Hull Identification Numbers: Your Unique Eddyline

March 22, 2021

The serial number on a kayak is actually a portion of the kayaks “Hull Identification Number” or “HIN” for short.  This article will tell you everything you need to know about your kayak’s HIN

As a new kayak owner, knowing how to find and read your kayak’s serial number is important.  The serial number on a kayak is actually a portion of the kayaks “Hull Identification Number” or “HIN” for short.  This article will tell you everything you need to know about your kayak’s HIN

What is a Hull Identification Number?

Kayaks manufactured by Eddyline Kayaks are subject to United States Coast Guard regulations pertaining to Hull Identification Numbers.  For an in-depth review of the rules and regulations around HINs please refer to this USCG circular.  Here is what the US Coast Guard says about the HIN:

The regulations requiring Hull Identification Numbers (HINs) for recreational boats are intended to provide an uniform positive identification of each boat manufactured in or imported into the United States… Each Hull Identification Number consists of 12 continuous characters at least one-quarter of an inch in height, uninterrupted by spaces, slashes, hyphens or other symbols.

The first three characters in every HIN are a Manufacturer Identification Code, which is unique to each manufacturer and is assigned by the US Coast Guard.  Eddyline’s Manufacturer Identification Code is “EDY”.  Every Eddyline ever built and shipped has an HIN starting with these three letters.  If your hull number starts with something other than “EDY”, it’s not an Eddyline!  You can go here to find the contact information for your manufacturer. 

Characters four through eight of the HIN are the Hull Serial Number. Manufacturers can use a combination of numbers and letters (except for “I”, “O” and “Q” because of their similarity to the numbers “0” and “1”).  Eddyline use numbers exclusively for the Hull Serial Number.  The first number is “0” or “8”, with “0” referring to a factory first-quality boat, and an “8” referring to a factory second-quality boat due to a cosmetic defect.  The next four numbers increment in units of one from “0000” to “9999” and then repeat.

The final four characters in your HIN are again mandated by the US Coast Guard.  They represent the Date of Certification and the Model Year.  The date of certification is the date of manufacture, where the letters A through L correspondent to months 1 through 12 and the number refers to the last numeral in the year.  The model year is the last two numerals in the model year of the boat manufacture.  For instance, if the last four characters in your Eddyline HIN was “J021”, you would know that your Eddyline was produced in October 2020 as part of the 2021 model year, (Eddyline changes over its model year on August 1 each year). 

Hull Identification Number

What is the Purpose of a Hull Identification Number?

The HIN has several important uses for different entities:

  • The US Coast Guard uses the HIN to identify the safety standards that apply to specific boats, and to identify boats involved in a defect notification effort.
  • Some states use the HIN for registration and titling purposes. 
  • Police and law enforcement use the HIN to trace stolen boats. 
  • Eddyline registers paddlers’ kayaks by the HIN for warranty purposes. 

Where Can I Find My Hull Identification Number?

The US Coast Guard requires that the HIN be “permanently affixed” to a boat in a way that would cause damage if it were removed.  Historically, Eddyline has used a hand engraving tool to etch the HIN onto the deck of the boat near the stern (back) behind the carry handle.  In early 2021, Eddyline began etching the HIN onto the “lip” of the deck in the same part of the boat.  If you are unable to locate the HIN or are having a hard time reading it, feel free to reach out to our support team. 

CNC-etched Hull Identification Number
CNC Etched Eddyline Kayaks HIN
Hand-etched Hull Identification Number
Hand Etched Eddyline Kayaks HIN