YakAttack LeverLoc Anchor Trolley Kit HD: As Easy As Pie
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We all make mistakes and recently… I made a big one… I drilled an unnecessary hole in my new Pro Angler.
I know, I know, people do this all the time - but not me. I tend to be something of a Hobie Kayak Hole Purist, and tend to like my Hobies like I like my tires... that is, without holes...
It went something like this, I purchased my first Hobie a couple of years ago with the Anchor Trolleys pre-rigged. I never paid any attention to how it was mounted and just assumed that the previous owner had installed everything correctly. After buying my new Hobie WITHOUT Anchor Trolleys pre-installed, it was up to me to install them correctly and unfortunately, I couldn't remember how they were set up on my old kayak. Being the perfectionist that I am, I wanted to ensure I made no mistakes throughout the install and took as much time as I possibly could thinking, re-thinking, and overthinking every decision. The result? I still messed up...
The good news? I only messed up once before realizing how I should have done everything and quickly fixed my mistake and finished the install. I have been using and testing the YakAttack Anchor Trolley HD Kit every outing since with flawless results.
What Is In The Bag!
Included in your YakAttack LeverLoc Anchor Trolley HD Kit Bag you will receive the following...
1x Non-Yak Specific Installation Guide
1x 35' feet of USA-made 550 Paracord
1x LeverLoc Base Plate
1x LeverLoc Lever
1x Anchoring Connector
2x YakAttack Stealth Pulleys
3x HD Backing Plates
4x Anchor Trolley Line Guides
23x Assorted Mounting Screws and Bolts
Sounds like a lot of gear right? That's because it is... On top of giving 35 feet of paracord, which is way more than enough to fit any yak you're looking to rig, you will receive all the bolts and screws your heart can desire. While it seems like should be enough, if you decide you want to install your kit the same way we did, your going to need to buy a few more.
What Wasn't In The Bag
This kit comes with everything you need to properly install the Anchor Trolley System to your kayak. That is unless you choose to install yours as I did. In that case, the pre-drilled studs are too short for several of the included YakAttack bolts. Wondering what I used? I grabbed a pack of stainless steel #10-32 x 1/2” bolts at Home Depot and it solved all my problems.
HD Vs Standard
Wondering what the difference is between the standard kit and the "HD" kit? That's a great question. In fact, I was asking that question myself a few months ago when everyone was telling me I needed the "HD" kit and I didn't want to spend the extra money.
Aside from the obvious price difference ($34.95 vs $44.95), the Standard Kit does not include the 3 backing HD backing plates and instead uses only self-tapping screws for the pulleys as well as the LeverLoc. Additionally, with the Standard Kit, you will only receive 2 Anchor Trolley Guides instead of the 4 that are included in the HD kit.
There you have it. Now you know the difference. The HD is definitely a more secure way to mount your Anchor Trolley System than the standard but if you do not feel that you need the extra Trolley Guides then you are really just paying for the 3 HD Backing Plates.
Ease Of Install
You already know we made a mistake. I know, it's not like me, but it happened and ill admit it. That being said, it was no fault of this kit. I simply had no idea that Pro Anglers came pre-rigged for an anchor trolley system. Once I became aware of this I was given the option of using the existing mounting holes and drilling as few new holes as possible, or drilling all new holes and mounting the Anchor Trolley Kit as intended by the manufacturer.
As described above, I do not like drilling into my kayak so for me, the choice was simple. I opted to utilize all of the existing bolt holes which are designed for the Hobie Anchor Trolley System which meant 3 things.
1. Install was a piece of cake. Not just any cake either, like an incredibly soft, sweet, and delicious cake. Using the pre-existing holes made install as simple as screwing in a few bolts and calling it good.
2. I didn't need the HD kit. Opting to use the existing holes meant giving up using the backing plates (except for on the LeverLoc). Not only that, but I also opted to only use two anchor trolley guides instead of the 4.
3. I only drilled 4 holes per side (Hooray!). Only 1 new hole was needed per guide and 2 holes for the Lever Loc.
I am telling you all of this to say this, if you are like me and have a Pro Angler but were unaware that it was pre-rigged to accept an anchor trolley system, you may have the option to install it as I have on this kayak. Not only that, it will require far less time to install, far fewer holes to be drilled into your boat, and (personally) I feel that the install is far more aesthetically pleasing.
*If you do choose to install your kit as I have, do take note that the pulleys do not measure up exactly with the front and rear Hobie holes. It did require a little bit of finagling to get the screws in there and hold tight. I also had to buy a few extra screws from Home Depot since some of the provided screws were a bit too long to install it the way that I did.
Quality Of Components
The first thing you are going to notice once you break open your "bag-of-bolts" is that its all light-weight plastic. Personally, I hate plastic. Not only that, I try my best to buy products with as little plastic as possible, but in this case, I have no complaints. Each of the components feel very well constructed, very sturdy, and very light-weight (naturally). Because I use my kayak primarily in salt water, plastic construction is also very useful to prevent any long term degradation of the product and we certainly like that.
The only aspect of this product that we have noticed to be less than "superior" in terms of quality is the LeverLoc system. While it works flawlessly and engages or disengages with ease, the bottom of the plastic piece flares out when engaged ever so slightly. At first, I was concerned with excessive stress but having used these LeverLocs as much as we have without any issue, I think it is safe to say that you will not have any issues here. If you notice this like we have, don't panic, everything will be fine.
*Although it does not specify it on the YakAttack website, the screws appear to be stainless and have held up well to continuous salt water usage on our kayaks.
After purchasing my new Hobie Pro Angler 12 last year I knew the first accessory that I was going to need was the Anchor Trolley system. I got used to having this kit on my last Hobie, and once you experience that convenience, it's hard to let it go.
Being the El-Cheapo that I am, I didn't want to rush out and splurge on two sets of Anchor Trolleys for MSRP. I figured I would check around for a while and wait to run across a deal. Long story short, don't wait for a deal, you probably won't find one. After scanning for several months, the best "deal" I found was just a couple dollars off MSRP.
These bad boys cost $44.95 and if you want a set, you are going to have to pay it. While spending $90 on two sets for my kayak seemed a bit steep, this product really is superior to the competition and considering the price of some of the Hobie branded accessories, you can almost persuade yourself that $44.95 is a deal!
The lowest price we have ever seen this system go for is about $38. If you ever find them cheaper than that, I suggest you make like a tiger and jump on it.
Unlike several of the products we have reviewed recently, you should be able to find this Anchor Trolley System locally or online. Unfortunately, you aren't going to find them at your local REI or Dicks Sporting Goods but many smaller boutique fishing stores and kayaking stores generally keep them in stock. For us in Jacksonville, Black Creek Outfitters is an authorized YakAttack reseller and should have these in stock at any time. If you are interested in finding these locally, you can check the YakAttack Dealer Locator Page HERE.
For those of you prefer shopping online for things like this as we do, you're in luck. There are numerous websites selling these Anchor Trolley Systems, although you probably won't find a deal... We would suggest checking Austin Kayak, Amazon, Overton's, or Tackle Direct. Amazon will for sure get it to you fastest, but I would still check them all to see if you can find a deal.
If you want to buy online but need your new Anchor Trolley in a hurry, we recommend purchasing from Amazon. While we bought ours from ACK, we find that the shipping times are often quite slow. To purchase from Amazon click HERE.
Fishing the areas we do, we use our anchor trolleys with our stakeout poles constantly. Although this was my first time installing it myself, I was not new to the kit and have had nothing but fantastic results in the past. I love the simplicity of the design and the LeverLoc system which allows for easy use and very few failure points. It has served me well time and time again whether I am using an anchor or when using my stake-out pole in skinny water.
I'm not entirely sure how YakAttack would respond to my install method but I have to say, even if it is less than "ideal", I have seen absolutely no issues result. Furthermore, all of the pulleys and guides have held firm and kept me anchored even when fishing in 15 to 20mph winds in the marsh. I don't intend on fishing if the weather is any worse than that so for us, the performance is superb and I am very happy.
All Things Considered
Judging from my latest experience I would wholeheartedly recommend the YakAttack Anchor Trolley System to our readers. As far as I am concerned, it is the best way to quickly anchor and adjust your position regardless of weather conditions. With that said, The HD version is a must IF you are installing on a large, heavy kayak, that is not pre-rigged to work with an anchor trolley system. For instance, our 2019 Hobie Outback required all new holes for the anchor trolley install and the "HD" was a must. On my Pro Angler, however, I could have easily used the standard version and save a bit of cash (installing the way that I did and not utilizing the backing plates) but... you live and learn.
The YakAttack Anchor Trolley systems are fantastic and I have no doubt that you will absolutely love the final product. I would suggest that you please make sure and check, double-check, or even triple check before drilling so that you do not repeat the same mistake I made.
Do I need one or two?
A. That completely depends on you...or your budget! Our entire team here at Expedition Recreation has YakAttack Anchor Trolleys on both sides of our Hobie Fishing Kayaks and would definitely recommend that you do the same. For us, the $30 -$40 difference in price is totally worth the convenience of being able to anchor in any condition and on either side of the kayak. I think this is most important when you are using a stakeout pole as we do in the shallow marsh grass.
Alternatively, if you do not want to spend the money, you can definitely get away with only 1 anchor trolley system on one side of your kayak, especially if you are not planning on using a stake out pole. If you are on a budget and do not want to spring for two sets you will have no trouble utilizing on kit for now and adding another down the road. Heck, you might even decide you do not need a second!
Are there any down sides to your install method?
A. If you choose to install your Anchor Trolley System in the same fashion I did on your Pro Angler you are going to be wondering how well it is going to hold up. The Pro Angler is not specifically designed to fit the YakAttack System and you can tell. Not all of the bolts will fit perfectly and, if you do the same as me, you will not utilize all of the Anchor Trolley Guides. Although this seems strange, I can confirm that I have had no troubles, issues, or damage as a result of the way I installed my system. I think it looks cleaner than other installs I have seen and so far it has performed flawlessly even in very bad conditions.
Did You Watch Any Installation Videos And Where Did You Find Them?
A. Unfortunately, I could not find any good quality installation videos online and therefore did not watch any myself. Because this system is designed to work on so many different kayaks, the instructions are not very helpful. If you understand how the system works, the install really isn't all that difficult and I think it would be pretty hard to install it incorrectly. Try not to worry, take your time, and hopefully, our pictures can help give you some guidance if you are installing on a Pro Angler.
Wait, these pulleys aren’t harken…are they?
A. Before you get your panties in a wad. The OLD version of this kit DID include Harken Pulleys with a metal design. The New kits (like this one) is a “stealth” pulley and it is plastic. We have had no issues and think they are very well made but if you have your heart set on metal harken pulleys, don’t buy this kit.
Do I need to seal the screws with silicone?
A. It couldn’t hurt. If it makes you feel better, then give it a go, however, we do not think it is necessary. The holes you will drill are small on purpose so that when you screw the screw into it, it seals. Not only that, if you have installed your kit properly, it will be well above the water line. We chose not to seal up our screws and our kayak has remained dry as a bone inside.