How to get in
Your paddle is like the engine of a car. The more efficient that engine, the less gas it needs. A typical paddler makes 500 strokes per mile. During this stroke, a paddler is using energy to move the boat, as well as lift the paddle into position. The more efficient a paddle is, the less energy the paddler must use allowing for a longer, more pleasant, experience. Just like with our boats, a properly fit paddle is important. Hornbeck Boats are designed to use a double bladed low angle paddle. The double blade increases performance and maneuverability by constantly having a blade in contact with the water. Using a low angle paddle stroke (watch Werner’s video for a description of this technique) the user puts less stress on smaller muscles and shoulders, while using less energy, to stay out longer. This is different than what most people consider a kayak stroke. The shape of the paddle’s blade tends to be longer and thinner to be optimized for this low angle technique. The length of the paddle is also longer than your typical kayak paddle. This length is based off the width of the boat, not the size of the paddler. If a paddle is too short, the user will notice that they are hitting the sides of the boat with each stroke. The most important factor of a good paddle is it’s weight. When one blade is in the water, the paddle is supporting the weight of the blade in the air. Ounces can make a huge difference over the course of a day. Imagine holding a water bottle at arm’s reach; raising and lowering it 500 times. Now empty out the water from the bottle and repeat the experiment. A majority of a paddles weight is in the blades; far from your hands. Better quality materials and construction techniques can reduce this weight , thus reducing the effort required. Hornbeck boats offers a selection of Werner paddles for sale. Werner is a family owned company that has been making handcrafted paddles for over 50 years. They are recognized as the leader in designing and manufacturing of the world’s best paddles. While you are trying out a boat Hornbeck staff with gladly show you our offerings and allow you to try them out.
How you store your boat is key to it's longevity. UV exposure along the hull and moisture on the wood are a boats biggest enemies. A boat should be stored upside down, off the ground, with its weight evenly distributed; ideally inside.
This can be accomplished in many ways.
•Store on saw horses- a simple set of saw horses is enough to keep it off the ground with good ventilation.
• Store Suspended – Use a pulley system with a high ceiling, or simply suspend your boat with loops of rope to get it up and out of the way.
• Store with L brackets on a Wall – Make sure that the brackets are spaced evenly to distribute the weight of the boat. Also make sure the support arm is long enough so that the boat will not accidentally slide off the ends.
If storing outside, place in a shaded spot and cover with a thick and durable tarp that is loosely tied down, protecting the boat yet allowing for some air flow. It is best to tie the boat and the tarp down independently to protect from gusts.Again, keep the boat off the ground. If storing in a snowy area, regularly remove snow during the winter to prevent damage from excessive weight.
Follow the maintenance steps below before storing for extended periods.
Deter theft by storing inside if possible. If you must store your boat outside, keep it hidden, covered, and secured with a sturdy cable lock.
It is also possible to attach a boat using foam blocks instead of a rack. This is not ideal if you are travelling long distances or at high speeds.
As a cheaper alternative to a roof rack but more secure than foam blocks we sell the Yakima Easy Top in our store.
We Highly recommend that boats be strapped to a vehicle using a roof rack and the technique described below. All boat purchases include a set of webbing straps, Hood loops, and a bow line.
Care and Maintenance
After a day of paddling:
• Clean your boat with mild soapy water applied by a cloth, sponge or soft bristled brush to prevent pond scum build up.
• For the hull we recommend using 303 Aerospace Protectant. . This product reduces the damage of UV exposure, keeps the hull cleaner by allowing dirt and grime to be wiped off easier, and reduces the appearance of scratches.
o To apply, spray the 303 on the clean hull, wiping in a circular motion with a lint free cloth until completely dry. The product does not air dry; so make sure to really wipe it clean. Extra buffing will increase the bonding, repellency, and longevity of the product.
• The interior can be cleaned with mild soap and water applied by a cloth, sponge or soft bristled brush. 303 Protectant can also be used on the interior to protect from UV exposure and dirt; but be aware that 303 can make the interior slick
We recommend this procedure be done twice a year at minimum:
• Wipe down the hull with a mild detergent and water to clean; then apply a UV protectant. We recommend 303 Aerospace Protectant Spray.
• Weatherize gunwales by letting them dry and then applying a coat of Tung oil. We recommend Corey’s Amazing Tung oil. (Can be purchased through us or online) Repeat more frequently if wood begins to look weathered or dry.
• Check for cracks in the wood and hull. Make sure all screws are tight.