Customizing your Sea Kayak cockpit
"Making useful information and scarce productsavailable to discerning paddlers"
An ill-fitting kayak is what drives most of us into customizing our cockpit. Later we realize the performance advantage that strategically gluing a few ounces of foam gives us when we try a brace or a roll. Eventually we realize that there is more performance potential in the custom fitting than there is in the choice of boat.
Within our kayak club cockpit modification has become a mania. Members continually strive to outdo one another with creative ideas for cockpit improvements. We jokingly refer to our modifications as "Foam Art". Our custom fit seats, and hip and knee braces, have had such a transforming effect upon our kayaking that we will never willingly paddle without custom cockpits again. We have learned new skills which would have been impossible formerly. Our level of comfort has exceeded all our expectations. We are more satisfied with our boats, the sport of kayaking, and with our own abilities than we could ever have imagined.
Having demonstrated to ourselves that we could improve our kayaks, we soon found more to do: We found ways to improve the deck rigging, more secure storage for a spare paddle, ways to convert wasted space to useable storage. We even created a removable built-in ice chest! There was so much interest in these ideas, that we found ourselves drawn into presenting workshops where we demonstrated our methods. The demand for materials forced us to make them available by keeping an inventory on hand to sell.
We take pride in the fact that our efforts have brought the performance potential of custom fitting to the attention of many sea kayakers, who in turn have inspired others, who will inspire still more. The lore is spreading, like ripples from a pebble cast into a still pool.