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 Post subject: Twist Shackle
PostPosted: Mon Apr 01, 2013 10:16 am 
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Joined: Mon Apr 01, 2013 10:04 am
Posts: 3
I bought a hobie 18 a year ago and I'm starting my second summer of sailing it.

So far I've only been able to get the twist tackle to engage the latching mechanism at the top of the mast a couple of times. I've tried a few different knots to make more room for getting the ring to hook but really I've only been successful a couple times.

I read something about a half wire/ half rope halyard, mine is all rope and I'd prefer to keep it that way and not buy any extra parts if possible.

Could someone provide a picture of their twist tackle, how its attached to the halyard line and give an tips for a more succesful rate of getting this to work?

Thanks for anything! Jeff


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 Post subject: Re: Twist Shackle
PostPosted: Mon Apr 01, 2013 11:14 am 
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Joined: Tue May 27, 2003 12:44 pm
Posts: 9013
Location: Oceanside, California
Read the Sail Hoist FAQ. It's mostly about technique.

http://www.hobiecat.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=18&t=371

mmiller wrote:
Raising the mainsail of a Hobie can be more difficult than need be.

Several factors can cause the mainsail to be difficult to hoist:


Dirty luff ropes and luff tracks. These can be cleaned with soapy water and a scrub brush. If you want to use a lubricant, keep away from oils and waxes that can attract dirt. Use a dry silicone spray. Most all Hobie sails now have a Teflon threaded bolt (luff) rope to ease the hoisting effort.

Battens and sail shape. The battens stiffen the airfoil shape of your sail. Over tensioning of the battens can cause a couple of problems. Luff protector caps can be forced against the mast and cause drag when hoisting. The battens also force the sail shape into a curve. The luff curve (seen when laying the sail out on the ground, as a large arch) is typical to Hobie Cat main sails. The sails "airfoil" shape is mostly created by the miss-matched mast bend and luff curve of the sail. The luff curve is more than the likely mast bend and when the mast is straight (while hoisting) the difference is dramatic. This luff curve going up the straight mast can cause significant drag and hoisting problems when done incorrectly.

Outhaul. Be sure the outhaul is fully released before hoisting.

Hoist Technique:

Keep the batten tension to a minimum. Hoist the sail slowly, while feeding into the mast opening. When the sail gets about 3/4's of the way up, begin aggressively feeding at the bottom opening and reduce the amount of halyard effort. If the halyard is pulled tight when the sail is not being fed into and up the track, you will have problems. The sail luff will pull taunt and the curve shape will bind in the (straight) mast track. Lower the sail slightly and begin feeding again.

The best way to feed the sail is to stand in front of the mast and reach around either side to "sandwich" the sail between two hands (above the feeder opening) and push the sail up the track. Pull with the halyard, only the slack created, then feed again. If the sail binds, lower slightly and begin feeding again. This technique can be done by one person, but is certainly easier with two working together. It is VERY important that the person on the halyard only pulls the slack up the mast and does not get ahead of the feeder.


Locking the Hobie 17/18/20/21 Halyard:

It is best to simulate the halyard locking with the mast down so you clearly understand the system.

Then, depending on how old the boat is, be sure the hook does not have the old "flopper" stainless piece hanging on the hook. This old device caused difficulty in raising and hooking but would make it easier to release and lower.

Also, be sure that the knot tied to the ring is very low profile. A long bowline knot will hit the mast head before the ring gets to the hook.

If the ring has a small loop at the top... The line should be passed through the loop and a small knot tied. The knot (when ring and shackle are affixed to the sail) should be facing the mast. This tilts the ring closer to the mast.

Image

Then (before attaching halyard shackle to the sail) spin the halyard 3 or 4 times clockwise (looking down on the shackle). This "pre-loads" the halyard line and causes the ring to swing back towards the hook. Keep the boat into the wind and hoist. Should lock easily.

To release... fully release the downhaul and outhaul. Partially feed the sail up the luff track. Hoist with the halyard to the top till it stops, hold... rotate the aft of the mast base to starboard, hold the mast rotated, ease the halyard a few feet before releasing the mast. Lower the sail.

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Matt Miller
Director of Parts and Accessory Sales
Hobie Cat USA


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 Post subject: Re: Twist Shackle
PostPosted: Mon Apr 01, 2013 11:58 am 
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Joined: Mon Apr 01, 2013 10:04 am
Posts: 3
Awesome, thank you!

All of this makes sense.

One more question; the twist shakle ring is unevenly divided into two parts by a thin rod, which side of the ring should the main halyard be knotted to? The small part of the ring or the large part?

Thanks again. Jeff


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 Post subject: Re: Twist Shackle
PostPosted: Mon Apr 01, 2013 12:13 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 09, 2005 10:25 am
Posts: 2566
Location: Jersey Shore
The partial wire halyard only applies to the H14 & H16. The H18 uses a full-length rope halyard. 3/16" diameter line is best. The older boats came stock with a larger diameter halyard that did not run through the sheaves as easily.

Get one of the halyard rings that has the small hoop welded to the top for tieing off the halyard. Tie off the halyard using a basic overhand knot or a figure 8 knot to maximize the amount of travel of the ring above the hook.

Make absolutely sure the boat is pointing directly into the wind. This is critical. If you're off by even a few degrees, it can make latching and un-latching the sail extremely difficult.

Know which way you need to rotate the mast in order to latch or un-latch the ring. This is easiest with two people, one to work the halyard, the other to work the mast rotator and feed the sail up the track.

If you have the old style hook with the flapper/flopper, drill out the rivet and remove the flapper. It just adds complication to the process.

sm


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 Post subject: Re: Twist Shackle
PostPosted: Mon Apr 01, 2013 4:42 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 27, 2003 12:44 pm
Posts: 9013
Location: Oceanside, California
That was not a Hobie halyard ring, so not sure of the intended tie off point. Be sure the line exits the ring as shown in the diagram so the ring is forced towards the mast... The key is then the part about spinning the halyard line a number of times to pre-load, so it twists back towards the hook.

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Matt Miller
Director of Parts and Accessory Sales
Hobie Cat USA


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 Post subject: Re: Twist Shackle
PostPosted: Tue Apr 02, 2013 7:42 am 
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Joined: Mon Apr 01, 2013 10:04 am
Posts: 3
Thank you!


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 Post subject: Re: Twist Shackle
PostPosted: Thu Apr 04, 2013 1:42 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jun 21, 2009 7:32 am
Posts: 291
Use a simple stop knot to hold a single half hitch. Before attaching the twist shackle to the sail, let the halyard hang to make sure there are no twists that make it spin. Once it hangs free, shouldn't take but a few seconds, put two or three twists in the halyard so that the ring wants to go towards the side of the mast that the hook is on. Make sure that the stopper knot goes on the side of the mast without the hook. This leaves the line on the hook side completely fair, with nothing to snag.

Since your boat has the twist shackle, it probably also has a sail feeder. The opening in the sail feeder needs to be tight enough so that you can barely, but not too hard, start the sail in it. You can squeeze the jaws closer with a pair of pliers, but don't use a screwdriver to spread them apart, since it might leave little burrs. I had a Maple wedge for spreading. All edges need to be smooth, and screws holding the feeder to the mast have to have no burrs from someone overtorqueing the screws-that's what has cut bolt ropes. If the screws have meathooks-used to come from the factory like this-replace the screws using a good screwdriver, and don't screw up the heads.

With these things done, you can start the sail in the track, grab the halyard and walk back behind the boat with it until the ring pushes the flapper out of the way-probably also have the flapper-enough to let the ring find the seat. The flapper is a good thing to have, otherwise you have to be at the mast to rotate it to lower the sail.

To lower the main, just pull the halyard a little bit so the ring goes above the flapper, which lets it come down.

It's a shame people forgot how to use this system. It's the best I've ever seen on any cat. Like anything on a sailboat, you have to learn how to set it up, and how to operate it.

I like it because there's no fussing with having to hand feed the sail up, or twisting the mast to get it to release. It also makes it easy to play with batten tension on the water, since you can do it so easily from the tramp. Also, you never have to use any lubricant on the sail.

I keep a tugcleat on the end of the halyard on my 21, so if my hands are wet and I want to play with batten tension when I'm out, the small line doesn't harm the skin on my hands. I rarely wear gloves. Also the tug cleat makes a nice handle to grab for walking out behind the boat to pull the main up on the beach. I usually don't even bother to unroll the sail if the battens don't need any extra tension.


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