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While all the models had their respective merits and drawbacks, I chose to get a Paddleboy Fat Boy because it seemed to meet my needs, fit a variety of larger boats well (Dagger Legend 16, Eddyline Nighthawk 175 and Tarpon 160), and most importantly was on sale and I could apply an additional 15% discount coupon to it, with free shipping. That dropped the price to just over $100; such a deal. And it was something different than the rest of the crowd already had, so we had yet another comparison option!
Even though I liked the C-Tug for its innovative design and construction, especially the pad supports, the tires kept coming off. This is apparently a problem that they know of and are working to correct. Plus, it was a good bit more expensive without the sale/discount.
I am quite pleased with the Fat Boy. It is remarkably easy to set up and use, accommodates wider/larger boats well, seems to be robust remaining in place over rough terrain (*if* you follow the directions to adjust the height for your boat and pull it up until it contacts the boat gunwales so there is no side-to-side motion/trapezoidal collapsing possible!), the minicel foam on the bottom provides secure support, it is quick to disassemble, collapse and stow. It is a bit large to carry in any kayak, but in reality all carts of any design take up a lot of room. One thing I did like over the center designs is that when you collapse it you can wrap the bungee cord around the frame to hold it closed and roll it back like a wheeled walking stick rather than having to pick it up and carry it like the center fit models.
I inflated the tires to 5# under max pressure and they are holding solid after a month. They work very well and pull easily, whether over hard, uneven terrain or soft sand. Yes, they smell when new. They all do. It will go away eventually. Washing them off helps. The stems were easy to access and attach a fill fitting (I used one of those emergency car tire ones you plug into the lighter, took 30 seconds to fill). If the fittings have receded slightly when totally deflated just pull them up with your fingers or hold them with a pair of needle nose pliers to attach the fitting. There will be plenty to work with after partially inflated.
Regarding a possibility of trapezoidal collapsing for narrow boats, I tried adding a short section of thin 1" blown foam split pipe insulation to the upper support arms. Voila! They may interfere with collapsing the carrier, but are easily removed or moved.
I rank it a 9 out of 10 only because stowing it aboard is a not as easy as I would like it to be. It's not an option I would use often, but I'm not entirely sure any other competitive model (e.g. the C-Tug, my second choice) would be any better. The tire size is a factor more than any other.
That said it works great for my 22+ft double kayak. We've used it for over a year now. I like that it is easy to take apart and fits easily into the rear hatch. The larger pneumatic tires roll easily over rough terrain. It has a nice simple design and is easy to use.
There is no way to "lock" the frame to prevent collapsing when in use. It seemed to work ok on smooth surface, but very disappointed in its ineffectiveness over rough terrain. For $160, I would expect better design and usability. Also, it is not well defined that the unit collapses diagonally into a linear shape for storage, that might be a storage prob for some boats.
I feel Paddleboy is misleading people about how well it stores. The frame collapses linearly to an approx. 38"L x 6"W with the non-removable axles sticking out another 4" (ea. side) beyond the original 6" Looks like I'll be buying another cart for rough stuff, and selling this one.
Light. Well constructed. Easy to assemble. Easy to stow in the hatch. Easy to attach to kayak coaming. However, the camstrap should be TIGHT, otherwise the kayak can sway off axis after going over a rock or root. Handles mud quite well - much better than solid plastic wheels.
Worthwhile purchase - right combinations of features and price. Just might allow you to access areas that you might otherwise avoid.
Just roll the padded V-shaped cradle under the boat, hook the bungee'd cord somewhere in front of the cockpit, it's now wiggle free, standing straight and good to go! I've used this over clay/grass with swales, asphalt, hard sand, performance perfect. It will even allow me to position the kayak down small bluffs near river shores.
Once, when the takeout was really crowded with vehicles, I set up the Peanut in seconds and easily moved my kayak some 500 feet, half of that uphill, to my waiting car... saved a lot of time!
Oh yeah, 4 pounds, and it floats, too. Folds & fits the rear hatch of either kayak. Can't get any better. This product is made in the USA and the customer service excelled when I had a small problem with excess Loctite inside one of the capped hexnuts... PaddleBoy e-mailed back the same day and by Day 3 I had a replacement fastener. Try this quality kayak-specific cart from an American company that cares!
I bought the unit from LL Bean who shipped it in a box maybe 4' tall. The carrier is held together by 4 loosely tightened bolts and is easily "folded" into a tall narrow package. The same system which makes the unit easy to fold also makes it sort of sloppy to use. When carrying over uneven terrain or around turns, the unit will cant and slide around making the yak track across the road with the stern off angle from the bow. You can limit the issue if you push the cart as far towards the cockpit as possible.
In all, a nicely constructed product with a design flaw that makes it a little difficult to use.
The device is remarkably effective and folds to a smaller size. I use it predominantly for launching and take out and it has handled some fairly steep banks and bumpy terrain well. As the wheels are solid and on the small side--rather like those of a power lawnmower--I'm not sure how it would do on an extended portage or over a rough trail. But, when your heavy canoe is a ways from your vehicle and up a river ban it is really nice to have.
100,000+ people can't be wrong!
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