transportation- cover

Alright, I'm in the home strectch, bought my carrier, straps and am putting the finishing touches on my Chesse 16, hopefully will be ready to bring with me on my trip to N. WI this Thursday.  I will be leaving in the evening hours and will encounter many bugs on my trip as my windshield can account to in the past.  I know bugs can be tough to get off the front end of my car, was wondering if anyone had experience getting them of their kayak after a long trip.  I considered a cover, but after keeping my project to a bare minimum and knowing I will not be transporting it much, it's hard to spend another $100 on a cover.  SHould I even be concerned or is there a cheaper alternative to protect it?  Thanks for your responses.

8 replies:

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RE: transportation- cover

You could saran wrap it, sounds odd but it would be cheap and effective as long as you wrap it tight. Then just tear it off when you get there. Short term idea until you either saved enough for a cover or find an alternative.


.....thinking about, it I don't know how much it would cost. but make a cover out of tyvec.

RE: transportation- cover

Another idea.  I know someone who has made a 1,000 mile trip with an unfinished kayak wrapped with that plastic wrap you get on a roll at a big box store.  Started wrapping from the back toward the front (the overlaps protect the front edges of the plastic underneath).  Then packaging tape on the front plus two spiral wraps of the PT from front to back (the PT sticks to itself better than to the plastic wrap).  The kayak made the trip just fine.  The plastic wrap comes in a roll about 8" tall with a handle that sticks out from one end.  Good luck.

RE: transportation- cover

I wouldn't be too concerned about the bugs. For one thing, unlike your windshield that presents a great big surface area for the bugs to SPLAT against, the bow of the kayak is very narrow and pointy... For another thing, once you get to your destination, you can put the boat in the water and go paddling... which will serve both to  wash off whatever stray bugs and grime you might have picked up on the drive and leave you feeling so happy you won't really care....

Julie K.

RE: transportation- cover

I found that a cover left on too long can be dangerous.  It traps moisture inside.  Water vapor migrates into the plywood and gets trapped there.  I have wierd yellow patches and streaks under the epoxy which is moisture damage from a cover.  I am leaving my kayak out in the sun in the hope of killing whatever the yellowish fungus is underneath the epoxy and varnish (dry rot? hope not.)  

RE: transportation- cover

I just returned home from my maiden voyage that included about 1000 miles on top of the car to Tampa. I had rain but not a lot of bugs.

A cover has the problem of wind and movement against the boat, ie paint and varnish abrasion. One would have to put bungee cords or some other wrapping over the cover to prevent this problem. 

I think no cover is the answer for me and had no problem on my trip.

Good luck on the trip and paddle.


RE: transportation- cover

Re bug-splat, I always rub Turtlewax on the front of the car before a trip, and skip the "buffing it off" part (ie I leave a thin but milky-visible layer of wax on the hood and front bumper etc).

The layer of wax stops most bugs sticking at all, and the few that manage to hold on are removed very easily with a wet rag when I get home. Then it's a quick polish to buff the wax to a shine.

The same would probably work fine on your boat too.


RE: transportation- cover

David, re: wax on; great idea for front of car, not so good for a varnished boat.  Wax will play havoc next time you want to recoat or touch up your varnish. 

I agree with Julie.  I have car topped through lots of bugs and am amazed at how few (aka non) are stuck to the boat.  one or two on the front edge of the coaming - cockpit cover takes care of that and they are easy to sew (I have added a skill to my tool box ;)

Enjoy your boat!

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