Most of the advertisements and reviews on the BooneDox Propel Rudder Upgrade that I have seen are for the Native Slayer Propel, but the same BooneDox Rudder was also designed for the Mariner Propel. On 12/01/14 I ordered a BooneDox Propel Rudder for one of my 2012 Native Mariner Propels, and within a few days it arrived at my home. I ordered mine directly from BooneDox while I had them on the phone addressing a few of my questions.
Just like my BooneDox t-BONE truck bed extender, the rudder is exceptional quality made from lightweight aluminum. It has nice welds and an excellent power coated finish with a nice decal.
Installation is simple with the extra long machine screw provided. I applied a few drops of blue Loctite to the screw threads.
I was immediately impressed with the rudder’s performance, but I wanted to get in a handful of fishing trips in before I submitted a review. The first thing I noticed is that with the slightest movement, the kayak would turn immediately. The OEM rudder on the Mariner is fine, but I think the Propel Unit over powers it, especially in reverse. With the stock rudder, it takes a much wider radius to turn compared to the BooneDox rudder. With the BooneDox rudder, if you turn the rudder handle all the way to one direction, as soon as you push the pedals you will turn on a dime. Extremely tight turning radius… instantly. Steering while coasting or drifting is great, and steering in reverse is much improved as well. It only took a few adjustments of the single Phillips screw to get it dialed in. At first I had it too tight, then too loose, and finally found the sweet spot.
I definitely recommend this product and will soon be ordering one for my other Mariner Propel.
In the first picture you can see the difference in the rudders on my two 2012 Mariner Propels.