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Submitted: 08-25-2003 by krwahl63
I purchased the Airframe kayak two weeks ago and have now taken it on four distinct and very different trips. All of these trips have been in Rhode Island, which has proven a fantastic testing ground for this little kayak.
The boat itself has some key design elements that attract the mariner’s eye. She has a pretty sheer line, plenty of flare in the bow, and a form of tumblehome amidships. This has proven to answer well on the second and third trips taken on Narragansett Bay and Rhode Island Sound.
In these trips, I encountered the wash of a high-speed ferry on sea trials after a breakdown, several Novi style lobster boats/ fishing draggers (who generate a huge displacement wake), and a variety of other smaller boat moving at high speed. In taking the Airframe in all states of wind and sea (head sea, beam sea, following sea), I found the flare to split open the waves, the tumblehome to deflect the waves, and the stern shape makes for a fun ride in a following sea. Confused mid afternoon wind against tide chop was no challenge at all. I was amazed at how dry this boat was in all of this.
Moreover, a couple of regular yard hands in Wickford (who would not normally even look at a kayak) stopped to ask questions about the Airframe and described her as “cool” (high praise from these guys). Coming up the Narrow River from Rhode Island Sound, one gent in a gorgeous wooden CLC kayak eyed the Airframe up and down and gave an appreciative smile and said she looked good.
I will admit to grousing a bit when first trying to line up "valve number one", but I managed to get over that. Also, a nice thirsty towel is needed under your legs when wearing shorts... it gets mighty warm on the backs of the legs under the deck.
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