Kayak Fishing Ultimate Resource

Thursday, 16 December 2010 01:00

DIY Drogue

Written by DizzyFish
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DIY Drogue www.whitbyseaanglers.co.uk

A big thank you to Wookie6262 and Dorado (Simon Everett) for their informative articles regarding the use and construction of drogues when kayak fishing. Dorado sells drogues from his website (I own one and they are very very good) see www.kayakuk.com/shop. But, if you want to make your own then read on…

You will need some rip-stop nylon, some para-cord, a stainless steel ring and some nylon webbing. Scissors, a cigarette lighter, and ideally an understanding wife who is willing to help you sew seams on a sewing machine.


Cut the nylon webbing into 8 equal short lengths (these will be sewn to the rip-stop nylon to attach the cord to). Also cut the para-cord into 8 equal lengths – each one the length of the edge of the square piece of rip-stop nylon you are using.


Gently melt the edges of the nylon webbing and the ends of each piece of para-cord with a cigarette lighter, to stop them fraying (don’t leave the flame there too long, or the nylon will melt and be careful not to burn your fingers!)…


Fold over the edges of the rip-stop nylon approx 5mm to form a seam, and get the good lady wife to sew along them…


Next, attach the 8 pieces of nylon webbing to the rip-stop nylon – one piece on each corner (4) and one piece halfway along each side (4)…


At this stage, it should look something like this…


Next tie the 8 lengths of para-cord to the 8 pieces of webbing; tie the other end of the para-cord to the stainless steel ring. The main nylon cord can then be tied to the stainless steel ring with a carabineer at one end which attaches to the kayak (ideally to the anchor trolley). It should now look like this…


The drogue has a number of uses…

1. To slow the kayak down in windy conditions. If the wind is allot stronger than the tide (not always the norm), then the drogue can be deployed to slow down the kayak. It acts as an anchor and can be used in an emergency situation to stop you from drifting offshore or on shore (eg. on to rocks).

2. When anchored (from the stern of the kayak), very often if the wind and tide are in opposite directions – the kayak will be blown across the tide. This makes fishing very difficult (and uncomfortable). The drogue can be deployed off the bow of the kayak to turn the kayak back so that it is in line with the tide. I use 2 anchor trolleys – one at the stern of the kayak (mainly used for anchoring) and one at the bow of the kayak (used for the drogue or to buddy up with another kayak using s length of bungee). Please note that this method should not be used if you are expecting to hook into large/strong fish – there is a strong risk that the fish may tangle with the drogue line – and that could be messy!

3. For drift fishing. For years trout anglers have been using drogues when fishing from a boat. In the UK we fish lough style – and a drogue is used “amidships” to slow the boat down so that anglers can fly fish with the wind on their backs and the drift will not be so fast that the boat overtakes the flies! The same thing can be done in the kayak. Drogue off the bow trolley and watch the rod tips as you drift slowly with the wind.

The bigger the surface area of the drogue – the bigger the braking effect it will have. A large drogue will slow a kayak down until it is almost stationary.

Also, remember that the drogue line really needs to go through a trolley so that it emerges as close to the bow or the stern as possible. If you try to attach the drogue to the side/middle of the kayak (eg. attach it directly to the side handle), then the kayak will likely be dragged broadside to the waves resulting in a possible capsize. I usually drogue from the bow of the kayak using the front trolley. The drogue line is threaded through the carabineer on the front trolley, the end of the drogue line is clipped to a pad eye or the kayak handle to secure it, and then the anchor trolley is pulled into place so that the line emerges from the bow of the kayak.

One more piece of advice – when you come to retrieve the drogue, the best method is to simply paddle up to it, and pick it out of the water. Trying to drag it back through the water it not easy!

Check out DizzyFish's blog at  http://dizzybigfish.co.uk/

Read 17559 times Last modified on Wednesday, 15 December 2010 22:17

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