Anyone us the CLC Cockpit Splash Guard ?

I tried to paste a link but failed.  The item is listed on the CLC site under Paddling Gear.

It looks like a great idea but in the pics it seems it might not extend aft far enough to protect the paddler's lap from paddle drips.  I'm curious if anyone has tried it and if it seems to be effective.


Tim in SC

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RE: Anyone us the CLC Cockpit Splash Guard ?

Hi Tim, 

i have one and my feelings about it are mixed.  it does not get used a lot, frankly.

i really never though of it as a splash guard as much as a very breathable alternative to traditional skirts that seemed particularly attractive on a hot summer day.  for me it also kept the sun off my legs.

but in practice and on my boats (i mostly paddle a petrel, petrel play and night heron), i found it kind of a pain in the butt.

unlike a skirt, it does not stay on your waist so when you get in or out of the boat, its another step to put in place and did not seem particularly natural vs sit down and pull you skirt over your coaming.

i also seemed to get plenty of water in the cockpit anyway.....there is a little batten in it that needs to get positioned right...and i always seemed to be fighting to get it in the right shape.  and when it was hot...well, it was hot.  and now i could not even do a role to cool myself off. 

i am curious what others have experienced.  i am only a one data point.  in summary, i generally find myself now with a skirt or no skirt and this item just sits in my bag as another piece of gear.


RE: Anyone us the CLC Cockpit Splash Guard ?

I don't use the CLC version, I have the one from Seals since when I bought it CLC didn't have their own version. Seals calls theirs a splash deck. Here's the 2 products, CLC's splash guard first:

As you can see, they're pretty similar. The most obvious difference is the CLC model uses a naked bungee cord to hold it onto the coaming lip in the back and Seals is more like a spray skirt that has a hole cut in it. I can't tell from the pictures which one, if either, covers a larger area of the cockpit opening but they look very close.

They both use a batten to maintain the arch over the deck and both provide a netted, zippered area for secure exterior storage. The batten is adjusted using a nylon strap. If there's nothing in the storage area a light tension will maintain the shape such that any drips run off the boat. The heavier the stuff in the storage net the more tension you need on the bottom of the batten. Eventually this pulls the deck/guard off the coaming lip unless you tighten up the bungee holding the deck/guard tight under the lip which makes it harder to put on and take off the deck/guard. So the adjustments interact and need a couple of iterations to get right and you're better off keeping the stuff in the storage net to a minimum. I usually limit it to a snack, if anything.

I use mine exclusively in my WD12. I also have a sprayskirt for the WD12. Unlike Howard, I use my splash deck a lot, a lot more than the spray skirt. The main function is to keep the sun off my legs when I'm wearing shorts. The WD12's shape and bow buoyancy keep it from burying itself even in the confused chop by the USNA seawall so I've never needed it for keeping waves out. Besides, any wave/wake that can make it over the bow to the cockpit of a WD12 is not going to be stopped by a splash guard anyway; that needs a full spray skirt. FWIW, a couple of weeks ago I had my WD12 with the splash deck out in a small craft advisory on the Miles River and got only 1/4 cup of water into the cockpit.

Drips from the paddles are mostly stopped by the rubber drip rings on the paddles. What gets by those is stopped by the splash guard as long as the batten can maintain the arch. If there's a depression, the water will pool and soak through and drip into the cockpit, so keep it light and tight.

I put mine in place before I launch or get in. The result is the same as getting into a WD12 with a somewhat smaller cockpit. Even with my messed-up knee that is not a problem. Don't think of it as a sprayskirt, it's another accessory to attach to the boat before you get it.

The ventilation is far superior to a spray skirt, especially in a large cockpit like the WD12's. Between that and the shade it provides, I find it much cooler than either a spray skirt or even nothing. In fact, speaking of the shade, with that deck, a long-sleeved shirt and a hat with a brim and a cover for my neck I typically don't need any sunscreen since everything is in shade.

I find mine to be the most useful accessory that I have for my WD12. Since I bought it I have hardly ever used my WD12 without it and recommend it to anyone who has a WD-style cockpit.




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