Just don't leash the paddle to the aka brace. I managed to break mine (the shear bolts did what they were supposed to do) and nearly lost the paddle as well! They are really hard to tip over - the aka brace gave way before it had a chance to tip. The AI is not really suited to catching waves, but it was fun trying.
I have a leash on my new paddle, which also can fold down into four sections. Just to see how the leash held up, I deliberately slipped it out the front sleeve on the aka, and I was surprised at the force that was generated as the paddle dipped into the ocean. It was a VERY light breeze, yesterday sailing down wind, but one can easily see that a loose paddle will exert enormous force on the leash, or indeed the aka, as it pivots until it starts to surf. Having a spare paddle is an idea, and I have one that is all that is left over after selling all my H14 stuff.
Because of waves, we've settled on putting one end of the paddle under the bungees holding the front hatch
In really heavy surf you can't leave the paddle in its place on the aka, its too exposed, so those pictures are very helpful. But that's where I secure the mirage drive. Even directly along the hull can still get the paddle blade scooping water. However my replacement paddle is not shaped like the original one, and actually that scoops far less water. Because of the curvature on the standard Hobie paddle blade, it had a tendency to want to take off, even when pointed directly in line with the hulls, eg on the aka, or alongside the hull.
Talking of paddle leashes, I read yesterday on one of the forums, don't think this one, of a very serious injury caused by a paddle leash. They did not say so, but I suspect they had the paddle leashed to their arm. Which gets me to my surfboard leash, which I do leash to my arm, if I am in conditions where I suspect I might get turfed out the AI. Its something to bear in mind, that leashing yourself to the AI might pull your shoulder joint out, or even break the arm. Not a nice idea. But I don't fancy being off shore and seeing the AI disappear. I used a long surfboard leash to try and avoid being caught under the AI, which is another concern.