Nova Craft Prospector 17' for family
Posted by: brucered on Nov-16-13 1:34 PM (EST) Category: Canoes
-- Last Updated: Dec-23-13 1:20 PM EST --
16' Nova Craft PAL Kevlar/Specra in Green has been purchased.
Looking to move from our 16' Osagian Lil' Missourian square stern, to a family paddling canoe.
Is the Nova Craft 17' Prospector, Royalex, a well suited option. We have to van top it for our camping trips and would like to keep it in the 60-65lb range. Coming from an 80lb aluminum, this should feel considerably lighter and easier for us.
Often it will be just me (Dad) and one kids or maybe a dog, or maybe 2 kids and a dog, out paddling. The odd time we like to load us all in and just head out to a point for lunch, but no packing gear or anything.
I also don't mind heading out solo and doing some fishing etc.
We were thinking Royalex, 17', comes in around 65lbs, long enough to add a sling seat or two, which we have and use in the Osagian.
15' Bob Special (lightest)
are all other considerations, or anything from the Nova Craft line as we prefer to buy from MEC if we are buying new.
thanks and any help/suggestions are appreciated.
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Probably a good choice|
Posted by: pblanc on Nov-16-13 1:53 PM (EST)
If you want to sometimes load the boat up with a family of four and a dog I would consider a 15' boat too small. It sort of depends on the size of your kids, whether they can effectively paddle, the size of your dog, and how well-behaved the dog is.
Posted by: vk1nf on Nov-16-13 2:54 PM (EST)
A good friend has a NovaCraft Prospector in kevlar - one of the best designs you could want. I have a BlueWater Prospector, and while it's a decent boat, the NovaCraft is a tad ahead - tracks better, ribbed hull vs. foam patch bottom, better stability and general handling. Can't see how you'd go wrong with the NovaCraft.
Not a good way to compare/recommend|
Posted by: Guideboatguy on Nov-16-13 3:32 PM (EST)
Material, weight, loading|
Posted by: Guideboatguy on Nov-16-13 3:48 PM (EST)
15' vs 16-17|
Posted by: brucered on Nov-16-13 4:34 PM (EST)
thanks for the info guys.
Oh by the way!|
Posted by: Guideboatguy on Nov-16-13 4:39 PM (EST)
You may not have a LOT of time to make up your mind. Last I heard, the company that makes Royalex is going to cease production very soon. Others here will know more details, but I seem to remember that beyond about March 2014 it may not be possible to get a new Royalex boat at all. Also, bear in mind that there may be a six- to eight-week wait for your boat if you can't buy it "off the shelf" at your store of choice.
Posted by: pblanc on Nov-16-13 6:42 PM (EST)
Poly One has announced that they will cease Royalex production as of April 2014.
For what its worth - |
Posted by: rpg51 on Nov-16-13 4:36 PM (EST)
16' NC Prospector . . . |
Posted by: Glenn_MacGrady on Nov-16-13 7:14 PM (EST)
. . . is a deep canoe, 15", and hence voluminous for its length.
It's a popular choice in the UK, |
Posted by: ezwater on Nov-16-13 8:46 PM (EST)
because of its versatility. For solo paddling, they "heel" the boat to one side, fairly easy to do with the prospector design, so that they don't have to reach way over to get the paddle shaft vertical.
Plus - |
Posted by: rpg51 on Nov-17-13 12:03 PM (EST)
the prospector hull has that whole Bill Mason thing going on. :-)
All the Masons seem to be paddlers, |
Posted by: ezwater on Nov-17-13 5:11 PM (EST)
artists, and writers. Though Bill's been kinda quiet.
He still speaks wisely |
Posted by: rpg51 on Nov-17-13 6:03 PM (EST)
Posted by: AnniePoo on Nov-19-13 7:33 AM (EST)
We have a Nova Craft Prospector 16 in Royalex Light. Good all around family canoe. It's fairly easy to load on top of the van (can be done by one person if they know how). I'd buy the same canoe again. Our paddling is mostly smallish lakes and windy rivers, and it maneuvers fine. I can easily paddle it solo from the center.
Nova Craft Pal Kevlar/Ash|
Posted by: brucered on Dec-19-13 9:04 AM (EST)
Well, It's a Good Hull|
Posted by: wildernesswebb on Dec-19-13 11:30 AM (EST)
I've only paddled a royalex Pal, and only for one day, but I liked it and feel like it would meet your needs. I have a friend with a composite Novacraft and it's held up very well. It won't hold the volume a Prospector will, but many folks buy too much boat for their average paddling venues. You and a couple kids or you and an adult and a kid should be fine. I have a good friend who owns a Pal and I'll send him this thread.
Posted by: brucered on Dec-19-13 1:15 PM (EST)
it would be covered when not in use and with a canoe like this, I would invest in a canoe storage tarp (or something) for long term storage (winters etc).
I would say buy it.|
Posted by: pblanc on Dec-19-13 11:50 AM (EST)
But then, I can always come up with a reason to buy another canoe.
Posted by: plaidpaddler on Dec-19-13 12:06 PM (EST)
That price qualifies as a steal for a quality new Kevlar Tandem. Even if its not "ideal" for your big family outings, it is a great boat to get out on the water. You will be able to get your money out of this canoe 5-10 years down the road if its kept in good condition. With the coming demise of Royalex, composite canoes will only go up in price. The NovaCraft woodwork is really solid and also their hull layups. Not as light or sleek as Wenonah, but built for their home customer base.
size & investement|
Posted by: brucered on Dec-19-13 1:17 PM (EST)
thanks. I was thinkig much of what you stated.
Buy the Pal!|
Posted by: Steve_in_Idaho on Dec-19-13 12:39 PM (EST)
It's small for your whole family. Maybe okay for lily-dipping on a small lake. But, as someone else mentioned, you can't beat the price and may even be able to resell it for the same or more. A suitable canoe for two adults, two kids, and a dog is going to be a real handful for one person on and off the water. OTOH, a pair of canoes such as this Pal would make a great tripping set for the family.
Posted by: brucered on Dec-19-13 1:25 PM (EST)
Posted by: pblanc on Dec-19-13 3:22 PM (EST)
Asking this group if it is a good idea to buy a canoe is somewhat akin to asking a bartender if it is a good idea to have a drink.
You're too kind with the metaphor|
Posted by: Glenn_MacGrady on Dec-19-13 4:20 PM (EST)
I'd analogize many of us, not to a bartender, but to end-stage drunks.
Posted by: osprey on Dec-20-13 2:48 PM (EST)
Had a Pal in royalex and really liked the boat. I sold it when I found a different classic tandem canoe in expedition Kevlar and didn't need nor have room for two tandems.
Pal is very popular . . . |
Posted by: Glenn_MacGrady on Dec-19-13 4:15 PM (EST)
. . . both as a tandem canoe and as a solo canoe for wilderness trippers, who paddle it "backwards" from the bow seat. You can do this in a Pal as it is a symmetrical waterline canoe.
For your boys|
Posted by: plaidpaddler on Dec-19-13 8:13 PM (EST)
As the young lads get a bit bigger, the Pal is going to be a good tandem for them till they both are teenagers. Your idea of them in the ends and you in the middle is good. I friend of mine did the same thing several years ago when his boys were the same age. He had a center seat mounted in an 18'Sundowner and the yoke made removable. The boys were seated where the canoe is narrow and they could reach the water. His weight was in the middle and the trim was good.
Posted by: brucered on Dec-20-13 12:26 PM (EST)
Posted by: pblanc on Dec-20-13 1:12 PM (EST)
That was a good demonstration of the construction of an infused, composite hull. Thanks for sharing it.
Posted by: brucered on Dec-23-13 1:05 PM (EST)
Posted by: pblanc on Dec-23-13 1:14 PM (EST)
It is a great boat and will serve you well, I'm sure.
Posted by: wildernesswebb on Dec-23-13 2:24 PM (EST)
I think you'll be pleased with your new boat. Merry Christmas and may you make a bunch of new paddling memories in 2014 with the new boat!
Posted by: brucered on May-01-14 8:40 AM (EST)
The canoe is almost ready to hit the water, still ice on parts of the rivers and lakes up here in Canada.