Composite kayak for the larger paddler.

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Composite kayak for the larger paddler.

Postby LiamF » Mon May 10, 2010 1:57 am

I'm looking at getting my first composite kayak. I've been looking mainly at the North Shore Buccaneer (formerly Polar HV) and was wondering what people think of this boat? I've looked for hours trying to find reviews with only one or two out there so would be nice to hear peoples opinion.

I'm 6'1", 200lbs so am looking for a larger kayak. I found the Wilderness Systems Tempest 170 to be a good fit so any suggestions for a composite of similar size would be more than welcome.

Many Thanks,
Liam
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Re: Composite kayak for the larger paddler.

Postby Erling » Mon May 10, 2010 7:30 am

I used to have a Buccaneer, and I was very happy with a lot of its characteristics. The hard chines and the banana shape made it feel very stable. As it was very maneuverable in spite of its length, it was a great boat to use for coaching. The build quality was second to absolutely none. (I could feel with my fingers along the bottom of the cockpit coaming and was still unable to say exactly where it joined the deck.) I also loved the large fibreglass hatches - great when packing for expedition. Mine was a pre-Valley take-over boat. The newer have Valley hatches and larger cockpits.

What made me replace it (with a Tiderace Xplore), was that the low front deck and small cockpit opening combined with my 187 cm long and increasingly stiffer body made wet exits and re-entries hard. Wearing size 13 boots over my drysuit was out of the question. Even with my normal size 12 boots my feet were locked in one position, so after an hour of paddling I started looking for a place to land and stretch my feet.

For a person looking more for maneuverability than speed, and with shorter legs and smaller feet than mine, I would say that the Buccaneer is a perfect boat. I was sad to have to let it go. Here's a pic of mine w/son aboard:

Image
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Re: Composite kayak for the larger paddler.

Postby Big Ade » Mon May 10, 2010 5:11 pm

Although we're moaning elsewhere that production is abroad, the Tidrace Explore X is probarbly the Carlsberg Kayak for bigger blokes.
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Re: Composite kayak for the larger paddler.

Postby wilsoj2 » Mon May 10, 2010 7:41 pm

6'1", 200 pounds, is not a particularly "larger paddler" size. Most standard size sea kayaks should fit you such as a Valley Aquanaut, SKUK (NDK) Explorer, P&H Cetus MV, etc... All three of these models are extremely capable and reassuring. The Explorer probably has the personality closest to a Tempest 170. You might also consider a Necky Chatham 17. Most sea kayaks labeled HV (high volume) will be too big for you. I few LVs may also be to your liking. I'm 6' 185 pounds and often use a Nordkapp LV as my preferred day boat.
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Re: Composite kayak for the larger paddler.

Postby swagstaff » Mon May 10, 2010 8:52 pm

You are only very slightly bigger than me and I find the Northshore Atlantic and the Tempest 170 excellent. I agree you dont need to super size. Both are in stock at sea kayak oban.
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Re: Composite kayak for the larger paddler.

Postby swagstaff » Mon May 10, 2010 8:55 pm

I didnt clarify it is the Composite Tempest 170 I was talking about which has possibly slightly higher deck than the plastic one.
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Re: Composite kayak for the larger paddler.

Postby LiamF » Tue May 11, 2010 2:02 pm

Many thanks for all the advice. The main reason I was looking at the larger volume boats is mainly because I have pretty big thighs and I've got a 36" waist so have often found that the seats/cockpits in many of the regular sized boats are just a bit too small. I really like the looks of the North Shore kayaks and have heard great things about the Atlantic so would be really keen to try it. Does Sea Kayak Oban stock the Tiderace Xplore X at all?

Thanks again,
Liam
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Re: Composite kayak for the larger paddler.

Postby MikeB » Thu May 13, 2010 10:48 pm

I wish I had a 36 in waist - you should easily be comfortable in a Cetus, certainly in a Quest and also in an Xplore. I think you'll find the Xplore X is a big boat.

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Re: Composite kayak for the larger paddler.

Postby MePower » Fri May 14, 2010 10:58 am

Agree with MikeB, I'm a big fella at 18 stone, 6'3", and I have had to pad out my explore x seat with foam. The explore might be a better fit. If its a foot size issue, there is an inch height difference, 13 " for the explore, 14" for the explore x.
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