There are many accessories made for kayaks and they all serve a particular purpose. Whether you prefer sit-on-top kayaks, inflatable kayaks, or sea kayaks, a kayak rudder is one of the more popular accessory choices and some kayak brands are even shipping their products with a rudder attachment included. This is a somewhat new trend and kayaks weren’t typically designed for use with a rudder; however, many kayak enthusiasts are beginning to utilize this accessory and there are many fantastic models on the market today.
If you’re looking to enhance your kayaking experience by purchasing a kayak rudder, then this article will provide you with the information needed to make an intelligent choice. Kayak rudders aren’t for everybody and there are certainly a few things you should know before purchasing one. I’ll provide you with the information you’ll need to know and suggest five kayak rudder models that you should check out today.
I’m sure that most people reading this article have a rather solid understanding of what a rudder is, but in order to fully understand the specific uses of a kayak rudder, there are a few things you should know.
The most common understanding of the word rudder is that it’s a device used on boats that help you steer. Though this is true for most boats, a kayak rudder works a bit differently. In fact, a kayak rudder is used most often not to turn, but to keep the kayak on a straight path.
A rudder works well on a kayak because due to the lightweight nature of these boats they tend to get pushed around in the water by waves, currents, and wind. This can be rather frustrating and exhausting when trying to paddle through these rough conditions. This is where a kayak rudder comes in handy because the rudder blade can be used to counteract the waves and wind and keep you going straight.
The way it works is that the rudder is situated on the back or stern of the kayak where it can freely pivot back and forth through the use of foot pedals located in the cockpit. The rudder is connected to the foot pedals with elastics cords or metal rods and each foot pedal controls which way the rudder will pivot.
So, if I hit the right foot pedal, the kayak will pivot right and if I hit the left pedal it will go left.
As mentioned above, you aren’t going to make a drastic turn when using a kayak rudder, but if you notice you are getting battered by wind, waves, or currents on a particular side of the kayak you can use the rudder to keep your boat straight. When the rudder is no longer needed you can use the lift line to bring the rudder up out of the water where it can be stowed on the back of the kayak. The lift line is also used to deploy the rudder whenever you need to use it again.
Kayak rudders are typically used by more adventurous and experienced kayakers who tend to explore more dangerous waters. It takes a bit of time and practice to operate a kayak rudder correctly and isn’t really necessary for calmer waters.
If you’re interested in purchasing this accessory here are a few of the best ones on the market today. It’s important to keep in mind that some rudder models are specifically made for a certain model of kayak and not all kayak rudders can be used in every model.
One of the best rudder kits available is the Crack of Dawn Kayak Rudder with Mounting Kit. Customers who have purchased this rudder have claimed they can steer their kayak pretty much hands-free.
It also rather long, durable, and easy to install, making it well worth the price tag. This product will fit most major brands of kayaks, but it isn’t designed for all kayaks.
Another great rudder kit is the Ocean Kayak brand. This particular model of rudder kit is made specifically for the rough waters of the oceans.
With its high price tag, it’s certainly one of the more expensive models available, but it comes with everything you’ll need to safely survive ocean kayaking adventures. The rudder itself is made of high-grade aluminum, which makes it very durable and it also comes with a 1-year warranty.
Next on our list of five great kayak rudder kits is the Nylon Glass Fiber Watercraft model. This rudder kit is designed with an easy-to-use foot control system that makes controlling your kayak remarkable easy.
It can also be used on certain canoes and boats but isn’t universally compatible with all types of crafts. At What’s more, it’s one of the cheaper models available but no less effective.
Specifically built for the Lure 11.5 and Lure 13.5 kayaks, the Feelfree Lure SmartTrack Rudder Kit is a great accessory for owners of this model of kayak. At a fairly competitive price, you’ll get a great product that customers really like.
What stands out about this product is how easy it is to install. It accomplishes this because it comes with an instructional video that will walk you through the installation process.
The last product on our list is the Wilderness System Rudder Kit. It makes our list because of its relatively inexpensive price tag and because the rudder blade itself has a unique shape that’s designed for more efficiency and less drag when in the water.
Designed specifically for Wilderness Systems kayaks, this product adds enhanced control and maneuverability making it one of the best products on the market today.