Tempest 170 Problems-Flatpick help!

-- Last Updated: May-30-07 9:26 PM EST --

I have a RM 2006 T170.

I am having two issues with paddle float self-rescues

1. The rear lid pops off when I pull myself up on the back deck. Any fix for that to keep it on securely? Screws and bungee cords, etc? In a real situation, that lid coming off could put your life in jeopardy if the rear hatch fills up.

2. No way to hold the paddle securely at a 90 degree angle when doing a paddle float rescue. I slip it under the deck lines behind the cockpit, but those two lines alone aren't enough. Any fix for that?

3. Bulkheads leak--what is that goop you put along the seams to reseal them?

4. Also, anything to seal the hatches better? I've heard someone mention graphite dust of some other lube to make on/off easier and more secure. Easy off though can be dangerous. Any ideas?

On the plus side, the skeg works great ;-)


good luck
1.maybe a new hatch could make the difference is the old one is warped out. This is something folks identified the first few months the Tempests came out. I’d suggest cutting a 1/4" piece of plywood(sealed and painted) to fit perfectly over the hatch and bungie it in place or use 1" poly webbing and buckles. That way all pressure is on the wood and not the hatch. Maybe cut it oversize with a rim to hold it in place.

2. learn to do a pf self-rescue simply by holding the paddle shaft to the back of the coaming. The pf. rescue has limitations that are best met by learning to do it quickly and efficiently without securing it down.

3. Lexcel should do it.

4. I think it’s a flawed design and a hard cover over it should help keep it sealed. You may need to screw in some attachments for the hard cover bungies/webbing. If you want to make it tough and strong get some 4mm okoume plywood and glass the bottom with two layers of 6oz glass and the top with one layer otherwise 5mm-6mm plywood should do it.

Some Options
1. Switch to paddle a modified paddle float recovery technique that doesn’t have you dragging across the hatch:

A. Belly flop across cockpit, drop hip and rotate up, pulling legs in when/where it works best. Pretty similar, but not wasting so much time face down on rear deck.

B. Various leg hook/legs first, face up or completely corkscrewing in options.

C. Paddle float assisted re-entry and roll (best and most useful in textured stuff).

2. Learn the above without securing paddle under lines/straps/bungees. Instead learn to keep it against rear of coaming with one hand holding both shaft and coaming. You’ll likely have to switch hands at some point mid recovery depending on method. If you use option C above - this will no longer be an issue at all as you’re in before you use the paddle and then have both hands on it.

When I learned paddle float entry…
I didn’t have any rigging on the boat at all.

Holding the paddle to the back of the cockpit worked fine and was quicker.

nope and yep and yep
don’t go to the work of ‘building’ plywood/ glass covers…come on now.

try getting a new hatch cover from the dealer. we did have some go out that were not ‘perfect’ and it’s pretty tight tolerances on this part.

If all fails there is a kit to install composite ‘style’ rims on the hatches. it isn’t too hard a fix and is 100% bomber. It removes the roto rim and installs (sealant and faseners) a composite rim.

yep… learn how to re-enter w/o ‘strapping’ your paddle to the boat. i can re-enter a nunmber of ways w/o the bungies and truth be told…the bungies work fine when done correctly. believe me when the dudu hits the fan you don’t want your paddle strapped to the stern deck when doing a r/e.

off to Homer for a while…sorry if I don’t reply. Paddlefest and all!



steve–where to get the composite kit?
to replace the rm rim.

and is lexell(sp?) the sealant to use?

also, does valley make a decent rear hatch for rm t170s?

thanks to all…

more important ? about the kit: $$$? NM

lexel es correcto and
the kits are available thru R/D right now, Customer Service soon.

I can facilitate the sale but I’m off to Alaska for a week.

Put 'er ‘on hold’ and I’ll git 'er done when I get back.

email me your address and the serial number of your boat.


Tempest 170 problems
Re: keeping the paddle at a 90 degree angle:

The best fix is to replace the bungie cords with nylon straps with squeeze-release buckles. Or, just add the straps alongside the bungie cords. The straps hold the paddle like it was bolted to the deck.

so a replacement will work?
I’m just going from what I saw with a couple Tempests. They work ok now?

i’d disagree…
The BEST solution is not to use the rear deck lacing at all. Using the hand to connect the shaft and the rear cockpit coaming is secure and predictable, and gives the paddler control over the paddle shaft at every step of the process. It also positions the body so that the torso is already centered right behind the cockpit (over the day hatch rather than the larger hatch cover), making it less likely that the rear hatch would get dislodged in the first place.

I have a 2006 poly T-170 that I use as my teaching boat, and have demonstrated the paddle-float re-entry dozens of times without ever having an issue with the back hatch. Before going through a hatch replacement, it’d be cheaper and easier to try adjusting your technique first, to see if that takes care of the issue.

tempest 170 paddle float rescue

– Last Updated: Jun-04-07 2:09 PM EST –

to solve the problem of holding the paddle to the right angle of the rear deck, you can do what I did---I purchased a paddle float harness---basically two sets of straps bolted onto the deck---they are made out of nylon webbing and each has a buckle in them and can be tightened by pulling the end of the strap----put the blade of the paddle under the two staps and pull the two staps tight---makes a pretty good harness---you can either make one yourself or purchase them from Frontenac Outfitters in Ontario Canada to avoid the problem of having the paddle strapped to the deck in bad conditions you can simple pull the blade out and voila instant paddle---the other option is to do a reentry and roll with the paddle float---these are fairly easy to do with the tempest---I'm no great athelete but I was able to do one on my first try

Clothes snagging the edge?
I agree about ditching the bungies. Using just the hand to clamp the shaft against the coaming rim is faster and more secure.

I wonder if the OP is trying to “lift” himself up onto the deck rather than lunging across with straight body. Trying to do pullups could cause clothing to snag against the hatch edge. Lunging across does not. Again, it’s a matter of technique.

Some Experience

– Last Updated: Jun-04-07 4:18 PM EST –

My old 170 held the paddle nicely at a 90 degree angle. However I did a different kind of re-entry.

1) Paddle and float at 90 degrees secured under deck lines just behind cockpit. Float is at the starboard side.

2) Paddle shaft to your back, left hand on far side of coaming, right hand on paddle shaft out near the float.

3) Put feet in cockpit. Pull on coaming, push on paddle shaft, and plop your butt in the cockpit.

Some folks will tell you that you're risking a shoulder injury. It never hurt my shoulders.

Now... fellow learner... learn to re-enter and roll and you can forget all this paddle float crap. It's much faster and easier.

come in over the cockpit not rear hatch

are you the same kayakjourneys doing the texas to maine trip at the start of this year? Is it still going? what is the status?

check tecnique
I have a T170. I’m 6ft. I don’t really get near that rear hatch. I do come over the area of the day hatch. I’ve noticed one or twice that you can have that rear hatch turned a little and it’s not really secure. I don’t have a problem as long as I take a moment (double check) to make sure everything is properly secured before I launch.