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Bulldog

Some upgrades to Ocean Kayak Ultra 4.3

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1000100010001000Finally had some time, built a new hatch, installed a fish finder, and put in the New Zealand optional seat, also took a picture of the bow, these things are really sharp entry and have a lot of lift in the bow!.................Jack

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Dog, I can't wait to get mine back from the dealer. I had them install a rudder and anchor trolleys. I called them today, i should be picking it up next weekend. The only other upgraid i might need is a FF.


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Very curious about your thoughts on the seat after you have some butt-time in it. What made you switch from the stock one?

 

I installed the internal rod-tube into my 4.3-- my advice to others thinking about it is, don't. It's too short to be truly functional (if anyone's really curious I could measure the length including pod). It's also surprisingly heavy. It added nearly five pounds to the boat, believe it or not. In hindsight, it wasn't a great idea, but now that it's there I guess it's staying.

 

I have the rudder on mine-- must say, it's pretty sweet. Pricey upgrade considering the cost of the boat without it, but definitely worthwhile.

 

You're giving me fishfinder envy...

 

MM

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I prefer the "new Zealand " seat, it's simple, I can't forget it and don't have to hang it up when I get home. It is much lighter then the factory seat , but I didn't weigh it, but holding the seat in the shipping bag it was lighter then the factory seat. Butt time, I guess will be at the Susquehanna Flats Tournament in about a week, if your there you can take it for a spin, (after the big fish are landed)!

Things I didn't like:

1.) The flip lid on the rod pod was rubbing my legs too much, I had the same problem on my Trident 11, new hatch is lower and much narrower, we'll see.

2.)Rod tube(yes I put one in) isn't too bad, longest rod can be is 7 feet I think, I fish 6 or 6.5 two rods fine. It's heavy I agree, could be a thinner material.

3.) Got heavy , it did weigh 59 lbs. delivered. all the bubble wrap added up to three lbs., Rod tube and fish finder battery could add 10 lbs., still not real heavy though.

4.) it's too fast and too easy to paddle, all my friends can't keep up! It paddles so nice compared to what I'm used to, 11 and 12 OK and Wildy yaks.

5.) Less storage inside hull then my Trident 11 for our river trips, tents, gas grills the whole sha- bang goes on those trips..

Likes

1.) paddles and tracks well(no rudder).

2.) The bow cuts through chop great, I'm thinking it will come in the surf good also.The bow shape is unreal, not much room in front hatch though.

3.) Rod Pod storage area I love it isn't open to the inside of yak, so stuff stays there.

4.) rod tube is a plus for coming in the surf, I crash somtimes.

5.) All the screw inserts were nice.

6.) The fish finder setup is sweet, I put battery in the rod pod , fishing rod handles sit on it, easier then sticking it in hull.

I think if you paddle not peddle and you are looking for a good fishing yak, this is one of the top ones...................Jack

 

PS Do I recommend it, naw, to each his own I think!

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I could go on and on about stuff like the side mount rod holders, recessed handles on side , hard lifting handles instead of straps or toggles, pre rigged for anchor trolley no drilling, Ice Pod(Which I have). The fact that the New Zealand OK team really spent time designing it, and there are other options there then here, like a different hatch cover, and seat, plus they are working on a live well to fit in the indentions of rear well. OK, now I'm done!.....Jack:D:D:D:D:D:D:D

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So you would recommend the 4.3 Muddler?

 

Bulldog's covered it well, but I'll add a few thoughts.

 

I paddled the WS Tarpon 13 and the OK Trident 13/15 before making a decision. I have other experience knocking around in small boats ranging from canoes to whitewater kayaks to touring sit-in-kayays, so I wanted a paddle boat. I can see the appeal of the Hobie system for trolling, but for me trolling is a way of passing the time when not fly fishing. ;)

 

The hull has a somewhat unique shape, particularly around the bow. The last photo Bulldog posted is an nice illustration. The boat has a sharp entry with a wide flair. I'd read that the boat tracks like a longer boat than its length would imply. I would agree, and I'm sure the sharp entry and plumb stern are the cause. You have a lot of waterline for the stated length. The flair makes it tend to pop up and over waves rather than punching into them. For it's maiden trip I had it in steep three-footers off Block Island driven by a 20mph breeze, and I found it very well mannered and surprisingly dry.

 

The hull also has more rocker than some other designs. This also gives it some better wave handling characteristics. Of course, everything's a compromise, so don't expect it to be as fast as a true 15-17' boat.

 

They truly have the boat tricked out for fishing out of the box. The built in rod holders are very nice. I added PVC tubes with slots cut to hold fly rods/reels to the vertical rod holders behind the seat. An anchor trolley and a milk crate and it's good to go.

 

The boat is bulletproof. The molded in threads are genius. One comment-- it took a little work to find metric screws that fit the the molded in threads. A minor annoyance since its not something carried by the local big box or marine stores.

 

I read some complaints that bigger guys had a wet seat (scupper holes are right under it). At 185lbs with maybe 20-25lbs of gear, I'll attest that's true. I might add scupper plugs under the seat and leave the holes by my feet open. But it's not bad, and if you don't want to get wet, wear dry pants/suit or don't go out in a SOT kayak. :)

 

I question the published weight of the boat-- when I put it on the scale, it was north of 70 pounds. I think they weighed it before putting seat and hardware one it. OK publishes the weight of the 4.7 as 77lbs and the 4.3 as 59lbs. The difference between the two is the added length (which is just an extension of the tank well) and the rudder, which is standard on the 4.7. 18lbs is too much of a difference to be explained by a rudder and 1-foot of additional plastic. I think there's a difference in their methodology. I actually chose the 4.3 over the 4.7 because the weight difference seemed such a big advantage-- a bit misleading perhaps. After rudder and rod tube, I think I'm at 78lbs now.

 

I have to correct my rod-tube weight-- checked my notes and it weighed 2lb 5.5oz before installation.

 

So, very nice boat, specialized for fishing, and easy to customize. It's built with waves and handling in mind versus speed or primary stability (although the stability's not bad). It's pre-rigged with lots of goodies, but of course you're paying for that in the higher price tag. I'm very pleased with it. Definitely worth a try if you can get your hands on one.

 

And I still have FF envy. :)

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I think you would regret filling the scuppers with silicone, unless you only go in calm waters, I have scupper valves on my Trident 11 and like them. Oh yeah 230lbs.6ft.!

 

 

Muddler, it's FF/ GPS non color, low draw, waterproof connections envy!

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Took my 4.3 out for it's maiden voyage today in the RB, It rides very well, cut through the north wind that was blowing about 15 this morning The yak was very stable in the ruff seas. BUT, i did manage to flip her, don't ask me how. I had the anchor out trailing behind me, and as i turned to my right to get something behind me I  must have pushed the rudder pedal and the yak made a turn to the left, with me leaning right and the yak turning left the wave rolled me right over. I bobbed for a few minutes, glad i had the wetsuit on, Was about to climb in and a boat cruised over and helped me out. Got back to the beach, didn't feel cold until i stood on the beach not moving. hopped in the car to warm up so i wouldn't go into shock. This happened about 9:30 this morning, still alive. Otherwise, a nice yak, just did a stupid move.


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