Submitted: 02-28-2008 by Brianpage
The Waterman is a very well constructed boat.
The round carbon hull is very stiff and finely finished on my four year old boat, despite some hard racing from it's previous owners. A powerful sprint boat paddling position is naturally assumed in the well designed cockpits, with room for both paddlers to splay their legs when they choose to, though it's difficult to work the tiller steering in the front with legs splayed. The foot braces are dead solid and easily adjusted, though I had to drill a couple holes for my 5'4" paddling partner to properly reach the brace.
The front features the aforementioned tiller bar, and this is where I have to give less than glowing praise. I've spent about three hours in the front of the boat, my partner a little more time, and we both find it very hard keep the boat tracking. My boat has an aftermarket overstern rudder, so the factory underhung rudder may perform better, though it is quite small for a open water K-2.
The boat surfs well in small seas, and the low volume hull pushes through oncoming waves quite nicely. It's a great boat for protected and open water, though there is insufficient storage room to do more than a day tour. The boat does feature decklines all around, so in a pinch you might be able to strap on enough gear to overnight.
Similar boats paddled are the Ruahine Adventure Duet, I might give a nudge to the Nelo, simply because of it's more robust construction. It's a more sporting boat than the Australian Mirage Double, but less practical as it's really a day racer. Still far more fun to paddle than the more utilitarian Seaward Passat. I give it an eight because I haven't figured out how to keep it tracking, and no Kayak gets a 10, otherwise we'd have no need to own multiples of them.