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Everyone has their own unique style, their own comfort zone, their own way of doing things. It is no different with kayak fishing and your tools of the trade … namely, your kayak.

Center Hatch Modification:

My wife’s Cuda 14 arrived last week and after taking it out on it’s maiden voyage, she was able to determine what would work for her style of fishing and what she would like improved for her style of fishing. She fishes both bait and artificial so she went with a triple Scotty mount in the front. I mounted it to the Center Hatch at a length that would be comfortable for her to grab without having to slide all the way to the front of the yak. Since she is 5’6″, it ended up being at the front of the third indented section of the hatch cover.

Problem: With the triple mount attached to the center hatch, getting into the center hatch would be difficult once you had your rods out. She had already ordered the Center Hatch Insert so she could store her phone, tools, lures, etc.

Solution: I decided that cutting the center hatch cover and installing a hinge so the hatch opened in two parts would be the solution.

I removed the gasket around the center hatch cover. I used painters tape to cover the area on the hatch that I would be cutting so I could draw a strait line to use as my guide. I used a scroll saw to make the cut. I then installed a piano hinge with rivets to both pieces of the center hatch. Lastly I reattached the gasket and trimmed it slightly with a razor blade where the two pieces meet to make it flush. Reattach the center hatch to the yak with buckles. I will be painting it black so that it will blend in with the hatch. (I left it silver in the picture so you could see it better.)

Scupper Plug Modification:

Instead of making 6 more holes in my kayak, I opted to cut the tabs off my scupper plugs and leave them unattached. We don’t fish rapids so there is really no worry that the scuppers will be pushed out of their holes.

Anchor Trolley Installation:

We fish muddy, oyster-ey, grassy, sandy bottoms and getting the right angle into a small creek is vital. Once you finally get there and you want to stay there, an anchor trolley is the best solution for us. I’m a big believer of one on each side to achieve the proper positioning when the tides change.

Handle Repositioning:

We carry our yaks loaded. That means, all our gear is on the yak and loaded on the trailer. Once we arrive at our destination, we unload the yak, set our poles in the rod holders and we are off. With the handle off to the side, the entire kayak would tilt to the side when we carried them to the launch. Repositioning the handle in the center of the yak resolved this problem.