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Submitted: 01-08-2007 by SL
Here's the background: two years - self taught intermediate paddler with decent paddling technique / skills. I weigh about 200#s. I bought this boat for adventure racing, training and to take either my 5 year old or wife out paddling on occasion. This boat has not disappointed. I'm reviewing a fiberglass model that weighs about 80#s, I got lucky and found a couple year old used yak. Where do I start...
Storage - Taken enough gear for a long day trip, with room to spare
Cockpit - lots of room inside, ridden both the front and rear. despite a 33 x 16" hole, my teamate who's like 6'1" and 220+ has no problem fitting in. Seats are comfortable, I don't get any numbness in my rear or lower back pain when on the water 4-5 hours.
Stability - Initial stability is great, secondary stability is good. I would have to do some thing really stupid or have both paddlers leaning to one side really hard to tip this thing.
Weight - It's a tandem and weighs a lot, yet I am able to load it on top of my truck by myself with some effort - I use a thule goal post on the rear hitch. For a smaller person or someone who has full and high rooftop, you should probably invest in some rollers to load this thing.
Turning - As you know, paddling a tandem is a different breed of cat, lean is pretty much n/a but the K2 rudder works well and is responsive. The Werner sliding foot braces work well, but take some getting used to.
Windy Conditions - I wish I could comment more, but I haven't had to paddle this thing in more than 10 knot winds. The boat tracks extremely well because of the V-shaped hull (and rudder). I'm particularly picky about zig-zagging as it's basically wasted effort.
Rough Seas / chop - very good. I don't find myself bracing that much or at all, it's possible it's because the combined weight of both paddlers helps keeps things stable.
Finish, deck gear, hardware - perfect, boat looks great, ergo handles make the boat comfortable to grip and carry, plenty of bungees for stowing gear, hatches don't leak.
Speed - This is a relative term I guess and the underlying premise is that you give up speed for stability and vice versa. Well for as stable as this boat is, it's pretty fast. There are faster boats on the market - I've paddled a sisson, but naturally they are much less stable. This boat works for my purposes of being able to take my family or beginner/intermediate paddlers on.
Example: Me and beginning adventure racer - combined weight including our packs 460#s (yes heavy) started 9 minutes late on a 12 mile paddle. Made ups some time, caught a lot of teams. We finished 3rd, right behind a veteran team paddling a seaward and another team paddling a tandem surf-ski. I can also paddle this thing solo. I've thrown my 5 y.o. son in the front or my wife (both of who don't really paddle so it's like paddling solo) and can still keep a good cadence with the boat moving 3-4 knots. I have surfed this thing in 3-4 foot doheny and it is capable. Felt like an outrigger in waikiki.
If I had to find any negatives about the boat, I'll just say that the length and weight of the boat make it hard to handle by yourself and a kayak cart is a must. Also finding indoor storage space in a garage for a 21'+ boat is very tough!
Lastly, I'll say Seda customer service is great. They are always willing to take the time to answer all your questions about your boat and gear. I've been restoring a mid 90's glider and Seda has been extremely helpful in making sure I get all the right parts in a timely manner.
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