I just got my first real kayak, a Sealution 16’. I’ve been using some smaller rec kayaks (8-10’), off and on for a while.
For most of my life I’ve been boating in the Gulf of Mexico (Florida coast), and Lake Ontario (mouth of the Salmon River by the Selkirk lighthouse). I’ve lived on the Atlantic side of Florida for 7 years now, but have never owned a boat here. I recently brought down a 8’ kayak from NY for my kids to use. That turned into getting another kayak so I could go with one of them. And then most recently, I bought the Sealution from FB marketplace so I have something more my size.
I’ve been reading on here a bunch, about paddling techniques, how to roll, safety equipment I should have etc, but still have a few noob questions.
I’m in the process of replacing the rudder control cables in my kayak (one snapped). While I was looking in the cockpit, I noticed there is a bungee by the left foot pedal. What would this have been for, and can I remove it? Seems like it might catch my foot if I need to get out (wet exit). It’s attached to a fitting on the side.
My Sealution is the poly version. I’m not quite sure what the year is, but going by the Wilderness Systems site, it’s either a 1993 or 2003. I think all the early ones were fiberglass, so maybe it’s a 2003. S/N WKY123102F393. It’s supposed to be the last four digits are the month (letter F), the year (ends with 3), and then the model number (93).
I’ve read that since my kayak is plastic, I don’t need to wax the bottom, and should just use some Aerospace 303 to protect it. Mine has some scratches on the bottom (typical FL boat, there is a lot of sharp stuff at the bottom). I cut the pieces of plastic hanging off with a razor. There isn’t any type of buffing I can do on the bottom of this to smooth it out more? I’ve read I shouldn’t use anything abrasive on it.
My last question involves the paddle. Right now I have a cheaper Amazon paddle. It weighs right at 35oz. I’ve read I should buy the lightest paddle I can afford. At what weight will I notice a significant difference while paddling? Something 5oz lighter? 10oz lighter?
My goals for kayaking are to go a few times a week on the intracoastal. It’s about half a mile from me. I cycle around 7k miles a year, and want to add in kayaking for more of an upper body workout. So, 1 hour Kayak trips going for speed and efficiency. I’ve already noticed the Sealution is much faster than the smaller kayaks I was using before.
There will of course be more family oriented trips where we go the speed a 9 and 11 year old can handle:).
Thanks for any input you have.