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Royak's unique design is what sets this boat apart from all others -- Click Here to learn more
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The Original Royak - 1968 (see below)
- Royak History - A New Kind of Boat

Roy Grabenauer on his world voyage-
Royak on the stern as tender to Jofian

The sit-on-top kayak; as it is now referred, was invented by Roy Grabenauer in 1968 after years of experimenting with a variety of designs and innovative technologies.

The California scuba diver, needed a boat that would not sink, and that he could get in and out of easily in rough water. He wanted a craft with enough storage for his gear that was also easy to maneuver, lightweight and comfortable.

No existing vessel had all of these features.

Roy began experimenting with a boat fabricated from an airplane wing tank, and ended up designing a torpedo-shaped craft that resembles a topless kayak going backwards.
(See National Fisherman, April 1978)

With the enthusiastic encouragement of Roy's friends, he endeavored to build more boats. Roy applied with the U.S. Patent Office for a patent search on January 27, 1970 and on March 21, 1972, patent no. 3649977 was granted. By this time approximately 300 Royaks were sold throughout the U.S. and best friend, Al Snider, cleverly coined "Royak" by combining the inventor's first name and kayak. Roy then pursued and was granted patent rights in seven other countries. By 1978 approximately 2000 Royaks were owned and enjoyed internationally. In 1982 Roy's son independently marketed and manufactured the Royak.

The "sit-on-top" market has grown from a cottage to a commercial industry, as there are a numerous kayak manufacturers producing their own style. For over thirty years the sit-on-top has opened the door for many more people to safely and comfortably enjoy the cool sport of kayaking than ever before. The profound simplicity of Roy's initial concept remains the benchmark of design.

-A Variety Of Uses . -A World of Water Adventure

The Royak is a small vessel with a lot of big ideas! Originally designed for divers braving the Pacific coastal waters of Northern California, the Royak has become popular with water enthusiasts everywhere. Divers welcome the efficiency and convenience of the Royak River rafters like the Royak's easy handling. Fishermen appreciate its stability. Canoers and kayakers make enthusiastic coverts to the Royak because the comfortable, open cockpit allows them to get in and out with more ease.


The Royak is a streamline, single-passenger craft designed for anyone with a sense of adventure! Its patented design offers safety, stability, and versatility for all types of water excursions, including, but not limited to:
Fishing, Lake Touring, Scuba and Skin Diving, River Touring, Ocean Exploring and so much more.

- Our Maiden Voyage
Roy Grabenauer
Now in his 80s, and
still Royaking after all
of these years!

Roy Grabenauer's first successful prototype was very nearly the last. Pictured at the top of this page, now hanging on the wall at Royak Marine is Roy's first successful prototype. On its maiden ocean run, the hand made, aluminum brainchild that incorporated all the desired features was lost at sea. While Grabenauer was diving, the anchor line broke, as the sea was especially rough that day. Friends watching from the shore could do nothing to warn Grabenauer or rescue the craft.

Despite the loss, Grabenauer decided that his craft had proven itself. Friends agreed and wanted copies. Grabenauer quit his job and began manufacturing the very first Royaks.

Two years later Grabenauer was reunited with his prototype model. A Mexican albacore fisherman found it hundreds of miles out to sea. Amazingly, Grabenauer's fish stringer and can of metrecal were still in the cargo compartment, even though the compartment had no cover when lost. It would appear that little boat never capsized during its two year tour at sea.

Made in Orangevale, California - USA
Patent No. 36499977
Copyright © 2002 Royak Marine :: 916-989-5600
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