Henderson foot pump

Anyone know where to purchase a Henderson foot pump now that GRO is no longer in business?

No, I don’t know anything about foot pumps but I was reading my book on rescues and recoveries today and thought about how handy your electric pump was. Are you abandoning the electric? I was going to ask where you got it and who installed it, etc.

Have you contacted the new GRO?

Probably have, just checking.

Hi Rex
Am trying to decide between no pump, a foot pump or the Rapid Runner system for the Black Pearl. The RR pump lets water in through the thru hull, which wouldn’t be good in a very low volume Greenland boat, and is a even bit of a hassle in the OI. But it sure is convenient.

Tried a while back during the transition, and couldn’t get ahold of anyone. Will try again.

Information from GRO
Hi John,

We do still carry the Henderson Foot Pump Kit, but we’ve changed it slightly to meet consumer demand. The new kit includes a pump, outlet, 4 hose clamps, strum box, and 6’ of hose and costs $169.99. This kit allows you to run the pump intake from the bulkhead to underneath the seat, the old kit didn’t. After most of the water is pumped out, the last inch or so goes to the lowest part of the boat which is under the seat and was impossible to remove with the old pump. The new kit eliminates this problem.

If you’d like to order one please give us your mailing address (no P.O. boxes, please), phone number, Visa/MC/Discover number, expiry date, and the card’s billing address (if different from the shipping address).


Andy Knepley

Great River Outfitters

US Importer & Distributor of Valley Sea Kayaks

One Phillips Street

North Kingstown, RI 02852

Ph 401.667.2670;F 401.667.2680


I had all that and ended up not…

– Last Updated: Feb-03-07 2:37 PM EST –

...wanting all the clutter in my cockpit. You have to figure out a way to secure the strum box back by the seat and my dealer used some thin bungee. But with that long intake stretched back to your seat, I found that I was damaging it by getting in and out of the boat, ect. and was also concerned if it could contribute to any entrapment issues. Seemed 'cluttery'.

In addition, the longer the intake and pressure side hoses are, the less efficient your pumping will be due to having to move water farther and the increased frictional resistance caused by the moving water through the hoses comes into play--as always, the longer the hose, the more energy/pressure is needed to pump at the same rate up to some theoretical and practical point of no increased discharge pressure/volume. It may not be much different in this case, but I figured I'd like to make the system as efficient as possible given the likely sketchy conditions I would be in if I really needed it and that means short hoses. So, I did this:


My perception afterwards was that I was able to pump more water faster. I also wanted this to work better...so who knows? :) If you look closely, you can see that I kind of fashioned a strum box of sorts at the end of the intake hose as the hose follows the curve of the bulkhead down to the hull. I can get all but about 3/4" or less of water out of the cockpit and this amount left doesn't seem to bother me, but is the downfall of what I have done--it will leave more water in the cockpit that a carefully placed and secured strum box in the rear of the cockpit. When I get to a reasonably safe spot, I ask a buddy to push down on my bow and hold it a few seconds which drains the water in the cockpit forward to the pump and a few quick strokes gets out the remainder--seems to work well for me. Something to think about, I guess.

Henderson Foot Pump
In waves, you can just pump when the bow of the boat is down. Shorter hoses seem to be the way to go to keep clutter down in the cockpit.

The Henderson pump works pretty well for moving water out of the boat on the go. You can pump for a while–until the pump sucks your sprayskirt down into the cockpit–while you keep moving. In lumpy conditions you might slowly empty the cockpit over 15-20 minutes without having to stop paddling.

Interesting article on a foot pump install in the archived, on-line Sea Kayaker articles. Worth a look.


I’ve done it both ways (back in Pintail and forward in Quest and Explorer) and like the simplicity of the forward setup for general paddling. OTOH, it is nice to get the bit of water that pools toward the back of the cockpit when rolling. Interestingly, I set the pump up so that the long axis of the board is horizontal rather than vertical and ran the thru hull out just above the sheer line. Makes the hose fit a bit harder but no spray in the face. With the RR Bilge system (in an OI), everything is behind the seat, which is very convenient. However, I won’t have room in a Black Pearl to install the pump back there, hence, the dilemma. What I really want is to be able to pump out the water that gets in when rolling, which means intake at rear, so not sure what to do. Nothing’s perfect I’m afraid.

really like the intake going straight down. (nice and clean job)Thought about doing that on the last few pumps I’ve put in. The only problem is that I like the discharge over on the edge of the deck so that the pumped spray is blown out and away instead of straight up in front of you, where it gets you in the face if there is any wind.

Instead I’ve been mounting them the other way in order to get the discharge facing the way I like.

This is the pump I installed in my wifes Anas Acuta…easy to see it all because she likes the foot pegs still.

Pump going down wave, or just paddle backwards as you pump.


Best Wishes


You’ve been through this before…

– Last Updated: Feb-03-07 4:13 PM EST –

...sounds like.

My pic doesn't show it, but I've cut the board down to essentially a square and put some thin saw curf marks at right angles through it for better traction. With the long board I was always hitting it off to the side and not pumping efficiently and my foot was slipping off. The smaller size board with traction seems to work quite well.

Have fun!

Edit: Updated pic to show what I'm talking about:


Have you guys found…
…that you need to take the pump apart once a year or so to make sure everthing is in place and working right? I’ve found the board can rotate and ‘unscrew’ to the point that the pump is not sealed and becomes very innefficient and/or the spring gets out of place. Just curious if any similar experiences.

Great question. I haven’t had to do any maintenance so far, but also have avoided thinking about it since it is such a hassle getting to the pump. Another reason I may go with the RR system in the BP.

had the pump shaft on the pump in my Nordkapp unscrew. The nut came off so that the board and shaft would come out…it still pumped. I took it out, took it apart and just put the nut back on and tightened it with a little locktite blue on the thread. Works fine…sooo…if you decide to turn the board for any reason, turn it clockwise, so it is less prone to loosen.

Best Wishes


That’s pretty much what I found as well.
Good to learn other experiences. Thanks.

jmdens post…

I have the pump system GRO is talking about where the intake runs along the keel line and under the seat. I also have my wife’s kayak outfitted from P&H with the intake running straight down like the pics show here.

I’ve found no problem with the clutter situation and the pump effiency is the same as my wife’s pump. It’s a fairly long hose running all the way back, but it pumps out a cockpit of water in about the same time my wife’s henderson pump drains her’s. Plus it really seems to grasp that last little bit you would typically find along the bottom with the hose running straight down.