Submitted: 10-26-2012 by rivannahipsnap
This is a vintage downriver racing boat. I acquired mine (circa 1984) this past summer and was immediately in awe of its speed. This boat has wings and that is where the stability exists. It is definitely for experienced kayakers because it is very tippy.
I love this boat! I found mine on Craig's List and bought it from a kid who said he felt claustrophobic in it. I chuckled because I thought he just wasn't used to skinny racing kayaks, but once I tried to get into it and out of it I understood. The cockpit is very small (I'm 6'1") and it is a tight squeeze getting into and out of the boat. Once you are in there it has plenty of leg room with adjustable, aluminum footpegs on rails, but the first two times I paddled it I flipped it trying to exit the boat. You'll probably have no problem if you launch from a dock but it is challenging on an average shoreline.
This brings up another interesting point.
It is a downriver racer meant for flowing rivers. If you plan to take it on flat water, make sure there is no wind. The second time I paddled it I was having a blast paddling it as fast as I could to see just what she could do, and then a storm started blowing in and the winds picked up. I was in the middle of a lake and feared I might never get to land again. It just wanted to go in a circle no matter what I did. Horrendous weather cocking (because it is soooo light at 27-30lbs.) It is not an inherent problem with the boat mind you, it just isn't meant for open/flat water with wind.
I rate the boat a 9 only because of the size of the cockpit opening but otherwise would rate it a 10 for very experienced kayakers with excellent balance skills. If you are an experienced paddler of racing kayaks or skis and can find one of these and want to take it downriver or race it downriver, buy it! If you are looking for a rec boat stay far, far away.
I've got some photos and video (www.youtube.com/watch?v=ighbXVP_WBg) of the first couple times in this boat and that video will link to another one that shows it before and after my restoration.