Kayak Fishing Crates
Most kayak anglers have some sort of storage crate in the rear tank well of their fishing kayak. A crate makes a brilliant way to store tackle boxes, fishing gear and other larger items such as anchoring gear all within easy reach from the seating position. Most people make DIY versions from simple collapsible storage crates but a few companies including Feelfree, Yak Attack and Hobie are now making off the shelf crates with some cool features. Up to now i have used a DIY version but the Hobie H-Crate is more than just your standard crate....
Hobie H-Crate Features
The Hobie H-Crate is a super strong crate that features Hobie H-Rail, giving it it's name. H-Rail is an extruded aluminium dodecagon rail that provides a strong and corrosion resistant accessory mounting platform. 4 sections of H-Rail run around the top of the H-Crate and double up as carry handles. The walls of the crate feature a grid pattern of pre-drilled holes for the attachment of further accessories if required. The 4 corners of the crate feature vertical rod holders with built-in rod retainers. Hull grip pads feature on the base. It has a very solid construction and comes with 4 adjustable webbing tie down straps to clip the crate down firmly to the kayak.
Hobie H-Crate Dimensions
Outer Dimensions: 35.9cm wide x 44.3cm long x 33cm high
Inner Dimensions: 25.9cm wide x 34.2cm long x 24.9cm high
Weight: 5.8lbs / 2.63kg
The H-Crate will fit the tank well of all Hobie Kayaks and will fit the vast majority of other fishing kayaks too!
Assembling the H-Crate
The H-Crate comes flat-packed in a box...
In the box we find:
Minimal tools are needed for assembly - you'll just need a Phillps or Posi Screwdriver and maybe a powered drill with Posi/Phillps drill bit.
The first step is to construct the frame. Take the corner pieces and push the H-Rail sections into the designated receivers. A bit of force is required - pushing the rail against a hard surface helps them go all the way into the corners...
The grid walls can then be slid into place, using the designated grooves on the corner pieces...
Take a close look at the walls and you'll see the grid arrangement of pre-drilled holes, with nut recesses on the inside. These allow for further accessories to be fitted to the H-Crate including additional vertical rod holders (Hobie Part No: 72020015).
The base plate can then be put in place, and the thread forming screws screwed down into the corner pieces to secure it in place. You will notice foam pads at the corners - these help grip the kayak to keep it firmly in place in the tank well.
With the base attached to the frame, give each grid wall a push outwards from the inside to ensure the little clips on the base engage with the frame. These help to hold the walls straight and rigid.
The H-Crate is now assembled!
The whole crate is very strong and sturdy, but it can be made even more rigid. Look closely at where the H-Rail meets the corner pieces and you'll find some small holes. You can use the self-drilling screws here to firmly attach the rails to the frame. This is a good idea if you are mounting accessories from the rails. You will need to use an electric or battery powered drill for this.
All that is left to do is to fit the crate to the tank well of the Revo 16. The crate can fit with the tank well bungees left in place like in the images below, but i opted to remove the bungee to save weight.
The H-Crate comes with 4 tie-down straps. These clip to the corners of the crate and to the XL Pad Eye's found on the corners of the tank well. The webbing straps can be pulled tight leaving the crate securely held within the tank well.
There is plenty enough space inside to fit large tackle boxes, anchoring kit, your lunch and more!
I can carry up to 4 rods in the vertical corner rod holders. The corners feature bungee rod retainers - simple pull the bungee toggle up and over the reel seat and back down into a bungee slot. The rod is now held firmly down into the crate.
The H-Crate features H-Rail carry handles which also double up as an accessory mounting platform. Hobie produce a range of accessories to allow mounting of all popular accessory brands to the H-Rail. Mounts include:
I will be using a H-Rail 1.5" Ram Ball Mount to attach my camera pole to the H-Crate. The H-Rail mounts work on a clamp system, simply loosen off the tightening knob, place the clamp around the h-rail, put the knob back into its slot and tighten up with the red lever locked down. Once tight, pop the lever up, put another couple of turns on the knob and the red lever should now clamp down under tension for a solid and strong fit.
One H-Rail Ram Ball fitted to the H-Crate! The mount can easily be re-positioned on the rail by releasing the red lever, sliding the mount and clipping the lever down once in the desired position.
I now have a super strong and sturdy tank well storage solution that will carry up to 4 rods, all my tackle boxes, anchoring kit and food whilst on the water. It also provides a useful accessory mounting platform at the stern of the kayak.
I purchased the H-Crate and H-Rail Ram Mount from Cornwall Canoes - the entire H-Rail Mount range can be found on their website by clicking here and the H-Crate can be found by clicking here.
Time to test it out on the water!
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