Submitted: 01-07-2005 by kiwi
I use this boat to spearfish in NZ: unstable weather and big yellowtails!
Easy and fast to paddle, and since this time in +25knt head winds and close to 50kg of fish/gear where I manage to get back to the beach, I trust fully this kayak... even if I was singing "the yellow submarine" the whole time!
I did some modifications to organize all the diving gear on the deck, and I only get reserve gear or big fishes thought the main hatches: It is actually quite impressive to see this hatches swallow a 25kg yellowtail but I only do so if the weather is OK (if is not you must be able to bail the fish).
My only real complain is that the hatches always leak a bit, while the day hatch behind the seat doesn't seal properly and I've end up by fitting a Tupperware box on it to keep some gear dry.
The rudder is weak, and the side wings break easily: I end up by build an alloy replacement. If you use the rudder the boat slow down, and I only resort to it if is really windy.
Stable? Sometimes fall asleep while resting in between the dives... must be OK!!!
I do find the boat difficult to handle down wind with rear side swell, the stability is reduced big time and if I'm heavily loaded I end up by taking boards and avoid a swim... but this problem is probably exacerbate by all my dive gear on the deck and a cockpit full of fish and crayfish. The running water on the cockpit maintains all my catch fresh and sometimes alive...
Over all the boat is impressive... used with a wing paddle is not much out there that keep up the speed or distance this hull manage. Current, wind, swell, exhaustion... I'm always back to my launching point with out any problem, enjoying the ride, and able to reach areas that not much diving kayaks can dream of.