My Rogue Lite Mods

Mods, DIY gear, repair, etc...
Joined:Thu Jul 30, 2020 10:10 pm
My Rogue Lite Mods

Post by Mojoe » Thu Jul 30, 2020 11:03 pm

I bought a Rogue Lite earlier this year, for the usual reason. I wanted to hike to some lakes that you can't drive to, then paddle around. If I can drive there, I take the kayak.

There were two things about the Rogue Lite that I thought needed improvement - the lack of a back support, and the way you inflate the raft. Yes, the non-lite version of the Rogue comes with a back support, but I don't do whitewater, and didn't want the extra weight.

To fix the lack of a back support, I bought an inflatible "lumbar support pillow" from Amazon (see picture). The particular brand was "Vive". It has an elastic strap on the back, for attaching it to a chair. What I did was to put a strip of super-adhesive Velcro along several inches of the seam, at the back of the raft. Next, I glued a small piece of the same Velcro to the middle of the elastic strap on the inflatible cushion (the Velcro adhesive alone wasn't enough to hold it). This little bit of Velcro is enough to hold the cusion in place, as I get into the raft. It provides great back support, and it weighs almost nothing.

As for inflating the raft, I imagine most packrafts have a similar problem. The included inflation bag works, but is a pain in the butt to use. The real problem is, you have to first open the Leafield valve, as the bag can't provide enough air pressure to inflate the raft with the valve closed. I find the idea of having to quickly remove the bag, then even quicker, close the valve before too much air escapes, totally ridiculous. Then, you have to use a tube to top off the raft by mouth, which is not an easy task, fighting against the spring in the valve.

Yes, Kokopelli sells a small, battery-operated pump. From what I can tell from their description, the pump also doesn't provide enough air pressure to inflate the raft with the valve closed, or to fully inflate the raft by itself. So, still losing some of the air you put in, and still having to top off by mouth.

As an aside, I don't like the idea of blowing into a raft, or my sleeping mattress that I use for backpacking. I have seen online pictures of really nasty stuff growing inside some folks mattresses, from repeated inflation by mouth. The mattress, being much smaller than a raft, it isn't as much trouble to use an inflation bag.

I solved the open/closed valve issue by making a sort of plunger (see picture) that fits inside the neck of the inflator (bag, pump, tube). The plunger is just tall enough to depress the spring in the Leafield valve, so you can leave the valve in the closed position. When you are done inflating and remove the inflator, you only lose a tiny wisp of air, before the spring closes the valve fully.

Along with this, I found a battery-operated pump that will fully inflate the raft, without over inflating it, even if you leave the pump running. It is a Coleman pump that I bought at the local Sportsman's Warehouse (see picture). Using this pump, along with an NRS Leafield valve adapter (see picture), and my homemade plunger, I can easily and fully inflate the raft, without having to blow into it by mouth, and without losing air. I made the plunger from a small, broken parts box. I trimmed it until it fits tightly inside the NRS valve adapter. The only downsides to the Coleman pump is that it is a bit bulky and heavy. The pump and the NRS adapter weigh right at one pound.

Oh, and the pump also works great for deflating the raft.
NRS.png (233.5KiB)Viewed 970 times
Pump.png (155.4KiB)Viewed 970 times
Cross.jpg (58.71KiB)Viewed 970 times
Cushion.png (223.41KiB)Viewed 970 times

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