Submitted: 06-06-2005 by jwpaddling.net
I would almost change my rating on this boat because of all the things that went wrong, but can't as I think Absolute has resolved those since my experience in Fall 2002. 1. I actually broke the contrived footbrace when paddling--resolved. 2. The hatches as I made them leak quite a bit, maybe 2 quarts after about 10 minutes of rolling and bracing--common to many kitmakers' hatches--not resolved. 3. A high cockpit rim and a poorly padded backrest put pressure on my midback--probably resolved. 4. As I mentioned in my review below, small waves washed over the front deck when paddling in small chop, but also, the water hitting the front edge of the front hatch cover drenched me (the kitmaker probably resolved this by moving the cockpit back 3"). My particular boat needs cockpit relocation (sternward) and reconstruction (lower in back), a better back rest, watertight hatches (VCP or Kajaksport--not pretty but effective) and a rework of the front hatch installation to minimize splash.
On the plus side, the boat has so much rocker that the stern hangs out of the water when I set it down empty. Primary stability is very good and few other boats I've paddled can match its secondary stability. Once leaned to max, the bow and stern hang out of the water and you can spin the boat so quickly you almost puke, esp if you use a Greenland paddle in extended position. People constantly admire the thing. Mine looks great with the deck bright finished, the hull bottom dressed with epoxy/graphite and the hull sides painted white.