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PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 1:00 pm 
Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Mon Nov 04, 2019 10:59 am
Posts: 19
Updating My ’77 Hobie 14

I wrote this piece documenting the updating of my Cat with the thought that Forum members might find it interesting reading while they wait to get their boats in the water. I’ve broken it down into specific steps detailing changes I’ve made, and will add these to this topic in the coming weeks. In each case, I’ve included a list of the problems I’ve found with the boat, how I’ve addressed each challenge, and the parts I’ve incorporated for the repairs or changes.

I’ve sourced parts from West Coast Sailing, my go-to Hobie dealer, as well as Murrays Sports and The Chandlery Online for rigging and blocks.

Finally, a shout out to Hobie for supporting these legacy boats – try getting OEM parts for your 43 year-old Chevy. Of course, parts sales are a major part of their business model, but product support as exemplified by Matt Miller and his team deserve recognition. Also, thanks to many others – Matt Bounds, Bob Curry and the other contributors to this Forum who consistently help others by sharing their knowledge and experience with forum readers.

Part 1

Back in 1977 when I decided to buy a Hobie Cat, I chose the H14 over the H16 because I could crew it, and more importantly, right it, by myself. I think I made a good decision, because I sailed on many days when the guy down the beach with an H16 watched from shore, without a crew.

My boat was delivered to our lake by the dealer, and has spent its entire life there. I sailed the heck out of it for the first few summers, but I think my experience is similar to many others', in that my sailing activity, very intense at first, waned over the next fifteen years, to the point that I didn't bother to take it out of the boathouse for the last twenty five years. Part of that had to do with the fact that my weight increased from 160 pounds in the seventies, to 195 in the nineties, so the boat performance necessarily dropped off.

Last summer, my interest rekindled, I decided to put my Cat back in the water. We had to remove a 6" diameter spruce tree that had grown up in order to get the boat out of the boathouse, though.

I managed to find all the parts and got it ready to sail, but I don't remember ever having as much trouble stepping the mast as we had last summer. (The lug on the mast base wasn’t drilled for the mast step kit, but I later drilled it with the mast in place and ordered the kit – what a difference that made when it came time to take the boat apart!)

I had a ball with it, and with access to so much information available on the internet, including the old Hobie Hotline issues, I learned much more than I ever knew back in the day about my boat. For one thing, I was unaware of the existence of the H14 Turbo, and additionally, the modifications and improvements that were incorporated into later production boats. Even as is, with my having lost about 20 pounds, it performed far better than I remembered. Still, having a jib couldn't help but improve that.

My Cat had all the 'old' features - non-adjustable rudder castings and tiller bar, 3/32" rigging with 3/16" pins, all-aluminum mast, 4:1 mainsheet system, a downhaul consisting of just a line and a cleat, five-batten sail, no dolphin striker - I think you get the picture. Given the very low resale value of even later, Turbo models, I decided to look for a Turbo, but I couldn't find a suitable candidate within a thousand miles - most were converted models of similar vintage to mine, some even without a dolphin striker, and all of them looked beat.

So, given the choice of buying 'a pig in a poke' - a boat that has spent its entire existence exposed to the elements, possibly salt-water usage, with soft decks, corrosion problems and worn out parts, or updating my boat, which was exposed to summer sun and heat for only two months a year for fifteen years, and stored indoors for the balance, and used strictly in fresh-water, I've chosen to incorporate as many updates as possible in my '77. The guiding principles - use new parts only, "it's only money and the banks are full of it", and "you can't take it with you when you go", LOL. All joking aside, that doesn't imply reckless spending - I value a good deal as much as the next person! But, with a view to the future, it seems to make good sense to purchase good quality parts that have decent resale value when that day comes. I think that most would agree that these boats, parted out, are far more valuable than if sold complete.

Since formulating my modification plan, I’ve been accumulating the necessary parts. When I took the boat apart for winter storage, I took some of the smaller components to my shop to work on during the off season – the entire rudder system, the boom and sail. Unfortunately, with the boat now snowed-in at the lake, modifications to the mast, the front crossbar and the sidebars will have to wait for spring.

One thing I’m doing for sure. Back in the day, I dumped my ‘Cat plenty of times, and every time I did, it turtled. Our lake is pretty deep, but on one occasion, I managed to get the mast stuck in the mud. I won’t do that again – I’ve obtained a ‘Baby Bob’ mast float which I’ll install in the Spring.

PostPosted: Mon Jun 01, 2020 8:45 am 
Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Mon Nov 04, 2019 10:59 am
Posts: 19
This is the second instalment detailing the updates to my ’77 H14. My thinking is that this information might be useful for others facing similar issues with their own boat. I believe the part numbers listed are correct, but if you are ordering, please verify!

Part 2


The first order of business last summer was work on the rudder system. The rudders vibrated excessively at speed - back in the day we took that as a good sign, meaning you were really moving. Of course, what it really meant was unnecessary induced drag. I never got the memo from Hobie about removing the trailing edge 'bulb' on the ABS rudders, but it was mentioned in a Hotline issue I read last summer, so I removed the rudders and dressed the trailing edges and shimmed the rudders on re-installation. That eliminated most of the buzz. I noted appreciable wear to the tiller and tiller bar end caps, so ear-marked them for replacement. That provided the opportunity to incorporate the rudder adjustment kit on the tiller bar, so I'll be able to adjust rudder toe-in. (I attribute much of the wear to the original rudder hinge connection arrangement, comprised of a clevis pin, two hard rubber hemispheres, a spring, washer and a ring. I had updated, early on, to the bolt, nylon hemispheres and spacer, spring and nut of the second-generation connection, but the damage was already done.)

I also noted some play in the upper rudder casting-tiller tube joint, so I replaced those rivets as well. Even with extra care it is hard to remove those nasty stainless rivet shells without enlarging the holes, but there was evidence that the rivets were working in the holes as well, given the black aluminum oxide in the holes. With the rivets removed, the tube to casting fit was quite loose, so I filled the gap with structural adhesive before re-riveting. To keep the original rivet locations, I trimmed the bottom portion from rivet caps, usually used to seal rivets for water tightness, to the required length and drilled the holes out to #4 to receive them. (There isn’t enough room in the tube to accommodate the entire length of the rivet cap.) I know, kind of OCD, right? But the resulting sleeve restores the original holes and avoids drilling new holes and plugging the existing ones.

I've also ordered the newer tiller connection kit and hiking stick yoke connector kits, and the rudder cam kit, and I installed a soft grip on the tiller extension.

My boat had the nylon rudder pins. They showed only limited wear in one area, so last summer I drilled the bottom of the pins and installed them upside down. (I never considered the possibility of the pins dropping out and losing the rudder system when turtled, but I used a safety pin in the bottom holes after reading a Hotline issue!)

I ordered a pair of fiberglass pins, which turned out to be a disappointment. While my old pins measured a full 0.375" diameter except in the noted wear areas, the new fiberglass pins miked out at only 0.370". Built-in wear! Even so, most of the wear is in the castings and the gudgeons rather than in the softer pin material (which seems counter-intuitive), so there was work to do on them.

I mounted the gudgeons in line on a scrap piece of ¼” aluminum angle, one pair at a time, and filled the oversize holes with Smooth-On A4 epoxy adhesive, then line-drilled them with a Letter U drill to accommodate the new but undersize fiberglass pins.

To accommodate the planned increased mast rake, rudder rake must be adjusted as well. I've reamed the holes in the rudder blades oversize to get rid of the glazed hole surface, and filled them with the same epoxy adhesive (it’s similar in properties to JB Weld) and the holes will be re-drilled to achieve more rake using the rudder drill template available on-line as a pdf for the new hole locations.

Parts required:

    1 60400011 Rudder Adjustment Kit
    3 10400010 Tiller End Cap
    1 3052 Tiller Connection Kit (Pair)
    1 3205 Hiking Stick Yoke Connection
    1 3206 Hiking Stick Soft Grip - Std Tiller
    1 5202 Rudder Cam Kit
    1 5051 Fiberglass Rudder Pins - Pair
    1 136 Rudder Stiffening Kit
    AR* 8010131 Rivet Pop 3/16 x 3/8 PH-SS
    2 8011231 Rivet Pop 3/16 x 1/2 PH-SS
    6 8011291 Rivet Cap 3/16" x 1/2"
    AR - As Required

I could have opted for the later-style rudder connection, at about double the price, but since my boat isn't trailered and I don’t need the convenience of quick disassembly, I just can't justify the cost, plus, with a boat stored on the beach, ease of disassembly isn’t always a good thing!

The rudder cams weren't badly worn, but new cams installed with the 'sister screws' mean I can change them right on the boat if necessary, using the old cams in a pinch. I did learn the lesson about cleaning and lubricating the spring/plunger assembly which controls rudder kick-up. I had never thought about doing so until last summer when the rudders refused to kick up – Lubriplate 630A cured that!



My sail is the original five batten type. Given its reasonably limited use over the years, it is still in really good shape, and I can’t justify the cost of a new, six batten sail at this time. I had repaired an early batten poke-through in the top batten pocket with sail tape, but I'll effect a permanent repair before summer. That will involve removal of the existing batten pocket protector, so I ordered a new one that is attached with screws.

Back when the boat was new, I had taped the battens with 3M masking tape to protect the sail from the exposed fiberglass fibers in the tapered sections, but the tape had shrivelled and wrinkled over the years to the point that it was probably causing more damage than if it was not there. I scraped off the tape and residue, and used superglue to repair a couple of small cracks in the luff-end webs. I cut sail repair tape into 3 equal width strips, and taped the battens with that. The original luff caps were toast, so I ordered a Trentec luff cap kit. I had installed the Trentec leach caps years ago.

Parts required:

    1 1561 Trentec H14 Luff Cap Kit
    1 1662 Sail Repair Tape
    1 80550005 Hobie Mainsail Batten Protector Kit

PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2020 5:30 am 
Site Rank - Old Salt

Joined: Mon May 24, 2004 10:33 am
Posts: 609
Location: Clinton, Mississippi
Excellent write-up! My daughter and I have been partners in a H14T for several years. Our experience with turtling mirrors yours, so we proudly sport a Baby Bob as well. Before that, though, we discovered that the mast plugs had failed and the mast was full of water and mud, so I'd recommend you check that and empty/clean/reseal as necessary. I had heard that fiberglass pins were good for launching in surf, so I tried them once on my H16 sailing in the Gulf of Mexico. Maybe they were just old, but one failed.....made it real hard to jibe having to pass the entire rudder assembly behind the mainsheet!....never again (I use aluminum). Speaking of pins, the stock ones are a little too long for the H14....they interfere with drain plug install/removal which I do every time I sail to allow the hulls to breathe. My solution is to redrill the bottom keeper pin hole just below the lower gudgeon and cut them off just below that hole.

Jerome Vaughan
Hobie 16

PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2020 9:46 am 
Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Mon Nov 04, 2019 10:59 am
Posts: 19
Thanks, rattle 'n hum, for your kind comment.

There are some rocky outcrops in our lake, waiting to snag the unsuspecting boater, so I prefer a frangible pin rather than risking ripping out the transom. Our lake is not that large, so limping home with a disabled rudder system in the event of a broken pin, while it would be a p.i.t.a., trumps hull structural damage in my case.

I ordered the new Hobie 5051 fiberglass pins because I was worried about the age and integrity of the old nylon pins, and as I said in my last post, was disappointed that they measured only .370” dia., .005” undersize. So, when I filled and drilled the gudgeons, I used a Letter U (.368”) and sanded the pins to achieve a satisfactory fit.

I have never experienced water in the mast, but when I asked the dealer why my boat turtled every time, he said it was the nature of the beast – just not enough buoyancy in the mast to prevent it. Righting it used to be a struggle, so I was easily sold on the mast float solution. Just to be safe, though, I’ll apply a bead of silicon to joints and rivet heads. Thanks for the heads-up!

Stay safe!


PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2020 10:16 am 
Site Rank - Admiral

Joined: Mon May 24, 2004 8:07 am
Posts: 163
Location: Virginia
Awesome writeup. Thank you! Would love to see some pics as well!

2001 H16E (European Boat) Sail #108348 Cabo
1991 H14T
2006 Bravo (sold)

PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2020 10:48 am 
Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Mon Nov 04, 2019 10:59 am
Posts: 19
Thanks for your positive comment, drej. I had hoped this series might be of interest to readers, so it’s great to have positive feedback. I haven’t taken any photos so far, but I’ll take some and post them when I’m done.

Take care,


PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2020 10:58 am 
Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Mon Nov 04, 2019 10:59 am
Posts: 19
This is the third instalment detailing the updates to my ’77 H14. My thinking is that this information might be useful for others facing similar issues with their own boat. I believe the part numbers listed are correct, but if you are ordering, please verify!
Part 3


Early boats, such as mine, were rigged so that the mast essentially had zero rake. In fact, with the forestay pinned at the top hole of the 7-hole adjuster, my shrouds were still a couple of holes shy of the bottom adjustment. I realize now that a quick and dirty fix would have been to use a 10-hole forestay adjuster, stock on newer boats, to get more rake.

Since I planned on equipping the boat with a trapeze and a jib, a change from 3/32" to 1/8" wires was necessary (along with a dolphin striker, of course). I'm sure it's overkill, but I decided to change the shroud adjusters and pins to 1/4" from the original 3/16. I even thought about drilling out the 7-hole adjusters to ¼”, but reaming out 15 individual holes in two stainless steel parts is just too much work.

Also, since my boat will be sitting on the beach all summer, I want to rig it as a 'Mini 16' so the jib can be removed after use, and incorporate a forestay tensioner (consisting of two 7 hole adjusters and 1/4" shock cord) to take up the slack when the jib is up.

I have access through work to a Nicopress tool that will swage 1/16 - 5/32” sleeves (it is operated like a large bolt cutter) along with a pair of cable cutters suitable for stainless cable. I've cut down the existing 3/32” stays for the trap wires, and obtained 1/8" black-coated 1 x 19 stainless wire for the rest from Murrays, along with white wire covers for the trap wires. I ordered more of the 1/8" cable than I calculated I’d need, just in case. Cable is easily shortened – lengthening it, not.

Getting the wire lengths correct was the first priority. I inserted 1/4" pins in a sixteen foot 2x4 at the required locations. I found that working with 1 X 19 wire was much harder than the 7 x 19 aircraft cable we usually deal with, and it took a bit of experimentation to get the desired result, but in the end all wires ended up within 1/32" of the required length. I swaged only one end on the forestay, and will complete the other end on the boat.

Rather than including a jib halyard block in the forestay assembly per the original H16 setup, I'm using a one-piece forestay from the mast tang shackle to the bridle shackle, and made up a six inch long pigtail for the jib halyard block, which I swaged into the pigtail on assembly. I used a Harken 083 29mm single block with becket for the pigtail, with a Harken 082 29mm single block to be shackled to the jib luff wire, which gives me a "mini Aussie 16" jib halyard arrangement - not the same purchase, but not the same size jib, either. The two blocks are listed separately, with the jib halyard parts.

I used the following lengths for the wires (per the Hobie Cat Wire Guide, except for the pigtail and forestay):

[list=]Shrouds 15’ 3¼”
Bridles 3’ 10”
Pigtail 6”
Forestay TBD on assembly
Trap Wires 13” 5”
For me, there was some confusion regarding the H14/H16 parts list. The diagram shows twist toggles in the shroud/adjuster assemblies, so I ordered them, only to realize that they probably weren't part of the H14 shroud. This was cleared up for me by forum members who responded, with my thanks, to this topic: ... fe4eb77ac6

Parts required:

[list=]65' 02-0041b 1x19 Stainless Steel Cable - 1/8” Black Coated
2 01-0120 Rope Lock (61530000)
5 53-1004 Wire Cover - 1/8 White - 6'length (3252W)

2 2001 Dog Bone
2 2011 Trapeze Handle
2 3103 Removable Sheave Trap Rig Block
2 8063271 3/32 Stop Sleeve
4 8063761 3/32 Sleeve 28-2G
1 20730001 Trapeze Shock Cord

1 20700001 Shackle 5/16” - Mast Tang
12 20800000 1/8 Thimble
24 8063501 1/8 Sleeve - 28-3M
2 8020371 Clevis Pin - 1/4 X .469
6 8020381 Clevis Pin - 1/4 X .578
8 20860000 Ring
4 20830010 7 Hole Stay Adjuster
2 3261b Shroud Adjuster Cover - Black

2 20210000 Twist Toggle
As it turned out, I didn’t need the 20210000 twist toggles.

Parts I ordered from Murrays are identified by their in-house part numbers, with the Hobie equivalent in brackets.

Choice of supplier was based more on availability at the time than on price.

As mentioned above, I used the original 3/32” stays for the trap wires, cutting them to length and remaking each upper end with two Nicopress sleeves after installing the stop sleeve and handle. I retained the existing thimble and sleeve at the bottom end. I ordered the wire covers for the trap wires. These are only available in white. Although the wires are 3/32” and the covers are for 1/8”, the fit was not an issue – just easier to install.


PostPosted: Thu Jun 04, 2020 8:41 am 
Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Mon Nov 04, 2019 10:59 am
Posts: 19
This is the fourth instalment detailing the updates to my ’77 H14, which will ultimately result in a modified (“Mini 16”) Turbo configuration. My thinking is that this information might be useful for others facing similar issues with their own boat. I believe the part numbers listed are correct, but as I said before, if you are ordering, please verify!
Part 4

Mast and Boom

The mast on my boat is the original, all-aluminum type. There are no overhead electrical wires anywhere near the water on our lake, where my boat has spent its entire life, so installing a comp tip really would serve no purpose. I read about the controversy back in the day regarding the forced change for those who raced these boats, but the increased safety factor for those who launch or sail their boats near overhead wires certainly trump those concerns.

Mainsheet System

My boat came with the original 4:1 mainsheet arrangement, which I found less than optimal last summer – I guess I’m just not as tough as I was 25 years ago – so a 6:1 system seemed mandatory. I chose what is now the H16 standard – a Harken 57mm low-profile lower triple, and a 40mm Harken Carbo upper triple. I thought about less-expensive alternatives, but in the end decided that future re-sale value was an important consideration, when that time comes.

Parts required:

    1 H194 Harken 57mm Triple Block W/ Cam
    1 2640 Harken 40mm Carbo Triple Block W/ Swivel
    46’ 5/16” Spun Dacron Line
    1 18-3m075 Quick-Release Pin Deluxe 3/16 x 3/4
    1 18-4m075 Quick-Release Pin Deluxe 1/4 X 3/4

I obtained the H194 block from Strictly Sail, a Hobie dealer – these blocks are custom-made for Hobie. A new-old-stock 2640 block was sourced on-line. Most of the remaining Harken parts were ordered from The Chandlery Online, a Harken dealer in Ottawa, Canada. They ship to the U.S.

You might note that Harken part numbers I’ve listed here lack the prefix “H” used by Hobie in their numbering system, so a Harken 2640 block would carry the part number H2640 if ordered from your favorite Hobie dealer.

I wanted the option of quickly removing the mainsheet blocks from the boat and the boom, so I ordered quick-release pins for both. The H194 triple block shackle is retained with a ¼” dia. pin, and it’s possible to dispense with the shackle and pin the block directly to the traveler plate. To allow for that, I’ll drill the existing traveler deck plate to ¼” for the ¼” lower block quick-release pin.

These quick-release pins, from Murrays Sports, came with a 1/16” 7x7 stainless lanyard attached, plus a Nicopress sleeve to complete the installation– I fabricated .020” thick stainless steel tabs to secure the lanyards to the traveler plate (using one of the traveler plate screws) and to the boom (using a rivet), so no loose parts to drop in the lake when rigging the boat.

Downhaul and Outhaul

For the downhaul, the boat came with a piece of line and a cleat installed in the lower part of the luff track, and the outhaul consisted of the outhaul line and a V-jam cleat.

I upgraded the outhaul to a 3:1 purchase last summer, using a single block and a single block with becket.

The 6:1 downhaul seems to be a worthwhile improvement according to opinions expressed on-line, so I’ve acquired all the parts for that installation.

My original intent was to purchase the Hobie 14 Powerpack (2090) which includes the 6:1 downhaul, the 2:1 outhaul, and the mast rotation control kits. Having a 3:1 outhaul already, I decided to source the remainder of the parts separately.

Parts required:


    1 224 Harken 22mm Micro Single Block
    1 225 Harken 22mm Micro Single Block With Becket
    1 072 Harken 3/16” Small Shackle
    AR 3/16" Low Stretch Line

    1 347 Harken 29mm Carbo Triple Block W/ Cam & Becket
    1 344 Harken 29mm Carbo Triple Block W/ Swivel
    1 11870000 Traveller Deck Plate (lower block attachment)
    2 8030281 Screw - 10-32 X 3/4 RHMS-P SS
    2 8051301 **Nut - 10-32 Square SS
    1 18-3m075 Quick-Release Pin Deluxe 3/16 X 3/4
    AR ¼” Spun Dacron Line

As is the case for the mainsheet blocks, for the downhaul system, a quick release pin will be used at the plate that attaches the lower block to the boom, allowing me to quickly remove the expensive downhaul system with the boom and sail, as was the case for the boom blocks, I fabricated a .020” thick stainless steel tab to secure the quick-release pin lanyard to the traveler plate. The cable loops through one end of the tab, and the tab is secured to the traveler deck plate by the lower attachment screw.

**Since I’ll need another cleat on the mast for the jib halyard, I’ll use the square nuts from the old downhaul cleat installation along with the two 10-32 x 3/4” screws to secure the traveler plate that attaches the lower downhaul triple, and after drilling and tapping 10-32 holes, the screws removed with the cleat will be used to attach the cleat to the mast.

I’ll also need to secure a Harken 29 mm Bullet Cheek Block to the mast for the jib halyard. Parts required are listed with the future Jib Installation post.

Mast Rotation Control

Since I want to increase mast rake and still use the original mast step and base, I need a method of controlling mast rotation, since the original stops will no longer engage. Also, from my experience last summer, it was readily apparent that having the mast always slammed to the stop was not the most aerodynamically efficient situation. Installation of the mast rotation control set-up neatly solves both problems.

    1 61210001 Mast Rotation Control Arm
    1 60680001 Hobie 18 Mast Compression Plate Assembly
    1 Cl236 Clamcleat, Racing Junior with Roller Fairlead
    2 8030991 Screw 10-32 X 3/4" P-FHMS
    1 137 Harken Eyestrap – Pair
    4 8010181 Rivet - 3/16 X 1/4 SS

I wasn’t sure exactly where on the mast the control arm is supposed to be to be located, and how the rotation is controlled, but all is explained thanks to Bob Curry who e-mailed me a photo of his installation in response to my questions here: ... fe4eb77ac6

Following Bob’s installation, I’ll use the Harken eyestraps to guide the line from the control arm to the ClamCleat, and keep the other end handy after it exits the cleat.

Bob’s installation also dropped the upper downhaul block below the rotation control arm, to avoid interference between the two, so I made up a short 3/32” 7 x 19 SS cable pigtail, the top end thimble nicopressed to the gooseneck downhaul ring. The lower thimble will receive the upper block shackle.

    1 AN100C3* 3/32 Timble - Lower
    1 20800000 1/8 Thimble - Upper
    2 8063761 3/32 Sleeve 28-2G
    AR 7 x 19 SS 3/32” Stainless Steel Cable

*For neatness, I used a 3/32 aircraft thimble, considerably smaller than the Hobie part, which I liberated from stock for the lower end, but the 1/8” Hobie thimble could be used for both ends. Pin to pin length to suit.

Mast Float

As I mentioned in the original post, my 14 turtled every time I capsized it. No water in the mast, I was told by the dealer that there just isn’t enough buoyancy in the mast to keep the boat from doing so. Having stuck the mast in the mud on one occasion, to avoid this in the future, I’ve obtained a ‘Baby Bob’ mast float for installation this Summer. All parts required for this installation are included with this kit. It requires drilling and tapping the masthead for #10-32 screws.

    1 30115 Baby Bob Mast Float

Next Up: Trampoline & Deck

PostPosted: Thu Jun 04, 2020 5:51 pm 
Site Rank - Captain

Joined: Mon Jun 02, 2003 6:19 pm
Posts: 119
Location: Florida Panhandle
Absolutely awesome write up!!! I can't wait to see pics of the finished project!

Take care,

Bob Curry
Master Unirig Sailor

PostPosted: Sat Jun 06, 2020 8:04 am 
Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Mon Nov 04, 2019 10:59 am
Posts: 19
Thank you, Bob Curry, for your encouragement. High praise, especially coming from someone who has probably forgotten more about the H14 than the rest of us will ever know.

There are a couple of more parts to post, and when the boat modifications are complete, I’ll post photos of the steps I’ve taken and the tools I’ve used. I hope to have the work finished by the end of the month, when we’ll be moving to the lake for the Summer and I can get the boat in the water.

I mounted the clamcleat on the boom using the photo of your mast rotation control setup you kindly e-mailed me last Fall in response to this topic: ... fe4eb77ac6
That picture explained the control system perfectly. Thanks again!

Stay safe!


PostPosted: Sat Jun 06, 2020 8:29 am 
Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Mon Nov 04, 2019 10:59 am
Posts: 19
This is the fifth instalment detailing the updates to my ’77 H14, which will ultimately result in a modified (“Mini 16”) Turbo configuration. My thinking is that this information might be useful for others facing similar issues with their own boat. I believe the part numbers listed are correct, but as I said before, if you are ordering, please verify!
Part 5


The original, blue vinyl trampoline is in amazingly good condition – faded a bit on the top, but still quite flexible. Being stored in the dark has helped, and the very cold winter storage temperatures have no doubt slowed the migration of plasticizers that eventually affects all plastics.

At the end of the season, I removed the tramp for a more thorough cleaning (it was really grimy from 25 years in storage) and for modifications for the Turbo blocks. Considering that a lot of the boat’s stiffness relies on a tight tramp installation, I was surprised at how little the hulls flexed without the tramp on as we put the boat away for the winter.

I decided to install additional grommets as a precaution, given the age of the tramp. This included doubling the number of grommets on the rear edge and rear lacing strip and at the rear corners as well, plus some up the center of the tramp. I added the two grommets to each of the tramp halves at the rear outboard edge mainly to fill the gap over the rear corner castings to keep my butt from falling through.

Parts required:

    1 2061 Trampoline Double Grommet Kit with Tools
    1 2062 24 Grommets
    AR 3/16" Low Stretch Line

I found that the tools supplied with the 2061 kit were good value for the money, and with some effort, I got reasonably good results. I had some difficulty getting the edges of the grommets tight to the plastic, though, which might be just due to the age of the tramp, so I machined two additional tools – one to initially force the grommet half teeth through the tramp material, and another to force the edges of the opposing halves tightly together after swaging them with the punch and die.

I can’t find anyone locally to stitch doublers on the tramp for the jib block grommets, so I plan to fabricate four 2 ¾” 2024T351 aluminum disks with a 1” hole in the center, and sandwich the tramp between pairs using solid flush (countersunk) aluminum rivets. Since the boat is used in fresh water, the use of aluminum is not an issue.



Early (pre-Turbo) boats had no provision for the jib block support wire. In addition, a dolphin striker is required to strengthen the front cross bar for jib or trapeze usage.

My boat of course came with the old-style chainplates, so I ordered the new style plates, along with the necessary rivets. I ordered the jib block support wire from Murrays, who had them in stock, and who also still include the turnbuckle adjustment feature in their part. At the same time, I ordered their dolphin striker kit, which comes with all necessary parts and the rivets. The equivalent Hobie part numbers are shown in brackets.

I also wanted to incorporate a mast raker line, as much for tightening up the rig on the beach to keep it from racking and rattling in the wind as for downwind work, so I ordered a Harken cam cleat and eyestrap. I also ordered a cam cleat wedge kit, just in case I need it.

Parts required:

    2 10300000 Chain Plate
    6 8010181 Rivet - 3/16 X 1/4 SS – (Chainplate)
    1 02-0124-80 Jib Block Support Wire (80201300)

    1 01-2083 Dolphin Striker Kit: H14 (80200010)

    1 365 Harken #365 Cam Cleat
    1 145 Harken #145 Wedge Kit
    1 137 Harken #137 Eyestrap - Pr
    2 21658 Screw - 10-32 X 1 1/2 FHMSP (Cleat)
    2 8010181 Rivet - 3/16 X 1/4 SS (Eyestrap)
    AR 3/16" Low Stretch Line

I noted in Part 4 that Harken part numbers I’ve listed here lack the prefix “H” used by Hobie in their numbering system, so a Harken 365 Cam Cleat would carry the part number H365 if ordered from your favorite Hobie dealer.

In Part 4, Mast and Boom, I outlined my plan to modify the existing 11870000 Traveler Deck Plate (the lower block attachment point) by drilling the existing 3/16” hole out to ¼” to receive a ¼” quick-release pin. The Harken H194 57mm Triple Block I’ve chosen has its shackle retained by a ¼” dia. pin, so I’ll dispense with the shackle all together and pin the block directly to the traveler plate. When I remove the plate to drill it, I’ll install a Traveler Tamer on reassembly.

    1 50014 Hobie Traveler Tamer I


PostPosted: Tue Jun 09, 2020 11:02 am 
Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Mon Nov 04, 2019 10:59 am
Posts: 19
This is the sixth instalment detailing the updates to my ’77 H14, which will ultimately result in a modified (“Mini 16”) Turbo configuration. I believe the part numbers listed are correct, but as I said before, if you are ordering, please verify!
Part 6

Jib Installation

The jib installation is the reason I undertook the upgrade of my old ‘Cat. I wanted to add the jib to better take advantage of the days when moderate winds prevail. Because of the installation I’ve chosen, with a permanent one-piece forestay, for those days when the boat would be overpowered with the extra sail area, I can leave the jib on shore. With the boat stored on the beach all summer, this way the jib is not continually subjected to sun and wind.

It was an on-line blog I found last summer that inspired me to go ahead with the project in the first place, at ... erger.html . The article credits Dan Berger for what he refers to as the “Little 16” configuration. In Dan’s setup, the jib halyard block is part of the forestay, ala the Hobie 16 jib installation.

I’ve chosen to use a one-piece forestay, from mast tang to adjuster rather than incorporate the halyard block in the forestay. (To differentiate this arrangement from Dan Berger’s ‘Little 16’, I’ve referred to it as a ‘Mini-16’ in this topic.) The forestay tensioner mentioned in Part 3: Rigging, comprised of two 7-hole adjusters, a clevis pin and a piece of ¼” shock cord, was also recommended in the article about Dan.

Also in Part 3, I mentioned that I used a Harken 29mm single block with becket installed in a 6” pigtail, with a Harken 29mm single block to be shackled to the jib luff wire, which gives me a "mini Aussie 16" jib halyard arrangement, – “not the same purchase, but not the same size jib, either”. The two blocks are listed below.


The stock jib is available only in white. However, with Matt Miller’s help, I’ve ordered a custom Hobie jib from West Coast Sailing, in the “Aqua” color, which I think will look better with my multi-colored sail.

My plan was to order the jib as late as possible, as it is the single most-expensive item to buy, but I shot myself in the foot, with the Covid 19 pandemic shutting down manufacturing for months. I’m still hopeful that even with Hobie factory backlogs, I’ll still receive it in time to use it this summer.

    1 10992991 Sail H14 Jib - Custom - AQUA

Jib Halyard

As mentioned earlier, because my boat sits on the beach all summer, exposed to the north wind, I’m using a modified setup rather than the stock furler installation, with a 6” pigtail with a single block with becket incorporated in it for the jib halyard so I can remove the jib. The corresponding single block will be shackled to the jib.

(I realized after I had swaged the block with becket into the pigtail that I don’t even have the same purchase as the H16 – in the stock ‘16’ arrangement, the jib halyard wire (1/8” 7 x 19 cable) is shackled to the jib at one end, threaded through the halyard block in the forestay, to the downhaul block swaged into the other end, 2:1 purchase. The halyard line is attached to the becket of the downhaul block, threaded down through the cheek block on the mast, back up through the sheave of the downhaul block and finally down to the downhaul cleat; 3:1 purchase. I believe that gives a 6:1 mechanical advantage, while my arrangement only gives 3:1. Depending on how my setup works, I may have some additional changes to make, but that can only be determined once the boat is reassembled in July – I’ll report then on what I find)

Parts required:

    1 082 Harken 29 mm Bullet Single Block
    1 083 Harken 29 mm Bullet Single/Becket Block
    1 092 Harken 29 mm Bullet Cheek Block
    2 8010181 Rivet - 3/16 X 1/4 SS
    AR 3/16" Low Stretch Line

For the halyard cleat, I’ll use the removed downhaul cleat and screws and reposition it to the side of the mast. I used the square nuts from the existing downhaul cleat to attach the plate that attaches the lower downhaul block. (See Part 4 - Mast and Boom)

Jib Blocks

For the jib blocks, I chose the Harken 40mm Carbo block equivalent to the H186 blocks called out in the H14 Parts List. These were mentioned by Matt Miller as a substitute in response to an earlier post. For the jib clew, I ordered two Harken 22mm single micro blocks and a bow shackle.

Parts required:

    2 2611 Harken 40 mm Carbo Ratchet Block W/ Cam & Becket

    2 224 Harken 22 mm Micro Single Block
    1 3021 Shackle - 3/16 Bow - Captive Pin
    32’ Jib Sheet - Yacht Braid - White W/ Blue Tracer 1/4"

I pointed out in Part 4 & 5 that Harken part numbers I’ve listed here lack the prefix “H” used by Hobie in their numbering system, so a Harken 2611 40 mm Carbo Ratchet Block W/ Cam & Becket would carry the part number H2611 if ordered from your favorite Hobie dealer.

I chose a white yacht braid with tracer for this sheet since it will be left on the boat permanently – less issues with fading. To keep the jib sheet from fouling, I’ll follow the recommendation in the Beachcats article and stretch a length of ¼” shockcord between the front corner castings. When the jib is in use, the shockcord will be stretched up to a small fabricated bracket attached to the boom where the original main downhaul cleat was located. That cleat will be moved to the side of the mast.

    AR RS014BLK Super Stretch Shockcord

Stay Safe!


Next Up: Summary

PostPosted: Thu Jun 11, 2020 6:56 pm 
Site Rank - Captain

Joined: Mon Jun 02, 2003 6:19 pm
Posts: 119
Location: Florida Panhandle
I saw you are updating with the rig tensioner like we do with the standard rig. I think you will find, with the tighter rig tension required for the jib to furl properly, will negate this system. Keep us posted!


Bob Curry
Master Unirig Sailor

PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2020 10:10 am 
Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Mon Nov 04, 2019 10:59 am
Posts: 19
Hi again, Bob,

Thanks for your response!

I plan on sailing in both the Uni-rig and Turbo configurations, and because my boat sits on the beach all summer long, I opted to not use the furling option – rather, the boat will be rigged similar to an H16, with a separate forestay. While I’ll be using a standard Hobie Turbo jib, I can remove it for storage (and thus keep it out of the sun and wind) and for those days when I don’t need it. So, best of both worlds.

Not using the furler will save a few bucks, but in the end, it was the longevity of the jib that most concerned me.

Because the boat is exposed to the north wind all summer, I imagine the rig tensioner will be most useful for tightening up the rig while on the beach, to prevent racking and the rattling all night that gets to be annoying.

All the best,


PostPosted: Thu Jun 18, 2020 12:14 pm 
Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Mon Nov 04, 2019 10:59 am
Posts: 19
This is the seventh instalment detailing the updates to my ’77 H14, which will ultimately result in a modified (“Mini 16”) Turbo configuration. Hopefully this information will be useful for others facing similar issues with their own boat. As I said before, I believe the part numbers listed are correct, but if you are ordering, please verify!
Part 7


The origin of this piece was simply a point-form listing of changes I wanted to incorporate in my H14, along with lists of the parts required. There was so much information in my original modification plan, covering most every area of the boat, that I felt it might be a useful resource for those in the same situation I was, so I decided to write the narrative and post it on the Forum.

The process of carrying out a detailed inspection, listing deficiencies discovered and modifications needed, determining parts required and then documenting and recording the repairs or replacements is routine procedure in aircraft maintenance, where I’ve spent most of my career, so that’s how I approached my old ‘Cat, and I found quite a few things that needed attention as I got into it.

I’m fortunate to have a shop that specializes in aircraft and helicopter structural repair, so I have access to tools and materials that most Hobie owners do not, but I don’t think that many of the changes I’ve made to my boat couldn’t be done by the average owner with some mechanical skills – some, like the tramp grommet installation for the Turbo jib blocks, would have to be farmed out, and making up the standing rigging would be impractical without a professional Nicopress tool – but it certainly would not be impossible. The task I was most concerned about was pulling the stainless pop rivets, since I only have a consumer grade hand tool suitable for aluminum pop rivets. But in desperation, I tried a pneumatic/hydraulic rivet puller we use for Cherrymax blind aircraft rivets, which worked perfectly. Sometimes you just luck out.


I can’t stress enough that there was no original thinking or any new ideas on my part included in this article – rather, it is a distillation of information found on this Forum, and in the wonderfully informative Hobie Hotline issues and other information I found online. On the basis of the extensive knowledge base available, I looked carefully at my own boat, and not surprisingly, found quite a few deficiencies, and I included my findings in this piece.

As I said in Part 6, what inspired the project in the first place was an online blog about converting an H14 to the Turbo configuration. This conversion doesn’t incorporate the furling feature – rather the boat is rigged as what Dan Berger referred to as a ‘Little 16’, with a removable jib. I made some minor changes to that configuration, but most of the information I needed was in that blog. (Since my boat sits on the beach all summer, I didn’t want the furling feature, which leaves the jib in place permanently exposed to the weather). You can read the blog at: ... erger.html

As for setting up the boat in general, I’ve found no better advice than Bob Curry’s Hobie 14 Catamaran Tuning Guide, which can be found here: ... ing-guide/


There is a lot of useful information in the archived Hobie Hotline articles. I’ve listed some of the maintenance-related material I found helpful. The page numbers refer to the Hotline issue page number, not the pdf page number. You can find the Hotline material here:,

and here:

The articles I found most informative were:

Summer 2010 Pg 14 This Old Hobie – Setting Up the Hobie 14,
a compilation of advice from Hobie 14 greats Wayne Shafer and Bob Curry, with added comments by Hotline staff. The article is also available at:,
(Sadly, I note the passing of Wayne Shafer on June 02 2020).

and these, available at:

Fall 2010 Pg 10 This Old Hobie – Get the Rudder Slop Out!,
Winter 2011 Pg 12 Drilling Rudders,
Spring 2011 Pg 18 Fine Tuning Rudders,


March-April 2008 Pg 14 This Old Boat – Fiberglass Repairs
May-June 2008 Pg 16 This Old Boat – Blind Hole Repairs
July-August 2008 Pg 16 This Old Hobie – Spraying Gelcoat
July-August 2008 Pg 12 This Old Hobie – The Bottom Job
November-December 2008 Pg 14 This Old Hobie – Non-Skid Repair Part 1
January-February 2009 Pg 12 This Old Hobie – Non-Skid Repair Part 2
March-April 2009 Pg 14 This Old Hobie – Rudder and Daggerboard Trailing Edge Repair
May-June 2009 Pg 14 This Old Hobie – Gelcoat Chips and Dings
July-August 2009 Pg 14 This Old Hobie – Installing Reinforcing Bulkheads
September-October 2009 Pg 14 This Old Hobie – Pylon Shoe Repairs
March-April 2010 Pg 12 This Old Hobie – Pylon Repairs/Frame Gluing

Fall 2011 Pg 8 Aluminum Bits
Fall 2015 Pg 12 Leaks

Thankfully, I didn’t need any of the information on hull repairs, but it made interesting reading and might be of help to readers here.

HOTLINE MAGAZINES from the 1990’s and prior are available here:

Hobie Hotline - April/May, 1976 Pg 10 Mast Rake-How & Why's
Hobie Hotline - January/February, 1977 Pg 28 Does your Cat sail like a Dog?
Hobie Hotline - March/April, 1978 Pg 26 Rudder Hassles and Excessive Weather Helm
Hobie Hotline - March/April, 1978 Pg 10 We Blew It (Corrects rudder rake measurements in HotLine_1977_09)
Hobie Hotline - January/February, 1980 Pg 14 Backyard Boat Repairs (Fiberglass repairs)
Hobie Hotline - January/February, 1983 Pg 56 Hobie Hot Tips – Rudder Maintenance
Hobie Hotline - March/April, 1983 Pg 15 Turbo Power
Hobie Hotline - March/April, 1991 Pg 14 In Tune - Stepping Out


Hobie provides a wealth of information regarding the H14, not just fixing but sailing, safety etc. here:
including Manuals & Parts Guides, Care and Maintenance, Instruction Sheets, etc.

Hobie 14 / 16 Parts Guide (US)
Hobie 14 Manual - Original
Hobie 14 Turbo Jib Manual

I also referred to the following guides:

Hobie Cat Line Guide (for lines and sheets)
Hobie Cat Wire Guide (for stays, shrouds, trapeze, etc.)

(I couldn’t find direct links for these, so simply google the titles and the links to the pdf’s come up.)

Next Up and last: Tooling and (hopefully) Photos

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