I'm new to kayaking and to this forum. Been on canoes and boats all my life, but only recently did i have a chance to kayak a slower moving river that runs through Cortland NY. I was quite surprised at little it took for me to tip over on the borrowed sit in I was using. But no big deal.
After searching craigslist for a few weeks I caught a nice deal on an older FnD. It's at least seven years old and has no rod holders. I got the seat, paddle, some sort of fish finder (don't plan on using this to fish right now,) it will be used on milder small rivers.
We had a good inch of rain yesterday and I was able to have a great day on it today. I don't know how to classify water conditions, but I suppose they may have been class one or two in spots. After 5 minutes I took all the scupper plugs out as water and waves were washing all over it. I dumped once and after drifting 20 ft or so into calmer waters, I easily flipped it over. So much nicer than emptying out the sit in. I'm very impressed with this truck of a Kayak so far. Really impressed. It was stable, tracked nice, very comfortable. I'm 5'9", 220 lbs and gradually losing down from 235 last year.
After 3 hours on the river I had taken water on. Guessing maybe 3 to 5 gallons? Maybe less. As I paddled on, I occasionally checked to make sure I wasn't riding any lower in the water. I have a feeling it may be leaking from one or more of the tubes.
At this point I just don't care if it leaks a little. For it's age and what I paid it's a starter/beater. And if it gets to where it's an issue I'll fix it if possible. As things are now, it just doesn't affect me. My stuff stays dry and performance doesn't seem to suffer.
I'm new to this so I'm asking opinions, is it a common problem with this model, is there a real urgency to address this problem now ? Do all SOT's eventually leak ? ( My storage cover gaskets aren't in the best shape either ) I'm so impressed with this thing, I'm feeling it's maybe not worth messing too much with a good thing.
Sorry for the Long Read,
And Thanks for any Advice/Suggestions,
Check Padeyes and scupper holes
The pad eyes that are used to attach the seat and thigh straps are held in place with blind rivets. These normally do not seal tightly. Sometimes you need to replace leaky ones and put in a layer of silicone before you put in a new blind rivet. Instructions for this can be found at Sit-on-topkayaking.com.
Cobra Kayaks are pretty well made. I doubt it's a scupper leak but …. Some kayaks have problems with there being very thin plastic on the inside where the scupper holes were formed. Check for pinhole leaks in the scuppers. you can take a dry kayak and fill it partially with water thorough the drain plug and check and see if the scuppers feel damp. Then turn it over and see if water leaks out through any of the pad eyes or inchworm fittings. IF its a big leak you can cut the pad eye off with bolt cutters and install new pad ey e with bath tub silicone caulk and a new blind rivet. IF your scuppers are leaking you can check around for someone who does plastic welding. A kayak dealer should be able to point you in the right direction. 3 gallons of water inside a kayak is quite a bit. SOTs do leak. Playing in heavy surf for 3 hours I might have a pint of water to drain.
Bow & Stern Points
Take a look at the pointy ends. If they are worn you will be able to see the seam of the top and bottom. Put water in and tip either way. If it runs out you have found your leaks. A little silicone will seal your ends.
likely not scupper holes
When the kayak is made, it is a hollow area full surrounded by plastic. In this form, it should not leak unless you punch a hole in it (look for cracks or actual holes). Not likely.
But kayaks aren’t sent out the door like this. Instead, they start drilling holes to add hatches, pad eyes, rod holders, and the like. Every hole has to be sealed, and not all are done right. This is the normal way water gets into a sit on top.
A poster above mentioned taking it while some water is in it, sticking it on saw horses or the like and start holding it at different angles and see where waters comes out. If you had a gallon or more, should be an easily noticeable leak. Once you find the leak, then you can figure out how to seal it.
Also check hatches …
I forgot to mention but where the screws or attachment hardware enter the boat and the seal of the hatch and ring itself.
I really appreciate the advice, and I’ll check it out. It’s been raining quite a bit here in NorthEasten Pa. this week, some isolated areas got 4" last night!!!
So levels should be ok for the weekend (if the rain ever stop !!! ) Looking at the Lackawanna, maybe starting at Carbondale or above, or the Lackawaxen on Friday, as they are scheduled to open up the dam between noon and 5pm (tentative)
Right now I’m stoked. I didn’t expext to enjoy myself this much, but the simplicty of the the sport is a beautiful thing. One of my son’s friends bought a new kayak yesterday and he wanted to borrow mine this Saturday. I’m happy to see him taking interset for sure, and said the kayak is there for all of us.
If this keeps up, I may be shopping for another one. I know quite a few people that have a second one just for bringing someone new to the sport, or a friend who doesn’t have one.
I’m used to getting e-mail notification on replies, but it doesn’t look like this board has that feature, so I’ll just check in every couple of days.
Thanks Much for the Suggestions !!!
check out the kayak fishing forums as this kayak got mentioned a number of times for leak problems. They may help you pinpoint and offer a solution to help you fix it. Good luck
Today my family spent some time out in our pool. I decided to put the kayak in. It made a pretty good floating deck, and even the dog almost liked it : )
I practiced jumping in and out of it. Getting in isn’t that easy, then again I’m not 25 anymore. I’ve heard a some people say they can stand on theirs, I tried a few times and could only last maybe 10 seconds or so, I guess that’s out for me.
After everyone went in I was inspecting it too find leaks while floating it in the pool. Then I pulled it up on the deck and filled it to the brims. Nothing. Once I siphoned enough water out, I turned it upside down. I found water seeping from practically every rivet.
I’m very relieved that’s all it is and the hull and scuppers are solid. Also I think I mentioned that the two compartment cover gaskets are pretty shot. Not a huge deal, I may fix them at some point.
I was white water rafting on the upper Hudson this week. They do dam releases four times a week. The guide said we were doing class 2 and 3 Rapids. Compared to what I’ve been doing at home, they looked comparable.
Is it unusual or considered stupid to do class 2/3 Rapids in such a craft with only beginner experience ? It seems adventurous to me, and idiotic to even think about not using a pfd. I’ve also used my mtn bike helmet and plan on getting one just for white water. Otherwise so far things seem to be moving along well. I’m thinking about buying and keeping an extra paddle with me, just from all the stories of lost or broken paddles ruining trips for my buddies.
Thanks Again !!!
Moving water and entrapment
In class III water if you come out of the boat you can get your legs trapped or get caught in strainers etc. You should take a whitewater safety class before running class III water.