For those of you that own a kayak trailer - how do you prevent your kayak from getting rock chips or dirty when you’re going down the highway? A friend suggested buying a kayak sock. Have any of you guys used these before? Our kayaks are between 17 to 18 feet long. Also, I’m curious, has anyone ever looked into making your own kayak sock? What material did you use? I’ve read some people using canvas but I’m thinking, how about a light weight material like taffeta (parachute material)? Something that would dry easy… Also, I notice that the kayak socks that are available out there have a zipper, I think I would be happy with a rectangular shaped sock that just has a hole in the end big enough for me to stick the kayak all the way through. I dont know if that will work without me having to bungee the material otherwise it’ll make that loud flapping noise as your going down the highway. Any suggestions?
The rock chips are either from your car tires or the trailer tires. If the chips are in front of the trailer tires, they are coming from the car tires. Install mud flaps (About ten bucks). Put them on the trailer too.
I live on a dirt road
As already posted, use mud guards on your tow rig. That won’t keep all of the rocks from flying, though, esp. since mud flaps seem to be supershort these days.
Driving slowly is best, though not always an option. The road we live on has a 20 mph speed limit and doesn’t pose a problem–it’s highway driving where rocks flung from the tires would most likely cause damage.
Our trailer is a modified snowmobile trailer, so it came with a plywood flatbed that protects most of the kayaks. About 3 to 3.5 ft hangs over the front and 3 to 3.5 ft hangs over the back of the trailer. The back of the trailer is not an issue, because the axle/wheels are in the middle (lengthwise) of the trailer platform, and the wheels sit well underneath the sides also. That leaves the front end. Have not noticed a problem with rocks there, possibly because of the extra-long trailer tongue.
OTOH, I never worried about it because on highway trailer trips we’ve only hauled plastic sea kayaks. For towing glass, you could wrap and tape bubble wrap around the ends. The wind might make it flap and rub the gel coat, though. Be careful what you do. I will be going through the same exercise in a few months; have not decided what to do yet. If I think of something good, I’ll post it here.
Clingy plastic wrap
worked for me on a 5 hour, 350 mile trip with a new-to-me composite kayak. I used the plastic that is used to keep pallats covered, and protected. Worked like a charm. The road wind moved it around a little, but it never started flapping. I did wrap it starting in the stern (rear) and worked my way forward, then tied off the end at the front securely.
I know which wrap you are describing
It does stick well.
I’m thinking for a more permanent solution that raw neoprene “socks” custom-fit to the kayak would work well. They would stick to the gel coat AND pad from rock hits AND be aerodynamic.
Somebody might be able to create a niche business out of this.
The mud flaps would work no doubt but that still wont stop my 'yaks from getting dirty. I guess I’m thinking about summer time, just right around when road construction happens, there’s tar on the road and now my kayak is splatters of it… I guess I’m just trying to think ahead. I know someone who bought the Rack and Roll, took a road trip somewhere and came back complaining about squished bugs and tar he picked up from the road not to mention rock chips.
Saran wrapped it huh? Cool… not a permanent solution but cool. Would you consider a kayak sock for future excursions where you would have to drive far?
I haven’t really heard any opinions on the kayak sock. Honestly, this is the direction I would prefer to you. I’m thinking that I would put a small bungee on each end to prevent wind flap (maybe…?) the darned thing will look like a long piece of candy or a wrapped banana. LOL!!!
My wife made a fitted cover for her kayak out of ripstop nylon. Got a 10 yd remnant from Walmart for $1 a yd. Also made cockpit covers.
what kind of trailer do you have? On mine i bolted one of those plastic pick-up tool boxes to the front of it, any rocks will hit it… it also doubles as a place to store PFDs etc… as for the dirt, thats what a garden hose is for… easer then cleaning a dirty yack sock i bet…
if it doesn’t fit tight to the yack it may vibrate in the wind, causing abrasions. When i lived in Florida, my dad got one of those cheap love-bug nets for his car, it literally scoured away the paint where it touched the car, just from the movement due to the wind catching it.
Too bad there isn’t a true kayak trailer
Could make fairing pods for it shaped like sea kayaks.
It will be the rack and roll for the trailer. I dont know if the thin parachute material will rub off the gel coat.
Original posting Warrior: "how do you prevent your kayak from getting rock chips or dirty?"
Answer: Don't peel out like Barney Fife heading to the kegger in Mount Pilot with Goober.
you could try this…
I sometimes work installing plastic drain pipe and thought about using them as kayak storage for folks with space issues.they come in 20’ lengths and they sell end caps.the single wall type is lighter but only in up to 24" dia and up to 60" in double. strapping these to a trailer maybe doable.one problem could be having enough space to slide the boat out. and you may have to take your boat to ths stock yard to see if it fits in a 24" www.ads pipe.com
flapping in the breeze
If I have anything that is not going to be tight to something while travelling, I use the clear hockey tape and wrap like crazy. If you have a loose fitting sock, try putting it on and then start at one end of the boat and spiral your way to the other. May take a few minutes but if you are on a long trip may be worth it.
However, it may just create a bunch of little flappers instead of one bin one depending on your spacing.