new kayak re-entry method - survey

I have designed, patented and prototyped a device that aids in kayak re-entry. After four years of R+D, building prototypes and testing I have the product complete. I should be manufacturing this product but I can’t quite bring myself to borrow the thousands of dollars necessary to bring this product to market. So, I have a question to ask my fellow kayakers, but first let me tell you what this product can do.

1 The product enables a kayaker to quickly get back in their boat after a wet exit.

2 The kayak will be EMPTY of water when re-entered.

3 The product will help you get back in your boat in a minute to a minute and a half. (I paddle a Wilderness Systems Tempest 170, this boat has a small cockpit. I am 6 foot tall, 195lbs. and 50+ years old. I can re-enter in 55 to 90 seconds) The best fact about this device is, you don’t have to be an athelete to re-enter your boat.

4 The device and method of use creates a stability that allows for re-entry even in waves.

5 The product weighs about 4.5 lbs.

The cost of manufacturing will bring the retail price to $180. to $190.

THE QUESTION: would you really spend $180. to $190. for a product you may never use???

Many Thanks in advance for your comments.

If you have the patent in hand
why be cryptic about what your invention is and how it works? More specifics would help people evaluate whether it’s something they’d pay for.

No but many would
I whitewater kayak rather than sea kayak. However, if I did sea kayak, I don’t think I would spend the money because I am very comfortable with my roll.

However, many people are not as comfortable, and likely would spend the money. Or, people doing extended trips far from shore may enjoy the extra safety net even if they do have good rolls.


– Last Updated: Jan-08-06 6:40 PM EST –

does it permantently attach to the boat? why will the boat be empty? It's hard to pump from outside, and untill QCC learns where a rear cockpit bulkhead should go you can't easily lift and dump those boats.

I'd rather see the community buy a couple of days lessons and practice what they have learned.

The question

– Last Updated: Jan-04-06 11:24 PM EST –

The question is, if this is indeed patented (and a quick search of kayak related patents shows nothing new granted since Timmy's Sponsons and the Roll-Aid), why you can't give us enough details to judge the actual invention - and ask us a real question vs. some vague and amateurish query that will tell you nothing, except maybe what you're really in for...

Sorry, but when it comes to these so called safety devices - this is, as comedians say - a "tough room" (as you're no doubt already noticing). Lots of users at all levels, product designers (like myself - though not of paddling gear except for my own use so far), and many in the industry.

As to your actual question? Sure I'd spend that much for something I'd never use - but not for a kayak recovery aid.

Learning some fairly simple techniques (that I'd call basic kayaking skills) takes care of that, for free. A solid brace prevents capsize, a roll gets you up in a few seconds. A cheap paddle float works as a back-up (and if you can't get in and up in 90 seconds with one you need practice). More complicated aids tend to offer a false sense of security that might encourage people to forgo those skills and get into situations beyond their skill and fitness. Fast deploying ones tend to be one shot affairs too, while capsize inducing situations tend to repeat in rapid succession. In some cases, the aids create their own risks and complications.

But of course you already accounted for all that and more - so enough suspense. Dazzle us with your better moustrap!

PS - Too late now, but you might have wanted to be posting here during development. Great resource.

PSS - If you plan to hang around, add a profile.

Nope, waste of money.

Asking the wrong people
"would you really spend $180. to $190. for a product you may never use???"

As Greyak pointed out, some of us WILL spend that much money for something we might never use, an EBERB (sp?) comes to mind. However, I (and probably many others) will not very likely to spend that much for something that:

  1. I may never use
  2. Duplicates something else costing $18-19 (paddle-float)

    Most who frequent this board already knows paddle-float re-entry (or roll). Once learn, we realize it’s not hard. So you’re asking the wrong clientile.

    Your best client are those who’re afraid to even try a paddle-float re-entry. They will fall for ANY crutch that will give them an excuse NOT to learn. My former girl friend would be one of such person. (though after 2 years, she finally tried it and was amazed at how easy to do it) These are also the kind of people that if they bought that device and got in over their head, they’ll sue YOU for the demage.

No. I think you wasted your time
I can wet exit and be back in the boat in about a minute and not have much water in the cockpit. Or I can just roll back up in less than 5 seconds and not sweat it

I don’t think it would sell. Sounds like a great idea, but for that kind of money I don’t think most would buy it, and I think you would lose money on the deal.

Too Fancy
Assuming my roll fails (which it often does), and I can’t just cowboy up (which is usually really solid), and my paddle float (the foam type because it will never leak) doesn’t work, then i would rely on a more complicated device? I don’t trust inflatable paddle floats, and any water that would tip my kayak would be challenging to re-enter in anyway. I doubt a more complicated machine could be relied on in this circumstance, therefore, I would not pay $180 for it. I would pay $180 to hire one of my guide friends to be backup in an assisted rescue, or to teach me to roll better.

That sure would shoot the hell
out of my swimming to shore in cold water post!

I wouldn’t spend any money on it. It would mean all these years of setting aside one day each season for “self rescue” practice would have been a complete waist.

-Blow up paddle float(about 10 seconds)

-Put paddle in float and under back bungees (about 10 seconds)

  • pull myself up on rear deck, roll over and slide into seat (about 30 seconds)

    -pump out cockpit (one minute)

    Total is about two minutes

    If my stupid Seal Line rudder isn’t up in the air where I would get de-balled I could cut about half a minute off by doing a “cow boy” entry.

    Naw, I’ll pass and apply those bucks towards a new smaller blade wing paddle!



Not me, but you are asking the wrong
crowd. You should be asking paddle shops if they can sell it to their customers. Paddlers here are too damn independent. You need the needy and got to have one paddlers that the local shop sells all kinds of unneeded stuff to.

You need to go to the trade shows, get reps to push it, and all those other expensive things.

Remember when in business for yourself there is no one that you will work so hard and long for, for so little pay as yourself. You have got to do it for the love of doing it, not for the envisioned financial gain or you are defeated before you start.

It would be interesting to look at or hear a more detailed how it works narrative if you care to share.

Good Luck,



I agree with the others
However there might be a market with some of the guide services, depending on how it works it might be useful if your leading a bunch of relatively inexperienced boaters. Can’t tell with the info given.



maybe a dumb question but
Why would you spend the thousands of dollars necessary to patent it if you knew you couldn’t bring yourself to spend thousands more to manufacture it? Did you have a change of heart about it?

If you already have patent in hand, you could consider approaching a paddle sports manufacturer to parter with you in the manufacturing and distribution.

Try kayak gear makers
They already know the market and what it’ll bear. Without enough to detail to answer questions like what kind of space does it take up on the deck, in the cockpit or whatever, it’s pretty hard for anyone to answer. I’d wager that it has to be something that auromatically inflates, in which case the closest simile is probablyu the BackUp RollAid device. That fits handily on the front deck and comes in for more like $120 US, though there is the cost of the cartridges.

This is not the place
This is a PERSONAL advice and help forum, not a personal business forum. Please take this the best way. If you are soley doing this to be of help to others, and do not plan to make money, share it here imo. iF not, perhaps, and again imo only, maybe you should poll your fellow paddlers about market plans not here.

not many thieves among us
just a lot of people who love kayaks and love to paddle.

i think you would have been safe if the product was in the process of being patented in showing us the actual gizmo.

Greyak didnt sugar coat the truth in the skills needed and false security that can come with gear.

Be realistic, show the goods.

Prolly not…because…
Once I see your idea, I will have ideas to improve it (to MY satisfaction) and then I will ask: “Can I make one of these myself for less?”

Thanks for the idea sir, now down to Home Depot for materials…


Sea Sock that is actually an inflatable bag, with replaceable CO2 Cartridges…Wet Exit…then blow up the bag, forcing the water out of the cockpit and the sock, then deflate and reenter…NO PUMPING.


… just enter and inflate. You won’t come out and water won’t come in! L

Your way might me safer! But your way the cockpit will refill as you get in - and take waves over the coaming - and maybe recapsize - and oops - no more CO2 for another shot…

Thing don’t tend to deflate very quickly/cleanly either, meaning it’s in your way. Even the simple paddle float suffers from this, and dealing with the float once your in and pumped is the weak link there IMO.

I would buy it if…
You can get the weight down 5oz., put some carbon and kevlar in it somewhere, and double the price.

I would not use it though… status symbol only.