The W500 INF 20-15 is for anglers who want to go on long offshore fishing trips in the ocean as well as in big lakes and rivers. It offers you to launch anywhere, go anywhere, and beach almost anywhere.
If the water is too shallow for motorizing, you can put in with the outboard motor’s propeller lifted up, and paddle or pole until you reach water that’s deep enough to lower it, start it, and drive seated or standing up.
Similarly, when you approach shore, you can stop the engine, raise the propeller, and beach while paddling and/or poling.
The W500 INF 20-15 is also a great water toy that offers you to play in the waves both seated and standing while driving or paddling.
Without the motor and flotation attached to it, the W500 INF 20-15 weighs 60 lbs (27 kg), which makes it easy for anyone to car top, even if they’re by themselves. If your vehicle is big enough, you can transport this W kayak inside it.
This is not a solo skiff, it’s a personal microskiff, which means you can take a passenger on board, providing they’re not heavy. With a 200 lbs driver, a lightweight outboard motor and not too much camping or fishing gear on board, the second passenger can weigh up to 100 lbs (45 kg). The new Spray Shield offers good enough protection to a passenger seated in the front, and before you start fishing you can easily detach in less than a minute and store it standing flat in one of the hull tips behind you.
Using a small outboard motor is convenient for multiple reasons:
It’s portable and almost maintenance free, and being a popular off-the-shelf item means that service stations for such products are ubiquitous and service fees can be expected to be reasonably low.
Another important advantage is that such motors are usually dependable and robust, and if the propeller hits something while you drive, it pops out of the water so that damage can be avoided. The same is true if you drive through grass or weeds that can snag the propeller – You can stop the motor, turn around in the cockpit so that you sit face the rear, and take care of the problem. Alternatively, you can stop the motor and paddle or pole to the nearest shore, beach the kayak, and clean the propeller on dry land.
When observing fishing kayak design developments in recent years, it’s impossible to miss two main trends that seem to have gone out of control: The first is an increase in size and weight, and the second is over accessorizing.
These days, the typical high-end SOT fishing kayak is a barge that weighs around 100 lbs, and requires a trailer for transportation, which is enough to defeat the purpose of kayak fishing even before you hit the water and find out that paddling such barges to a noticeable distance is either hard or impossible…
One company recently launched a tandem fishing kayak that weighs 185 lbs in the basic version, and 230 lbs when fully accessorized. And if you think this weight includes a powerful outboard motor, you’re wrong – We’re still talking about a human powered boat, (although not a paddle craft) that’s too wide for paddling… At such weight, a crew of two strong anglers couldn’t car top this kayak, and they’ll even have a hard time loading it on top of the trailer that’s offered with it.
The thing looks like it came out of a shipyard rather than a kayak factory… Good luck with moving that object out there, on the water!
The new SOT and hybrid fishing kayaks’ decks are so overcrowded and over accessorized that some of them severely limit the user’s range of motion in fishing, and they restrict even their legroom. Some of those fishing kayaks look bizarre, or comic, with such a plethora of useless objects (e.g. leaning bar), semi-useless objects (e.g. cup holder) and overly complex ‘systems’ (e.g. double-cover storage hatch) crowding their decks and getting in the way of their users’ arms and fishing lines.
And since this article is about innovation, we feel obliged to mention the new, award winning electric fishing kayak that features a motor installed in its middle. Its propeller shaft comes out of the water between the angler’s legs, with the propeller appearing at a couple inches distance from their crotch. Good luck with that too!
New products from Wavewalk
Wavewalk launched three new products in 2014: High-buoyancy Inflatable detachable flotation modules, a detachable, transparent Spray Shield, and a dual use Transom Motor Mount.
These accessories strengthen our advantage in high performance motorized kayak fishing, which is significantly different from traditional motorized kayak fishing involving outfitting SOT kayaks with weak and unreliable electric trolling motors for short distance, flat water trips. A W500 outfitted with proper flotation and a powerful outboard gas engine offers a solution to the problems of strong tidal currents, wind, and the need to travel long distances in moving water, including offshore.
1. Inflatable detachable flotation modules
This new accessory transforms the W kayak into a Rigid Inflatable Boat (RIB), an increasingly popular high-performance class of watercraft used in a variety of motorized boating applications ranging from tendering bigger boats to high speed travel, diving, fishing, and rescue operations.
The new inflatable float provides twice as much buoyancy as the large size Polyethylene foam modules we offered so far. Thus, it improves the motorized W kayak’s performance in terms of both capsize prevention and recovery.
A W500 can be outfitted with either one or two pairs of such floats. In the two-pair configuration it isn’t suitable for fishing, and you need to stop somewhere and relocate the front pair – either by reattaching them at the rear, or just storing them in the kayak’s hull tips behind you.
Another great feature these floats have is that you don’t need a pump to inflate them.
2. Detachable transparent spray shield
This accessory works to prevent spray from getting into the cockpit of the W500 while motorizing at high speed in choppy water, or in waves.
The reason it’s detachable is that you may want to have it out of your way when you fish – Casting and landing fish from this kayak’s front is not only easy, but it also has some advantages, so you may want to quickly detach this spray shield and store it (flat) in one of the hull tips behind you. Reattaching it is easy, and takes less than a minute.
3. Dual use transom motor mount
Outboard gas motors and electric trolling motors come in two basic configurations – Long propeller shaft (20″ and above), and short propeller shaft (15″).
This can be a problem in case you have a long-shaft outboard motor and a short shaft electric motor, or vice versa, and you want to use them in different conditions. For example – travel fast to a distant fishing area using the powerful outboard, and once you get there troll slowly and quietly using the electric motor.
You may also want to use the outboard motor when you fish offshore, and the electric trolling motor when you fish inland, in smaller bodies of water, or in no-motor zones.
Either way, you’re fully covered now and in the future with the new TMM 20-15 Transom Motor Mount.
This new motor mount is not only more versatile – it also weighs less than the old mounts.
Click the images to enlarge -
Note that a W500 kayak outfitted with high-performance inflatable flotation and a powerful outboard motor still weighs less than some of the mammoth ‘barge’ fishing kayaks out there that feature no motor at all.
In sum, while Wavewalk keeps expanding the performance envelope of its already superior products and solutions, other fishing kayak manufacturers still have nothing interesting or sensible to offer, but they seem to put more effort into it in recent years.
TMM 20-15 Transom Motor Mount for Long and Short Shaft Outboard Motors
The TMM 20-15 is a versatile transom mount that fits both 20″ long propeller shaft outboard motors and 15″ short ones – Just flip and relocate it, and it’s ready for the new motor.
No extra charge when shipped together with a W kayak
When shipped separately: $20 S&H in the continental US (48 states)
When shipped separately: $25 S&H to Canada and Alaska
Materials and Construction
The TMM 20-15 is made from 3/4″ thick Medium Density Overlay (MDO), a composite wood and polymer resin (a.k.a. plastic) material developed for outdoor use such as signs and marine applications. The front and back of the MDO panels come coated with a waterproof polymer-infused layer, and the sides of the parts that form the TMM 20-15 are waterproofed with polyurethane. Unlike the TMM 20 and TMM 15 specialized motor mounts that are made from Trex, which is a heavier material, the MDO used in the construction of the TMM 20-15 makes it considerably lighter.
The parts from which the TMM 20-15 is made are cut with a computerized router for maximal precision, best fit, and optimal strength. They are assembled and glued together with waterproof adhesive. The tab-and-slot technique and ‘caisson’ design applied in this product give it additional strength.
There is no need to paint this motor mount, but in case you want to, it can be painted with special paint for outdoor plastic, such as Krylon Fusion spray paint. Regular paint doesn’t adhere well to its surface.
The bolts, washers and nuts used in this motor mount are made from zinc plated steel.
Dimensions and Technical Specifications
Width: 21.5″ (54.5 cm)
Height: 5.5″ (14 cm)
Depth: 7.5″ (19 cm)
Weight: 2.5 lbs (1.14 kg)
Horsepower Compliance: This design was tested with small outboard gas motors such as commonly used with Wavewalk 500 kayaks. It is unknown whether this product fits heavier and more powerful motors in the 4-6 hp range, which aren’t recommended for use together with this watercraft in any case.
How to attach this motor mount to your W kayak
In the 20″ position, just put the mount as close as possible to the rear end of the cockpit, as seen in the picture below, make sure it is centered, mark the two spots where you’d need to drill 3/8″ holes for the blots, and drill.
In the 15″ position, the distance of the motor mount from the rear end of the cockpit will be determined by the bolts that attach the motor to the mount, and the position of the motor when the propeller is. You’d need to make sure that the motor can tilt all the way down and lock, as the propeller shafts rises up from the water. You’d also need to make sure you can fasten and release the bolts that attach the motor to the mount.
Once this is done, make sure the motor mount is centered, and mark to two spots whee you need to drill the 3/8″ holes for the mount’s bolts.
Bolt the motor mount in its place by tightening the nut knobs with their Tee nuts facing down.
Why a dual purpose motor mount?
The problem starts with the fact that only a handful of small outboard motor models feature a 20″ shaft, which is the preferred length for the W500. This limit in choice forces some W owners to use a 15″ (short) shaft motor. If later they find a 20″ (long-shaft) outboard, having a dual motor mount would save them the need to get a new motor mount for it.
Other users may want to use an outboard gas engine for long drives, or when they go through rough water, where electric motors aren’t recommended (see article » ), and use an electric motor when they fish in flat water and in no-motor zones (NMZ). Having a mount that can accommodate either type of propulsion can save them the need to carry and install two motor mounts on their W.
We also had our dealers in mind when we designed this motor mount. It’s easier for them to have one type of mount in stock rather than manage two different items. In the long run, this would improve the service our clients get from our local dealers and distributors.
When the W kayak is outfitted with a powerful motor such as a 2 hp gas outboard, it can travel at speeds exceeding 8 mph. Currently the speed record for motorized W kayaks stands at 13 mph.
While spray splashing into the cockpit isn’t a problem in regular conditions, spray might splash into the front part of the cockpit when the water is choppy and the kayak’s bow hits waves at high speed.
This problem can be solved by outfitting the cockpit with a cover such as a small tarp.
Most W kayak models come outfitted with a preparation for a cockpit cover, and installing a cover is easy, takes less than a minute, and it can be done when you’re on the water.
The Spray Shield can offer similar protection, and it’s attached in a similar way, using the same bungee and hooks that are part of the preparation for cockpit cover.
The Detachable Spray Shield can’t be attached to the kayak while the cockpit cover is attached to it, so you have to choose which one you prefer.
Thickness: 0.098″ (2.5 mm)
Dimensions: 48″ x 12″ (122 cm x 30.5 cm)
Weight: 2 lbs (0.9 kg)
Lashing hooks: 6
Made in USA
No shipping fee when shipped together with a kayak
$25 S&H fee when shipped to addresses in the continental US (48 states)
$30 S&H fee when shipped to addresses in Alaska and Canada
How to attach the Spray Shield
Attaching and detaching the Spray Shield is easy, and takes less than a minute –
Hold the Spray Shield with the hooks facing outward (away from you) and downward. Move to the front of the cockpit, and place the Spray Shield before the spray deflector’s front end. Lift the bungee in the front, and bring it over the shield’s two front hooks, as seen in the above pictures. Pull the sides of the shield towards you until they fit shape of the cockpit’s front end, and attach them using the bungee in the same way (see pictures).
To make the bungee tighter you can shorten it.
Storing it in your kayak
When not attached, the Spray Shield is flat, and it fits easily in one of the hull tips behind you – Just slide it inside. The end will protrude from the hull tip, but not enough to bother you.
Motorized kayaks are heavier than paddled kayaks, and they go at high speed. This requires high capacity flotation, which is what Wavewalk’s inflatable detachable flotation modules offer.
Made in USA
Tech Specs – stated for 1 inflatable flotation module:
Dimensions: Length: 60″ (152 cm) Diameter: 6.5″ (16.5 cm)
-Note: Fits exactly between the eyelets on the kayak’s sides in the XL and INF configurations. -Note: Each side of the W500 kayak can fit up to 2 inflatable flotation modules (Maximum 4 modules for the kayak’s sides).
Weight: Each module weighs 2 lbs (0.9 kg)
Volume: The volume of an inflatable module is 2,000 cubic inches (8.65 gallon / 32.5 liter)
-Note: This is more than 2 XL foam flotation modules combined.
Material: PVC / Black
Thickness: 30 MIL (0.03″) or 0.763 mm (Heavy Duty)
Air valves: Each module is outfitted with 2 air valves – A 1″ wide easy-filling valve, and a small valve for quick pressure-release.
-Note: The wide air filling valve eliminates the need for an air pump.
-Note: Do not fill the flotation module completely – Always leave some room for the air inside to expand as the sun warms it. If you see the surface is too stretched, release some air through the small valve.
Attachment: Each module is outfitted with 2 heavy-duty rope eyes, and ships with 2 anodized aluminum carabiners
Repair: Each pair of inflatable flotation modules ships with a PVC repair kit
Price: This accessory is sold in pairs. Each pair sells for $228.
Shipping: When ordered together with a W kayak, these accessories ship with no additional cost. When ordered separately, S&H is $20 to addresses in the continental US, and $25 for shipping to addresses in Canada and Alaska.
Inflatable vs. XL foam flotation
Price for similar buoyancy: 4 x XL flotation = $124 vs. 2 x inflatable flotation = $228. This means the inflatable is twice more expensive.
Puncture: Inflatable modules might get punctured by sharp objects, such as fishing hooks.
-Note: If your motorized W500 kayak is outfitted with just one pair of inflatable flotation modules at its rear, you can still fish out of its front.
Paddling: When attached as seen in the above picture, the inflatable flotation makes the W kayak’s rear end become much wider, and this makes the kayak harder to paddle.
-Note: In this configuration, the W500 is as wide as our competitors’ ‘barge’ fishing kayaks, which don’t lend themselves to paddling…
In sum, the inflatable flotation is a solution fit for motorizing and not for paddling long distances, unless you attach these modules under the kayak’s saddle.
Looks: The inflatable flotation modules look better than the ones made of foam.
Capsize prevention: Being wider than the foam modules, the inflatable flotation modules are more effective in preventing the kayak from flipping.
Trimming: Adding buoyancy at its stern helps the kayak keep level at higher speed.
Shipping: Inflatable flotation modules cost less to ship than XL foam modules do.