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Submitted: 07-25-2001 by Jim Smith
I finally had the opportunity to paddle the Eliminator in rough conditions on two seperate ocsasions. In 6 to 8 foot seas and 20 knots of wind off of Wrightsville Beach, (NC)the boat wanted to turn into the wind and swells in rear quartering seas. Adjusting the rudder to the opposite side of the swell decreased the amount of foot steering required to maintain a down-wind course. The boat surfed well on larger swells, but due to the width of the hull behind the paddler and short waterline, the boat was easily washed to the side by shorter wind chop. The great news is that the hull does extremely well on the return leg into the wind and chop. The bow never buried between swells. The boat screams upwind in big seas. I paddled the boat two days later in the ICW in 2 to 3 foot wind chop, both with and against the current. Same results as in the ocean. Very fast against the current and wind chop, and a slight challenge with the wind at your back. The most important point in using this hull concerns the use of the drainage system. In rough water, the boat takes on a full load of the wet stuff. When surfing a swell, or heading down wind, the sump has no flow across it and will not drain the cockpit. Go against the current or flow, and the drainage is instantaneous. I promised a rough water review, and these opinions are based on putting a boat to the test in the harshest conditions of the season. To end on a positive note, my friend and I had to help right one capsized sailboat, and another whose owner was caught between docks with a cracked hull at the mast base. The first boats' sailors returned immediately to the launch site, while the second was towed back by a kayak through heavy wind and chop...
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