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  good point, WB
  Posted by: willowleaf on Jul-02-13 1:53 AM (EST)
 

Once manufacturers get above 12' long they tend to go to a narrower width and stay close to that width as the boats get longer so weights do go up. Other than specialized craft like hypernarrow surf skis, you pretty quickly reach a width that is the smallest the average adult can slip their butt into. So the weight curve tends to go up as the wide rec boat category increases in length, then drops off slightly in the first couple of jumps to narrower boats, then begins to rise again as width stays the same and length increases.

Hull design has a lot to do with secondary (and even primary) stability too. Even though I don't have the best balance (inner ear damage from a bike wreck decades ago) I feel quite comfortable in my narrowest kayaks, which are hard chined. Even my 18' x 20 1/2" Greenland skin boat has never capsized on me except when I dumped it deliberately. I would not want to try to fish from it, for sure. I've rented or borrowed soft chined boats of similar dimensions and had some tense moments and near dunkings only avoided by bracing.

For me, and probably for most of us, kayaks are a lot like shoes. You can admire a lot of styles in the store window and even lust after them, but it takes trying them on to tell if they are going to feel good enough to "wear".

 Great Products from the Buyers' Guide:

YakCatcher Rod Holder

Electric Kayak Motor

Sport Gloves

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