Bulkheads         Foot pumps          Foot Pedals and Thigh Braces          Hull Reinforcing

Bulkheads

The major modification that was made to both kayaks was moving the front bulkhead closer to our our footpegs. This maximized the storage space available in the front hatch and minimized the volume of water that would have to be pumped out of the cockpit should we capsize.

After removing the factory bulkheads we determined where in the kayak the new bulhead would be placed and shaped initial templates from cardboard.

These cardboard templates were then used to make rigid plywood templates that had their shape refined to fit in the desired spot. Once happy with the shape and fit of the plywood templates they were used to make the fibreglass bulkheads. The final step was to trim the fibreglass bulkheads and glass them into the kayaks.

   
 
Bracket, foot pump and custom bulkheads installed in each kayak.

Foot Pumps

One of our concerns was that if we were to capsize it would be in conditions unconconducive to letting go of our paddles and operating hand pumps. By installing footpumps we would then be able to keep hold of our paddles and brace while pumping out our boats. (Happily we never capsized thereby putting this theory to the test!)

As we didn't have complete faith in the strength of our our self-installed bulkheads we mounted the footumps to aluminium brackets that were bolted to the deck.

 
 

Foot Pedals and Thigh Braces

We replaced the sliding pedal system in the Expedition with a "gas pedal" system, which we felt offered more stability when bracing and rolling with the rudder deployed. We also glassed in larger thigh braces for the Expedition, creating a tighter fit and providing more stability when bracing and rolling.

   
 

Hull Reinforcing

Seaward Kayaks provided a fibreglass matting scrape plate at the bow of the Quest. We also added extra layers of fibreglass along the stern of the Quest and along both the bow and stern of the Expedition. Given the deep scratches and dramatic wear done to both hulls by the end of the trip we were glad that we did this reinforcing.

After modifications we estimate that the weights of both kayaks were increased by 15-20 lbs.

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