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Thread: Modify a 2-person kayak with pontoons or attach an aircell

  1. #1
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    Default Modify a 2-person kayak with pontoons or attach an aircell

    I have a dilemma regarding the future configuration of my foldable 2-person kayak. I need help from experienced kayak users on which design to follow. Eventually, I want a secure, comfortable kayak platform to cruise on lakes or open sea. Purpose would be mostly fishing and enjoying outdoors. I have located good inflatable aircell materials from boat sporting company. My kayak has a length of 17 feet with width of 34 inches. Weight limit is 600 lbs. Option One is to attach an 11 foot aircell tube (catermaran design) using aluminum tubes. Separation would be four feet. This design would give me stability and option to install trolling motor to tube frame. Possibility of introducing an elevated oar rowing position above aluminum tubes. Option Two is to attach two medium length (six foot) aircells on either side of kayak (pontoon design). This would provide stability but not practical to install motor. Both options can be broken-down for easy transport and assembly. Suggestions appreciated. Thanks

  2. #2

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    You might want to look at whether it is feasible to attach a pair of Hobie amas. They would add the stability you're looking for, though would need customized mounting. Is your tandem a Featherlight, Folbot or Klepper?

  3. #3
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    Thanks for your reply. My tandem kayak is a Folbot Greenland II. I found several companies who will sell a complete single inflatable tube with necessary parts. There is a good aluminum welder here who will bend and twist the material. The kayak will be modified into a catermaran design with a single elevated oar position. I want the welder to use LoPro 356 aluminum alloy fittings. If he does not have this product available, I have to purchase them separatedly.

  4. #4

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    If you are lookign for merely stability, I think the pontoons are overkill. But if you are looking to build a catacraft, I could see using them. I am trying something similar but with two single kayaks. The idea is to be able to motorize and transport two kayaks to a destination, than detach so we can fish normally out of the kayaks once at the destination.

    The major dilemma I have run across is how to attach the Aluminum frame to the kayaks. Standard U-bolt set up would work, but not sure the plastic even with backing will hold up to powering along in 2 to 3 foot seas. Would be very curious to see your solution.

    I did just order a sail and amas kit for my Hobie Outback so I will be interested in seeing how much stability they will add.

  5. #5
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    Interesting kayak idea. I found the inflatable tube companies already provide the necessary imbedded D-rings, frame chafe material and realability into their products. I am thinking of the catacraft design. Relying only on pontoons will not support a motor. I read instructions suggesting the maximum trolling motor would be four-horse power. If you want to exceed this limit your frame has to be strengthened to handle additional weight and vibration. I have similar plans about dismantling the craft once I arrive at a destination and use the kayak alone. We are on the same page. My new concern if my Fairbanks aluminum welder uses anodized material and LoPro 356 alloy fittings? These are the common items used by the leading inflatable boat companies. Keep in touch.

  6. #6

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    Question for you. What motor are you thinking about?

    I'm trying to decide if a 2.5hp will be enough. The weight start getting heavy even at 4hp I think 35lbs for a 2.5hp, double that for a 4hp.


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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kardinal_84 View Post
    Question for you. What motor are you thinking about?

    I'm trying to decide if a 2.5hp will be enough. The weight start getting heavy even at 4hp I think 35lbs for a 2.5hp, double that for a 4hp.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Size of engine and weight are important questions. You have to refer this question to the engine dealers.
    New Subject - I decided to scrap idea of connecting two kayaks together. I talked with several kayak/raft/cataraft dealers and they said there is potential for problems. I have elected to go with standard cataraft frame and I purchased two 14 foot tubes. Northwest River Supply (NRS) sells all the necessary equipment including modular cataraft frames. You can modify the frame to your own designs. I purchased extra LoPro alloy fittings from NRS for future modifications. I also used Outdoorplay (Anchorage) for additional products. I found both companies were giving good discounts on the major components (frame and tubes). The shipments will start arriving this week. Enjoy

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jojobou View Post
    Size of engine and weight are important questions. You have to refer this question to the engine dealers.
    New Subject - I decided to scrap idea of connecting two kayaks together. I talked with several kayak/raft/cataraft dealers and they said there is potential for problems. I have elected to go with standard cataraft frame and I purchased two 14 foot tubes. Northwest River Supply (NRS) sells all the necessary equipment including modular cataraft frames. You can modify the frame to your own designs. I purchased extra LoPro alloy fittings from NRS for future modifications. I also used Outdoorplay (Anchorage) for additional products. I found both companies were giving good discounts on the major components (frame and tubes). The shipments will start arriving this week. Enjoy
    What were the problems? I was encouraged how well the kayaks handled when I just put a paddle across the two. It's the second video in my Sadie Cove report. Even if I don't motorized it, I will make PVC tube connectors to stabilize when I have the kids out so I can also teach them to fish maybe.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD

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