I bought this used a few years ago and love it! This boat has become one of most favorite possessions. With a kayak style paddle it is a joy to paddle. Everything you read about these is true, good and bad.
The boat is really stable and the sponsons are really a great addition. I don't understand why other manufacturers don't use them. funny story, for me at least. I had the wife in the boat on a lake. she decides to sit on a padded boat cushion. I warned her it was too high and dangerous. long story short she slides off the cushion into the water. Even with all of her flailing and grabbing the boat never went over. the water was shallow and she was able to stand up so she was fine. I was really impressed with the sponsons effectiveness. the boat took a little water but I stayed dry.
really light; really stable
quiet due to the foam interior lining
Cons:I purchased this canoe used as a fishing platform and I have to say, that with all the ranting and raving about these boats, I am more than a little disappointed. Mine leaked. It took a hit to the bow and that was that. The aluminum sheet itself is quite flimsy.
does not track very well
tends to be blown around the lake like a leaf
is said to be very fragile to punctures
Mine has an actual seat, but these are designed from the factory to have little foam seats that simply sit on the bottom and one is expected to sit/kneel/crawl directly on the floor. I found the floor to pop and buckle whenever I tried to put any directed pressure on it, as in getting to a kneel or putting a foot in during launches. It hasn't broken. Yet.
I find it hard to paddle solo and cramped with even the smallest of co-pilots. The back seat puts too much weight too far back for solo use and it gets tossed by the wind even with my considerable ballast kneeling in the center. It looks pretty beet up and dented and dinged in many places.
Again, I bought it used so I'm not sure how hard a life she led before me but I have put a scrape or two in her myself and I think that I am probably, in fact, even more gentle of a canoeist that I think I am.
Still, it is very light weight and stable and if that is all you are after it's a good boat. If you have some expectation of durability then the Radisson might not feel particularly solid to you nor fill you with much confidence. I enjoy mine but will have to sell it with the coming of my Big Boy (17 foot Grumman) which should fill me with that sense of bullet-proof confidence that I found lacking in the Radisson.
I image that I will be shopping for another small, solo canoe before the season's end as the Grumman is too big and heavy for my solo adventures which out number my tandem/group outings by far. When I do it probably won't be for a used canoe and it probably won't be for a Radisson...I've had my 12ft Radisson for two days now. You're probably wondering how I can rate it a 10. I'll start off by saying that this is the only canoe I've ever owned. I've had it in the water once. I deliberately went out on a windy day to see how it would handle. The canoe did great. So how can I rate it a 10 after only one trip? Well the reason is embarassing and depressing. I mentioned earlier that this is the first canoe I've owned. It just so happens it's also the first time I tried to tie a canoe to the top of a car. I bought one of those kits with the foam blocks and ropes etc (I give the kit a rating of 1). Being a windy day you might have figured out that a 35# canoe on top of a few foam blocks with a poorly tied rope traveling 45mph might be a bad combination. It was. The foam blocks flipped, the canoe swung off the drivers side onto the road and scraped across the concrete until the car stopped. There's a dent in the bottom now plus a few areas where the aluminum looks like it almost wore completely through. Part of the foam side was rubbed off by the tire and two of the riveted seams look like they are nearly ground off (no more rubber, just ground flat rivets). I put the canoe back on the car, drove to a small lake, and launched it anyway. It didn't leak and it rowed like I was on ice. I still cannot believe it survived. I call that a 10. Too bad Radisson doesn't give away free canoes for customer testimonials.
I recommend this canoe, just don't ask me for help tying it down if you buy one.