First Scratch Fears

Jack L…
…you are possibly giving away hints to your age. Carter hasn’t had “Little Liver” pills for years. :slight_smile:

just not concrete.

Like new car … a kayak is a 4x4 …
If you buy a shiny new 4x4, are you gonna use it off road? That doesn’t mean you have to go smashing into trees and boulders. But it does mean an occasional scratch or ding.

Most kayaks are like 4x4’s. Especially where you describe paddling, and what you want to do with it. I have owned more than a few sea kayaks, plastic and glass. I remember my first outing in my new Nordlow, one of the most beautiful kayaks out there. Going over submerged sea wall, timed it just a second wrong, and a wave moved my angle just a bit off, and dropped the boat down on to a rock. Just a scratch, but that sound! Thought I tore a hole on the darn thing.

I also take good care of my things, mainly to keep resale value up there. I guess there are too basic philosophies on this. One is “use it up”, and the other is take care and preserve the value in case you want to trade up.

My POV is neither is wrong, unless perhaps taken to extremes. Depending on your POV, take enough care of the boat to have fun with it, and when you get a scratch or ding, don’t let it spoil things for you.

Unless your goal is to keep it in show room condition, go use it.

Avoid the avoidable
At the playpark where I used to go, most WW kayakers would put their boats on the shore, get in, and push themselves off the rocks or dirt into the water. SCCCCRRRRRRRAPE! I guess they thought it looked cool.

There was no need to do it that way there. I always put the kayak in an eddy and was able to skirt up without trouble, same as launching at a lake.

The kayak has scratches from paddling in rocky, shallow moving water, as expected. I just didn’t add any that were easily avoidable–such as “cool” launches or dragging instead of shouldering.

Give up the idea of avoiding all scratches, because you might as well just not paddle. But you don’t have to regard the boat as a disposable item, either.

At my age, I can even get away with
telling 22 year old female paddlers that they are as cute as the dickens!

Jack L

Don’t run it up on the beach,
don’t drag it, pick it up and carry it, coat it with 303 once a year, and store it out of the sun when not in use.

I have a 11 year old Pungo 140 that has been treated this way and it still looks nearly new. Sure it has a few scratches on the bottom where I hit a crab trap, a stump, a barnicle covered log, and a few rocks and oyster shells over the years, but it is in far better shape than most plastic boats I see that are only a couple of years old.

This is too funny
Your worried about a PLASTIC kayak, LOL. I bang the heck out of mine.

Now if you said you had a nice new 3 to 4 grand fiberglass gelcoated kayak I could under stand. I hate getting scratches on my gelcoat. It was hell in my recent trip to Georgian Bay.Rock landings every were. The two plastic kayaks on the trip could just ram themselves onto the island at will. Were I had to gently try to carry my kayak to shore which wasn’t always possible.

With your paddle, if you put it in the water, it will get wet, some of those water spots are hard to get out. As for rocks, mud and sand, don’t even go there. tkamd

Not for me.
I probably paddle more times per year than most folks on this site and all of my boats look like brand new. I don’t believe that taking good care of things is a vice. That’s not to say that there aren’t a few little marks if you look close enough, but none of them are on purpose.

My philosophy is that I try very hard to respect the work and care that the craftsmen who built these boats put into creating them and as long as I own them, they will not be abused. I don’t care what other people think–that’s just the way I am.