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PostPosted: Sun Dec 18, 2016 4:37 pm 
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I need your help in deciding if a Hobie Tandem Island is right for me.

First a little background. I’ve had a 2013 Hobie Outback for over 3 years. I bought it to fish out of and have done just about everything you can imagine in it. I’ve fished rivers, lakes, bays, and ocean. Taken it down a river for an overnight camping trip, gone crabbing out of it, surf launched, sailed it, pulled my kids on boogie boards. Needless to say, I love and am well familiar with the ins and outs of a mirage drive kayak.

My family consists of my wife and 2 daughters, ages 7 and 12. None of us are particularly large with me being the biggest at 5’10” 165 lbs. We currently have 3 kayaks: my Outback, an old Ocean Kayak Scrambler, and one of those small kids kayaks you can pick up at a sporting goods store. This has all gotten then job done for getting the family out on the water. My wife typically takes the Scrambler, my oldest daughter the kid’s kayak and my little one rides along with me in the back of the Outback. This has been fine for the last few years but the kids are getting a bit too big now for this setup.

We were contemplating adding a Revo 11 to armada, but over the summer we rented a Windrider 17. All 4 of us were out together, my wife and I in the cockpits and the kids on the trampolines. We loved it! I really considered getting one, but the weight of one would be a bit much for us handle and limit launches to boat ramps. This got me thinking about the Hobie Tandem Island.

My main question is, will we be able to get mostly the same experience out of a Tandem Island as we did from a Windrider 17? (see video). https://youtu.be/zbDRDovNkTM Will it be able to handle my whole family as my girls grow?

Thanks for your input.


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 18, 2016 4:55 pm 
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Location: High Point, NC
The Windrider 17 is capable of hauling a lot more people and gear than a Tandem Island. It's a very robust craft and quite capable.

The TI is equally capable in different ways and the Mirage Drive gives it a bit of an edge in some areas. But where I wouldn't think twice about carrying 3 or 4 adults on a WR17, I wouldn't do it on a TI. Two adults and a couple small children? Sure, no problem there. But as they grow you may find you need a larger boat.

The TI is also better and easier launched from a boat ramp off a trailer. Although, it is possible to cart it to beaches and the like if you so desire.


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 18, 2016 11:01 pm 
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Location: Sarasota,Key West FL
The windrider 17 is quite a bit more boat than the TI. The Wr17 has a larger main, a jib and an optional screecher making it's sail area around 265 sq ft. It also weighs around 450 lbs ( our TI weighs in a little 200 lbs fully rigged). The hull by itself on my TI weighs exactly 100 lbs (I weighed it). We car top our TI often, but also have a trailer (we do both).
The TI only comes with a 90 sqft main (no jib), however they recently released a optional 80 sq ft spinnaker, that has been only out a short time, the spinnaker design might have some minor issues, if you get a TI I recommend holding off on the spinnaker for a little bit, at least until everyone works the kinks out.
The TI has mirage drives that make up for quite a bit (I personally will never own a boat without mirage drives).
Make sure you get the optional tramps for the TI, we have had as many as six people on our TI (adults and kids), but we were over the recommended 600 lbs and the boat was clearly overloaded and a real dog when overloaded. We are mostly divers and snorklers and park it just off Higgs beach in key west and dive off our TI, usually with way too many people.
One huge advantage with the TI is you can leave the sails and AMA's off and use it as a kayak (the fastest and best kayak in Hobies entire lineup).
The Windrider typically takes 40 minutes to setup up and launch (boat ramp preferred). The TI takes ten minutes tops to launch, and we often launch at kayak parks (can't do that with a WR).
Both boats are very good, but I personally prefer my TI feeling it to be way more versatile.
FE


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 19, 2016 2:04 am 
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Location: Forster, NSW, Australia
The Tandem Island will be perfect for the four of you, and in due course, if one of both of your girls desire their independence, the Tandem Island will continue to serve as an excellent "mother ship" to assemble the family as desired.

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2012 Tandem Island "SIC EM" with Hobie spinnaker and Hangkai outboard
only cool people follow the (non-magnetic) titanium weight-loss program! lol.)


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 19, 2016 7:07 am 
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Location: Jaco, Costa Rica
All depends on the conditions. Out front, windy. I wouldn't take more than 2 total. Makes for a more dogged ride and can get unpleasant in heavy waves. Heck I don't even like an added passenger, love riding solo on my TI the most.
That being said, fishing, versatility, love the TI.
After using a motor for a time, I find I rarely use the pedals. If it wasn't for the weight (Getaway) and lack of comfortable long range seating I would go with a modified Hobie sailboat with motor instead. Would love to see Hobie design a new vessel in this direction. I have been looking around for a possible alternative but there isn't any I can see without a heavy price tag. Something along these lines but made with a motor mount and better seating sit on top. http://www.warrenlightcraft.com/kayaksailboats.html

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Mark
Costa Rica Kayak Guide
http://www.cryaker.com
Tandem Island- 2013
Sport - 2014
Revolution 11-2015


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 19, 2016 8:12 am 
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Joined: Sun Apr 20, 2008 6:18 am
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Location: Sarasota,Key West FL
After selling our 24 ft sea ray, we were mostly kayakers with 3 Hobies for several years before we bought our first TI.
This video below and several others are what sold us.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pb4orK9MLXE


This is us living the dream 'The Hobie way of life':
Image

FE
Edit: obviously our TI is heavily modified for use in swfl and the keys to cover the vast distances and way faster and more capable than even a WR17, these were relatives from up north none had ever been in a sailboat before or in the open ocean. I took them out thru the breakers (always present 3ft breakers line just off shore that you have to go thru to get offshore (you can see them in the distance). We blasted thru them at around 8mph (everyone was drenched). We went out a mile or so and cruised past Siesta key beach (#1 beach in the world), then came back in. Now they have a nice story and memory, saying they sailed offshore (seriously we weren't out there an hour, and the seas were flat and the winds were only 6mph tops (pretty hard to get in trouble). Yes the hatches were underwater, and we were a good 200 lbs over the rated 600 lb capacity( as you can see in the pic both AMA's were in the water, I had my planing hull mod with the extra 100#'s of floation removed that day, because we were supposed to go kayaking thru the mangrove tunnels that day, not go sailing off shore, that was the plan anyway (lol).
Not recommending anyone do any of this stuff.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 19, 2016 4:18 pm 
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Thanks for all the insight! The photos, videos and descriptions are a big help!

I'm feeling a little more comfortable with a TI for my needs. So for more clarification, all in I don't think the 4 of us will exceed 450 lbs and even when my girls are adult size with all of us on there, we'll likely still be under 550 lbs.

My wife is not much of an "adventurer", so the majority of the sailing will be done in lakes and maybe the the back bays of NJ or the Pamlico Sound, NC. Even at that, I'm guessing winds approaching 15 mph will likely put her off going out. Consequently, performance in big water with 4 people on in it isn't a major concern. If it'll sail well and fun (not sluggish and unresponsive) with the 4 of us in the conditions I mentioned, it'll likely meet our needs. Would you agree it'll do that?

Hitting the bigger water in rougher conditions will be just me or me with one of my daughters. (Probably the little one, she's the daredevil)

Here are some Pros and Cons I put together from my research on the TI vs WR17. Does this sound about right?

Pros:
$3,000 cheaper
Has the dual mirage drive so you can power it with your feet if the wind dies down
Much lighter and easier for one person to launch (never beach launching a windrider by yourself)
Can remove the amas and sail to use is as a single kayak
Much better product support and availability of parts nearly anywhere
Faster setup and launch

Cons:
Not as fast on the water
Wetter ride
Lower capacity
Only 2 people on the boat, the other 2 have to be on the tramps
Probably not as good in big rough water
Only a main sail


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 19, 2016 5:50 pm 
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Location: Delnor Wiggins, Fl Peters Twp PA
I note that you have "wetter ride" listed as a TI con. I believe that it sits quite a bit lower than the WR17 and will be a LOT wetter. Note, too, that some members of this forum have been hassled by marine enforcement for having more than two on their TI based on the silly Hobie sticker.

As much as I love our TI, I personally think another boat might serve your needs for a 4 person ride better over the longer tern.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 19, 2016 6:27 pm 
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Location: Jaco, Costa Rica
As far as safety in rough weather. I would take the sit on top/ TI. Again, either trimaran, I wouldn't want anyone riding on the tramps in such weather or long excursions out front. For comfortable seating, the TI wins again.

The inability to beach launch solo, which is most of the time, is automatic disqualification for my location. Thus Ti wins on default alone.

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Mark
Costa Rica Kayak Guide
http://www.cryaker.com
Tandem Island- 2013
Sport - 2014
Revolution 11-2015


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 19, 2016 9:25 pm 
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Posts: 165
Location: Georgia
Many, many years ago we started sailing with a monohull (Thistle) - a great inland lake boat. All wood, even the mast and boom - too much work, but beautiful. The kids were very small and not terribly interested in sailing. Mostly eating while on board. Tried a Hobie 14 and loved it. As the kids got heavier we bought a Hobie 16 and sailed it mostly in the Gulf on vacations. Love Hobie Cats. I still own a Hobie Wave, at least for a while longer.

Don't think there's another 16ft cat that can compare on price, reliability, fun factor, etc. The fun factor is entirely up to you. As the wind builds and if you're feeling adventurous you can sail in heavier winds and seas. I don't think you'll ever 'out grow' a 16. In between Hobie Cats I also owned a 16ft Playcat. While it was an ok lake boat, I always felt uneasy with in in the Gulf. Hobie are built (in my estimation) to thrive and survive well in salt water.

Bought the TI for many reason - stepping the mast, dragging it out of the surf, garage storage, rotomolded maintenance free construction, etc. Personally, if I had small children and the family truly enjoyed being on the water and sailing - lake or ocean, I'd opt for the Hobie 18. Pricier, much heavier mast, but also more room, backrests / seats combo, etc.

At this point in my life, the TI is perfect for single handing, stepping the mast, ramp launches, ease of negotiating tight inlets, roller furling (love the Mirage drives), etc. With the Hobie 16, in the Gulf, if the wind dies and you're offshore it can be a very long day. My 16yr old grandson loved the Hobie Wave more than the TI, but when he sails single handed the TI in the Gulf, I feel he's
much less likely to get into trouble re: wind, waves, no wind, stability, etc.

As someone noted earlier, your situation is unique from everyone else and one size or one type does not fit everyone.

My 42yr old daughter still recalls sailing on the Hobie16 in the Gulf, snorkeling, picnics, etc. when she was little and we've tried to pass on a love of the water and sailing to her children as well. Whatever your choice, I wish you many many seasons of sailing memories.

Fair Winds,
bill


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 20, 2016 4:33 am 
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I've considered cats for a number of years, but my wife doesn't like boats that heel like a cat does. She never even liked the heeling on monohulls. It wasn't until she got into that WR17 that she actually really enjoyed sailing. The trihull design minimizes the heeling and made it something my wife wanted to do, not something she did to appease me. This is what's driving the WR17 vs. TI.

I really like minimizing maintenance, I love how I can store my Outback under my deck and forget about it until I'm ready to take it out and post trips, even to salt water is mostly just a rinse of the mirage drive.

I also realize how important it is to be able to manage the boats out of the water. I quickly bought a Hullavator once I got the Outback to make getting it up on the roof easier. If I do get a TI, it'll definitely be on a trailer, ideally a trailer I can fit it and 2 other kayaks.


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PostPosted: Sun May 07, 2017 7:08 am 
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Thanks to everyone who provided input. We went with a TI and will take delivery end of the month. I'll be sure to post photos and videos of our adventures!


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 25, 2017 3:06 am 
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Joined: Mon Apr 04, 2011 7:26 pm
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Location: Ft Myers, FL
atv223 wrote:
My main question is, will we be able to get mostly the same experience out of a Tandem Island as we did from a Windrider 17? (see video). https://youtu.be/zbDRDovNkTM Will it be able to handle my whole family as my girls grow?


Nice video! I see a lot of small sailboats playing around! Where was it taken?

As far as your questions, for now, while your girls are young, a TI should be able to handle your family, but I don't think you'll get the same experience. Hobie Islands are very versatile, but WindRiders are more capable boats. As your girls grow older, you may decide to get a WR17 for yourself and let the girls use the TI. ;-)

I know you already purchased a TI, but for anyone else who may be having the same question, here are my $0.02 cents. I currently own both single and tandem Hobie Islands as well as WindRiders 16 and 17. The WR17 is by far my favorite of all, followed closely by the WR16. Setup time is longer than a TI, but to me the extra room and faster speed are totally worth the extra 10 - 20 minutes at the ramp. If play time or launching conditions are a concern, then the Islands get to play. I used to take my Islands out all the time, until I got the WRs. So far this year I've taken the WRs out on multiple camping trips and dozens of day trips, but I still haven't used either one of my Islands yet.

Hope that helps.

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