I recently installed a harmony rudder system on my tarpon 120 but I seem to be having an issue with the rudder rising while im paddling and not sitting directly into the water. Its fine when I deploy it but gradually as I paddle I notice it has raised because of the drag in the water forcing it up. Obviously I thought it was just a simple adjustment to tighten up the guide ropes. But even when very tight I still have the same problem. I know iit shouldn’t really tight as ive noticed the rudder bracket pulling and bending and starting to damage the kayak. So ive taken the tension off and watched many video’s online and everything I have done seems correct. So im now at a loss.
You may be paddling too fast. And try
occasionally paddling backwards.
Seriously, though, does Tarpon 120 mean it is only 12 feet long? Maybe you should ditch the rudder. I removed all of the rudder assembly from my Necky Looksha Sport. I don’t think rudders do much for short boats, but they are terrific for long ones.
tarpon 120 rudder system
Well I certainly will be going faster once ive fitted my minn kota engine to it and a sail.
Yes it is 12ft long I do like having the rudder on as it does help but just frustrating that im getting this problem.
Realistic answer vs one you hope to hear
The most logical answer to your question is that you should improve your paddling technique as a first step. If you do, you’ll wonder why anyone would even dream of putting a rudder on such a boat. That’s what the first person to reply tried to convey in sort of a joking way. You say you like what the rudder does, but seriously, the boat already has a skegged stern which discourages it from wandering as long as paddle power is applied properly, and at that short length, making sharp turns should still be pretty simple. For even sharper maneuvering, you could do what canoers do when in tight quarters, which is to rely more on pivots and side-slipping than simply “steering like a ship”, and both of those methods can’t be done at all if a rudder is present. On your boat, all the rudder will do is continue to keep you from learning how to use your paddle. That only sounds harsh at this time because you haven’t learned for yourself how true it is.
tarpon 120 rudder system issue solved
Think ive fixed the issue now. I nipped up the nut and bolt in the centre of the wheel on the rudder. Its just a very fine adjustment. Too much and you can’t pull the trolley ropes.
Shame there is no trouble shooting about this with the harmony system instructions nor any videos or help from fellow kayakers or the retailer.
The old saying if you want something doing, do it yourself