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Submitted: 11-03-2008 by bestboat
Purchased the boat this summer, find that it has been discontinued? I am 230 lbs, the large cockpit is easy to enter and exit and it is able to carry the load easily and can be paddled by a much smaller person also without difficulty. The boat is a very stable tourer, with limited tracking capability. The bellihood Skeg is a joke, it is flimsy, in-affective and I will remove it in spring.
Installed a rudder which was made for me by a machinist friend, and the boat became a real fun craft to paddle even in rough windy conditions. I would advise it to all to do so if you want to paddle in anything but flat calm water.
One nasty weakness I found with the deck design is the rear deck is low like a pan, and even minor waves break over it from the rear and the water pours in. I find this aspect a really poor design, it may be stylish but very poorly conceived by a non paddler, you have to wear the spray skirt at all times, not nice on hot days! Lack of flotation was solved by cutting swimming Noodles to 18" lengths and filling the bundle into the front and stern-cheap but effective.
Find that the spray skirt does not want to stay on the rounded underside of the coming - will have to find a solution to that too - even putting it on is a real difficult process, just does not want to stay on? Sometimes I wonder if the designer ever was in a boat and used the equipment!
As a recreational boat it is a good one, very stable, reasonably fast - it surprised me, and wouldn't hesitate to take it on longer trips, storage at the rear is reasonably good, after the storage pan-another dopey design feature was cut out and the space became accessible. The hatch cover is not watertight? So beware! invest in waterproof bags! Aaamazing! why have a hatch that is not watertight?
As a footnote, I have paddled a Klepper folding boat since 1969 in sea, ocean, river, lake and puddle, giving me much experience with various aspects of desirable features in a boat. With a little upgrading of the areas I mentioned, the boat is a real good buy for the money. I will rig it for sailing next year!
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