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 Post subject: New Fins! Turbo Jr?
PostPosted: Sun Feb 25, 2007 12:07 am 
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Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2005 10:46 pm
Posts: 2379
Location: Escondido
Hobie finally came out with some new fins! They look like Turbofins, but are the same length as standard fins. I just picked up a set and am definitely impressed!

Here's a picture showing the ST Turbo, the ST and the standard fin
Image

First impressions: In terms of pedaling ease, they feel very similar to the standard fins. They are noticeably easier to operate than the Turbos, but they have more "bite" than the standards. They don't feel harder to push, but you get more out of them. This is especially true in the higher speeds -- when the standard fins feel like mush, the ST's are still driving.

My wife, who likes to join me occasionally on the tandem, has always preferred standard fins over the Turbos. When she tried the new ST's, she found a new favorite. That's a strong endorsement!

Actual performance: As one who always likes to go fast, I have a little speed course that I use for comparisons. Here's how the ST's stack up against the standards and Turbos using the Hobie Adventure (average speed using time and distance):

Slow cruise (40 cycles per minute):
Standard fins 3.0 MPH
ST fins 3.4 MPH
ST Turbo fins 4.5 MPH

Fast cruise (60 cycles per minute):
Standard fins 4.4 MPH
ST fins 5.0 MPH
ST Turbo fins 5.7 MPH

Sprint speed (average, using GPS):
Standard fins 6.5 MPH
ST fins 7.3 MPH
ST Turbo fins 7.5 MPH

As you can see, when the speed increases the ST's start leaving the standard fins behind and begin closing the gap with the Turbos. I was really surprised and impressed at how good they got at the higher speeds!

If possible, it feels like these fins are providing gain without pain here. I'm guessing 1) the design shape is better, especially near the tip where most thrust is made; and 2) the materials provide better airfoil control, helping keep their composure at higher speeds.

If there is a downside, it would be that the ST's are not as rugged as the Standard fins; they are made of the same shape and material as the Turbos. On the other hand, they shouldn't get banged up as easily as the Turbos since they are 2 inches shorter!

Installation is a piece of cake. These fins slip on the standard masts; just un-pin the old fins, slide them off the masts, slip the new fins on and re-pin. The next picture shows the change over on one of our older drives:
Image

As I recall, the Turbos cost about $80. These ST's were only $46 (PN 81193001). Easy to install and a bargain price to boot!

Personally, I still like the Turbos better. But unlike the standard fins, I wouldn't mind using these at all -- they are a hot performer for their size. They would be ideal for anyone who feels the Turbofins are a bit too much, but aren't entirely happy with the standard fins. In fact, Hobie should consider making these the new standard fins! 8)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Feb 25, 2007 8:53 am 
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Joined: Fri Nov 19, 2004 6:56 am
Posts: 822
Location: Tallahassee, FL
Wow RR,
Great post complete with some real world data! Ya gotta love it. :!: I have been holding off on the Turbos for my (wife's) Sport and my OB since we have so many oyster reefs around here that I frequently get swept up on them by a strong tidal current or bang up the tips of the standard fins on them at low tide. But I have to admit that it would be nice to have a little more upside potential in the speed department, and the STs should be perfect for what I want to do. I'm still using my "old school" OB Mirage Drive with the SS masts and Cotter pin assembly, so obviously it won't be a problem to do the ole switcheroo. Thanks again!
Dick

P.S. Here's a pic of my nemesis (one of many on the Forgotten Coast!) that is completely invisible at high tide, but all too visible as I get swept up on it at a moderate running tide!

Image

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Feb 25, 2007 10:07 am 
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Joined: Sun Oct 22, 2006 7:23 pm
Posts: 34
Brilliant! Thanks for your great review, trial data and excellent photos. Simplicity of installation too. Wow, I'm completely sold.

I wonder if the new ST fins might work a little better than the Standard fins as a daggerboard when sailing (a bit wider profile at the bottom).


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 Post subject: ST Fins
PostPosted: Sun Feb 25, 2007 2:54 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 27, 2003 12:44 pm
Posts: 8824
Location: Oceanside, California
Thanks for the review roadrunner!

Replacement for the standards? Maybe not just yet. We still have a more durable fin in the standard one and they are easier to pedal.

Now we have 3 speeds...

Low gear (Standard fins)

Medium gear (New ST fins)

High gear (ST Turbo fins)

These are sold as singles, so if you want a pair... order two.

2 each PN 81193001 = $46

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Director of Parts and Accessory Sales
Hobie Cat USA


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 Post subject: Re: ST Fins
PostPosted: Sun Feb 25, 2007 10:53 pm 
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Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2005 5:21 pm
Posts: 335
mmiller wrote:
Now we have 3 speeds...
It would be real nice to be able to change gears without the need for tools. That would be a real selling point for the mirage kayaks. :idea:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Feb 26, 2007 2:22 pm 
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Joined: Wed Nov 08, 2006 3:16 pm
Posts: 6
Location: Jacksonville, Fla
Thanks for the report. Does anyone know of a dealer that has them in stock so I can order?

Thanks


Last edited by Pacifico on Mon Feb 26, 2007 3:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Feb 26, 2007 4:18 pm 
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Hobie Team Member

Joined: Wed Dec 07, 2005 11:04 pm
Posts: 615
Location: Hawaii, Big Island
Glad to see Hobie improving the drive product.

As Roadrunner tests indicate the slow speed cruise diferential for the tubos is, IMHO a real strong point for having them.

Also for having the next fin upgrade improve the turbos performance, rather than the standard (don't get me wrong-I think the announced product sounds great)

Can the turbos be made with a wide taper?

Slightly longer? whatever would kickup performance.

You would need something to bump the slow cruise speed a half MPH at least That would give me 3-4 extra miles I can cover on a typical day. I'll buy new fins for that benefit.

Long distance travelling and trolling is where Hobie can make some real inroads into the narrow fast boat market.

The turbos, (and an improved version ) are really great for getting out of rough weather also. Click on this image to see what I mean.

Image


I don't think leg conditioning would be an issue either at lower cruise speed. Hasn't been so far for me, and I'm probably one of the oldest ones in this bunch.

aloha

Dan

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Feb 26, 2007 5:37 pm 
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Authorized Hobie Dealer

Joined: Mon Jun 02, 2003 7:35 pm
Posts: 1370
Location: 315 N. Hwy 79 Panama City Beach, FL 32413 850-235-2281
Matt, any word on when we can start filling our orders for them?

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 Post subject: Available now!
PostPosted: Tue Feb 27, 2007 10:07 am 
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Joined: Tue May 27, 2003 12:44 pm
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Location: Oceanside, California
Available now!

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Director of Parts and Accessory Sales
Hobie Cat USA


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 Post subject: Bulletin to dealers
PostPosted: Tue Feb 27, 2007 11:37 am 
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Joined: Tue May 27, 2003 12:44 pm
Posts: 8824
Location: Oceanside, California
This information was given to dealers:

Image

Now three speeds for the MirageDrive! Choose standard, ST or ST Turbo. The new ST Fin fills the gap between standard fin and ST Turbo fin performance. This new fin uses the standard mast length making it a simpler upgrade than the ST Turbo fins. These are only sold as "singles". Simply order two of part #81193001.

The new ST Fin offers a mid range of performance and resistance. Many people enjoy the ease of pedaling the standard fins, but others wanted more power! The ST Turbo fin kit (# 72065) gave us a "High gear"... now the ST Fin is giving us a medium gear.

Field tests show that the ST Fin has superior performance over the standard fin yet is easier to pedal than the ST Turbo. Choose the fin that is right for you... easy, medium or fast!

#81193001 Mirage ST Fin $22.95 Retail (each)

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Director of Parts and Accessory Sales
Hobie Cat USA


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2007 3:27 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jul 30, 2006 2:07 am
Posts: 4
Location: Flour Bluff, Tx.
Just got my second gear today. Going to have to wait for the winds to die down before I can try them out. :D


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 Post subject: Re: New Fins! Turbo Jr?
PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2012 9:42 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 31, 2012 9:34 pm
Posts: 1
Any thoughts on using the ST's at altitude? We now have two Mirage Tandems up at 6300 foot level (Lake Tahoe, CA) and are considering the increased performance of the ST's. But humans lose horsepower at altitude just like boat engines do.

At 6000 feet an engine is down 30% on horsepower. Boats are usually high altitude propped to compensate: down pitch and diameter. Wondering if the ST's will tire-out the legs in this oxygen compromised environment?


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 Post subject: Re: New Fins! Turbo Jr?
PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 10:09 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2005 10:46 pm
Posts: 2379
Location: Escondido
Properly adjusted ST fins aren't much (if any) more difficult to push than standard fins; they are more efficient though, especially at higher speeds.

Fortunately our bodies are more altitude-adaptable than our engines. I wouldn't be surprised if an acclimatized person could handle Turbos quite well at altitude. Remember, Turbos aren't harder to push than STs at any given boat speed, just harder tp push at the same cadence. In other words, Turbos will give the same speed result at a slower stroke rate than with STs. 8)


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