Stinger Anchor Review E-mail
Tuesday, 20 October 2009 04:50

Stinger Anchor

I was contacted by Craig from Golden Drake Outdoors to evaluate their new “stinger” anchor system. A few days later I received a package containing the system and could not wait to get it installed. The stinger anchor comes in three versions, a stern mount for kayaks without rudders, a side mount for kayaks with existing anchors, and one with an attached rudder. I chose the side mount system for installation on my Ultimate Multisport 14.5. It has a factory installed rudder, so the side mount was the logical choice. The concept of the stinger is simple and very well built, every seam is welded and the bracket is anodized for corrosion protection. It has few working parts and uses stainless fittings and Harken pulleys.

Installation
Golden Drake Outdoors sends everything you need for the installation of the stinger, including a very thorough instruction manual. The first step is to install the bracket to the stern of the multisport kayak. It has floatation glued in the stern so I opted to use the blind rivets included with the kit.

It is a good idea to make sure everything has room to work before drilling the holes. It is important that the stinger bracket does not interfere with the rudder movement, or the cables. The bracket has several holes that w a multitude of mounting options. Once you are sure everything will work, mark the holes with a marker. Check a second time to make sure the tolerances are ok.

Now drill out the marked areas with a ¼ drill. On the bracket insert the blind rivets in the corresponding holes, and place the neoprene washers on the bottom of each rivet. Position the bracket into place making sure the rivets are lined up, and tighten the rivets down with the rivet tool.

Stinger Anchor

Second, install the clamcleat, this device is what holds the weight of the anchor, so make sure that the area you fasten it to can handle the stress. I recommend you use stainless machine screws, fender washers and nyloc nuts on the clamcleat. Install the cleat in an area that is easily reached, and one that will not interfere with paddling or rudder operation. Put the rope through the pulley and then through the cleat and you are ready to use the stinger.

Operation
Transportation of the kayak with the bar and tube installed is not recommended. So before paddling, you have to install the moving parts. This is simple and all you have to do is place the metal bar through the hole in the bracket, and then slide the aluminum tube down over the bar. Attach the clip on the rope to the ring on the bar and pull on the rope to fully retract the anchor. Lock the rope down into the clam cleat, and you are ready to go. When reach a spot that you want to anchor, simply stop the motion of the kayak, and pull the rope out of the clam cleat and let the bars drop until it make contact. The kayak will now stay in place so you can fish. The standard Stinger has a maximum depth of 4-feet and has a stop built into the rope. The system is factory set to operate in water 4-foot or less. When you are ready to move, pull the rope to retract the anchor, and lock the rope into the clam cleat. Its that simple!

My Evaluation
Installation was simple and the manual was very thorough. I highly suggest you follow the manual and follow all its recommendations.  Construction of the system is solid and the quality of the built is very obvious. It adds some weight, but not enough to affect loading or paddling. On the Ultimate side mount, the anchor does drag through the water but does not seem to affect performance. This kayak is pedal driven so I simply made any course adjustment with the rudder. The center mount versions should not affect performance at all. Operation is simple and much faster than manually placing a stakeout type anchor. Because it is located at the stern, it is also much safer. I deployed the stinger on many types of bottom and in many types of current. It held fast in a majority of the situations, but tended to skip some on the hard rocky bottoms in the faster currents. As specified by the manufacturers it is not recommended for use in extreme currents, but based on my evaluation, it will hold in most shallow (4 feet or less) water tidal currents and slow rivers. There is a lot of play designed into the system and this allows the anchor to adjust to the conditions. Relocation is a breeze, simply pull on the rope and retract the anchor. The pulley gives you some mechanical advantage, and the anchor pulled free of all my test areas, even the deep “boot sucking” mud. I give the Stinger a thumbs up, it is a quality product that will hold up to years of usage.  Kayak anglers who buy this system will not be disappointed. Golden Drake Outdoors has a great product that will revolutionize shallow water kayak angling.

You can see more product photos, as well as some videos of the stinger in action at Golden Drake's Website.

 

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