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PostPosted: Thu Sep 02, 2021 4:58 am 
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Joined: Sat Aug 28, 2021 5:30 pm
Posts: 2
My previous iS9 sprung a leak in the center air compartment after only three seasons. Was unsuccessful in repairing it. Very disappointing for such an expensive product. Received my new iTrek 9 last week and have the following observations:
Pros:
* MUCH less weight. Easier to pack, move and store.
*Very responsive rudder control. Comparison to turning an ocean liner (iS9) to a speedboat (iTrek 9). Wow.
*Easier rudder deployment. New design simply requires an upward tug on one line compared to the old two (red and green) lines.
*One button snap-in seat rudder control. Hated the iS9 knurled screws while installing/removing the old rudder control.
*One button snap-in drink holder. Hobie should have done this years ago. Works great.
*Only one air compartment. An air leak could be easily repaired compared to my iS9 experience.
*Just as fast as the iS9. Had the turbo fins on both boats. Seems the iTrek 9 is just as fast (and not faster) then the iS9.
Cons:
*VERY DIFFICULT TO INFLATE. The 12V pump only inflates to 1 psi. That leaves 9 psi to go using the hand pump. I was stunned how long (and difficult) it was to get anywhere near 10 psi. I would not buy this kayak for this reason alone. Purchased an aftermarket SUP 12V pump for $56 and replaced its valve connector with the factory Hobie connector. Works great and inflates the boat in about 6 minutes. Auto shutoff prevents over-inflation.
*Noticeable lateral movement on the water while turning. The bottom of the iTrek is completely flat compared to the iS9. Not a deal breaker - just something to be aware of.
*Cheap accessories. The electric 12v and hand pumps appear to be very cheaply constructed.
*Short seat straps. The vertical backrest seat straps are way too short. Had to spend an additional $20 for carabiners to provide more backward movement.

I loved my iS9. Broke my heart to have it go away. But now, with the new electric pump, I'm also in love with the new iTrek.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 07, 2021 8:01 pm 
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Joined: Sat Aug 28, 2021 5:30 pm
Posts: 2
I'm a little surprised by the lack of interaction on this section of the Forum. Are Hobie inflatable owners naturally shy and try to avoid the limelight? Perhaps they are so completely satisfied with their Hobie that they only seek posts from equally satiated owners looking only to validate their purchase? Asking for a friend.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 10, 2021 6:19 pm 
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Site Rank - Captain

Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2021 6:30 am
Posts: 94
I hesitated to reply because I seem to be a conversation killer and you were fairly complete. I regret that with the exception of the i11s, most inflato posts over the years have been of the hit and run problem solving variety. i11s got a torrent of interest probably because it was the only way to go with the new sit on board configuration, but now maybe the rigid Lynx will cannibalize iTrek sales.

I think many inflatable owners are a bit embarrassed about not being able to go rigid, so don't want to assume that identity for unneeded forum chitchat about mods, experiences, or whatever. But I like getting unlikely performance from a blimp boat. Constraints can add class; it's like soccer where you forego hands or poems where you restrict yourself to rhymes.

Blimp boats can be slower to paddle and even pedal. But to me all such drawbacks are forgiven when you can sail an inflatable. Who's in a rush when the wind does the work. I think the iT11 may be the most likely sailable. I have several great sailing inflatables, but they don't have mirage drives to get in and out of launch areas and thru calms.



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PostPosted: Sat Sep 18, 2021 2:21 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2021 6:30 am
Posts: 94


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 24, 2021 1:38 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2021 6:30 am
Posts: 94
Above reviewer just named iT9 as one of best 5 kayaks of the year. He is articulate and knowledgeable except in the area of pedal drives and sails, so I hope Hobie supplies more yaks for him to test next year. He has many followers that seem puzzled and unaware of Hobie strengths. Their mind would be blown by even a rigid hull with turbo fin drive and a sail.



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PostPosted: Thu Oct 28, 2021 10:16 am 
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Joined: Sat May 21, 2005 11:32 am
Posts: 209
Location: Portland, OR
I love my iTrek 9. But I can't compare it to the iS9 as I never had one. The iTrek 9 is lighter than any other kayak or board I've had, it turns on a dime, and I can even use it as a SUP although I'm not very stable. I can't wait for the iTrek 11 to be available locally so that I can upgrade if it is indeed more stable.


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