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Spring Kayak Fishing Maintenance Schedule.

Written by Tim Taylor on September 7th, 2015.      0 comments


Handy tools you might need…
  • Old toothbrush
  • Can of spray silicone
  • Can of CRC Dry Glide
  • Contact cleaner
  • Petroleum jelly (Vaseline)
  • Heat Gun
  • Spare micro SD card
  • A couple of clean cotton rags or a roll of paper towels.
  • Screwdriver set.
  • Hose, brush, and bucket of soapy water.
 
  1. Fish Finder Maintenance
    1. Clean all electrical terminals with toothbrush and contact cleaner. If there is green copper corrosion, you need to get rid of that with gentle brushing. Dry off excess cleaner with paper towel.
      Fish finder plug full of sand

       
    2. Coat all terminals with petroleum jelly. This won’t affect the electrical signals but it will prevent corrosion. Use a heat gun on low heat to melt the jelly into the terminals
      Lowrance Fish Finder
      Tim’s Tip: if the air from the heat gun is hot enough to burn your fingers, it’s too hot for melting the petroleum jelly.

       
    3. Check the fuse for corrosion or if it’s blown. Replace if necessary.
       
    4. Charge the battery.
       
    5. Connect everything together and check for operation
       
    6. Download your waypoints onto a spare micro SD card and store file on your computer as a backup. Trust me, it sucks when your sounder shits itself and you loose all your favourite GPS marks.
      downloading waypoints from fish finder
 
  1. VHF Maintenance
    1. Clean all terminals, volume and squelch dials in same manor as your sounder.
       
    2. Charge VHF
       
    3. Turn VHF on and leave running all day – the battery life is extended if you can fully drain it and then charge it every once and awhile.
       
  2. EPIRB
    1. Take out of pouch, clean and dry.
       
    2. Open up and test for operation – most EPIRB’s will have a testing function. If a light doesn’t flash, then the battery is flat and you will need to return it to the supplier.
      Checking EPIRB for operation
  3. Kayak Maintenance
    1. Give your kayak a good wash and scrub with some warm soapy water – get all those bits of old bait off her and make her look good for the start of the season.
       
    2. Open up hatches and sponge out any water. Leave open to dry.
       
    3. Check all holes (e.g. wiring holes for sounder) to see if they still look waterproof. Apply extra silicone if they look dodgy.
      Filling holes in a fishing kayak with silicone

       
    4. Check any wiring for damage or corrosion. Battery terminals are common spots for damage, clean and/or replace if necessary.
       
    5. Hose out the foot-peg area to remove salt and sand build up. Once dry, apply a coat of ‘Dry Glide’ or Silicone spray to the rails and moving parts to help the rudder move easily.
      cleaning footpegs in a kayak

       
    6. Check any Starports for operation – these often get filled with sand and become hard to move. Flush with water if necessary or apply a coat of spray silicone. 
       
    7. Check running rig for correct operation. Consider replacing cord if badly frayed or re-tieing knots. 
      checking running rig knots

       
    8. Check the rudder
      1. All screws, bolts, and shackles should be tight.
      2. Check crimps and cables for signs of corrosion. Steel rudder cables are prone to corrosion so replace if necessary…I had cables snap on me while paddling Cook Strait and it really sucks!
      3. Check blade for signs of damage – straighten if necessary
      4. Lubricate any moving parts with Silicone spray or CRC.
         
Well I hope these simple tips help you to have an enjoyable experience the next time you're out on the water. None of these have to be done with any urgency, but a quick check over now and again, and a few sprays of silicone, can make a big difference to your performance. It's also a fun thing to do with your young fellas so get them involved and before long you'll have a new fishing buddy.

Paddle Hard. Tim.  
 

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