I was reading the specs for some of the LL Kayaks and the 9.6’ one says it is an excellent tracker. Could a 9.6 be an excellent tracker? I thought longer made better tracking. Thank you. Betsy.
I not familiar with the specific hull here but the idea that tracking increases with length is a bit overly broad and isn’t necessarily always true. It does increase when the length to beam and length to draft ratios increase. In other words if one takes a hull that is 10 feet long and enlarges it in every way until it is 15 ft. in length, tracking will remain the same. If one increases length to 15 ft. but keeps the same beam then tracking will improve. The same holds true for length/draft ratios.
A short hull can be designed to track well but might suffer in other areas such as stability.
Hope this helps.
The Amount Of Rocker…
if you have a 9'6" boat with no rocker (and especially with a pronounced keel line running the length of it like some rec boats), it will track like a train. If you have a boat 15' boat with say 3-4" of rocker om tje front and back, it will want to turn one way or the other if you put any type of sweep motion in your stroke. Basically the bottom of the rocker acts like a pivot point while the bow and stern are relatively free from the water.
Length will give you more speed (until you, the engine, dont' have enough horsepower to get up to and maintain the speed). With two boats of the same length, one with out a rocker and one with a rocker, the former will have more effective length in the water than the latter. Thus more speed and more tracking.
If you want to turn easier with a tracking type of boat, then you put in on edge and put some sweep on the stroke. When the boat is on edge, you essentially made the side of the boat the "bottom." The curve side of the boat acts like a rocker and also shortens the effective length.
What they said
Also, typical ad copy on rec boats is going to say they are excellent trackers, surprisingly fast for their size, stable and manueverable. No substitute for getting in one and paddling.
Having said that, my first boats were used Old Town Otters. And while they were not excellent trackers, they were great for exploring small lakes, ponds, inlets and slow moving creeks and rivers. They got me around and I kept up with the bigger boats on club flatwater paddles–which are typically done at easy to moderate paces. Depending on your use, whether or not it is truly an “excellent tracker” may not be that important.
Length is a factor but so is width. Also you will learn to make the boat go in a straight as your skills improve. Best advice: GO PADDLING. Vaughn Fulton
Well, it’s probably a WW…
…kayak where tracking might have a different
meaning relative to how most people think of
tracking in a touring boat.
please elaborate on the different definitions of tracking. Thanks