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Mast collar's ball bearings missing (TI)
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Author:  mkrawats [ Mon Nov 15, 2010 9:59 am ]
Post subject:  Mast collar's ball bearings missing (TI)

Several of the white plastic ball bearings at the top of the mast collar of my Tandem Island have fallen...

...into the mast cup receiver.


Anyone else notice this issue?

Author:  mmiller [ Mon Nov 15, 2010 10:45 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Mast collar's ball bearings missing (TI)

Loosen the bolts on the collar. Re-insert the bearings then fully tension the bolts all around the collar. Again... contact your dealer for assistance if needed.

Author:  stringy [ Mon Nov 15, 2010 2:45 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mast collar's ball bearings missing (TI)

You were lucky you transport your TI right way up mkrawats!
An old problem the AI's had. Shame it's still occurring Hobie. :?
Whenever the mast isn't in I make sure some pool noodle is. :wink:

Author:  mkrawats [ Mon Nov 15, 2010 8:32 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Mast collar's ball bearings missing (TI)

Sounds like it isn't too difficult to fix.

I doing something incorrectly to cause this issue to occur?
Is this issue of ball bearing falling out of the mast collar normal and happens to most AI/TIs? Or is it a flaw with my specific TI?
I currently maintain the ball bearings by spraying it with McLube SailKote. Is there anything else I can do to prevent this issue from reoccurring?

Author:  Chekika [ Tue Nov 16, 2010 8:01 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Mast collar's ball bearings missing (TI)

A couple years ago, the AI people were complaining about this, but I have not heard much recently. I've never had the problem, so, other than keeping the screws tight, can't offer any suggestions.


Author:  mmiller [ Tue Nov 16, 2010 9:31 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Mast collar's ball bearings missing (TI)

The tolerance is pretty slim. The balls should "just" be captured by the two plates. If the gap between the two plates is too small, the bearings will not roll. A little wide and they can pop out. Typical cause was a burr on the plastic at each screw location. If the screws were not fully tensioned or worked loose, the two plates do not come together enough. Some plates may have been damaged from an attempt at sanding off the burrs... sanded off a bit of the lip in error.

Author:  Kevin McCarthy [ Mon Apr 23, 2012 4:11 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Mast collar's ball bearings missing (TI)

This problem snuck up on me as well. Apparently, on previous attempts to insert the mast (tricky due to its high CG relative to where I can grip it), I knocked a few balls into the well. I hadn't made a visual memory of the original configuration, which is "full-complement", meaning that there are no gaps, and the balls all are nearly in touch with each other. Not realizing that balls could escape, I didn't pay much attention to them, and every time that I saw a partial complement, I assumed that this was normal. Finally, at the start of a long sail, we found it very difficult to reef the sail. On the theory that maybe some balls had fallen into the well (it had some water and sand in it, so this wasn't obvious), we laid a fellow sailor's dress on the beach, and inverted the TI above it. Low and behold, fourteen of the balls came tumbling out! The number in the bearing had been only ten as of this most recent mast insertion. I now know to check for a full complement before inserting the mast. I'm lucky in that I transport the TI with the mast well facing up; otherwise the balls would have been long gone. As per other posts, I will disassemble the bearing and check for any plastic flashing that needs to be sanded down, and I'll also give the screws a tightening, perhaps with Loc-tite. The Hobie assembly instructions really should include a photo of the ball complement, and explain what to do if you spot any gaps.

Author:  mkrawats [ Mon Apr 23, 2012 5:11 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Mast collar's ball bearings missing (TI)

Hi Kevin.

When I first received my TI, bear bearing were always falling down into the bottom of the cup.

Now, whenever the mast is out of the mast receiver, I always keep a short pool noodle stuffed in the mast cup. Thank you Stringy for this excellent suggestion. Now, the issue is completely eliminated.

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