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inflatable kayak safe?

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#1 ralphrox

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Posted April 14 2012 - 9:27 PM

would fishing in an inflatable kayak "suicidal". is it a guaranteed pop with hooks floating around?

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#2 dena

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Posted April 14 2012 - 10:52 PM

I've never used an inflatable kayak, but hooks, and balloons don't mix, for me anyway. I am sure the sides are protected, and puncture resistant, but the Titanic was 'unsinkable' too.
I can't see them being much fun to paddle very far either. And if the wind kicks up, I could see a blow up boat being a handful.
They might be in their element floating down a bouncy river, though.

Every feature in every boat is a trade off. Some boats shine where others will flounder, you have to decide what boat fits what you are going to do most often, your storage space, and what you have to transport your boat to the water. There are other considerations too, but those are the big ones.
If you get one, and fish successfully out of it, I will gladly change my opinions.

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#3 JRT

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Posted April 15 2012 - 5:24 AM

The biggest issue is that they have the seaworthyness of a crisp packet. By nature they are high sided and super light so catch the wind like nothing else. Paddling against or across a strong wind is a nightmare, especially against a decent tide. But for sheltered inshore areas without much tide then they should be fine.

#4 sugaree1978

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Posted April 15 2012 - 7:56 AM

I am  Long Island resident and not personally familiar with inflatables( I have a hobie Kona) but last summer A police officer out kayaking with his 5 year old son in an inflatable with no PFD was taken out of the mouth of the Nisseqougue river into Smithtown bay and couldn't get back in,It was a beautiful sunny breezy day .The next morning they found the boy floating alive in his PFD but his father drowned and it was believed he may have been trying to swim the yak back in.....but none knows. No safety gear was found..i.e. air horn,flashlight,kayak light ,radio etc. While I think some inflatables are nice unless it's a storage space issue I wouldn't buy one,and I certainly wouldn't kayak without safety gear.

#5 ralphrox

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Posted April 15 2012 - 3:20 PM

so in other words mostly for local lake use?

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#6 fisharmanCT

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Posted April 15 2012 - 4:04 PM

My dad got one for 25yrs at work, we kept it a few years, only used it once. And it paddled like a turd. Not worth it, not even for free.

#7 barrell

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Posted April 15 2012 - 6:42 PM

This is a world of difference between a cheap inflatable and a quality one. The high priced ones paddle very well. The Hobie that is 12 foot long is just as fast and turns just as quik as the hard 12 foot Outback. Quality inflatables cost more then hard kayaks. Cheap inflatableslike the Stearns are hard to paddle but better then nothing. My wife and I camped and fished on Dry Tortuga island for six days with two Stearns inflatables.


#8 Greenford

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Posted April 18 2012 - 7:48 AM

Only one I used was many, many years ago as a kid. This was in the day of cheap vinyl. I just have this image in my head of clumsy me dropping my ultra sharp bait knife.... doesn't end well. I agree that new technology would make a big difference now a days. I've run into one person using one and he loved it. He just said you had to use care and common sense. If you look up Hobies kayak forums there is a forum for their inflatable’s that might give you some ideas on problems and rigging of inflatable’s in general.


#9 FizzyFish

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Posted April 18 2012 - 4:14 PM

If space is your issue and price is not, then another option is a Folbot folding kayak.

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#10 nptr23

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Posted April 19 2012 - 10:53 AM

I've caught plenty of fish in mine. They have their limitations and should be used accordingly. I have Sea Eagle 370 that I use on the north shore of Long Island and stay pretty close to shore. Back of the harbors, back of the nissy, or within 200 yrds of shore on the sound. I won't use it at all if it's windy out as it gets blown all over the place. That's just common sense. Be careful with the hooks...of course. Maybe taking the trebbles off is a good idea, as I've had a blue fish with a pencil popper in his mouth swim under mine. Result was 1-1/2'" rip in the floor. About 1/3 of the air leaked out of the floor, but the sides were fine so I continued to fish another hour and fixed it with patch kit when I got home. Now, I bring a net to grab 'em when they get close. Oh, and I never go anywhere without wearing the pfd and whistle, and telling my wife exactly where I'm going and when I'll be back. Just in case.

#11 JayTheHobo

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Posted April 19 2012 - 11:48 PM

Many sources say that they are pop resistant, and extremely hard to sink... i just cant see how they are worth it.. if you hit a barnacle, a tree root, or even scratch it loading it in the car you are out all that money. just not worth  it in my opinion. And thats just without fishing on it. A stray lure or hook would sink you and all your gear on the spot, and unless you have a vs or a torque... just say goodbye to those reels(in saltwater of course)

#12 ralphrox

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Posted April 21 2012 - 9:12 PM

well i guess its not worth the investment :(

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#13 Adam-_888

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Posted April 22 2012 - 8:19 AM

I've used 2 different ones.Never worried about popping either.The good ones are heavy duty pvc with tubes inside of it.The Hobie i12S is a great fishing platform.Handles great in the wind and does pretty good in the chop. Not to go off topic but blaming the inflatable kayak for the guys life who got sucked out the mouth of a river and didn't have a lifejacket is horrible.Too many variables with what happened.If you buy a plastic pool toy you most likely will pop it.The bottom of the hobie I had looked like it was at least double the protection on the bottom.I landed it on many rough areas and never had a problem.Barely made a mark.In this thread there is a ton of blame a little speculation and some experience.If it is the Hobie you seek feel free to pm me on here. I can answer whatever questions you have.The 2nd kayak I had was an advanced elements straight edge kayak.While it paddled much worse in the wind.Was much more wet in the chop it's another solid platform for fishing.Has multiple chambers and a heavy skin on the bottom.That kayak was good for the quick in and out .I always wore a lifejacket and had all the safety items aboard I would need.Never once was worried about a hook puncturing either of the two kayaks.



#14 The Riddler

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Posted April 22 2012 - 8:59 AM

well i guess its not worth the investment :(

Your asking for inflatable kayak advice, when the majority of kayaker's here don't own one. Of course you will read why you shouldn't get one. I say, buy one.

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#15 Silver Stoat

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Posted April 23 2012 - 8:59 PM

I think it depends which inflatable you buy. I only have experience of one, by Sea Eagle. It isn't really a kayak, but it provides a superb fishing platform and is tough as hell.

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