maiden voyage and how to transport

So I received my Chesapeake 16 kit on November 11 and will be going for my maiden voyage at a local lake tomorrow, March 31.  The boat has only an epoxy finish and I have installed a Smart Track rudder system.  I will be using the happy bottom seat from CLC.  I have not installed a back band, so I'll use a cushion or towel of some sort for padding.

My question is how do people transport these boats?  This is not an issue for me for tomorrow, as I will be transporting it on a carpeted pontoon boat.  In the future, I'd like to take it out with just my full-size pickup truck.  I have transported plastic kayaks up to 14.5 feet in the truck.  I always transport them on their sides (transporting them on their bottoms could create dents or warpage) with a moving blanket underneath.

Thanks for any comments/advice.

Paul in Phoenix


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RE: maiden voyage and how to transport

Congrats on the maiden voyage!  I'm at that point, but decided to finish the whole boat before taking it for a spin. 

I transport mine using a set of Thule racks on my Corolla.  I've done it with foam pads on the racks with the boat strapped to the racks and bow/stern lines to the undercarraige of the car.  If we're transporting both boths, one goes on the Thule J-racks (on its side), and the other one goes hull-down on the foam pads.  The wooden kayaks won't deform like their plastic breathren, but you still need to be careful about how tight you're tensioning your straps (too much tension and there's always the chance of cracking the deck- very unlikely though). 

Have fun tomorrow!


RE: maiden voyage and how to transport


Per the above, Thule makes great racks.  For your pickup you could use their roof rack forward and the "Goalpost rack aft.  (they also have a couple of other options)  You can then just pad those basic bars or you can get cradles designed especially for kayaks.  Just do a google search for Thule.  Have a great first voyage.  I may get my Shearwater 17 Hybrid in the water this weeke4nd after 15 months in the building.

Paul G.

RE: maiden voyage and how to transport

Check out anything like the rack pictured  there will work or Thule makes what they call a 421 Xporter. SEEYA Jack

RE: maiden voyage and how to transport

Here's how we've been transporting our 13 footers. The 17 foot Shearwater will look even funnier

RE: maiden voyage and how to transport

Also check on your local Craigslist.  I don't know about in the Phoenix area, but I got my entire kayak rack setup on Craigslist for much less than new. 

RE: maiden voyage and how to transport

ive been using ladder racks with  foam noodles zip tied to it

RE: maiden voyage and how to transport

Not too bad...

RE: maiden voyage and how to transport

Some varnished cedar strip panelling on the side of the wagon might be all you need to complement that beautiful deck! -Wes

RE: maiden voyage and how to transport

Back from a quick paddle on the river. I think I'm going to need a custom bracket for my rack. The boat only hits the Thule bracket on 2 points. The keel and the sheer. Not enough surface contact to make me comfortable. I might try flipping it over and see how that does. I'll definitely need something more secure for longer trips (we're considering Okoumefest)


RE: maiden voyage and how to transport

Take some of your leftover wood and make 6-8" wide panels that wrap around your hull, centered where your racks hit.  Reinforce with scrap glass, just like building your deck.  Build up a support on the rack side and fillet and tape to add strength.  Paint/varnish (UV protection).  Cover with a bit of rug (to protect the hull).  Strap everything down and drive to Okoumefest.

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