The VJ, my other kayak

Posted by Robert N Pruden on Dec 3, 2004

I've done a lot of bad things to my other boat, the VJ. The bow was so badly chewed up last year after paddling through gravel and ice that I had to do something to strengthen it; the damage was down tothe endpour. I added rub strips.

From time to time I have "enconters" with rocks and ice that send shudders through the length of the kayak. I deliberately run the yak over ice on the river. Sometimes that ice is surprisingly solid. That end pour keeps the panels together and minimizes the damage it would otherwise pick up. I have little choice but run the ice once it builds up on the river. It's either that or shelve it until Spring.

I can easily see a time when I will go through a rapid such as a riffle or rock garden that will mash the bow/stern/keel to bits; I know it will happen one day. The end pour will pay its way at that time.

I don't think a heavy end pour has any use but I do think that filling a knife edge bow and stern has its worth. If the bow/stern is filled to 1" within that knife edge then your boat is well protected from possible critical damage while remaining light enough to handle well. I also added a very thin layer of fill all along the keel using chopped glass (about 1/2" if I remember correctly) for extra insurance as I run through those particularliy annoying gravel beds that are unavoidable on the river I have to paddle on. I would have split the keel long ago without it.

The VJ weighs in at about 42-lbs. Weight-wise that is pretty good. Anyone who uses lbs of epoxy for an end pour is wasting his/her money. Think about how roughly the boat will be used and you will know what you need for an endpour. Of course, only experience or listening to experienced folks can teach you how to use that tip.

Kayak weight is somewhat overrated for a touring boat. I think that most of us could stand to lose a few pounds in the midriff, that area that has a greater affect on boat performance than a few ounces of epoxy in the bow/stern.

I hear you on the irrelevance of an endpour if the boat has broken in half. The endpour, however, held the bow together through extreme punishment so that I could recover it and rebuild it. That, in of itself, saved me $1000. Replacing that boat would have cost me $1300, rebuilding it cost me $300. Without the bow, the stern was only good to be used as a planter for flowers and setch. As it was, I almost turned the broken boat into a flower planter. It was only because so many folks said it couldn't be done or that it wasn't worth it that I decided to rebuild her. Hee! Hee! Just don't tell me something can't be done. Now I'm setting myself up for some reverse psychology, I just know it.

Robert N Pruden

In Response to: Re: How an end pour holds by LeeG on Dec 2, 2004