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Submitted: 06-26-2008 by fpharris
After paddling casually for a few years I decided last summer to get "serious" about it. I took some lessons and rented a few different brands. I wasn't heavily involved in a paddling club at the time so I wasn't able to paddle other members' boats. Trying to find paddling companies or boathouses with a wide variety of boats was hard unless I wanted to travel way out of town. But I did the best I could and spent HOURS on the web reading product reviews. What finally made me settle on a QCC kayak were the reviews, the 30-day test paddle guarantee, and the financing options.
I ordered my QCC 400X in September 2007 and made monthly payments until March 2008. It was sort of painful to wait that long to get my boat but I knew I wasn't at the point where I wanted to paddle in winter conditions so the wait really wasn't too bad. I called QCC in late March, made my final payment, and had them start building my boat. It arrived in mid-April, in time for me to get in a few paddles before a weekend-long skills clinic.
I do love this boat! The fit and finish are flawless - a testament to the craftsmanship that goes into their boats. It's comfortable - I haven't had to make any modifications to the seat or back band after many paddles, from 3-4 mile quick trips to 10-12 mile day-long outings. It tracks beautifully. You can lean this boat pretty far over without feeling unstable. It's a fast boat and just a delight to paddle. Deck rigging seems well thought out and more than adequate. My budget dictated the fiberglass construction but this boat is FAR lighter than any of the plastic boats I previously paddled - I've had no difficulty getting it on top of my car or carrying it back and forth on my shoulder. Customer service has been the absolute BEST!
So... the 30 days passed long ago but I never had any interest in returning this boat. In fact, after the first weekend of paddling I sent an e-mail to QCC and told them I had already cut up the cardboard shipping box and had taken it to the recycling center! I was totally satisfied from the very first time I put the boat in the water.
If you're at all concerned about buying a kayak sight-unseen ... don't be. The odds of you not liking a QCC kayak are very, very small. And if, for some reason, you don't like the boat they'll take it back at no cost to you. You'll find an almost cult-like following among QCC owners which, I think, speaks volumes about the boats and how satisfied we are with them!
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