Hey you guys, I have a cheap little Sun Dolphin Aruba 10 kayak and was just wondering if you guys can think of any mods I can do to make it safer and more usable. Thanks in advance.
I would say the safest thing you could ad are float bags. This way if the kayak tips over it wont sink. There are many other things you could do such as ad deck rigging around the perimeter too. But float bags would be my choice to do plus deck rigging wouldn’t cost much. I guess it depends on what you plan to do with it too.
Put wheels on it
Make a downhill go kart out of it
Sorry, couldn’t stop myself
I actaully found that pretty funny
Lakes and rivers
Mostly just small lakes and rivers. By the end of the summer(probably more like next summer) I plan on upgrading to a Perception Sports Conduit 13. I’ll look into some float bags and extra rigging.
Second the float bags
Since you are paddling calm waters, I assume staying within swimming distance of a shoreline, the only thing you need to do to make it safer is make sure you don’t get run over by a motor boat while figuring out how to get you and the boat to shore. The easiest way to assure that is float bags to make the boat very visible, hopefully you as well.
One caution - you should try to get it flipped back upright while in water over your head and see how far you can actually swim towing the thing after putting in the float bags. You might find that you want to add more flotation to displace more water (weight) after your first round, or stay closer to shore. It can be more tiring than you expect.
Anything more robust like perimeter lines… this is a boat that doesn’t belong where they would be needed anyway. The next step would be as you are thinking, a boat that comes with more features.
The boat was designed for places where if it becomes swamped it can be drug to shore and dumped out. Stick to the waters it was designed for and spend your money on good comfortable PFDs or nice paddles which are transferable when you upgrade the boat.
My first boats were similar to those with no bulkheads and they have a couple hundred miles of never being in more than 10 ft of water. With a piece of floating Poly rope tied to the grab handle for a painter it’s recoverable after I’ve waded ashore.
Boats such as this seem to be pretty good at self rescuing; I have found a couple of them washed up on some remote island at different times. The last one wasn’t in too bad a shape, but it was missing the seat and a hatch cover.
High-speed kayak abuse
This is like a go-cart without wheels:
(I suppose this has been posted before, but I missed it.)