Dagger Green Boat - what float bags are recommended?

I just bought a Dagger Green Boat. It has some kind of a front bulkhead but I’m not sure if that’s water tight. The stern has no floatation. So my questions are:

  1. Do I need bow and stern, or just stern float bags?
  2. Any idea what size?
  3. Who makes a good float bag? NRS? Harmony? Other?

Thanks in advance.

Interesting boat choice, unless you’re planning on racing whitewater. The Green is a big whitewater boat, but it is fast (for WW at least). The front bulkhead is a footbrace, designed to really let you stand on it in vertical drops. I’d probably go with NRS (just because I’ve had good luck with them) and a quick phone call to them will tell you what size.

What kind of water are you planning to paddle? In case you’re interested, the Green Race, which the boat was really designed for, is coming up on November 6th.

In general, you want flotation in a boat (usually in the form of float bags or trapped air waterproof bulkheads) for when you flip over and swim.

On a river, you need enough flotation so it floats higher and is easier to swim to shore and to drain on shore.

In kayaks used in open water, more flotation is needed - enough so that even with the cockpit flooded, the boat floats high enough up that you can get back in and still have the cockpit combing higher than the water (if it isn’t higher you could never drain the boat). Sea kayaks get this through having front and back waterproof bulkheads trapping air. Sit on top kayaks get this by being a hollow boat filled with air. I order to get this level of flotation in a Green Boat, you will want to pretty much max out on the float bags possible.

I have float bags in all my sea kayaks front and rear. In case I knock the hatch off. At least I’ll still have flotation front and rear. 16 Seattle Sports float bags :joy:

Thanks for your response. I agree, max floatation is good.

Thanks for your response. I actually did contact NRS about this, and they gave me their standard answer, which was for me to measure the boat to see what size float bags to order. I have some float bags in some of my other boats but they are much different - a couple of sea kayaks and a shorter ww boat, so I can’t just use those.

I probably should have been clearer about the fact that I have ordered, but not yet received, the Green Boat. So I can’t really measure it, hence, my question. I also am not sure whether the front bulkhead will be removable (guessing yes, based on a previous ww kayak). If it is removable, I’ll buy float bags for bow and stern. If not, just stern. Wasn’t sure because I think some of the hybrid / crossover kayaks (Dagger Katana, Wave Sport Ethos, etc.) do have permanent bulkheads that cannot be removed. I think so anyway…

Yes, I’m aware of the Green Boat’s design origins and the Green Race. I’ve owned 11 kayaks of various types over the past 20 years. So a little about why I chose this boat:

No, I won’t be doing the race. I’m actually transitioning away from (real) whitewater because I’m getting older and for family reasons need to start paddling closer to home, and paddling calmer venues. But I really enjoy whitewater kayaks… the way they fit, spin, carve, roll, etc. So I decided I’d buy the Green Boat as an exercise boat. There are a couple of put-ins locally where I can just go, play in the easy Class 1-2 waves for a bit, surf, maybe do some attainment and come back down. Might even take it to the lake and paddle around (although I always feel like that looks kind of stupid… I should have my Necky Looksha there… but hey, it’s exercise).

Does that help at all? Might need to wait until the boat comes in, do some measuring and then order the float bags. It might not come in until spring anyway. Ugh.

p.s. The float bags I currently own for my other boats are NRS. But I recently read a review that said Harmony float bags were sturdier (although I’ve not had a problem with my NRS ones). Was just curious if I had missed something over the last couple of years since I’ve bought mine.

Thanks for the reply, and for adding a little more information. I have to admit when I read your post I assumed that someone had sold you this boat and that you really didn’t know what you’re getting, because it is kind of a niche boat. My bad. Your explanation makes perfect sense, and it sounds like it will be a good boat for you. In the past year or so with so an increase in the popularity of kayaking, I’ve seen many examples of people getting the wrong boat for their intended paddling either because that was all that was available, or it is what they were talked into.

I’m a little bummed that NRS just gave you a standard answer. There was a time when they would have tried to figure it out for you, or put you on hold to see if anybody paddled a Green that might know, or even get your info and call you back. You might try the Nantahala Outdoor Center a try. This is from their website:

Need some help? Give us a call at 828-488-7230 and we will help determine the correct size float bags for your boat(s).

Being not too terribly far from the Green, there’s a better chance that someone either has or is familiar with the boat. Good luck!

I’m normally a fan of NRS, but my Harmony float bags are bomber. Strong recommend.


In my 12r (pyranha’s answer for a green race boat) I just used existing NRS float bags from my shorter boats and stuffed in some float toys in the very end. I did put one float bag in front of my bulk head but admit it is hard to reach the hose to add air. Personally, I’ve been really disappointed with the quality of NRS air bags- The tubing cracks, valves fall off, they rip out where the tubing connects to the airbag so I’m using float toys in most of my boats now. Much like I did 40 years ago. Some space behind the seat isn’t bad- for first aid kit, pin kit, and throw bag

Big volume kayaks are particularly hard to wrangel full of water so flotation is a great idea. I use my 12r on class II-III with no aspirations of paddling the stretch of river where the green race occurs. Why drive a short boat (creeker,river runner, playboat) when you can enjoy the smooth ride of a cadillac (ww longboat)!

Thank you, I did decide to go with Harmony. I think they’ll be fine.

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Sorry for the delayed response. Yes, I can see why you’d assume that, since I didn’t offer much detail. With so many newbies getting into kayaking, I’ve also witnessed them being sold kayaks that are not appropriate to the kind of paddling they want to do.

I appreciate your comments and advice on the float bags. I ended up going with Harmony, and I think those will work fine. Thanks again, and happy paddling.

Thanks for your response. Yes, that Pyranha 12R is nice too. I looked at that, and also at the Liquid Logic Stinger. Ultimately, I decided on the Green Boat for its slightly smaller cockpit, lower volume. I like a snug fit.

Agree, the longer narrower Green Boat will likely have a different “feel” than my other ww kayaks. Can’t wait to get it out on the water. Still awaiting delivery, and I’m told it might be spring before I get it. I guess everybody is having production issues. So I guess I’ll take my Looksha (17 footer) out this weekend. Enjoy the above-freezing temps while I can.

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I LOVE my made in the USA Watershed stow float bags. In my Dagger Katana 10.7, I carry two Futa Stowfloats in my stern hatch, & one Salmon Stowfloat in my bow, forward of my foot brace bulkhead. Amongst those three Watershed bags, & a 10L SealLine bag behind my seat, I am able to carry enough gear for a 3-4 day, self support float.

The difference between the Salmon & the Futa are how they proportionally differ in shape—the Futa being longer, yet narrower; & the Salmon being shorter, but broader.

Watersheds durability is BOMBER. & they are a U.S. Military contractor for gear bags.

That said, if you don’t intend/need to carry gear for overnights, then these bags are likely overkill & I would then steer you towards the NRS float bags.

Having owned a couple of Dagger WW boats, I know for a fact that your foot brace bulkhead is DEF not water tight, but it’s 100% removable/adjustable. So you will DEF be able to stuff a bag or two forward of that.
As for the volume of space behind your seat(?) … that I could not say. However, I could all but guarantee that the stern bulkhead will be water tight, & not removable.

& I can also say w/ confidence, that you will LOVE the Dagger outfitting & comfort. Dagger has by FAR, the best outfitting setup of any WW manufacturer.

ENJOY :call_me_hand:t4::love_you_gesture:t4::v:t4: