Professor Paddle: Sea Kayak rudder or no rudder?
Professor Paddle Professor Paddle
  RegisterRegister  LoginLogin
Home Calendar Forum FSBO Gallery PPages Reviews Rivers Trips Links
  Active TopicsActive Topics  Display List of Forum MembersMemberlist  Search The ForumSearch
Chit Chat
 Professor Paddle : General : Chit Chat
Message Icon Topic: Sea Kayak rudder or no rudder? Post Reply Post New Topic
Page  of 2 Next >>
Author Message
dave
Master Poster
Master Poster
Avatar
D4

Joined: 29 Apr 2005
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 4224
  Quote dave Replybullet Topic: Sea Kayak rudder or no rudder?
    Posted: 13 Oct 2010 at 8:07pm

After much research and discussion I thought I would post this for you non-believers!

ALL the Olympic and world class racers use a rudder. Read this from the manufacture of the fastest sea kayaks on earth, Epic.
 

All top flatwater paddlers and openocean racers use rudders, as they have proven time and time again in competition to be more efficient than a skeg or going without a rudder. Olympic sprint races are held on a straight course in calm water and rudders are optional. However, you would be hardpressed to find anyone paddling without a rudder in highlevel competitions. They know that the fastest way to paddle is to put maximum focus on an efficient forward stroke and let the rudder ensure they are traveling in a straight line. In the same way, engineers have found it much more efficient to use a rudder on an airplane, rather than attempt to turn the engines for directional control. Concern over drag is no reason not to use a rudder.

Read it and weep, non-rudder users!
Nomad
IP IP Logged Send Private Message
Courtney
Big Boofer
Big Boofer
Avatar
Whitewater,sea kayaking, snowboarding, backpacking.

Joined: 22 Mar 2005
Location: United States
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 662
  Quote Courtney Replybullet Posted: 15 Oct 2010 at 7:57am
I just face it.  You're still a wuss and so are all of those racers.  ;-)
 
Courtney
IP IP Logged Send Private Message Send Private Message
Shaun
Rock Bumper
Rock Bumper


Joined: 16 Jun 2009
Location: United States
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 27
  Quote Shaun Replybullet Posted: 15 Oct 2010 at 6:33pm
I thought this was common sense.  There are people who really think it is faster or more efficient to not have a rudder?  I race surfskis, and I couldn't imagine not having a rudder on one.
IP IP Logged Send Private Message Send Private Message
dave
Master Poster
Master Poster
Avatar
D4

Joined: 29 Apr 2005
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 4224
  Quote dave Replybullet Posted: 15 Oct 2010 at 6:45pm

Yes, I have gotten into long discussions with many people on this site that think that no rudder is better! They are stuck in the past....

Nomad
IP IP Logged Send Private Message
Courtney
Big Boofer
Big Boofer
Avatar
Whitewater,sea kayaking, snowboarding, backpacking.

Joined: 22 Mar 2005
Location: United States
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 662
  Quote Courtney Replybullet Posted: 15 Oct 2010 at 10:04pm
On a more serious note, what I've gotten out of it is that if you're trying to go in a stright line, rudders are great.  If you not and just out sea kayaking around people think it's better to know how to turn the kayak on your own and guide it on your own rather than relying on the rudder to do it for you.  I can see both points of view.  To me, I don't care, to each his own. 
 
Courtney                                           
IP IP Logged Send Private Message Send Private Message
dave
Master Poster
Master Poster
Avatar
D4

Joined: 29 Apr 2005
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 4224
  Quote dave Replybullet Posted: 15 Oct 2010 at 11:24pm
That is what a rudder is for, to go straight and concentrate your energy on the forward stroke. If you want to turn, you still edge the boat and use your paddle strokes to turn.
That is the comman misconception about rudders, they are not for turning, they are for going straight.
Nomad
IP IP Logged Send Private Message
Courtney
Big Boofer
Big Boofer
Avatar
Whitewater,sea kayaking, snowboarding, backpacking.

Joined: 22 Mar 2005
Location: United States
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 662
  Quote Courtney Replybullet Posted: 16 Oct 2010 at 6:06am
 

Edited by Courtney - 16 Oct 2010 at 6:07am
IP IP Logged Send Private Message Send Private Message
Jimmy
Tricky Woo
Tricky Woo


Joined: 20 Mar 2005
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 239
  Quote Jimmy Replybullet Posted: 16 Oct 2010 at 6:08am
Originally posted by dave

That is what a rudder is for, to go straight
 
So what are you saying, only gay people should use rudders?  That's a little narrow minded don't you think?
IP IP Logged Send Private Message Send Private Message
Courtney
Big Boofer
Big Boofer
Avatar
Whitewater,sea kayaking, snowboarding, backpacking.

Joined: 22 Mar 2005
Location: United States
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 662
  Quote Courtney Replybullet Posted: 16 Oct 2010 at 8:58am
If they weren't made to help you turn then why else would they make them turn from side to side?.
IP IP Logged Send Private Message Send Private Message
James
Admin
Admin
Avatar
Sum Dum Guy

Joined: 31 Dec 2004
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 3589
  Quote James Replybullet Posted: 16 Oct 2010 at 9:10am
Originally posted by Courtney

If they weren't made to help you turn then why else would they make them turn from side to side?.


To make adjustments so you can keep the boat going straight when your strokes are unprecise and sloppy. Or if you are drunk, one handed, or can only paddle on one side.


IP IP Logged Send Private Message Send Private Message
dave
Master Poster
Master Poster
Avatar
D4

Joined: 29 Apr 2005
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 4224
  Quote dave Replybullet Posted: 16 Oct 2010 at 2:53pm
You guys are starting to give me a headache.
Nomad
IP IP Logged Send Private Message
Jed Hawkes
Rio Banditos
Rio Banditos
Avatar

Joined: 24 Aug 2008
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 813
  Quote Jed Hawkes Replybullet Posted: 16 Oct 2010 at 6:27pm
In windy conditions during long crossings the rudder has it's place. But kayaks existed for hundreds (arguably thousands) of years before the advent of the rudder so I feel that the native people had something going for them. They also never used anything but a greenland style paddle, a style which exists merely on the fringe of seakayaking. But like I said the Rudder has it's PLACE in paddling, not a permanent fixture. Using the rudder is like training wheels, if you never take the training wheels off you'll never learn to ride without them.
The line will become apparent
978-273-7723
IP IP Logged Send Private Message
dave
Master Poster
Master Poster
Avatar
D4

Joined: 29 Apr 2005
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 4224
  Quote dave Replybullet Posted: 16 Oct 2010 at 7:43pm
Then why do Olympic Racers use rudders. They definitely don't need training wheels and have perfect paddle strokes. You don't make the Olympics unless you have a perfect paddle stroke.
 
If we assumed your logic was sound, cars would still have manual steering, airplanes would not have rudders, TV would still be using tubes...Rudders for kayaks are just natural evolution in efficiency, technology and getting the most out of your energy.
 
I would never paddle a sea kayak without one because I want to concentrate my energy on going straight. WW kayaks of course do not have rudders because you need to turn a lot.
 
Read this article by Epic (the undisputed leader in fast kayak manufacturing)
 
Nomad
IP IP Logged Send Private Message
Jed Hawkes
Rio Banditos
Rio Banditos
Avatar

Joined: 24 Aug 2008
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 813
  Quote Jed Hawkes Replybullet Posted: 16 Oct 2010 at 8:43pm
I'm not saying YOU shouldn't use a rudder, I'm just saying why I don't all the time. Like I said they have their place in the sport. This isn't a personal attack on your paddling, just a discussion about kayaking.
The line will become apparent
978-273-7723
IP IP Logged Send Private Message
Jimmy
Tricky Woo
Tricky Woo


Joined: 20 Mar 2005
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 239
  Quote Jimmy Replybullet Posted: 16 Oct 2010 at 8:59pm
My boat has a skeg on it which works out pretty well for crossings, then I pull it up when hugging the shore.  I don't like the way I can't push my feet against something when I roll in a kayak with a rudder.  If I paddled a sea kayak a lot I might change my mind.
 
Jimmy
IP IP Logged Send Private Message Send Private Message
dave
Master Poster
Master Poster
Avatar
D4

Joined: 29 Apr 2005
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 4224
  Quote dave Replybullet Posted: 16 Oct 2010 at 9:46pm

I have had 3 different sea kayaks in the past 15 years, with skeg (sucked) without rudder or skeg (was ok for close to shore and short crossings) with rudder (totally awsome, especially when you can just raise it out of the way when needed).

I just learned when we did an 80 mile trip in 4 days that the guys without the rudders were all over the place and I was tracking straight and true.
 
I have an Epic 18x sport coming with thier new rudder (trackmaster plus) and I am looking forward to having a very fast sea kayak (and only 42 lbs) and putting the Easy Rider to the side (for guests) or selling it. We will see who is left behind next summer hehehehe....It wont be me this time! Look out all you Greenlander rudderless people...
Nomad
IP IP Logged Send Private Message
dave
Master Poster
Master Poster
Avatar
D4

Joined: 29 Apr 2005
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 4224
  Quote dave Replybullet Posted: 16 Oct 2010 at 9:50pm
The Greenlander guys were faster during the trip, but I was paddling an Easy Rider slow boat too. This wont happen with the Epic...
Nomad
IP IP Logged Send Private Message
Courtney
Big Boofer
Big Boofer
Avatar
Whitewater,sea kayaking, snowboarding, backpacking.

Joined: 22 Mar 2005
Location: United States
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 662
  Quote Courtney Replybullet Posted: 17 Oct 2010 at 8:15am

Dave just face it, as I said before you're a wussy.  ;-)

Seriously, what's the big deal?  Is a racer uses a rudder to hold a line, great.  If a beginner or someone needing a little help stearing uses one, great.  Again, to each his own.  The point is to go out and have fun.
 
Courtney
IP IP Logged Send Private Message Send Private Message
James
Admin
Admin
Avatar
Sum Dum Guy

Joined: 31 Dec 2004
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 3589
  Quote James Replybullet Posted: 17 Oct 2010 at 3:26pm
I agree courtney. I Think the issue is that Dave gets upset when he knows he is using bunk gear. There is nothing wrong with using a car with an automatic transmission. I personally prefer a manual for personal reasons but hey what is the big deal. Use what you like.

Dave if you need help keeping the boat straight, and since you are in the back all the time use a rudder .. nothing wrong with that. It will help when your racing too, at least that is what the survey says. For me, I will skeg so I can surf and feel nimble whilst turning my head to make sure Dave is ok back there..




Edited by James - 17 Oct 2010 at 3:28pm
IP IP Logged Send Private Message Send Private Message
dave
Master Poster
Master Poster
Avatar
D4

Joined: 29 Apr 2005
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 4224
  Quote dave Replybullet Posted: 17 Oct 2010 at 7:29pm
James, I did not know your van had a manual transmition. That is totaly cool, is it a three on the tree?
Nomad
IP IP Logged Send Private Message
dave
Master Poster
Master Poster
Avatar
D4

Joined: 29 Apr 2005
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 4224
  Quote dave Replybullet Posted: 17 Oct 2010 at 8:13pm

http://www.epickayaks.com/products/touringkayaks/18x-sport

This is my new boat! Except mine will be all white. It comes with a Track Master PLUS rudder system. The fin that sticks out below the integrated rudder retracts, then when retracted it locks the rudder in place so it acts like a skeg or a boat with no rudder! Because the rudder is actually part of the hull form, when it is locked into place it is like you have no rudder or a skeg. Epic has really designed their boats well.
 
I guess that is why the Olympic racers use them...
 
When I get it I will race anyone with a skeg or Greenlander style boat to prove my point. I will get the coffee going when I reach the finish line and wait for you...
Nomad
IP IP Logged Send Private Message
dave
Master Poster
Master Poster
Avatar
D4

Joined: 29 Apr 2005
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 4224
  Quote dave Replybullet Posted: 18 Oct 2010 at 8:37pm

Along with the manual transmition (three on the tree) in your van James, you could install one of these too...

 
You may need this after I kick your ass with my new boat and rudder and you drown your sorrows with that fancy whiskey you have.
Nomad
IP IP Logged Send Private Message
KBfree
Splat Wheeler
Splat Wheeler
Avatar

Joined: 07 Oct 2005
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 104
  Quote KBfree Replybullet Posted: 18 Oct 2010 at 8:52pm

As a rudderless kayaker I have only a few observation.  The first would be the intent and design of the kayak hull would most likely dictate whether a rudder is used.  I have a wine glass hull that tracks very well...even in big waves.  The only time it becomes noticable is with a quartering wind or a cross current. 

And although a rudder may be more efficient when paddling, I feel that by not having one, I'm more engaged in the paddling experience.  I've incorporated better sense of contol with my paddling and balance.  I use a slight draw when I finish the stroke for corrections or I wiill lean on an edge longer to help track.  Efficiency may be the goal, but I have been able to develope ta echnique that directly translates into whitewater that has made me a better kayaker. 
 
Dave... you might like the rudder clutter but I've enjoyed being connected to the water, boat and the elements.  I'll race you anytime.....     How about the Deception Pass Dash?!
 
 
 
 
Kirk B
IP IP Logged Send Private Message Send Private Message
KBfree
Splat Wheeler
Splat Wheeler
Avatar

Joined: 07 Oct 2005
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 104
  Quote KBfree Replybullet Posted: 18 Oct 2010 at 9:01pm
Kirk B
IP IP Logged Send Private Message Send Private Message
arnobarno
Big Boofer
Big Boofer
Avatar

Joined: 04 Nov 2006
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 450
  Quote arnobarno Replybullet Posted: 18 Oct 2010 at 9:01pm
I've carefully read this thread and examined the specs on the boat you posted. What I can't seem to find are the attachment points for the fishing rods on this boat? Where are they? Does the rudder interfere with landing the big one or does Epic have some trick system for that as well? Deborah wants to know where the drink holder is as well as the best place to store chocolate chip cookies - would that be in the front hatch or is the rear hatch the only one that is refrigerated?
arn9schaeffer@gmail.com (remove 9 for my real email address)
IP IP Logged Send Private Message Send Private Message
Page  of 2 Next >>
Post Reply Post New Topic
Printable version Printable version

Forum Jump
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot create polls in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum