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Submitted: 08-26-2009 by kobzol
We have recently purchased another Ikkuma 17 and so I think it's time for a review.
Background/Experience: 2 years sea kayaking
This is a wonderful kayak. Hatches are dry and easy to open. Deck rigging is well done, deck lines are in all the important spots and bungee lines front and back help attaching 'quick grab' gear. The design of this kayak seems to be a nice blend of Greenland (chines are 'semi hard') and British kayak with confidence boosting initial stability and functional secondary stability for when the waves kick up on the ocean.
The way the kayak feels on the water with its blend of stability it reminds me of NDK Explorer. The difference is that it is much lighter than the NDK boats. Single person can easily carry the kayak to the water. The lightness also means that I would not take it to the 'rock garden' with my skill set because the chances are that it would get banged up badly. But if you don't plan on roughing it up in surf and rock gardens it will perform great for you in good or bad ocean weather.
The kayak seems to be able to accommodate wide gamut of paddler sizes from 140 lbs to 200+ but if you are a wirey body type you might need to add some padding on the hips. The amount of freeboard seems to be high. For the lighter paddler the boat would do better in high winds when loaded with gear. The hatches are generous and will take a lot of gear for extended touring trips.
I haven't rolled it. I don't know how to roll yet. Hopefully by next year I will. The existing chines on this kayak make it very easy to lean and turn the kayak. For the 17 feet it is very maneuverable yet it also tracks well and goes fast. The skeg is awesome.
It is a nice blend of features. Lightweight Kayak, Good tracking, Fast and Maneuverable.
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