I like to carry small multitools or knives. These items either get buried in my pockets, or work their way out to around behind my seat, or fall through a scupper hole. I like to put one in each kayak, along with line cutters and my GoPro remote, and keep them within quick reach. Add pliers, lippers, and several other small tools that you may use while fishing, and your kayak can become an disorganized mess.
I first used tethers often used for fishing rods and kayak paddles. I even bought some telephone cords to make my own tethers. Having more than one or two will eventually create a tangled mess inside your already limited space. When practicing catch and release, limiting the amount of clutter in your kayak aids in the quick and easy release.
I wanted to reduce the time it takes to retrieve my tools and avoiding the tangled mass of tethers and lines, especially when fishing in a tournament. Having everything within reach is important when I’m on a school of fish.
There are several manufacturers that make retractable devices that aid in keeping your kayak organized: Gear Keeper, Hobie, and the Boomerang Tool Company are only a few. Both Gear Keeper, and Hobie retracting tethers come in different sizes and retractable lengths.
I had a collection of these in my garage and decided to attach one to one of my knives. I liked how convenient it was and decided to add retractors to my snips and my remote. I am sure there are many other applications for retractable devices.
Most kayaks will have places to mount the retracting tethers. To make it even easier, you can attach a carabiner that could hold multiple retractors. With most of my small tools attached to my kayaks, I never have the frustrating experience of searching for them.