Submitted: 01-03-2001 by Phil M
I purchased my old town Nantucket near the end of the summer 2000. I am a beginning kayaker and this was my first boat. I am 6' 200lbs. I tried about a dozen boats before settling on the Nantucket. Demos are a must! It seemed to have a good fit for me. I did have a concern that I needed extra back support to kayak. The old town kayaks have the largest and most comfortable seat of any I tried. Actually, with a spray skirt, the seat is a couple of inches too high, though it still fits on. Also, I liked the elongated cockpit so I could stretch out my knees. I tried the America and Acadia, but the molded in keel down the boat hit my heels and was uncomfortable. As it is, I could use a bit more foot room in the Nantucket, although I only have size 10 feet.
Because I was a beginner, I wanted a boat I could grow with. My target area of use is for flatwater in the many creeks by me and a little lake or river trips, not really openwater oceans or anything. I also wanted to use it a bit in class 1-3 white water, if I ran into some on the creeks. I liked the boats in between length of 14'9". Not too long for the creeks and still long enough to track well. I did not have a problem with the finish as mentioned by others, But the rear hatch cover seems kind of loose. I have gotten water in the rear hatch, probable from the bulkhead seal, but have not repaired it yet. As for the look of the boat, it is great. I have the red, which really looks more like a fiberglass boat, and not a cheap toy.
Performance: I have had it out probably 12 times in the creeks and have been very happy with it. I even took it out for a couple of winter runs! It seems to track well. I purchased it with the rudder, but really have not used it much. I have heard that you should learn proper paddling skills rather than relying on the rudder, I find that works for me. Initial and secondary stability are both good (as I understand their meaning). Also, I wonder if I would like a boat with more rocker to handle the occasional rapid or the faster moving water found in the spring.
One thing I decided I'm not happy with is that the boat is fairly wide 24" and has no thigh braces or knee braces. I will need to add something as my skill increases, because it is difficult to brace without them on a boat this wide. I haven't tried to roll yet (will be taking class this winter), but I think it will be tricky.
Does anyone know of a knee brace available for this boat that will attach to the coaming like other mfg's standard braces?? Please feel free to e-mail me with question or your comments.