Q: How do I know I will get the kayak that is right for me?
A: The chart in the Which Kayak? section is designed to help you make your choice. It is easy to purchase a kayak that seems great, but is unsuitable for where you plan to use it. Also there is now such a large selection of kayaks and kayaking equipment available that the choice can seem daunting. The best advice is always to enquire at a specialist canoe/kayak shop. You can see our range of kayaks at your nearest Q-Kayaks dealer.
Q: Does Q-Kayaks design and manufacture all of its kayaks on site at its factory in Manawatu, New Zealand?
A: Yes. We also manufacture most of the accessories we stock.
Q: When I have chosen a kayak, should I try it before purchasing it?
A: Yes, you should try before you buy. Most specialist kayak shops will allow you to try one of their demonstration models before you agree to make a purchase. They will also be able to suggest a beginner's course for you to take part in, so you can learn the correct safety procedures and can obtain maximum enjoyment from your kayak.
Q: What are your colour options?
A: To view our range of colours for kayaks, click here.
Q: What can I do to help keep my kayak in good condition?
A: When you are not using the kayak, keep it undercover out of direct sunlight.
Always hose it down with fresh water after using it. Hose out the cockpit area as well - footrests, seat and webbing. If small particles of dirt build up on the inside of fibreglass & lightweight polyethylene kayaks, they can be removed by carefully using a water blaster. You can wax the surface to prevent this happening (It is not wise to use a water blaster too often).
When storing your kayak away, replace the hard hatches with soft hatches made from a 'breathable' material. This allows the storage areas to dry out and prevents pressure building up inside the storage areas on hot days (This pressure can cause leaks to develop).
Clean the outside of your hatches with armourguard every 3 to 4 months.
Clean the inside of your hatches with CRC 808 silicon spray. This will keep the hatches good and waterproof, plus they are easier to fit. You should also spray the silicon on your footrests and rudder fittings.
Make sure you replace the rubber cockpit stiffener after using your kayak.
Q: What happens if my kayak gets damaged?
A: All kayaks manufactured by Q-Kayaks carry a two-year warranty against faulty workmanship or materials. Damage to polyethylene kayaks is nearly always caused by falls from a trailer or roof rack. Welding can repair holes and cracks. Damaged deck riggings or rudders can easily be removed and repaired or replaced. If you look after your kayak and follow the instructions on our warranty card, your kayak should last you a lifetime.
For more information on repairing a damaged kayak, click here.
Q: Can you explain what the difference is between kayaks made from polyethylene, polyethylene foam sandwich, fibreglass and Kevlar/carbon?
A: The standard polyethylene kayak is the most durable and strongest sea kayak. To gain in performance, the kayak needs to be lighter and more rigid. Modern technology has recently led to the introduction of the three-layer polyethylene constructed kayak, which has superseded the fibreglass kayak in performance. The Kevlar/carbon kayak is your true high performance sea kayak because of its lightness and rigidity. But, like all high performance products, it is more expensive and requires more careful attention, as it cannot withstand the knocks that the standard polyethylene kayak can. The model of sea kayak you purchase should be weighed against where it will be used and how much you can afford!
Q: What is the best way to store my kayak?
A: Store it either the right way or upside down, never on its side. To prevent dents forming, store your kayak on two hanging slings, spaced one-third and two-thirds of the way along the kayak. Each sling should be 10cm wide and under cover to protect the kayak from exposure to direct sunlight. The same applies for carrying your kayak on a car roof. Cradles should be made in the shape of the kayak to prevent pressure spots denting your kayak.
Q: Do you have a factory shop stocking kayaks at wholesale prices?
A: No. However, we have a retail shop adjacent to our Manawatu factory where you can purchase our kayaks and accessories or book any of the trips we run. Alternatively, you can contact your nearest dealer to view our range of kayaks and receive specialist advice.
Q: Why do sea kayaks have bulkheads, and is it important to have two?
A: Paddling in the open sea requires two bulkheads in a kayak to ensure the kayak is buoyant enough to re-enter and continue paddling should a capsize occur. If water can only flood the cockpit area, the sealed bow and stern areas keep the kayak afloat when re-entering. One bulkhead in the rear is better than none, but it is wise to fit a kayak air bag in the front of the kayak to reduce flooding capacity.
Q: Do I require a rudder for my kayak and, if so, why?
A: If you are planning to use your kayak in coastal waters, having a rudder fitted to your kayak gives you easy steerage, particularly in windy conditions. Toe flaps are fitted to the footrests with wire cords running back to the rudder, which assists greatly in steering the kayak. This is particularly useful with double kayaks.
Q: Is it better to choose one double kayak or two singles?
A: Doubles are fun for everyone to enjoy. They also provide confidence and a rest for younger members on a day cruise. Most doubles can be paddled by one person safely, and provide a large amount of room for gear to be stowed. A single kayak is more playful and gives you independence to use and transport it yourself. It also provides independence and a sense of 'I can do it' for younger family members.