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Topic: Hatch for disco, Rigging up a disco< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
knowspics Offline
Mullet




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Posted: July 28 2008,13:26

I am slowly modding my disco for fishing and was considering putting in a hatch in the seat area as well as a RAM rod holder just in front for trolling purposes. Does anyone have any thoughts on this? I was thinking a 5" hatch would give me enough room to put the RAM mount just in front. Has anyone done this? Also, attached to the ram holder I was going to attach my gps and vhf.

I noticed in another post that someone added an aluminum footbrace which would be great since I would rather paddle with my feet closer together and give me more power to peddle. Has anyone else done something like this that would share their plans?

Many thanks.
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Capn Jimbo Offline
The Godfisher




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Posted: July 29 2008,07:11

Great question!  Since the Disco has now been my main ride for over a year, I know it well.  With your question in mind, I closely reexamined the center cockpit area.  Here's what I think:

1.  The center area simply begs for a hatch.  I think you should go as large as possible, feel free to fill the entire flattened area, as...

2.  The RAM ball can be placed forward of the flattened area.  Now I know you haven't considered this but I think this would be both easy and ideal.  By placing it more forward you can have a larger hatch.  Second you will avoid (literally) ball-busting events when you must remount the kayak after a dump (all puns intended).  The RAM ball will still be quite reachable, but you can place it much lower.   Don't know how you transport your Disco, but the RAM ball will now be out of the way.

Nice.   This will be easily mounted on the ridge by easily fashioning a small round wooden mounting pad (use teak) that you have filed to fit.  Drill and through bolt (all stainless) with a little sealant, easy once you have the hatch to reach through.

Bottom Line:

No ball busting.  Any balls.  Bigger hatch, better access, and now sittable (yes, I often shimmy up and sit on this area for a break or to reach something forward).

Last, and one final thought.  I troll a lot, especially since I love to cover water and always, always tow a lure.  Have picked up everything from jacks, big cudas and one memorable 6 or 7 foot tarpon this way.  And I refuse to use a rod mount.  Why?

I much prefer to stuff the rod butt down the front of my life jacket, with the rod extending over my right shoulder.  It may sound intrusive, but trust me, you will soon forget the rod is even there.

It is terrific.  It is very common to pick up weed, even small amounts, means fish will avoid your lure like the plague.  Since my rod is touching my chest I can feel even the slightest pick up of weed.  I can actually feel fish starting to tug at my lure, even the slightest touch or hit.  When I used a rod holder I felt nothing, often discovered I'd been dragging weed for miles. And you'll miss the small hits that don't pull drag.

Next is access.  When I get a hit - even a tiny one - I can immediately feel it and make a couple of quick hard strokes to set the hook.  And continue so I can move the fish to open water.  Because the rod is on my chest, it is instantly and easily accessible.  No reaching, no squirming.  And if in the middle of a fight, I need to move the fish away from obstructions, to open water there is no messing around.  I simply restuff the rod and paddle.  No fidgeting or trying to remount the rod into the small opening of the rod holder with a big fish jerking the rod around.

Easy and failsafe.

Last, it's simple.  No drilling, no BS, just effective minimalism.  I would urge anyone to try this for themselves.  Give it a fair try, you might like it.

Anyway... good luck and let us know what you did....


:capn:


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Capn Jimbo

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knowspics Offline
Mullet




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Posted: July 29 2008,17:12

Hmmm, bocce balls! Forgot about that ram ball. I am now reconsidering. My pfd is just not designed to put a rod butt inside. Used to troll with it resting on my shoulder with the butt on the cockpit but that was awkward. Added a ram holder over my left shoulder but as you mentioned never know when seaweed or grass is on my line also never know when I have a hit until the boat kind of stops. I will see what hatch options are available once I measure the diameter of that space. Regarding the teak mod I could also fill that space with quick dry epoxy when it is bolted in place. Not sure how that would work but it is an idea that came to mind tying some epoxy flies.

My disco came with nothing except the back webbing. No hatches or rod holders.

Thanks for sharing.
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RDS Offline
Marlin




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Posted: July 30 2008,18:58

Before you add the hatch take a good note of how high the water is in the seat area with you and all your gear in it. The Scupper pro has a similar round hatch area, and if I was about 20 lbs heavier it would probably be under water when the scupper holes were left open. Even a tight hatch has its limits.

As far as the Ram-mount goes, you want it as close to you as possible without getting in the way when paddling. I've found with most trolling lures you can tug gently on the line periodically and feel for "weedage", but you still don't notice the bites until the rod gets a nice bend in it. I once trolled a small jack for probably 1/2 mile without realizing it was on the line.

RDS
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knowspics Offline
Mullet




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Posted: July 30 2008,19:34

Thanks RDS,

More to consider. There is no doubt my disco is a wet ride. Just ordered a  pair of NRS hydroskin shorts just for this. I weigh about 165 and I paddle in and around NY, Long Island. I do not carry too much equipment with me but could add up to 20-25 extra between clothes, shoes, pfd, dry bag, radio, lip gripper, etc. I definitely do not want a leaky hatch in that area. I need to get in front of my boat with a tape measure and consider my options. May have to figure out a way to 'shoulder' a rod again as well without it being awkward to paddle.

Thanks for the comments.
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Capn Jimbo Offline
The Godfisher




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Posted: Aug. 02 2008,07:17

Quote
Before you add the hatch take a good note of how high the water is in the seat area with you and all your gear in it.

As far as the Ram-mount goes, you want it as close to you as possible without getting in the way when paddling.


Good considerations.  Envelope please...

1.  The hatch area is much higher on the Disco than on the Pro (I own both).  No issues with more weight or "high water".   Hatch will be fine.

2.  I think the second consideration is very well taken, good stuff Roger.   Although many paddlers have successfully placed a RAM mount farther forward, you must remember that the Disco is a higher performance design and you will have to shuffle forward with much care.  In the heat of battle, may be an issue.

Better: put the RAM (or a pair of them) just behind and to the sides (near the clips) of the cockpit.  Then you can grab your rod with a quick half turn.

Boy am I glad I just stuff my rod down my lifejacket....


:capn:


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Capn Jimbo

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knowspics Offline
Mullet




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Posted: Aug. 02 2008,10:42

Thanks all,

Still considering hatch options and decisions. Wondering if OK vs Viking is drier.

I think placing the RAM mount just ahead of the flat spot is still within arms reach. I already have a ram mount over a should but want one in front to keep an eye on while trolling.

Going to look at wood and aluminum angle to add a foot brace. To this I could also add a gps ram mount or depth finder.

Thanks.
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Capn Jimbo Offline
The Godfisher




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Posted: Aug. 03 2008,05:23

Sorry, I'm beginning to feel like "Columbo" - just one more thing, sir...

When Sue Sea and I dropped by our favorite launch in Islamorada (middle Keys) I specifically thought of you and the soon to be infamous Disco Ram Ball Placement Series.  Roger's point really is a good one.  I took the time to note what space my paddle and paddling required, with a bit of additional airspace for cushioning and decided a RAM might do reasonably well if placed right between my heel placement.

Still close enough to reach, yet out of the paddle's way.  Your idea - mounting it on the foot rest you are creating is excellent.  The ball could face you (to avoid any ball-busting) and may still be functional (make sure of this).  Although this is far enough forward that it wouldn't inhibit a re-entry anyway.

Nice thought.

And I still dare you to try stuffing your rod...



:capn:


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Capn Jimbo

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knowspics Offline
Mullet




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Posted: Aug. 03 2008,08:27

dare taken. Went out last night out of the South Shore Long Island. So much sea grass that my tube and worm was constantly fouled. I was frustrated so Capn Jimbo on my shoulder and shouldered the rod. Yes, it can be done. I am going to go out of an old haunt today and hopefully not run into my ex-g (not likely I hope). The area is more rocky and oyster beds...Long Island Sound. Will try to stuff my vest.

I noticed the flat spot at my heels as well and realized I would not be a problem to reach forward (with a little yoga stretching) to grab a rod if placed there.

Going to ACE to check on aluminum angle for my foot brace. Already have some minicel to put on it for the soles of my feet.

Columbo was brilliant...he always acted dumb, asked 'could you help me out, I'm trying to understand here...' as they step into the trap. Rod stuffers.
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knowspics Offline
Mullet




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Posted: Aug. 03 2008,18:16

Dare complete. None on the shoulder, 3 stripers from the rod holder. Jury is still deciding. Trolled a tube and worm that I made and trailed an 8" gulp worm from it. Had a few short hits which I knew when I felt the tug and found 1/2 of a worm left. Going to make some mods to my tubes by using some 'weedless' hooks. I will have to fashion these from mono since i have never seen weedless saltwater hooks.

Went to ACE hardware and they had aluminum angle that would be okay. Only 2" wide and I wanted 3. I could make it work but I know I can find the wider size.

Sounds like you do live in paradise. I live in the big apple which a person either loves or hates. Juries still out...I've been living there over 20 years. LOL.
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