I’m trying to buy a new 9" day hatch for my Impex Montauk. The present hatch is a Valley and I’d like the new one to be a Valley also. I’m not having much luck finding one. Any ideas?
I switched to carrying the SeaLect hatch covers. They fit VCP nicely and are easier to acquire as they’re made in WA not UK.
See you on the water,
The River Connection, Inc.
Hyde Park, NY
one source for VCP hatch covers
is Kayak Centre in Rhode Island http://store.kayakcentre.com/browse.cfm/valley-sea-kayak-parts/2,266.html
There are several archived posts regarding poor longevity and higher cost of Valley covers vs SeaLect.
I hope your choice works well for your needs.
I just replaced a few Valley hatches (were only about 5 years old!) with Kayaksport. Ordered them from topkayaker who seemed to know a ton about everything he sold, and shipped my order out the same day. Excellent service. Will replace the day hatch with sea-lect when it comes time. http://topkayaker.net/index.html
didn’t make a 9 inch round day hatch…it’s a 7 inch. That is how it’s listed.
Another vote for Sealect
The Valley covers have always been crappy and eventually rot and fall apart. The Sealect covers are much higher quality, less expensive and I’ve never heard of one failing.
Valley vs others
Depending on the boat and hatch rim the Sea-Lect’s may be fine or may leak. Have never had a problem with the Valley hatch covers. The Sea-Lect round worked well on a rotomolded Valley Avocet, but the ovals leaked badly on that boat. I would trust Marshall’s opinion on Sea-Lect covers fitting an Impex kayak as he used to be an Impex dealer. As others have said, Kayak Centre in RI is the east coast distributor for Valley and socks the covers.
The Kayak Centre used to be the U.S.
importer and distributor of Valley Sea Kayaks. It is my understanding that this is no longer so.
this drives me nuts
I really like the valley covers conceptually and in practice. They work well and I've always found them to be watertight. BUT you're right, they're made of a material that not only doesn't last long but sometimes doesn't indicate that it's about to fail.
If someone else engineered a better mousetrap to a component I designed, and my design could be improved simply with a change in materials...I'd change the materials. Sometimes I just don't get Valley and NDK.
Valley vs. Sealect
Yes, Valley covers rot over time. How much time varies, but I’ve never had one leak. You’ll never have to replace a Sealect, so they’re wonderful - if they don’t leak. For example, my Pintail has all Sealects and no leaks. A beautiful thing. My Avocet’s day hatch cover needed replacing so I tried a Sealect and it leaked. It’s wearing a Valley cover now. Gotta go with what works, but if your boat likes Sealect, you’re golden.
Another Impex/Sea-lect vote
Just replaced the oval hatch on an Impex Currituck with Sea-lect and am very happy. Not a drop of water and love how it seals. will definitely buy more Sea-lect for our two Impex boats when the time comes.
SEALECT >>> VALLEY HATCHES
I have a Valley Aquanaut whose OEM hatch covers rotted on the boat. I replaced all 3 -the smaller front and larger rear ovals, and the small circular day hatch cover -with less expensive, more readily available, and in my (and others’) opinion, superior Sealect hatches. They’re still in terrific shape after several -4?, 5? -years of palm-shaded outdoor storage here in Coconut Grove.
See the transfotmation from rotted to radiant below on gnarlydog’s informative and helpful paddling blog:
Sally’s Hurricane Tracer’s Kajaksport hatch covers are similar to, but world’s better than, the Valley rubber-like covers. They are holding up in the same environment just fine, and they’re about 14 years (+?) old. If you can find an appropriate size, they would be most Valley-like.
But I wholly and most enthusiastically recommend the Sealects: they’re handsome, tough, watertight, and value-priced covers to keep your compartments sealed for a good long time as you happily dryly
-Frank in Miami