Submitted: 05-31-2000 by Bullwinkle
The BIG cigar has it's place on the river for sure. Great boat to teach newcomers boat lean crossing current differentials and coach them on stroke technique with you in the stern. I took the incredibly heavy outfitting out of mine and made molds from the seats and favbricated kevlar and glass seats and replaced the clunky bulkhead foot braces with Yakimas; estimated weight savings, 12#. This boat is heavy, but a real hoot to paddle. It's difficult to rescue after a swim due to the large open cavity in the middle and the difficulty finding adequate floatation for the ends of the boat. Takes some getting used to having only about 2' of stern behind the stern paddler. I added a minicell wall in the middle which did make exit out of the med. sized cockpits a little difficult. also put a custom carved chunk of minicell laminate in the bow for some floatation in the boat.
One of it's hidden selling points is that stacking it on its side on the car roof racks, allows you to literally stuff it full of paddling and camping gear when used in conjunction with good cockpit covers. The boat new is not cheap and I believe that may contribute to the lack of numbers of them on the water. like $1400 for a new one. I sold mine used (8 yr. old) for $800 and had its share of battle scars. Was never able to ender it due to the bulbous and short bow, but then it could've been the wate I was on. perhaps putting the heavier paddler in the bow for these exercises would be beneficial.. Only reason I sold it was financial, ie kids graduated into their own boats and it was collecting too much dust.