Category Archives: Right Kayak

Kayak Buying Choices

By F Gual

Before looking for a new kayak, you must consider how you intend to use it. And before that, you have to shop for all the essential equipment you must have.

Choosing the right kayak can be a difficult ordeal. Several factors must be considered before starting a search. Some simple steps will make the search easier.

First, decide what it will be used for. Is this all new to you? Do you plan to enter competitions? This will guide you when exploring all the different designs on the market. An online search will reveal hundreds of choices, and narrowing your choices will take time. Hurrying through this step could bring buyer’s remorse.

But before that happens, you must get all the equipment you will need for safe and enjoyable kayaking. Wetsuit, life jacket, paddle, footwear, and more will be essential, so go for quality here.

Thinking of your kayak as an investment is the way to go. A quality kayak need not be expensive, but lots of research is needed to get the most for your money.

Famous top brands include Clear Blue Hawaii, Old Town, Coleman, Pelican International. The popular Hobie has a line of simple, durable boats. Sevylor has been making tough inflatable kayaks for years. Emotion makes plastic kayaks as small as eight feet, ideal if space is a problem. Folding kayaks have been made in Germany by the Klepper company since the fifties. Their wooden frame covered by a waterproof synthetic skin can be assembled quickly once you know how.

If you have never been on a kayak, it would be wise to rent one, even if only for a day. Learning how to get in and out of the kayak safely may take several attempts to get it right. Plus learning how to hold your paddle through the strokes also takes some trying.

Many people of all ages have become addicted to gliding through the water. Why not you?

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Photo by James Coleman on Unsplash

5 Things People Do Wrong When Buying a Kayak

By Emily Peyton

Buying the right kayak can mean the difference between discovering a passion and throwing away money on a miserable experience. Steer clear of these 5 common mistakes and discover why so many people are passionate about kayaking!

1. Assuming beginners and recreational kayakers don’t need an expensive kayak. Actually, this is the wrong way around. An experienced kayaker has a much better chance of being able to get a cheap kayak to go straight and not in circles. If you are just interested in occasional recreational kayaking, you need an easy-to-paddle kayak, and cheap kayaks are never easy to paddle – they are like trying to steer a bath tub. People often say to me – I’ll start with something cheaper and if I like kayaking, I’ll get a better one, but if you get a cheap kayak, YOU WILL NOT LIKE KAYAKING!

2. Buying a short kayak because its easier to carry and transport. Long kayaks go faster and straighter – and if you don’t think this matters, try paddling a pool toy across a lake and you will see what I mean. Short kayaks are great for white water because they turn easier. But if you are not into white water, DON’T GET ONE. If you want a lightweight kayak that fits in your car, check out the huge range of quality inflatable kayaks that are now available – you’ll be much happier than you would be with a short hard shell.

3. Buying a no-name brand. Design is the most important factor in determining the performance. A well designed kayak will glide through the water, be comfortable to sit in, be stable and be durable. If you go with a no-name brand, it is unlikely that the company will have invested heavily in the design, and you may find that it has no momentum, goes in circles or continually veers to one side, digs uncomfortably into your back or your bum, and then breaks.

4. Buying a tandem kayak. If you are soon to participate in the Olympics tandem kayak race, then this purchase might be justified. But if you are a recreational kayaker and you think you might get a tandem so that you can go out with your partner, think again. A bit of independence and distance is healthy in all relationships! Tandems are a cause of tension between kayakers – the person in the back gets splashed, the person in the front isn’t setting a steady rhythm, either person isn’t paddling enough, etc – and when you want to have a break from all this, you are stuck with a kayak that you can’t take out by yourself. If you are hooked on the romance of the tandem, compromise with a convertible kayak that can be paddled solo or tandem.

5. Reading kayak reviews without considering 1-4 above. When you are reading a review, think about whether the person might have made any of the mistakes I have listed. They may be complaining that an inflatable kayak got a puncture on the second use, for example, but did they buy a cheap unknown brand? Similarly, if they are complaining that the kayak is hard to steer straight, is it too short? And if they are complaining about their paddling partner, forgive them – tandem kayaks bring out the worst in people!

Emily Peyton has five years experience selling kayaks in Australia as the owner of

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“The most important things are length, width and weight,” Kitt says. “You have to get the right boat for the right job. The main difference is distance. You have to determine how far you want to paddle. A longer boat goes farther with less effort”.

Day 74 – 1.5 Hour

First coat of varnish is applied. 2-3 more coats to go. The smell is terrible in the house. We are moving the project to the garage to complete the project. Weather is finally becoming warm enough to finish everything there, plus I have better light.

First coat of varnish is applied. 2-3 more coats to go.

Day 75-77 – 4 Hour

3 ½ coats of varnish later and I pulled off the painters tape. I will have to repaint parts of the hull. In the better light I can finally see where it didn’t cover well and I have some varnish runs. I have installed the seat back and drain plugs. Next I will be applying the contact cement for the seat after the varnish cures completely. I must say I am pretty happy.

3 ½ coats of varnish later and I pulled off the painters tape.

Day 78 – 1 Hour

Short day today. Installed the seat. I used a “dry erase” marker to outline the seat placement and estimated the interior space necessary to apply the contact cement. After allowing it to dry, I positioned wax paper over the surfaces. This allowed me to place the seat in position without immediate contact being made. I then pulled the wax paper out and applied some bricks and spacer to hold it in position.

I positioned wax paper over the surfaces.

Day 79-80 – 1 Hour

I touched up the hull with a little more paint in the areas where it did not cover well. DONE! Moved it outside for some photos and realized I hadn’t installed the foot braces. It will be in the water this week.

DONE! Moved it outside for some photos

DONE! Moved it outside for some photos

Day 81 – IN THE WATER!

Today we led the boat to water and it did swim. Most rewarding part was the smile on my lady’s face. It is exactly what we were looking for in another boat. Now our biggest problem will be to find some place to store it among the other boats the two of us have. We are now up to eight. I am certain it will get much usage.

This has been a great project. The major problem with the build was shown in Report 7. Trying to fill the fillets between the planks in one step was the killer. If I had done this in two steps I estimate it would have reduced 20-30 hours from the build and given me a much smoother surface to finish. Well, that is why I documented the build. Don’t repeat my errors, learn from them.


The least expensive kayak is the “right” kayak!

When I first opened I had a customer who bought a kayak. The next year he came back and got a better one. The same happened the next year and the year after. The lesson I learned from this is to make sure you have room to grow as a paddler. Had this customer bought a better right kayak the first year he might not have ended up with a garage full. ( This is a little tricky since if you get a kayak that is too advanced you could become discouraged.) TJ.

Ask the dealer! Most dealers will have sold hundreds of kayaks and gotten feedback from their customers. Any reputable dealer will recommend the right kayak he/she thinks is best suited for your enjoyment. After all, do you want to take advice from the most knowledgeable person in the room or the least knowledgeable? LM.

Test Paddling – As a rule, I think test paddling is not a good way to choose your next purchase.Some times I insist the customer tests the kayak first especially if I think the kayak is too advanced for them, but usually beginners who test paddle will under buy. They buy the right kayak they feel comfortable in today and a month later regret buying such a basic boat. I can’t tell you how many people have come into my shop after buying a totally inappropriate boat for what they want to do and tell me I test paddled it and it was stable. If you do test paddle, listen to the Pro. They have seen hundreds of beginners and if they say you can handle a more advanced kayak you most likely can. After all they don’t want to sell you some thing you are going to be complaining about. TK.

Paddling Festivals/Shows – If you have never been to one I highly recommend going. There are usually dozens of manufacturers reps there and these shows are a good source of information. Now for the bad part, the vast majority of shows are put on by one store. When you get there it looks like a bunch of competing dealers, when in fact there is only one. It doesn’t matter which kayak you buy it all goes in the same cash box. Some shows like the East Coast Canoe and Kayak Fest have competing dealers. I really like these shows as you can get some seriously good deals at them. CF.

“The most important things are length, width and weight,” Kitt says. “You have to get the right boat for the right job. The main difference is distance. You have to determine how far you want to paddle. A longer boat goes farther with less effort” Read More Kayaking CNY