Tag Archive: rowing

My multipurpose Wavewalk S4

By Terry Pritchard

Western North Carolina

I’m a retired guide, and I live in the mountains of western North Carolina.

I bought my S4 early this year, but so far I had only one chance to take it out on the river because this year has been been very unusual, since it kept raining until July, and the rivers have been high. The S4 was very stable in fast moving water, and easy to maneuver.

I outfitted our S4 with a 1987 6hp Johnson outboard, and it works perfectly.

My wife and I took our S4 to Florida, and we enjoyed it very much. She likes it, and she even likes driving it.
I drive my S4 with a tiller extension, and I can drive it standing with no problems. I drove it in saltwater at a top speed of 15 mph, and at 13.4 mph in a sustained mode. I noticed that it was going faster in saltwater and at sea level than in freshwater in the mountains. I attribute this to the combination of more oxygen and more buoyancy. Note that the place where I live is at a 2,700 ft elevation.

I take a lot of gear on my fishing trips, and the first time I went fishing with my S4 was confusing for me, since I didn’t know how to store my gear in its hulls. But after I gave it some thought and arranged things properly, the boat turned out to be perfect. I added a storage hatch inside the saddle, works great. I also stiffened the gunnels with wooden ribs so that I could use the sides of the boat to store my fishing gear, and I laid foam on the bottom of the hulls.

I’m planning to add rowing oars to it.

Here are some pictures that show how I rigged it.

 

Wavewalk S4 motorized kayak skiff

Wavewalk S4 motorized kayak skiff

 

I need the gunnels ridged because I will be attaching oarlocks soon

 

Wavewalk in the rowing world

By Ken Dollhopf

 

Rowing shells are among the fastest human powered boats, and there are some two hundred US colleges that have rowing teams.
When racing, a large men’s 8 rowing shell can go about 13.8 mph. This is Olympians. Normal club rowing is about 11.5 mph.

I have a company called Leribe that is focused on the US rowing market. We sell racing boats and systems for racing events. We offer boats for this market. The Wavewalks serve two specific needs:

Coaching launch: The S4 model coupled with an 8 HP outboard motor is perfect for this application, which requires a boat that produces a minimal wake. The S4 is being used as a coaches launch for training and also an officials “chase boat” for regatta racing. There was a lot of experimenting with motors in a number of water conditions but we have settled on the need for an 8hp motor.

Regatta Start: During racing there are usually 6 platforms that are anchored at the start and a person on these hold and adjust the racing boats prior to the start. The Wavewalk 500 R is a great option for these. Each regatta needs 6-8 of these boats.
The 500R’s are being used as stationary platforms for racing. An unconventional use undoubtedly. The key item here is that a person sits in each boat and then for each race the crew that is assigned the lane backs into the 500R and the person uses the split between the pontoons to align the bows of each boat to the starting line. As each racing boat may be a different length there is an official that uses radios and will tell each of the 6 500Rs to move their boat in or out until perfect alignment is achieved. Then the race may begin. This is repeated for each race on between 3 and 10 minute centers.
It is a unique use of the W500 R but it’s working.

Inside the trailer

The S4 on the left is the coaching launch

Picking up the Wavewalks at the factory

New Rowing Rig

By Billy Boughner

I found certain issues with my first rowing saddle concept, and I build a new style which allows me to install oarlocks to be more accurately positioned.
The basic design is a frame that extends the length of the cockpit and anchored in the two end slots of the tunnel.
My seat separates and I’m able to accurately position two sets of oarlocks for the different seat positions for pushing or pulling the oars.
The other asset of this design is that there is no beam directly across the oarlock thus allowing to lift the oars higher in rough water.
This design required that I replace the plywood insert [saddle bracket] with one that is a little higher to attach the frame at one end, and an identical one at the opposite end.
This design also allows me to do some experimentation with the seat position and height.

Boat is now on a trailer.
Only a 12 minute drive to the lake. If I decide to go only takes me 13 minutes to load and be there now.

DIY-rowing-rig-for-Wavewalk-500

DIY-rowing-rig-with-oarlocks

frame-for-rowing-rig-for-Wavewalk-500-kayak

Wavewalk-500-rowing-kayak

Rowing Wavewalk 500 fishing kayak with oars and 5 rod holders

Wavewalk 500 with rowing oars, for trolling

By Billy Boughner

South Carolina

I am prevented from paddling due to a problem with my thumbs, so I outfitted my W500 with this rowing rig, and I use it to move around wherever I want. I used saddle brackets as a base for the seat and the rowing rig.
It rows really well, and I’m going out rowing a lot, 2 to 3 times a week. I can row for two hours without any problem.
I use this kayak for trolling, and it’s easy to catch fish with this setup.
My only complaint about this kayak is that it rows too easily… I’m thinking about getting a bigger boat so I could take another person with me.

fishing-kayak-with-rowing-oars-for-trolling-1024

Wavewalk 500 outfitted with fishing rod holders and rowing oars

 

 

Kayak crab fisherman from SF Bay reviews his Wavewalk, by Edwin Warner

I am an amateur fisherman and an ex UC Berkeley rower. I am a big guy (6’5″-260lbs) who wanted a versatile boat that I can fish and paddle my girls around.
-I owned two sit in kayaks. Both were uncomfortable and neither of them suited my needs. I do mostly beach launch crab fishing and my two-man [brand name] kayak weighed 100lbs and had a huge open cockpit that was subject to swamping. My other boat was an inherited [brand name sit in kayak] that has left me upside down so many times I am ashamed to say.

Well I have had the Wavewalk kayak out 5 times so far…what a boat. Wow impressed.

-I am amazed at how easy it is to move at a good cruising clip.
-The sitting/kneeling paddling position really affords a strong stroke with very little effort which doesn’t really help with the “workout” aspect of it 😉
-I have been averaging just over 6km/hr over a 7.5km distance in flat water with no real wind to speak of. While not blazing fast the effort required to do that would allow me to paddle all day. -Changing your position fore/aft really changes the behavior of the boat! I’ve found that for cruising neutral balance really speeds things up.
-Beach launching is a piece of cake as well as you just step in and weight forward until you float, then move back accordingly. Getting down to the beach isn’t hard either as I can just shoulder it and carry my paddle, necessitating only one trip. I like that.
-Mounting the boat to my roof racks is super easy and feels very secure. 75mph on the freeway, no noticeable noise or bouncing is noticed on just regular Yakima bars. That’s rad
Ok just to reiterate I really like the boat and will have no problem selling it to lake/river enthusiasts.

But now the bad-
-Definitely a learning curve, being so high out of the water magnifies the lateral motion experienced in your ears, even though this boat is probably rolling less than a monohull. Comfort was achieved immediately on second shot out.

-The noodles. Yes I get that they are inexpensive, easily replaced, and very functional. Again in my opinion not an elegant solution for a very cool, technical boat. And since what I do is crabbing, when attached on the sides the noodles get in the way, crab pots get caught in them so I should attach the noodles under the saddle, between the hulls. Now for fishermen the foam noodles actually could be a selling point as you could array your different lures very easily by simply embedding them and hanging the leaders over the side, but for me they get in the way.

This boat is amazing and one of my favorite things about it is its versatility. You literally can do just about anything with this boat. It gets so many creative juices flowing for me! As a designer/fabricator it’s really exciting and inspiring, though I realize I have to dial it back and just get some boats sold… 🙂
Thanks so much for making this boat and giving the opportunity you have. I intend to make the most of it. Also I have been grabbing a photo here and there so far. Looking for a good one to put up on the web page.
Cheers
Edwin

 

Wavewalk-fishing-kayak-SF-Bay-CA

Click images to enlarge –


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