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advice on rudder kits and installing one


mbbruce

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I am having a lot of trouble tracking with my kayak. I researched it and found that other people who had the same problem with this particular model put or a rudder on it and it tracked fine. I do like my kayak very much but I had a hell of a time on a cranes beach outing. It is a wilderness system Alto which they no longer make. Any ideas on getting a rudder kits for this model And finally do you know anybody that installs them? I am not a handy person. Thanks for any advice you can give

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I don't know your location, but I've had excellent luck with these stores:

- Charles River Canoe and Kayak - http://www.paddleboston.com

- Contoocook River Canoe Company (near Concord, NH) - http://www.contoocookcanoe.com

I know that others have found excellent service at other places and may speak up. ...or someone may know where to get exactly what you need and installation may be trivial.

Cheers!

Ty

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Hi Mary Beth,

You can contact Wilderness Systems or go through a WS dealer. They might still make something that will fit your kayak. Most WS rudder kits should be around $200.00 +

plus installiation. If you purchase a rudder and are planing on installing it yourself

you can contact me and I will help you out, I have installed many.

Bill H

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A rudder takes up space on your stern, complicates towing, and makes it (more) difficult to self rescue by climbing up to the cockpit from the stern. If you were having trouble with weathercocking you might find a skeg sufficient to solve your problems. If you were having problems with following seas or similar conditions you can also use leaning techniques to mitigate the effects.

I'm neither a skeg/rudder expert nor a WS expert but rudders best serve racers who want to develop/use a regular cadence wherein the rudder steers the boat in lieu of corrective strokes. Rudder systems also can be problematic (as can skeg systems) when the footpeg position/pressure during cycling of the legs effects the rudder position. Some systems have a footpeg rotation to determine rudder position that allows the peg to be otherwise fixed in the boat. You might want to rent or borrow a boat with the rudder system you are considering to get an idea what you are signing up for.

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