4 Best Portable Outriggers (Stabilizers) for Kayak Canoe or Small Boat Review

Posted by Author David Lee


Last Updated September 1, 2021
Outriggers (Stabilizer Systems)
Water activities are not only useful but also cheerful. You should, however, consider your own safety so that fun or leisure does not turn into disappointment. The special features of canoes and kayaks are that they are narrow types that are quite easy to turn over. To avoid this, special stabilizers attached to the kayak/canoe should be used, and the chance of swinging, rolling over, or tipping will be reduced to a minimum.

TOP Kayak Stabilizers Comparison Table

NameWarranty
❑1. Canoe/Kayak Stabilizer Ballast System [Scotty]+
❑2. Inflatable Outrigger for Kayak, Canoe, Fishing Boat [Lixada]+
❑3. Boat Kayak Canoe PVC Outrigger Arms Stabilizer System [Pactrade Marine]+
❑4. Kayak-Canoe Outriggers [YakGear]+

1. The Best Canoe/Kayak Stabilizer Ballast System [Scotty]

Canoe/Kayak Stabilizer Ballast System [Scotty] Picture
Convert any SUP to a stable platform for fishing, yoga or bringing a dog or child along. Great for beginners, rough water and plus size paddlers. Quick and easy installation and removal, secure and stable model , extra buoyancy.

2. The Best Inflatable Outrigger for Kayak, Canoe, Fishing Boat [Lixada]

Inflatable Outrigger for Kayak, Canoe, Fishing Boat [Lixada] Picture

3. The Best Boat Kayak Canoe PVC Outrigger Arms Stabilizer System [Pactrade Marine]

Boat Kayak Canoe PVC Outrigger Arms Stabilizer System [Pactrade Marine] Picture

4. The Best Kayak-Canoe Outriggers [YakGear]

Kayak-Canoe Outriggers [YakGear] Picture

Outriggers are a great way to stabilize your kayak, canoe, boat and prevent the rocking motion that often causes discomfort for paddlers. Outriggers come in many different shapes and sizes, so it is important to find one that will work well with your boat. In this guide, you will learn all about outriggers including their types, how they work and what questions you should be asking before purchasing.

What is a kayak outrigger?

Kayak outrigger or stabilizer is a device that is used to stabilize and prevent the rocking of kayaks.

What are the benefits of extra flotation?

Extra flotation gives you confidence and reduces the stress on the water.

What is the stabilization system?

The stabilization system is a great way to enjoy kayaking without the worry of flipping over. The system includes two poles, one on each side, that attach to your kayak and it has a stabilizer in-between them.

Are there different types of stabilizers? 

You can find outriggers with one or two beams, they may have an A-frame shape or be straight across the back. Some even come as extensions of your boat's seat for greater stability while sitting in it. How do I know what kind will work best for me? The type you purchase depends on the size of your boat and needs - if you are looking to reduce fatigue from long trips then try choosing something taller up to 34 inches tall (86 cm). If you're primarily paddling around lakes and slow waterways look for shorter options.

How do kayak outriggers work?

Their work is pretty simple, really! Outriggers are a type of floatation device that helps boaters to stay stable on the water. When you attach them onto your kayak or canoe and extend them out with one beam (or two) they provide stability for both paddling strokes as well as against waves and wind which can make it difficult to maintain balance in certain situations.

Why do you need to use a kayak outrigger?

Outriggers are a must-have for those who paddle on open water. They help to give you stability and balance when there's wind or waves, which can make it difficult for any paddler whether beginner or expert!

When should you use an outrigger?

There are some situations when you really need to use a stabilizer system for your boat.

For fishing

Kayak outriggers can be useful for fishing and for those who may want to take their kayak on a longer excursion without having to worry about stability.

For Duck Hunters, Photographers & Kayak Anglers

Kayak outriggers are also a great way to bring your kayak onto the water before sunrise or after sunset without scaring away any animals.

Outriggers might not be necessary if you only plan on taking photos on a boat in calm waters, but for those who want more stability, it's an excellent accessory to have!

The larger the boat is that you're using with an outrigger attachment system like this one then there will be the additional weight that can throw off balance when traveling through rougher waters. It may take some time getting used to paddling while balancing all of these different things at once so don't feel discouraged if you find yourself having difficulties right away. 

For beginners

They're great to help make paddling easier and more enjoyable. Outriggers are perfect for helping to maintain balance while kayaking, canoeing or in smaller boats providing additional stability when traveling through rougher waters. Every person has their own preference about what they feel most comfortable with and using such devices may depend upon your level of experience with boating as well as how big the vessel is.

Parents kayaking with kids

For parents wanting to kayak with their children, this is a great tool for helping make the experience more enjoyable. The kids will feel like they are part of the adventure and enjoy it all that much more because of how supportive you'll be through the journey. It's also useful when there are waves or choppy water so that both can remain steady while paddling without getting too wet in stormy weather.

Is kayak outrigger or stabilizer worth it?

Outriggers can be an expensive investment, but they are worth it for those who plan to do more paddling. If you only paddle on lakes or rivers and don't anticipate any windy conditions then a kayak outrigger isn't necessary just yet. But if you're looking at long-term investments we would definitely recommend using a stabilizer, especially for beginners.

What do you need to consider when buying boat outriggers or stabilizers?

Material

The material is always the first thing you should consider as this parameter is in charge of the quality and durability of the product. Besides material affects some technical characteristics such as weight, maximum load etc. Soft inflatable stabilizers can be made of rubber or PCV plastic and they have less weight and compact dimensions for storage and transportation. But hard constructions are stronger and can be made of plastic, aluminum, carbon fiber. They can stand big load and they also have perforation and cuts resistance. Moreover, you should pay attention to the material holders are made of – it can be made of metal or strong plastic.

The way of fastening

The choice of stabilizer for fishing canoe or kayak depends on the way of fastening. You should bear in mind your boat’s characteristics and select only suitable fastening for stabilizers. Hinged equipment can have separate fastening to the boat’s sides. In another case it is necessary to make a hard framework which will be attached to the boat. Reliability of fixation also depends on the way of fastening. There are only two types of overhead kayak pontoons rigid and inflatable. You will choose the one you need and prefer. There are also different types of fasteners:
  • Clamps on sides (metal, wooden or plastic canoes);
  • Multi-point fasteners (including special pontoon lugs);
  • Rigid frame - a kind of pontoons which are connected to a special frame, which, in turn, is attached to a kayak.

Weight of construction

The weight of hinged equipment is one of the most important features. Stabilizers are designed for a definite load. That’s why you must choose them taking into account the weight of the boat it will be installed on. Soft inflatable stabilizers have a plain design but they can stand only a small load. Harder and heavier stabilizers for canoe have higher strength and can be used for canoes with a larger weight.

Inflatable vs Rigid

Inflatable kayak outriggers are a relatively new invention. They can be inflated with an air pump and deflated for easy storage, but they require much more maintenance than rigid PVC models. The inflatable model is also less sturdy and durable which means it may not work well on fiberglass boats or other lightweight vessels.

Rigid outriggers are not so lightweight and can be difficult to store because they are made of PVC pipe and not deflatable. They do work well for glass boats or other lightweight vessels but will need more maintenance than inflatables.

The tradeoff is that rigid outriggers are cheaper than inflatables for those who want stability without the quickness and ease of inflating an air pump. You should also consider how often you’ll use your kayak before purchasing either model as it may make sense to invest in a higher quality product if you go paddling frequently.

Buoyancy

Buoyancy is the main option to consider when deciding between inflatables and rigid outriggers. Rigid systems are heavier than their inflatable counterparts, but they will be more stable in the water. Inflatables offer quick stability at an increased weight saving that is better suited for those who paddle less often or have limited storage space on land, such as apartment dwellers with balconies or renters without yards. The tradeoff here is higher maintenance requirements due to pump inflation if you go kayaking frequently - which we assume would make up for the lighter load of carrying your rigger system over any distance by comparison!

Size

Size is a personal preference and a matter of stability. What if you are looking for more steadiness in your kayak, but find that some outriggers systems are too big? When it comes to size, this is all about what feels most comfortable. While an inflatable system may lack the same amount of stability as rigid models due to their weight distribution (which has a higher center-of-gravity), they also have less drag on the water surface than hard plastic or aluminum versions do - which might be worth considering if you're not planning on paddling often with heavier gear. If storage space is limited at home or work, then lightening up will help save both money from buying hardware and effort hauling equipment around!

Installation Method

The main method is using the traditional two-point mounting system. This is a good option because it can help with stability when in rough water conditions.

Additional Accessories You’ll Need

Some kayaks are designed with a beam that is too wide for the outrigger attachment points. If this is your case, then you might need to purchase attachments like extensions or gooseneck arms so that your boat can stay attached securely.

Best branded kayak stabilizers

The market is dominated by some manufacturers such as: Scotty, Lixada, Pactrade Marine, YakGear.

Kayak Stabilizer System by Lixada

It's an inflatable stabilizer for kayaks and canoes. It consists of two pontoons and hardware. They are held in place by a single steel frame, which can also be readily attached to almost any boat. This design offers the highest reliability and provides excellent stabilization, even with strong waves. design provides also the ability to adjust the depth of pontoons, making this stabilizer universal and suitable for almost any kayak or canoe. Make your water recreation or fishing as safe as possible by installing on the boat a pontoon stabilizer with a rigid steel frame. It's simple to install and can be folded if needed. Ideal for boaters who are always out fishing at lakes or oceans in adding stability while standing on the boat. Adjustable float depth with easy locking mechanism. Fits any type kayaks, canoes, boats (paddling or fishing, beginner or professional). Stainless steel mounting hardware is included. It's an inflatable stabilizer for kayaks and canoes. It consists of two pontoons and hardware. They are held in place by a single steel frame, which can also be readily attached to almost any boat. This design offers the highest reliability and provides excellent stabilization, even with strong waves. design provides also the ability to adjust the depth of pontoons, making this stabilizer universal and suitable for almost any kayak or canoe. Make your water recreation or fishing as safe as possible by installing on the boat a pontoon stabilizer with a rigid steel frame. It's simple to install and can be folded if needed.

Kayak Outrigger by YakGear

Don't forget your own safety when kayaking or canoeing. Special stabilizers should be used to prevent tipping over. This product is an excellent pontoon stabilizer for canoes, which is distinguished by its low weigh, and durable fasteners. It's good for a canoe with a rigid frame. All necessary fasteners are included in the kit. This model has an adjustable float depth, which allows it to be used on almost any type of boat. Inflatable pontoons are made of durable material. These are inflatable pontoons that are lightweight and can easily be folded into a small bag. This makes this equipment portable and easy to use. Don't forget your own safety when kayaking or canoeing. Special stabilizers should be used to prevent tipping over. This product is an excellent pontoon stabilizer for canoes, which is distinguished by its low weigh, and durable fasteners. It's good for a canoe with a rigid frame. All necessary fasteners are included in the kit. This model has an adjustable float depth, which allows it to be used on almost any type of boat. Inflatable pontoons are made of durable material. These are inflatable pontoons that are lightweight and can easily be folded into a small bag. This makes this equipment portable and easy to use.

Don’t buy cheap canoe-kayak outrigger (stabilizer)

If you buy cheap, you will end up buying twice. There are some very cheap kayak stabilizers on the market, but these are the ones made from poor quality material and components, and they can break down after a few months. Buy more quality model as it will be worth price that you pay.

FAQ

Let's go over some frequently asked questions about kayak stabilizers.

How can I use outrigger for dog?

You can use special attachment for your outrigger to place dog and feel safety.

How can I make a sit-on-top kayak more stable?

You can add foot pedals, adjust the kayak seat and add ballast with stabilizers for first time.

What is the Best Way to Fit Kayak Stabilizers?

The beams should be adjusted so that they are about hip high when standing at the front of your boat - this allows you to easily slide into position without having to bend down too low. You also want these adjusted so each point is no wider than shoulder-width apart from each other - if you're using just one beam then adjust it until it's parallel with the middle oarlock.

Will Outriggers Slow Me Down?

Outriggers can slow you down in some conditions - for example, if the water is choppy and hard to paddle through. However, they will also help you go faster in other conditions such as when there's a strong current or an updraft that would otherwise keep pushing your kayak back upriver.

How long should kayak outriggers be?

The length of your outriggers depends on the width of your kayak. The wider it is, the longer they should be. In general, a good rule of thumb is to make them long enough so that they're perpendicular to each other when the boat's floating loosely in shallow water - about as wide apart from one another.

How wide should kayak outriggers be?

A wider outrigger can handle more wind and waves.

Will I be able to stand up and fish with these outriggers?

Absolutely! You don't have to worry about stability with kayak outriggers if you stand up in the boat.

What outriggers (stabilizer systems) are good?

Check please our kayak stabilizers comparison table to find appropriate products for canoe, fishing boat, kayak, sup (paddleboard), etc.

Where to Buy Cheap Portable Outriggers (Stabilizers) for Kayak Canoe or Small Boat?

Take a look at this TOP kayak stabilizers reviewed of 2021 and then press the «Check Price» button to check their price and availability.

What is the budget canoe-kayak outrigger (stabilizer) for sale?

The Canoe/Kayak Stabilizer Ballast System [Scotty] is our Editor's Choice as the best model of kayak stabilizers for canoe, fishing boat, kayak, sup (paddleboard) with its combination of performance, features, quality and price.

Thesandshore.com is a source where the post Kayak Stabilizers appeared first.

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Comments to Review

  1. Scotty brand stabilizers have worked out great for me for the past three years! I had tried other brands in the past but they all seemed to have some sort of problem within the first month. I highly recommend starting with this brand so you can save yourself some stress.

  2. Stanley I. says:

    In my small canoe I like fishing in the sea. However, the waves are quite strong in windy weather and sometimes the canoe is fetched away pretty hard, so you have to keep the right course constantly and catch the waves. Under these conditions, if confessed straightforward, it is not a good time for fishing. I thought I’d try to order canoe outriggers, and I didn’t miss it. Pontoons are light in weight and are quick and easy to fasten. canoe’s stability was fine. Waves and winds have no impact on fishing at all.

  3. Hey. I’m Alex. I ordered canoe outriggers to fish in the sea. I’m happy with the product: the pontoons are kept on the water perfectly, they don’t let canoe roll over and swing. They are lightweight at the same time and easily fold into a carrying bag. It is also quick and easy to install and disassemble them. I recommend my choice to everyone — best canoe outriggers!

  4. My Brocraft Kayak Outriggers/Stabilizers have worked great for me in the last few seasons of kayaking. I don’t live somewhere where you can kayak year-round but I do kayak when I can. We often travel during the colder months too in order to get more water time in. So I can say these are somewhat good to travel with as well!

  5. Anonymous says:

    Everything is very open with a clear explanation of the issues with outriggers. It was definitely informative. Your site is very helpful. Many thanks for sharing!

  6. Hey there, would you mind stating which blog platform you’re using? I’m looking to start my own blog of canoeing in the near future but I’m having a difficult time selecting between different platforms. reason I ask is because your layout is so beautiful and seems different then most blogs and I’m looking for something unique.

    1. It’s a WP platform but the layout was created special for me to be useful for users and good for Google. Good luck 🙂

  7. A durable pontoon stabilizer by Mexidi suitable for most kayaks and canoes. This attachment prevents tilting and makes your boat more viable and stable even on the waves. White isn’t flashy. Kit includes all the necessary fasteners. It is the perfect solution for nearly any boat. pontoons are made of lightweight yet durable PVC material. Easy and fast installation. Pontoons can be easily folded into a small carrying bag. Make your water holiday safe with inflatable pontoon stabilizers.

  8. Stacy Honor says:

    I choose Lixada. This stabilizer is suitable for all types of canoes. It is made of lightweight, corrosion-resistant aluminum. And all fasteners are made of stainless steel. Thanks to this, the stabilizer is strong and durable enough. It has the ability to adjust float depth, making it versatile and suitable for canoes with different parameters. Using a special clamping fixture, it is attached to the boat. Pontoons are made of a material that is durable and water-resistant. Submersible floats, therefore, do not gain moisture and perfectly stabilize canoes even under windy and low-wave conditions. This stabilizer is featured by high quality and durability. Make your stay on the water as secure as feasible with this canoe stabilizer.

  9. Scotty 302 Kayak Stabilizer System contains two Anodized Aluminum Stabilizer Arms, Baitcaster Spinning Rod Holders, and Side Deck Mounts. The pontoons are made from a rugged PVC with a thick outer shell for extra durability. Feel secure and stable while fishing with this stabilizer model attached to your kayak.

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