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PostPosted: Fri Jun 20, 2014 1:55 pm 
Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Fri Jun 20, 2014 1:34 pm
Posts: 1
Hello! This is my first post on here, and i wish it weren't a negative post! So I'll start by saying that I love the adventure island!

There is one pretty large drawback that keeps me from enjoying it fully though, and that would be the rudder. It has the new rudder installed - not the old flip and fold. There are two specific issues with it that may or may not be connected.

1.) I have broken both of the plastic pins that came with this kayak. I live in Louisville close to the Ohio river, so it isn't like we crank this thing through particularly windy situations...

2.) The rudder has never really worked that well. You try to turn left, sometimes it does, sometimes it doesn't. I found a rudder installation video on youtube, and tightened the spectra coming out of the boat and attaching to the rudder, which *seems* to have helped with it's laziness in turning left, but now, turning right is more difficult (More difficult as barely turns right to the right). Sometimes wiggling it back and forth and trying again works, but it seems like something is wrong with the rudder for it to be this unreliable on a kayak that is this expensive...

On the ground, the paddles turn the rudder left and right with absolutely no problem. In the is a different animal.

3.) The rudder handles for each seat no longer point in the same direction. Upon checked the handle to see if that was a quick doesn't seem to be.

Is there anyone out there who has experienced these issues who could point me in the right direction? I'd take anything at this point. PDF's of the internal rudder system layout (it is kind of hard to get to in order to visualize...) Ideas for why the pins are breaking so frequently...things to test and report back about?

I'll gratefully take anything and everything that people have to offer! Thanks!

PostPosted: Fri Jun 20, 2014 5:42 pm 
Site Rank - Old Salt

Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2007 2:25 pm
Posts: 2625
Location: Central Coast NSW Australia
You are cleating the rudder down line properly?
When cleated down it should not kick up, which is what makes turning difficult. Check it on dry land first.

PostPosted: Fri Jun 20, 2014 9:36 pm 
Site Rank - Old Salt

Joined: Sat Nov 05, 2011 1:58 am
Posts: 2716
Location: Forster, NSW, Australia
As Stringy said, making sure the rudder "down" line is cleated really firmly is critical to optimum handling. When you look at the rudder in the down position, you will note that at the bottom half, there is quite a bit of the rudder blade ahead of the vertical line down from the rudder pin. This forward area acts as a counterbalance "servo" as it counteracts the pressure the water imparts to the back of the rudder.

So if you don't have the "down" line as tight as you possibly can (don't worry, the dyeema line has a 1000 pound breaking strain!), the water flow will push the rudder back so that some or all or this "counterbalance" blade area will be ADDING to the tiller load rather than subtracting. The change in tiller load is dramatic.

I always give my rudder down line an extra pull from time to time (with both hansa!) to make sure it is cleated as tightly as possible. If you want to know just how tightly you should pull on the down line, follow kayakingbob's advice, and pull the rudder line down while your TI is out of the water, and see if you can pull the bottom of the rudder blade back by hand. If you can, you haven't pulled the down line hard enough!

BTW, breaking rudder pins without hitting something is a pretty good indicator that your rudder down line is not tight enough, as this will directly and dramatically increase the load on the pin.

In addition, the rudder left-right lines require careful adjustment. Because the lines attach to the head of the rudder a little bit behind the line of the rudder pin, this automatically means that line tension will change as you turn the rudder (If the lines were attached directly in line with the pin, their tension would remain unchanged irrespective of rudder angle). So how to overcome this issue? This requires some judgement, as there is no absolute answer. If you adjust the lines so there is any slack, the tiller will have a "dead spot" where the tiller moves, but the rudder has to first take up the slack. If you set the lines tighter so there is no slack at either extreme of rudder travel, you will have both lines too tight, and therefore introduce a lot of strain in the system, increasing the load on your tiller. I tighten my rudder lines so there is a little bit of tension when the rudder is straight ahead, but there is a little slack on just one of the lines at full rudder.

As regards realigning the tillers, I have never had this problem so cannot help, other than to suggest you see your Hobie dealer to get the tillers aligned.

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

PostPosted: Fri Jun 20, 2014 9:40 pm 
Site Rank - Old Salt

Joined: Sun Apr 20, 2008 6:18 am
Posts: 2717
Location: Sarasota,Key West FL
It seems you have a peculiar problem as the rest of us actually have few problems with the rudder system besides the occasional rudder pin breakage and the periodic line adjustment. I know in my case the majority of my rudder pin breakages were self inflicted ( I bumped the ground with the rudder while launching or retrieving.
Perhaps we can help with a systematic approach to figure out what's wrong ( bunches of us are willing to help via this forum with suggestions about things the rest of us have come across. However if you bought your boat from a Hobie dealer they would be the first I would approach, letting them know your having a problem is the first step. All the dealers are very knowledgable and will help you get thru this.
A couple things you can do to verify that the rudder system is working as designed is as stringy suggests, pull the rudder down either on shore or on shallow water, latch it down then go to the back of the boat and try to tilt it up. If the rudder pushes back and starts to tilt up, this is your problem. The rudder is counterbalanced to make it easier to turn, if it rises up this makes the rudder extremely difficult to turn in the water while underway. I know on my TI I have to pull pretty hard on the down line, then lock it to get the boat to steer correctly, if the rudder tilts up at all it become difficult to steer.
Next thing to check is the rudder pin if it is half broke at either the top or the bottom the boat becomes very difficult to steer. This one is actually kind of hard to detect without removing the pin for inspection, or at the very least make sure if you spin it at the top the bottom also spins. 90% of the time when I have hard steering, a half broken rudder pin is the culprit.
Next check the steering lines, they would be fairly tight but not overly tight. If the steering lines are too tight this can cause very stiff steering. Keep in mind your boat grows up to an inch in warmer weather, and if you adjusted the rudder lines in cooler weather they become too tight in warmer weather and need to be re-adjusted. I always check my rudder lines before going out and end up adjusting them 2-3 times a year.
Now if you have checked off all the above common problems (sounds like you have).
Then you might have a more complex problem. If your dealer can't help, then you can investigate the problem yourself, it's likely inside the hull, I usually use a flashlight and two smartphones both running skype to tour around inside the hull looking for problems. One time I found a tennis shoe tangled in the lines inside (found it with the phone), another time I had the rudder lines tangled around the foam floatation inside the hull causing the problem. Basically all you can do is make sure all the lines inside are running freely and not binding on things. The up/ down and steering system is pretty simple and straight forward, just use your camera to track it all out and check everything.
After going thru all the above and it still doesn't work let us know, take lots of picks or videos and post it, we will all try to help. But on the other hand if you can take it to your dealer they will find and fix the problem for you especially if you have gone thru all the obvious stuff above and the problem is still there, then their might be a serious problem somewhere.
Where I launch there are always several TI sailers around, just ask one of them to look at it ( most of us have had to tinker with our rudders a bit, and most can probably advise you on what to do.
I'm willing to bet money your problem is the down cleat line not being pulled down tight enough, ( the condition is called 'rudder-down-itis' and is curable (lol)), nearly all new owners who have posted about similar problems, and this was the solution.
Hope this helps.

Edit: it looks like Tony responded at exactly the same time as me ( obviously he types faster than me ( one finger bob lol)). Just do what Tony says ( that's what I do).

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