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Watercraft Accessory Review


Transporting your pontoon float boat has never been easier, introducing the cleverly designed EZ Packer
(continued)

 

EZ Loading: The best thing about the EZ Packer is the ability to transport a fully built pontoon just about anywhere. This makes it possible to take your time and build your boat up in the shade of your garage rather than having to unpack and build up the boat on site. Once your float boat built up and the individual pontoons are fully inflated and strapped in your ready to load your boat. Simply remove the safety pin and safety chain and lower the EZ Packer down flat. The center bar on the EZ Packer is longer than the forked end so it is possible to simply lift the center crossbars of your boat onto the main EZ bar and then slide the boat right into the fork without having to much lifting.

 

After removing the safety pin lower the EZ Packer into position on the ground

 

Once the center crossbars are within the confines of the fork a locking pin at the end of each fork secures the boat. Simply lift the entire boat back into parallel position with the back of your vehicle, reinsert the safety pin and secure the chain and you are ready to roll. This entire procedure is undemanding, and takes less than 5 minutes. EZ Packer has a short video on their website that details the entire installation process.

 

The EZ Packer's fork design can accommodate many brands of Pontoon float boats

 

Driving: Depending on the size of your pontoon and vehicle it is very likely that some part of your pontoon is going to extend above the back of your vehicle (unless you are driving an RV). We were worried about wind resistance when driving at high speed, like on the freeway for example. Our fears were soon put to rest as we took our very first trip. We found that the pontoons were surprisingly aerodynamic and there was little to no movement of the rack at high speed as a result of wind resistance. When moving at low speed over uneven surfaces the EZ Packer and pontoon will sway back and forth a bit but never so much that it became a safety issue. This can be countered by using the supplied spring loaded hitch pin and bungee cords to secure the pontoon to a fixed point against the back of your car or truck. We found on our test vehicle, a Land Rover Discovery II, that visibility was still adequate around the angles of the pontoon, but visibility will vary depending on your individual vehicle. 

 

Lift the front of your pontoon boat and rest the crossbar beneath the seat on the center EZ Packer bar

  

EZ Launching: When we drove to the lake or the river to launch our boat with the EZ Packer during the field tests the unit garnered a great deal of attention. None of the other float boat owners had ever seen anything quite like this product. There were numerous times that other anglers approached us to see just how the product worked, and marveled at how quickly we were able to go from the car to fishing on the water.

 

With all the weight of the pontoon boat supported on the EZ Packer main bar it is easy to slide the pontoon into the fork

 

While loading the pontoon was undemanding, we found unloading our Water Skeeter downright effortless. Simply remove the safety pin and chain, lower the unit and pull back on the pontoon to slide it right off the rack. Like a boat trailer the EZ Packer allows you to back your car right to the waters edge and launch your float boat. No more lifting oversized pontoons on dry land, or wasting fishing daylight by having to assemble your frame and pump the pontoon chambers up in the field. The entire unloading process takes as little as 3 minutes.
 

Once you have the pontoon loaded onto the fork simply place both security pins on the end of the fork to secure the pontoon, then lift the pontoon into vertical position and lock the EZ Packer back into transport position with the safety pin

 

Maintenance & Durability: The EZ Packer is very maintenance free, and all you need to do to clean the unit is spray with water and wipe the unit dry. It is a good idea to lubricate the main pivot point once every few months, but other than that there is no routine upkeep required. The EZ Packer is all about being "easy." Easy to install, easy to operate, and easy to maintain. In terms of durability the unit received high marks and survived an off-roading expedition fully loaded with our pontoon. The only area that received some wear is the fork surface that comes in contact with the pontoon crossbars. After plenty of loading and unloading both the pontoon and the EZ Packer had a few cosmetic scratches on the black finishes. This can be easily avoided by placing a strip of clear packing tape over the forks loading surface.

 

Re-apply the safety chain onto your hitch and your ready for transport, the whole loading procedure takes only 5 minutes

 

Applications and increased freedom and range: While the concept behind the EZ Packer is relatively simple the implementation of this idea is phenomenal. The easy to use design spells a quick and uncomplicated operation for anglers, and because the EZ Packer is so easy to use it makes it possible for anglers to increase their chances of success on fishing trips. Bass anglers can carry more gear, and get into the water quicker by being able to launch wherever they can drive to on the lake. Trout and smallmouth anglers can work multiple points on the river by quickly relocating the boat to various spots across a much greater span of water. If you own a SUV it makes it possible to move around the waters edge without having to dissemble your boat, and if you own a truck it means you can transport two fully boat built up pontoons in your bed, and another on the EZ Packer. For those looking to fish with even more friends the company produces a EZ Packer dual model capable of holding two float boats! Finally, for those very adventurous anglers looking to fish those hard to reach honey holes the EZ Packer makes it possible to carry your pontoon boat into the backcountry on the back of an ATV!
 

No longer do you need to break down the pontoon between trips, the EZ Packer also allows you to change locations on the river quickly, or transport more equipment or passengers in your car or truck. Perhaps coolest of all the EZ Loader will fit on ATV's as well for even more mobility


Price & Warranty: The EZ Packer is an superb product when it comes to functionality, and it becomes even more attractive with a price tag that is no more than a quality baitcaster. The unit retails for $350.00 ready to go, and other available options include a wall bracket that makes it possible to use the EZ Loader as a storage device for your pontoon in your garage, and a height adapter making the EZ Packer RV capable. The unit is guaranteed for 1 year against all manufacturer defects. Overall the EZ Packer is well worth the money for any float boat owner on the go.
  

Ratings:

EZ Packer (Single) Ratings(?/10)

Construction/Quality The EZ Packer is well built, and features all steel construction, an attractive black finish, and quality welds in all critical areas 9
Performance The EZ Packer was easy to install and operate. Never before have we been able to unload a fully built pontoon right into the water 9
Price The EZ Packer is a reasonable price at 350.00 and while not extremely cheap it is worth the money for this quality product 8
Features The EZ Packer is designed to be extremely easy to use and the units swing down design and quick securing pin make it easy to use 9
Design (Ergonomics) The design is excellent, and the only area where we thought the EZ Packer could be improved is in weight, the unit is no lightweight at 35lbs. While the unit is somewhat heavy we are willing to accept the weight as a trade-off for the excellent durability we saw in our tests 8
Application The EZ Packer is much more than just a carrying rack for your pontoon. This is a product that will improve the fishing experience for float boat owners 9

Total Score

8.66

  
Pluses and Minuses:

                 Plus                                    Minus

J Innovative design! L Durable design requires the unit to be somewhat heavy at 35lbs (2/17/12 new version features increased strength but now weighs 47lbs.)
J Quality construction  
J Easy to use  
J True fishing advantages for pontoon owners. Get to fishing faster, and ability to relocate quickly  

    
Conclusion: Some watercraft accessory products are gimmicky, but the EZ Packer is not one of them. The EZ Packer is quite ingenious, not only from a design standpoint but also the fact that it addresses a need as unique as float boat transport so well. The EZ Packer is all about making it easier for anglers to get on the water and get to fishing. The unit is easy to install, easy to use, and quite affordable. The EZ Packer allows float boat anglers a much greater amount of freedom when it comes to moving about across expanses of land to target multiple locations on large lakes or rivers. Because the unit is so quick to use much less time and effort is expended during each relocation. We decided to award the EZ Packer our Innovation Award not only for a innovative quality design, but also for the pioneering thinking that went into the implementation and production of a product that truly addressed a actual need for pontoon anglers. The EZ Packer is much more than just a carrying rack, this is a product that will improve the fishing experience for anglers. If you own a float boat, the EZ Packer is one upgrade that is definitely worth investing in, and eliminates all of the negative time consuming issues associated with the setup and transport of these versatile watercraft.


                            


 

 

 

 

 

 
 





 

 



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