Rudder and water flow

Hello all, What a great site.

I currnetly have a Tempest 170 which i use as my work boat. I am looking to buy a composite boat and like everyone should is shop around and try etc.

The kayak I am currently looking at is the Mirage 580 (Aust Boat) which has an intergated rudder which proceeds pass the keel

My Question. Will the rudder still be affective if I cut the bottom of the Rudder to bring it inline with the keel.

yes i know in rough seas it will be hopless, but in moderate conditions will the rudder still work efficiently in reguards to water flow and all that good techo stuff???




3 versions
The Mirage has 3 different rudders available, the one shown on the website is the deepest of the three. I think the shortest rudder is level with the keel and it would probably be easier to order one of them than to cut the one you have. That way you can still change rudders to suit conditions.


Welcome Rob if you get a mirage 580

– Last Updated: Oct-15-06 9:58 PM EST –

make sure and write a review for us yanks! I'be been interested in that line for a while. Thanks!

please listen to the maker
Mirage does look like quite the boat. Why do you want to cut the rudder?

if you cut it
I’m not buying it used

To answer your original question…
…no, it won’t be as effective, at least not in anything other than flat water, as the rudder will be out of the water a greater percentage of the time.

Mirage 580 and its rudders
I have a Mirage 580 with both types of rudders. The bottom of the shorter rudder is flush with the keel and the longer rudder protrudes several inches below the keel. Because the boat has some rocker, the longer rudder still works OK for surf launches. The shorter rudder performs even in rough water (I paddle mostly in the Pacific off of Southern CA). It’s easy to swap rudders out and I keep my second rudder in one of the storage compartments. There’s no need to cut the rudder – just order the shorter “race” rudder.

The 580 is a great boat in rough water and tracks very well. Even though it’s a fast (for a sea kayak), it still has enough stability for me to get back in without a paddle float.

My friend Canunut
attached a bicycle deraileur to his Sea-line rudder assembly so he can raise and lower the rudder depth according to conditions. Whether he gets an extra hundredth of a knot out of it during a race, I dunno. But it sure makes for a great conversation piece.

Lightspeed Kayaks have a rudder that can be raised or lowered. I not seen, let alone paddled, one of their boats. The rudder design looks interesting though.