Submitted: 01-28-2008 by bestboat
I purchased my Aerius in 1969, the frame is still perfect, the skin also except for the bow [replaced] and the stern cover about to be replaced. A bit of sewing on the canvas top where it meets the gunwale [worn out] from many miles of paddling in rivers, lakes, oceans, many long journeys with wife and 2 kids + camping gear. It is THE Cadillac of all kayaks, it gets admiring comments everywhere I go, and the naysayers find out that indeed it is as fast as a hardshell in the long run.
I use my original paddles which have been re-worked with fibreglass where the dry rot has damaged them, tried many paddles, and wind up with the originals, try bracing with one of those fine composite things in a heavy sea, and you will see what I mean.
I have a Latin [triangle including the jib} sail for it [off a sportspal sailboat] works like a charm, designed and made oversize lee boards, which are attached at the back of the front seat, S hooks with twist tensioners secure the crossbar to the bottom of the rib, works great! with foot operated oversize rudder[also made for me by a friend machinist] from aluminum. It sails beautifully upwind with those leeboards, and all I have to hold is 1 rope. I enjoy the looks on the faces of the Other sailors as to what the hell is it!? how can it sail so fast and into the wind? I love my boat, would not part with it, and wouldn't go out in the oceans in anything else. As for putting it together in 15 minutes, after a few practices it's a Snap! and an Event when people see the bags and than a work of art of the frame emerges, and they scratch their heads! its fun! and then they all want a ride in it! It IS the best boat!