Wednesday, May 15, 2013

A Few Little Improvements To The Trident 13

I have been working on the rigging of my new Trident 13 for several months now. I am finished and am going to start a series of post on what I did and how I did it. I plan on finishing with a monster overview post, showing all of my customization. This is the ninth post in the series.

1st post: Installing a Fish Finder 
2nd post: Upgrading a Plano Dry Box
3rd post: How To Install SuperNova Fishing Lights On Your Kayak
4th post: Install Scotty Flush Mounts on a Kayak
5th post: YackAttack GearTrack GT90 Install and Review
6th post: The Ultimate DIY Kayak Crate - Part 1
7th post: The Ultimate DIY Kayak Crate - Part 2
8th post: Silent Traction System Install

Before I begin to show a few little improvements I made to my kayak, take a look at these trophy fish my good friend Jonathan Walker caught:

Jonathan has had trouble getting on the fish this year, but got into them in a big way on the Western Branch Reservoir. This 13" Shell Cracker is the largest I have ever seen!

This Trophy 43" Gar gave him a big surprise! He was using a light reel and rod while drifting a 3" dead shad in 15' of water, looking for a catfish or rockfish. This bad boy made his day!

If you have a trophy fish you would like to show off, email me a picture of it. I'll add it to the beginning of my next post!

On to the main subject....

I love my Ocean Kayak Trident 13. It is a great, versatile boat. Many things are well thought out on it. The rod pod, sonar shield, and hull design are just a few of its great qualities. However, there are a few minor, nitpicky things I dislike about it.

The paddle holders

The paddle holders on the Trident 13 hold a paddle very, very securely. I have not removed them for this reason. There are times that I want to know that nothing will strip my paddle from the side of my boat.

Realistically, those times are rare.

The standard paddle holder

What the Trident 13's paddle holders do not do is allow you to easily stow your paddle. It takes me two hands and a good deal of effort to do it. Now, someone with larger, stronger hands may be able to do it one handed, but not this guy.

I need to be able to quickly stow my paddle one handed. So, I added a Scotty Paddle Clip to the side of my kayak. It is not as secure, but I can stow and retrieve my paddle one handed.

Just this past week I hooked a fish that felt large. When I hooked it, I had my paddle and an extra rod in my lap. You want your deck clear when a big fish comes on board. As I fought the fish, I quickly put the extra rod in a rod holder and clipped my paddle to the Scotty paddle clip. I could do this without even looking. The fish ended up only being a little 23" catfish, but it was full of eggs and fought like a 10 pounder!

Towing Handles

The towing handles on the Trident 13 are some of the strongest you can find. That is the only good thing I can say about them.

The way they give and flop around make loading my kayak into the bed of a truck very difficult. Since they are attached to bungees, it is difficult to obtain the leverage need. So, I added a handle to the front and rear of my deck.

Now I can grip it with both hands and I have a solid grip to work with.

Take a close look at the picture above. See the drain plug in front of the handle? It sucks. In a $1200 kayak you would have thought they could have come up with something better. It works fine for draining, that is not the problem. The problem is that any time you try to drag your Trident 13 up a hill the handle of this plug digs into your fingers. It is very uncomfortable. I have yet to figure out a practical solution to this problem. I would love for someone at Ocean Kayak to read this and fix this problem in future kayaks. 

The Seat Snap

This one is very nitpicky. 

The seat on the Trident 13 can fold down for transport. It is held in place, up or down, by a bungee and plastic clip.  

This system works well, and I like it. However, the clip provided is a cheap plastic deal. It is hard to fasten and unfasten. I replaced this clip with a small Carabiner .

It's things like this that annoy me. They saved maybe 25 cents by using a cheap clip. Why not just do it right, your customers notice the little things.

The Trident 13 is an amazing boat. No boat is going to have everything I want. When you think about it, this is a very short list.

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