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JonS

Kayak Sails

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I stopped in at the "Outdoor Retailer Show" in King of Prussia yesterday and came across a neat item. They were kayak sails and definately not a toy. they used a Scotty mounting system and were made of spinaker cloth in Canada. The poles were shock corded and the storage and setup was very yak friendly. The rep says that with a ruddered yak you can actually sail with taks and all. Without a rudder you can sail but are more limited. I'll have one in the future as there's definately a use and it will store in a hatch.

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Yes. Suggested retail is $199. Not cheap but this isn't a toy either. Its even designed to spill excess wind, which could be a problem in a yak. I will have one in time.

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They've been out for a while. I've seen them in a couple places this past summer. Looked like a pretty cool idea for long trips. They also had a kite for the yak too.

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Sailable? Without a leeboard? I'm not sure how close to the wind you are actually going to get. But for down wind very cool, although a decent sized foil kite will do the same and stuff into your pocket. Scott

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I've tried the kites and I some suggestions. First you've got to use the two or four string stunt kites. Go with one with a flexible spar instead of a all string kite. The more string the more problems you'll have. The true water launchable kites are the best but they can be very expensive. Use them on very short strings for the best control and until you get you get used to them. If you run out the line you can find wind in places where a sail won't. Once it's in the water though you have a lot of winding to do.

 

The most important thing is not to get a kite that's too big (eg. big surfing kites). They can rip yo right out of your boat.

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ScottO - its not sailing but from what they say its more than just catching wind or using an umbrella. It would have a use. Eventually I'll check one out.

 

Old John - I hear you. When there's wind I usually start my fishing by heading into it so I can benefit by having its help on the way back.

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JonS,

 

Were these by BSD (Balogh Sail Designs)? If not, you should look at some of their products first. They've been in the business longer than anybody else that I'm aware of and they make a first-rate product. The most likely candidate for the folks on this board would be their "Twins" sails but the "Batwing" is the industry standard. If you want to get waaayyy out there, check out the "Boss" rig; you don't want to paddle it too far, but serious sailing with your yak is a serious option.

 

As noted above, sailing to windward in a kayak is a difficult proposition especially without something to prevent leeway. However, it's not out of the question.

 

As to the kite, I bought a small foil (string only) last fall and will be practicing with it in preparation for trying it on the flats this spring. I realize that water launches will be impracticle, if not impossible. However, on the flats I'm hoping that I can stand to launch then sit down and go.

 

Chris

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