse.

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 Post subject: Re: Mirage Fin problem?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 9:30 am 
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Location: Amelia Island, FL
olddognewtrick wrote:
Islandspeed...

Do you wrap the entire fin with tape or just the front of the fin?

Lower half of front edge and bottom of front edge.


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 Post subject: Re: Mirage Fin problem?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 10:47 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 08, 2010 12:33 pm
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Location: Virginia - Pro Angler 14 owner since Feb 2010
mmiller wrote:
Newer Turbo fins have tougher materials to take more abuse.



This is good to know. Is there a way to tell the fins made with newer material from the older versions? Is there a date stamp or something on the fins?


Thanks!

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 Post subject: Re: Mirage Fin problem?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 1:33 pm 
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mmiller wrote:

Newer Turbo fins have tougher materials to take more abuse.


Thanks for the info. I should get the tougher mats when I order my PA then.

islandspeed2001 wrote:
olddognewtrick wrote:
Islandspeed...

Do you wrap the entire fin with tape or just the front of the fin?

Lower half of front edge and bottom of front edge.


Thanks Islandspeed. This will come in handy in the future I'm sure.


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 Post subject: Re: Mirage Fin problem?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 2:53 pm 
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roadrunnner did a history post back in November about the different iterations of Turbo Fins...

http://www.hobiecat.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=45746

Roadrunner wrote:
To most users, Turbofins are Turbofins -- they all look alike. But without a lot of fan fare, Hobie has been steadily improving this product.

I believe STTurbofins are now in their 5th generation. Here's a rundown:
-- spring 2006 first generation turbos appeared
-- second generation enlarged chain clearance notch for better fit
-- third generation changed black outer material for more durability. Identifiable by a small "T" (tough) near the upper right corner.
Image
-- fourth generation changed gray inner material for improved performance

The newest (fifth) generation again upgrades the outer (black) material for better puncture resistance, improved rip resistance, better cut resistance from fishing line and better shape retention on the trailing edge. I got to "torture" one of the new fins compared with the previous version recently and was thoroughly impressed with the differences. On the water, this new fin handles submerged strikes with greater resistance to punctures and require no patching if somehow you manage to puncture the fin anyway. So far I've had several strikes against submerged stumps and no tears at all.

Trailing edge stretch, while not seriously disruptive to typical fin performance, is unsightly and can cause uneven leg exertion (see picture):
Image
(photo by wndrfl)

It is caused by resting the trailing edge against surfaces for any length of time, particularly warm or hot surfaces. The new fins appear to be remarkably resistant to this stretch. I've had the new fins now for over 2 months and without any special handling or sleeving, they still look like new.

How about performance? Oddly, the new tougher Turbo is more flexible than the former version, allowing it to operate with a little less resistance. That said, you'll be running a slightly higher cadence to cruise at the same speed. The difference is very slight. In terms of efficiency, the net energy expenditure is virtually identical to its predecessor.

Since all Turbos look alike, how can you tell the difference? The current version has a small patent number near the clew adjustment screw as seen here:
Image
None of the earlier versions have this.

If your older turbos are looking and running well, you probably won't notice much difference in this latest version. But if they are looking a bit beat up, patched up or stretched out, take heart that your next set will be a great improvement! 8)

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 Post subject: Re: Mirage Fin problem?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 3:02 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 31, 2013 2:26 pm
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So any newly ordered 2013 PA14 should have fins with the patent number, correct?


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 Post subject: Re: Mirage Fin problem?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 4:33 pm 
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You would think so. I am not 100% certain of when the latest ones hit the production line, but we start building new model year product in June / July. roadrunner wouldn't have seen the change till the fins started hitting the store shelves and had a chance to test them out, so... by extrapolation ... I "think" all 2013's have the latest ones. Don't hold me to it though. :)

Dealers buy stock of new product as early as late August... If the boat is in their stock, higher chance it was earlier production. If they had to get it from us here after you ordered... higher probability that the new fins are on it.

All said... even the iteration before was a lot tougher than the early vintage fins.

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 Post subject: Re: Mirage Fin problem?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 4:58 pm 
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Location: Satellite Beach, Florida
I'm a new 2013 PA 14 owner and I'm looking for some guidance on how to adjust the mirage turbo fins so that they are not too tight or too loose. Is there a way to count the threads showing on the clew shaft or some visual means of telling when you have it right? I'm not experienced enough to tell from just flexing the fins. Thanks.


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 Post subject: Re: Mirage Fin problem?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 5:27 pm 
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roadrunner again... He wrote a piece on fin adjustments too.

Roadrunner wrote:
I look for two gauges for a standard set-up.
1. The back part of the fin should just fit in the clew outhaul slot far enough not to slip out -- about 1/8 inch or so.
2. Look for at least 1/4 inch wind-up space or free travel along the mast.
Image

It doesn't hurt to dab a little Locktite on your clew adjustment if you find it turns easily. It really won't be hard to break free later if you want to change it.8)

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