Winter Kayak Fishing Projects 2012
Although winter was late coming to Western New York this year, I'm still left with close to 60 days to complete my off-season kayak fishing projects. Since I have two new kayaks to deal with this year, both of which are K12’s, they will be slightly different projects and I've completed previously.
External Transducer Mount
The Kajun K12 is built differently than my previous kayak which was in liquid logic manta ray. While it also 12 feet in length it's far wider and has a much more open design. It's built to be a true fly fishing kayak with plenty of room for mobility to the fore and aft. The open cockpit design also does not allow for traditional internal transducer mount.
In a previous article I described using a pipe-fitting clean out, adhesive, and some general household tools to mount a transducer inside the hall of the liquid logic manta ray. The liquid logic has far more space inside the hall as well as easy access to get inside work with tools. The key C12 has only one hatch to get inside of the hall, and even then that space is very limited making it difficult to properly mount the clean out.
So my thought is to use PVC plastic pipe to create an external mount that will get the transducer into the water on the port side of the kayak. I haven't fully completed the design, but I have some ideas as to using suction cups and some sort of clamping mechanism to create the mount. Since I have two different kayaks I could use the mount on, it will have to attach and detach quickly. Also I'll have to design some sort of a trade to keep the battery in place and dry.
In the end I think this system will actually be easier to use and to implement then the clean out system I developed for the liquid logic. The ability to move the mount from kayak to kayak is paramount. Further if I use that general enough design I will be able to move the mount quickly and easily to other makes and models of kayaks.
If any of you have created a transducer mount similar to this please leave a comment below. I'd love to hear about your designs and how it's worked out for you. You can sign in below with either your Twitter account or your Facebook account.
Fly Rod Holders for Flush Mount Systems
My K12 has two flush mount rod holders included in the design. These work very very well for spinning rods and bait casting rods. At the same time I intend to do quite a bit of fly fishing from the K12. Since on a fly rod the reel sets far closer to the butt end, a flush mount doesn't hold the rod securely. Because of their location this can cause issues while paddling up to and including knocking the fly rod out of the holster into the water. That be another very expensive mistake.
So the correct this inherent problem we need some thin gauge PVC pipe and a hacksaw. First we need to determine the depth of the flush mount rod holders. To do so simply use a tape measure. Extend the tape measure all the way to the bottom of the flush mount rod holder and take your measurement.
You'll also need to check the diameter of the opening of the rod holder. You'll want the diameter of the PVC pipe to be slightly thinner so that it can be placed inside of the rod holder. Then cut a length of PVC pipe roughly 6 inches taller than the depth of the rod holder. Place your new length of PVC pipe into the route holder to ensure everything fits the way you want it to.
Take your hacksaw and cut a notch into the side of the PVC pipe roughly the width of your fly rods reel seat. You will want the notch to be roughly two 1/2 inches to 3 inches in depth. Insert the PVC pipe again into the rod holder. Now simply slide your fly rod so that the reel fits into the notch of the new PVC pipe length. If you have to flush mount rod holders you can simply repeat the process for the other side of the kayak.
Odds and Ends
There's a few other small projects I need to attend to during the winter. We need to replace the wiring harness on the trailer for one thing. We also may take a look at how we welded the kayak holders on the trailer. I use what is generally a standard utility trailer we welded together some pipe in order to create racks to hold three or four kayaks. However the K12 is a far bigger boat at nearly 36 inches wide and therefore it changes the way the kayaks ride on the trailer. In truth I don't have much need for hauling more than two or three kayaks at any one given time. With gas prices being what they are we may tend to stack up a bit more on trips this year.
With a short winter were likely to experience in 2012 that may well be all I have time for this off-season. Please don't consider that a complaint. While I enjoy walking through the snow and hunting small trout from time to time, as a rule I prefer to be out in my kayak stalking pike. Not only that but I've really taken a shine to fishing for big brown trout and rainbow trout in the tributaries of Lake Ontario. If the weather continues such as its been, we should be very comfortably kayaking in March and April for those species.
Since we're really just received our first snow on January 15th, it's safe to say this could be the shortest winter on record. However I grew up in Buffalo New York. If I learned anything as a young man it's that you don't ever count winter out. The second you think it's over it tends to pound you in the stomach. But I digress.
What kayak fishing projects do you have planned this winter? I'd love to hear about them. Please use your Twitter or Facebook accounts below and let us know what you're up to. Thank you!