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I did replace the axle after 71 miles since sand had worn a groove on each side where the wheel hubs sit. Even though I wash off the cart thoroughly after each use, the high mileage and one instance of forgetting to wash the cart after going through deep sand resulted in visible wear on the axle.
Fortunately, Wheeleez sells replacement axles at very modest cost, so I bought a new axle. Apparently, they do not keep them stocked; I had to call a couple of times to request one, but they did come through. A quick wrench job gave me a refreshed device and I am a happy camper.
I will probably need to buy a new entire cart after another 70 miles or so, or whenever the wheel tread wears too much, but given the reasonable cost of $89 for such a good product, I can't quibble over that.
Kudos to Wheeleez for making a compact, high-quality cart that is easy to use and fits in my hatch compartments.
The wheels are small enough to fit in my NDK's front or rear hatch compartment (not quite small enough to fit through the smaller day hatch opening). The frame folds down so I can slide it into a dry bag and then into my front hatch compartment. The quick-release clips holding the wheels to the frame could not be easier to use, and Wheeleez supplies a spare pair of them. You can prevent loss of clips simply by re-clipping them to the frame after removing the wheels. That way they are there ready for use, and it's a logical place to put them.
The beefy wheels roll well on hard paved surfaces, bumpy ground, grass, and sand. On deep, dry sand they will not have as much flotation as balloon wheels, but at least they don't sink down to an abrupt halt like my hard, narrow 7" plastic wheels did.
As soon as I began rolling the kayak on this cart, I could hear and feel a big improvement from what I had been using (the tiny Quantum Kayak Cart): The ride is SMOOTH even on rough hard surfaces. The foam in these wheels does a much better job of damping vibration than I expected based on squeezing them with my fingers. My kayak thanks me. Probably so do my neighbors, who could hear the noise of the old cart rumbling down the rough road, shaking everything in the kayak with it. Now I can be stealthy....er, as stealthy as you can be while pushing a 17' mango-and-white banana.
In addition to the easy rolling and smooth ride, I can now place the cart farther forward under the kayak. I put mine just behind the day hatch, which is about 1.5' forward of the frontmost place I could attach the skinny Quantum cart. There is now noticeably less weight for me to bear, and the added height of the new cart also makes it easier to handle.
Strapping the kayak is done using 2 cam-buckle straps, the ordinary kind. The included straps are longer than necessary for my narrow sea kayak, but they held the boat securely. The key to a stable attachment is just this: When you place the cart under the boat, CENTER IT relative to the keel line. Then follow the simple strapping protocol. That's all. My boat did not budge from its assigned position, even though I did not tighten the buckle hard. My portage takes about 12 to 14 minutes each way.
Bear in mind that this review was written after only one use, but it is an auspicious start. If anything changes, I will post another review. Meanwhile, consider me one very happy customer. Thank you, Wheeleez!
* I say "light duty" because the cart rating on the box says the payload is 55 kg/121 lbs, which is plenty for daytripping and some camping trips but not for big loads.
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