Playboat Rebuild 1

A few years back I decided to try my hand at freestyle kayaking, unsuccesfully at first. I bought a Dagger G Force 6.1 and was soon able to dip the stern, as my height meant that most of my weight was at the back of the boat. This wasn’t so great on moving water though, when I’d end up paddling down river with the bow in the air! It was a fun boat, but I really needed something bigger to paddle, which I could make more progress in. Logically, I should have sized up to a 6.3 G Force, but after finding a Robson Twin Tip cheap on the internet I quickly snapped it up.

The Twin Tip (yellow/red in picture) is slightlylonger in the stern with a greater weight range than the G Force – much better for my height/weight. It also has more volume around the front of the cockpit, presumably for “sick aerial moves”… Or easier to loop, for us mortals. The last person to own the boat was 6 foot 4 and so the first job to do was to move the seat forwards, to alter the trim, to suit my height and size. Four seat bolts hold the seat in to the boat. Unscrew them, move the seat and do them up again. Easy right?

Wrong.

This should have been a straight forward job, however, the thumb screws used to adjust the seat had seized up with rust, needing mole grips to unscrew them. Once the seat was in the right position, I noticed the next problem. When doing up the seat screws, the bolts on the outside of the boat turned in their holes. I’ve had this happen on more modern boats as well. To stop this from happening, take the seat out to reveal the nuts on the seat bolts. Tighten the bolt on the outside with an allen key, whilst holding a spanner on the nut on the inside. Replace the seat, do up the seat screws and the jobs a good’un….

Unless the washers on the bolts are completely perished, allowing water in to the boat…
I replaced all of the rubber washers with tap washers from a plumbing merchant, making the boat waterproof again. The next job was to adjust the thigh braces, moving them forwards to a better position, now that the seat had been moved.

Most modern boats have thigh braces that adjust by taking out the screws, moving them to the correct position and then screwing them back up again. Same on the twin tip, except the screw holes for the other positions hadn’t been drilled… So I had to drill them in myself – a scary prospect!

Finally, the boat fitted properly. Now to sort out the footrest…

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