Cheapest 'Real' Sea Kayak?
Posted by: NewbTastic on Sep-20-12 8:33 AM (EST) Category: Kayaks
-- Last Updated: Sep-20-12 10:47 AM EST --
What I mean by 'real' sea kayak is a boat that you'd actually take out into the ocean in any real conditions... 4-5 ft waves, Force 5 winds, etc. I
In other words, not a 'glass water only' boat, or a 'calm lakes and slow-moving rivers' boat.
I ask this because even though I'll be buying a nice new (and not cheap) boat before the end of the year, I may want a second boat for friends/guests, and it'd be nice to get something with some performance overhead, in case a friend or family member really gets into the sport (which would be nice).
NOTE: Said friends/family members WOULD NOT be subjected to big-time ocean conditions unless/until such time as they progressed in skill enough to be able to handle them. And they would take classes, etc.
I simply want a '(fairly) cheap guest boat' that they would not outgrow, assuming they progressed as far as significant ocean conditions.
Also am more interested in hearing about specific models... generic 'buy used' or 'build it yourself' recs are nice but pretty obvious in retrospect.
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Posted by: rWVen on Sep-20-12 8:43 AM (EST)
Used or kit|
Posted by: Canuka on Sep-20-12 8:54 AM (EST)
Yes, look for a good used one or buy a kit from Pygmy and build it yourself. Their kits run around $1,000. If you build it with care, you will have a boat that is just as good and strong or better than most FG or kevlar boats out there, lighter and definitely more beautiful for a lot less money. The pride that comes from building it yourself and adding a custom touch here and there is a bonus.
For Purposes of Thread, Assume No Used|
Posted by: NewbTastic on Sep-20-12 9:13 AM (EST)
Besides, if you think about it, the cheapest 'real' sea kayak new is likely to be the cheapest (or one of the cheapest) used, all else being equal (age, wear, etc).
I'm not sure that the ability to go in |
Posted by: rWVen on Sep-20-12 9:25 AM (EST)
4-5 foot waves, Force 5 winds etc. should be a priority in a boat that you want to use to introduce new paddlers to the sport. I'd place easy maneuverability and relative stability above those. A boat that meets your criteria may be somewhat intimidating to most newbies. If they do take to the sport they'll be buying their own boat. I won't go into 4-5 foot waves and Force 5 winds in a boat I'm not familiar with, and I certainly wouldn't take a newbie out in those conditions.
Rwven hit it|
Posted by: LeeG on Sep-20-12 9:29 AM (EST)
You've got conflicting criteria with performance undefined.
Posted by: carldelo on Sep-20-12 9:42 AM (EST)
Posted by: NewbTastic on Sep-20-12 10:12 AM (EST)
Posted by: LeeG on Sep-20-12 2:47 PM (EST)
It isn't clear what you mean by that. A forgiving kayak for beginner/intermediate/guests in a range of conditions will not be a kayak that requires a lot of skill to control in wind and waves. I'd be more inclined to pick kayaks with a well rounded handling envelope than ones that require rolling as a base skill. Maybe a Manitou 14 or the Easky 15.
new vs used|
Posted by: jcbikeski on Sep-20-12 10:04 AM (EST)
"cheapest 'real' sea kayak new is likely to be the cheapest (or one of the cheapest) used," This isn't necessarily true. The cheapest new may likely fall apart of over time and not be sold for used. Or you may find a very nice (read expensive new) one sold by a very motivated seller such as after a divorce or loss of house leaving no storage options. Some friends have bought very nice used glass boats for as little as $300 (not common, but....).
Second looking for Divorce Sale.|
Posted by: seadart on Sep-20-12 11:57 AM (EST)
I got a fantastic deal once from a lady who was really pissed at her ex. She was told to sell the stuff in garage and send a check by his lawyer. I ended up paying her more than she asked but I do have some ethics.
Used Plastic Sea Kayak|
Posted by: Celia on Sep-20-12 9:36 AM (EST)
Nope, do not plan on killing any friends|
Posted by: NewbTastic on Sep-20-12 10:15 AM (EST)
"But... are you talking about taking out friends who are not likely to be accustomed to waves etc? If you plan to try that, can you get a panicked person back into their boat in those conditions? "
Posted by: willowleaf on Sep-20-12 9:54 AM (EST)
novices in boats|
Posted by: willowleaf on Sep-20-12 10:11 AM (EST)
Again, do not plan on killing anyone|
Posted by: NewbTastic on Sep-20-12 10:19 AM (EST)
"I think you are proabably posting this as a hypothetical informational challenge rather than actually planning to plop newbies in Force 5 winds so I will treat it as such (and avoid lectures on the dangers of big water and novices.)"
if you spot a 15LV on sale|
Posted by: willowleaf on Sep-20-12 11:40 AM (EST)
If you go to your local dealer with the Easkys on sale and spot a 15LV, let me know. Been looking for one for my BF, who loves mine so much after I let him borrow it a few tomes that we kind of fight over who gets to use it when we go paddling now. Depending on where you are located, it might be reasonable for us to drive to pick one up.
Where you at?|
Posted by: NewbTastic on Sep-20-12 9:18 PM (EST)
I know CCK in Oakland has a pretty dynamite sale going on, and there are Easkys and Easky LVs in the lot, some as cheap as $650.
oh, well. Too far away.....|
Posted by: willowleaf on Sep-21-12 9:44 AM (EST)
Yup, CCK is wonderful|
Posted by: NewbTastic on Sep-21-12 8:11 PM (EST)
Who is CCK?|
Posted by: Yanoer on Sep-22-12 11:15 AM (EST)
California Canoe & Kayak? That's what came up in my search.
That is correct.|
Posted by: NewbTastic on Sep-22-12 5:49 PM (EST)
Consider transition boat|
Posted by: Celia on Sep-20-12 10:38 AM (EST)
Something that has the safety features of two bulkheads and full perimeter rigging. It is enough to leave someone comfortable and a good paddler can make these boats do a lot in the nastiest stuff. A lesser paddler will find they want to go back to shore when things get nasty - which is a good thing.
Posted by: Peter-CA on Sep-20-12 10:54 AM (EST)
I bought my first 4 kayaks used., the first 3 were plastic Necky Lookshas that I got for $500 each (the 4th was an unusual boat, so not really relevant to a conversation on prices of available boats). Seems that if you watch, you can get a plastic boat in the $500-700 range.
second boat as play boat = great idea|
Posted by: NewbTastic on Sep-20-12 11:09 AM (EST)
Exactly What I Did|
Posted by: Kudzu on Sep-21-12 4:27 PM (EST)
My T165 is my 'do everything' boat. I found an Alchemy demo model for half price as my play boat / company boat. I think I'll be happy with this arrangement for a good while.
Perception Sea Lion.|
Posted by: Yanoer on Sep-20-12 1:44 PM (EST)
Posted by: nickjc on Sep-20-12 1:45 PM (EST)
like a WS Zephyr or Tempest. These are stable enough for anyone to get going and will take you through a lot. A couple of paddle buddies had these as their first boats and progressed from the local lake to NW coastal surf.
How many different guests. What |
Posted by: string on Sep-20-12 1:57 PM (EST)
size ranges? For anything but flat water, fit in the boat is very important. If there is much variation, I don't see how one boat will work.
I'll be very specific|
Posted by: magooch on Sep-20-12 3:20 PM (EST)
Go to nckayaks.com and have a look at what they are offering in their "in stock" boats. They are having a terrific sale right now. Their boats are as good
Nice try, NewbTastic|
Posted by: Glenn_MacGrady on Sep-20-12 3:58 PM (EST)
You tried to craft an OP question that would avoid, obviate and preempt the various and sundry generalities, evasions, diversions, tangents, diverticulations, cul de sacs, and random walk-abouts that often snake like kudzu through pnet threads.
Cheap Coaster .... where?|
Posted by: seadart on Sep-20-12 4:51 PM (EST)
No answer's perfect. Count me as kudzu |
Posted by: Glenn_MacGrady on Sep-20-12 5:47 PM (EST)
Posted by: tsunamichuck1 on Sep-21-12 3:16 AM (EST)
I got a glass Northwest Sportee for $550 this past summer and there was another listed for $400 right after I snagged mine. Really like that boat alot.
Posted by: seadart on Sep-21-12 12:47 PM (EST)
So what do you think of the hull shape, slightly different than the coaster, still fin in rough water?
Posted by: carldelo on Sep-21-12 1:12 PM (EST)
the word was that NW used to manufacture hulls for Mariner, then later came out with the Sportee after the relationship ended. Connect the dots as you see fit.
Coaster vs. Sportee|
Posted by: Glenn_MacGrady on Sep-21-12 5:34 PM (EST)
They have the same specs. The Sportee page says:
Posted by: tsunamichuck1 on Sep-21-12 8:10 PM (EST)
is from 1992 and the Broze brothers retired around 2005. The guy who sold it to me also had a Coaster and said the Sportee was a bit more squirrelly. It really is a great little boat. The only issues I have with it is top speed. I could not make headway against a 4 kt current like I can in a longer boat, and I need to outfit the cockpit a bit.
How Does It Compare ...|
Posted by: sing on Sep-21-12 2:31 PM (EST)
to my RM Mystic? I too kick myself for not buying a used Coaster 6-7 years ago. Haven't seen one around here since.
Been too long|
Posted by: tsunamichuck1 on Sep-21-12 8:24 PM (EST)
but that Mystic was a real nice boat.
Posted by: sing on Sep-22-12 6:41 AM (EST)
I'll keep holding out for a used Coaster.
now, now, G_M....|
Posted by: willowleaf on Sep-20-12 5:30 PM (EST)
....don't get those Nomex knickers in a twist. The OP did not clarify "not used boats" in his initial post so the responses regarding those are understandable.
re: Nice try|
Posted by: NewbTastic on Sep-20-12 6:22 PM (EST)
"You tried to craft an OP question that would avoid, obviate and preempt the various and sundry generalities, evasions, diversions, tangents, diverticulations, cul de sacs, and random walk-abouts that often snake like kudzu through pnet threads.
there are plenty of good boats|
Posted by: bowrudder on Sep-20-12 4:13 PM (EST)
a used plastic Tempest 170, for example, will run you about $700-$900.
Posted by: Kudzu on Sep-20-12 4:26 PM (EST)
I sold a used plastic Tempest 165 for $600. It had a nice compass and I think I threw in a paddle. The guy got a deal.
NDK Explorer or Romany|
Posted by: Dr_Disco on Sep-20-12 6:00 PM (EST)
These are not my choices for a boat but they are good boats, worth keeping around if you move on to sportier boats, and are comparatively stable. They can also be found used. The Explorer will probably be too large for some guests so getting both might be reasonable.
Posted by: abc on Sep-20-12 6:02 PM (EST)
First of all, what size(s) are your "friends/guest"?
Not the Romany|
Posted by: FrankNC on Sep-20-12 6:18 PM (EST)
I know very few people who are comfortable in it. If you are going that route for a "cheap sea kayak" the explorer will fit more people and conditions.
"very few people"|
Posted by: Dr_Disco on Sep-20-12 7:42 PM (EST)
Actually the Romany is a very widely used boat. I don't particularly care for it but not because it is not comfortable. It is one of the boats used commonly by instructors.
Not our experience|
Posted by: Celia on Sep-21-12 9:09 AM (EST)
Posted by: FrankNC on Sep-21-12 1:24 PM (EST)
OK maybe I got it wrong, but when I look around and average guy is about 185 or 200 and a Romany is a tight fit. I know it doesn't fit me, but I'm biased towards really long racing style cockpits or wash deck boats.
Seating comfort in Romany/Explorer|
Posted by: Celia on Sep-21-12 3:02 PM (EST)
These boats are actually both sized for about 180 - 190 pounds and can take taller. That said, seating comfort can be a different matter than size. There are some things specific to the Romany/Explorer that happen to be a very good fit for me but others can find uncomfortable. The big ones -
Q on Romany/Explorer Fit...|
Posted by: NewbTastic on Sep-21-12 5:23 PM (EST)
My youngest brother is a bit north of 200 lbs, and is 6' 1".
Brother is regular Romany/Explorer size|
Posted by: Celia on Sep-21-12 9:24 PM (EST)
Extremely helpful - many thanks, Celia |
Posted by: NewbTastic on Sep-21-12 9:42 PM (EST)
Posted by: willowleaf on Sep-22-12 10:27 AM (EST)
Posted by: wilsoj2 on Sep-22-12 11:34 AM (EST)
I have put the greatest range of paddlers (in size and skill) in my Romany and had them enjoy it greatly. It is our preferred guest boat among our 6 sea kayaks. I paddle it comfortably (at 6', 180lbs) and my wife has often paddled it comfortably (at 5'4", 130lbs).
Peter-CA hit it|
Posted by: jbernard on Sep-20-12 6:28 PM (EST)
and String and a few others alluded to it. If you do not have a single specific person in mind for the second boat then get two different boats for yourself. Say longer glass boat for touring and shorter plastic for surfing and rocks. Used glass should be found for 1K to 1.5K and used plastic for less than 1K. Take anyone else out in quiet water in either boat. Have fun.
I've not tried one|
Posted by: BigandSmall on Sep-20-12 6:35 PM (EST)
But I've always been impressed by the pricing on the Perception essence 17 for the bigger guy.
Posted by: ADNelson on Sep-20-12 8:11 PM (EST)
I know that the Conduit, which I speak of very much, is not a very fancy boat. I have not taken it in the ocean. I have not taken it on large lakes with real waves. I feel, though, from its performance in comparison to rec boats, and from comments on the Dagger Catalyst (its former name) it wold do well in mild ocean conditions.
Posted by: jesse59 on Sep-20-12 8:30 PM (EST)
Ok, so the words "Perception" and "real sea kayak" didn't come to mind initially. But all this talk of 14 and 15 footers brings to mind:
there ya go... thanks!|
Posted by: NewbTastic on Sep-20-12 9:15 PM (EST)
40 Replies - Individual Purchase|
Posted by: willi_h2o on Sep-21-12 10:45 AM (EST)
With 40 replies you see the various approaches
Posted by: PHILIPJEDLICKA on Sep-21-12 3:34 PM (EST)
Can't get any cheaper than renting a kayak for a friend for the day/weekend! Plus you don't need to take up garage space with a redundant kayak.
Posted by: WaterMark on Sep-22-12 5:07 AM (EST)
Check out the Nifty boats if there's a dealer close to you. Low price, good designs, heavy but they seem solid, nice outfitting for the price.
Posted by: budricko on Sep-24-12 8:26 AM (EST)
Get something with a comfortable seat, will take big feet, and ain't too tippy, 14 feet in length is long enough, and is easy to paddle. Be more upscale on a comfortable PFD, a nice looking wooden paddle no longer than 205 cm, and a bottle of Scotch. You may keep the boat with time, but you will keep the paddle and PFD. The Scotch will keep you from getting buyers remorse.