On most kayak forums, one could search the archives and current topics and almost be guaranteed to find a thread or two on kayak visibility at night and the opinions/recommendations for how to make your kayak more visible. Some people recommend lighting as your primary visibility markers for safety, while others recommend reflective material from piping on your PFD to reflective tape of some type.
YakAttack has recently released the NITEStripe kit to help compliment a kayak's visibility profile under low light conditions. The kit comes in a variety of colors (red, blue, green, white, orange and yellow) and includes installation tips on the package label, a 24' length of NITEStripe and a perforated package that permits dispensing of the NITEStripe without it coming unwound at your feet.
Step 1 (Preparation) - cleansing the kayak surface with rubbing alcohol and visualizing the layout.
Step 2 (Positioning) - gently place the stripe on the kayak in your desired locations.
Step 3 (Adhesion) - stripe adhesion occurs from applying pressure.
Step 4 (Finalization) - remove the clear protective film from the top of the stripe to complete the install.
Now that is an over simplification of the installation process, but you get the drift. To install the kit, you must first use rubbing alcohol and prep the kayak surface for the NITEStripe. A word of caution here - do not use any oil-based cleaning agent to remove any previous decal or sticker residue. It prevents the NITEStripe from adhering to the kayak properly and will result in a stripe that eventually comes off. Once you have prepped the kayak surface using the alcohol, begin by peeling back an inch or two of the backing and gently placing the end of the stripe at your desired starting point. Unwind approximately 18-20" of the stripe, removing the backing and place the stripe where you want it. A piece of advice here - avoid placing the stripe in small sections of 2-3" at a time. You will end up with a line that is not straight and will require you to reposition the stripe repetitively.
Hobie Revolution 13 I own is a yellow color known as Papaya. I opted for the yellow version of the NITEStripe to keep the visual dynamics of the kayak simple and clean. What do you think? Can you find the NITEStripe in this photo...................
I know my kayak can now thanks to the addition of the NITEStripe kit. I know it will help me when combined with my YakAttack VisiCarbon Pro light, my headlamp and the reflective piping on my PFD. To purchase your own NITEStripe kit, head on over to HOOK1 or stop by your local kayak shop, like Appomattox River Company and ask for it by name.
For other tips on YakAttack products, as well as discussions on general kayak rigging, check out the YakAttack Tech Support Forums.
Be safe out there folks.