Anyone tried these boats

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jackp
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Anyone tried these boats

Post by jackp »

Bought one of these banana boats earlier this year on a bit of an impulse buy but it’s only came out once as it’s soo wide and impossible to paddle even with a longer paddle ,i get the impression they are only designed for going down rapids /fast rivers ?
I was wondering about trying a canoe paddle but the shop it came from advised against this
It may be for sale if anyone fancies it
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seawolf856
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Re: Anyone tried these boats

Post by seawolf856 »

Is that a 'boat' or a lilo?

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Re: Anyone tried these boats

Post by SJD »

In the US whitewater segment they are/were called duckies. Most I have seen were used with a kayak paddled.

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Jim
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Re: Anyone tried these boats

Post by Jim »

Definitely more of a river boat than a sea boat, it will be adversely affected by wind at sea. Can't really tell if it is meant to be kayak or canoe from the photo with nothing to provide scale, but the thing in the middle looks more like a seat back for sit down paddling (kayaking) rather than a thwart for kneeling paddling (canoeing).
The Song of the Paddle forum, there are quite a few inflatable users there of both types.

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Re: Anyone tried these boats

Post by simon64 »

Looks similar to the “Hot dogs“ at Cardiff white water centre, great fun for that sort of thing, but wouldn’t want to paddle one far in flat water.
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jackp
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Re: Anyone tried these boats

Post by jackp »

Jim wrote:
Mon Nov 02, 2020 3:02 pm
Definitely more of a river boat than a sea boat, it will be adversely affected by wind at sea. Can't really tell if it is meant to be kayak or canoe from the photo with nothing to provide scale, but the thing in the middle looks more like a seat back for sit down paddling (kayaking) rather than a thwart for kneeling paddling (canoeing).
The Song of the Paddle forum, there are quite a few inflatable users there of both types.
Hi yes it appears it’s intended for use with a kayak paddle ,I was thinking when I bought it might be good for the biggest winter surf /swell but not so sure really .probably a somewhat useless boat really to own down south with only the sea nearby

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Jim
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Re: Anyone tried these boats

Post by Jim »

jackp wrote:
Mon Nov 02, 2020 6:09 pm
Jim wrote:
Mon Nov 02, 2020 3:02 pm
Definitely more of a river boat than a sea boat, it will be adversely affected by wind at sea. Can't really tell if it is meant to be kayak or canoe from the photo with nothing to provide scale, but the thing in the middle looks more like a seat back for sit down paddling (kayaking) rather than a thwart for kneeling paddling (canoeing).
The Song of the Paddle forum, there are quite a few inflatable users there of both types.
Hi yes it appears it’s intended for use with a kayak paddle ,I was thinking when I bought it might be good for the biggest winter surf /swell but not so sure really .probably a somewhat useless boat really to own down south with only the sea nearby
Being inflatable and easy to fall out of, it is unlikely to hurt you the way a rigid kayak could if you ended up swimming next to it in the surf (assuming you were well enough practiced to get out of it), indeed I remember a summer camp at Woolacombe where we spent a lot of time playing with a 10 foot Avon dingy in the surf zone with frequent flips etc. and no scouts injured. Of course we were well supervised and it was summer.

Your problem with going out to play in big winter surf is that you really want an onshore wind so the boat will blow back to shore if you get separated, and that makes for more dangerous very crashy surf which is pretty much guaranteed to flip you and put you through a washing machine like experience. You also needto be aware of rips and how they form and where they run, because there is a good chance that if you are separated from the boat, it will blow towards shore because very little of it is in the rip, whilst you will be dragged offshore, or along the shore because you are fully in the rip. I have been deliberately swimming in surf at a spot where I hadn't realised how the beach shelved forming a strong under tow in the last 10 feet to the shore, I was not even out of my depth, but the undertow would knock me off my feet, it took me what seems a hell of a long time to cover those last 10 feet to get out of the water.
If the wind is offshore, first time you fall out and let go of the boat it will disappear out to sea.

As for being a useless boat to own (and I would clarify that it really isn't a boat type I would ever use, but I have somewhere around 15 kayaks and canoes already), it is very portable, so you don't need to be restricted to your local area, well, you do for the next month but after travel restrictions ease again you should be able to travel to rivers and canals to paddle. There must be some coastal creeks or rivers near you to go and explore - for starting out just make sure that you pick a piece of water that is fairly sheltered from wind on the day.

You note the boat is difficult to paddle because of its width, typically I see these being sold with much longer, usually 2-part adjustable length kayaks paddles that would be used in narrower rigid kayak, it may simply be that you need a longer paddle?

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Re: Anyone tried these boats

Post by Jim »

I know NRS is a reputable rafting manufacturer so just looked on their website, do you have the actual boat pictured? That seems to be a top of the range boat, not the typical Aldi special that people usually get on an impulse buy! Should last many years of fairly serious river running, but really is for river running.

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Re: Anyone tried these boats

Post by PlymouthDamo »

I've got what appears to be a similar-ish boat: A Gumotex Twist. Everyone's right about not doing anything too ambitious with it. I'd go out to sea if I was confident in a low wind forecast, but I was mainly using mine for regularly crossing Plymouth Sound to get to/from my weekly dive club meetings/beer-sessions and keeping in the boot of my car for spontaneous river/canal trips when away travelling with work.

Mine packs down ridiculously small, so you can stow it in a small rucksack. It's also got a plastic removable skeg which I always used, however that was before I got into sea kayaking and understood the real purpose of a skeg. If I ever bother using it again, I'll try it somewhere safe, in wind, without the skeg to see whether it's necessary.

In terms of performance, a few years ago a load of us went on a trip on Loch Lomond. I was the only one with any paddling experience - the rest were total novices using hired sit-on-tops. I was the slowest in the group, despite it not being particularly windy - so these boats are definitely slow. It's very stable, very manoeuvrable, pretty dry and my one is made of amazingly robust lightweight material. I like the idea of having a functional boat which packs down so small, but I don't find many opportunities to actually use it. If you like scenic river paddles or you need a tender to get yourself to/from a boat mooring, it would be an excellent tool for the job.

Paddle-wise, mine came with a 4-piece plastic/aluminium thing, but the steel connection buttons rusted away and it fell to bits. I don't recall it being that long. Since then, I was using my fibreglass one-piece white water paddle, but that was probably a bit short as I was dragging my hands along it. If I use it again, I'd just use a full length Greenland stick - the only disadvantage would be that doesn't stow so unobtrusively in your car.

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Re: Anyone tried these boat

Post by jackp »

Jim wrote:
Mon Nov 02, 2020 11:02 pm
jackp wrote:
Mon Nov 02, 2020 6:09 pm
Jim wrote:
Mon Nov 02, 2020 3:02 pm
Definitely more of a river boat than a sea boat, it will be adversely affected by wind at sea. Can't really tell if it is meant to be kayak or canoe from the photo with nothing to provide scale, but the thing in the middle looks more like a seat back for sit down paddling (kayaking) rather than a thwart for kneeling paddling (canoeing).
The Song of the Paddle forum, there are quite a few inflatable users there of both types.
Hi yes it appears it’s intended for use with a kayak paddle ,I was thinking when I bought it might be good for the biggest winter surf /swell but not so sure really .probably a somewhat useless boat really to own down south with only the sea nearby
Being inflatable and easy to fall out of, it is unlikely to hurt you the way a rigid kayak could if you ended up swimming next to it in the surf (assuming you were well enough practiced to get out of it), indeed I remember a summer camp at Woolacombe where we spent a lot of time playing with a 10 foot Avon dingy in the surf zone with frequent flips etc. and no scouts injured. Of course we were well supervised and it was summer.

Your problem with going out to play in big winter surf is that you really want an onshore wind so the boat will blow back to shore if you get separated, and that makes for more dangerous very crashy surf which is pretty much guaranteed to flip you and put you through a washing machine like experience. You also needto be aware of rips and how they form and where they run, because there is a good chance that if you are separated from the boat, it will blow towards shore because very little of it is in the rip, whilst you will be dragged offshore, or along the shore because you are fully in the rip. I have been deliberately swimming in surf at a spot where I hadn't realised how the beach shelved forming a strong under tow in the last 10 feet to the shore, I was not even out of my depth, but the undertow would knock me off my feet, it took me what seems a hell of a long time to cover those last 10 feet to get out of the water.
If the wind is offshore, first time you fall out and let go of the boat it will disappear out to sea.

As for being a useless boat to own (and I would clarify that it really isn't a boat type I would ever use, but I have somewhere around 15 kayaks and canoes already), it is very portable, so you don't need to be restricted to your local area, well, you do for the next month but after travel restrictions ease again you should be able to travel to rivers and canals to paddle. There must be some coastal creeks or rivers near you to go and explore - for starting out just make sure that you pick a piece of water that is fairly sheltered from wind on the day.

You note the boat is difficult to paddle because of its width, typically I see these being sold with much longer, usually 2-part adjustable length kayaks paddles that would be used in narrower rigid kayak, it may simply be that you need a longer paddle?
Some good points made there .Last winter I had a go in big winter surf at 6am on the beach to get the big ones .ended up loosing the boat which was found down the beach and getting thrown about into around 4 big incoming waves .not the size but power of theses waves which isn’t obvious when looking from the shore .hard to even paddle through them without getting tipped sideways and out .but definitely need more practice
An offshore wind is good for training and exercise purposes though but should not go far out in more than a force 8 wind.
The other day though did venture into a force 9 onshore wind also against tide for 40 minutes so this is good practice if you get blown out .

Also got a point 65 tequila which is amazingly stable with unusual hull design and been well used .unless going far prefer this to sea kayak

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Re: Anyone tried these boats

Post by Chris Bolton »

An offshore wind is good for training and exercise purposes though but should not go far out in more than a force 8 wind.
The other day though did venture into a force 9 onshore wind also against tide for 40 minutes so this is good practice if you get blown out .
I'm surprised (and impressed) if you've been out in an actual Force 8 in that inflatable. Force 8 tends to lift people off their feet and land them several metres away, just standing there. I think I've once paddled a fully loaded sea kayak, briefly, in a F8 - keep as low to the deck as possible and keep paddling - we landed at the first opportunity.

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Re: Anyone tried these boats

Post by adventureagent »

simon64 wrote:
Mon Nov 02, 2020 3:17 pm
Looks similar to the “Hot dogs“ at Cardiff white water centre, great fun for that sort of thing, but wouldn’t want to paddle one far in flat water.
Looks like a lot of fun !
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Re: Anyone tried these boats

Post by adventureagent »

Jim wrote:
Mon Nov 02, 2020 11:11 pm
I know NRS is a reputable rafting manufacturer so just looked on their website, do you have the actual boat pictured? That seems to be a top of the range boat, not the typical Aldi special that people usually get on an impulse buy! Should last many years of fairly serious river running, but really is for river running.
Ya. Anytime I see the NRS symbol, I know it's not a toy. I trust their products. Having said that, I've too many years in more "refined" paddlecraft to even want to get near the gunwhales of these with a paddle. It would be long ... slow ... strokes. And ... having said that, similar craft are rented to run downriver at La Riviere Malbae in Quebec. Every day. (maybe not since the pandemic, though.)

But anything that gets you paddling is a good thing. As long as it isn't cardboard or other junk that clogs the waterways.
CELEBRATE LIFE: PADDLE by ALL MEANS !

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Re: Anyone tried these boats

Post by jackp »

Chris Bolton wrote:
Tue Nov 03, 2020 8:15 pm
An offshore wind is good for training and exercise purposes though but should not go far out in more than a force 8 wind.
The other day though did venture into a force 9 onshore wind also against tide for 40 minutes so this is good practice if you get blown out .
I'm surprised (and impressed) if you've been out in an actual Force 8 in that inflatable. Force 8 tends to lift people off their feet and land them several metres away, just standing there. I think I've once paddled a fully loaded sea kayak, briefly, in a F8 - keep as low to the deck as possible and keep paddling - we landed at the first opportunity.
Yep force 8 or 9 and against the tide for about 40 mins but not on this boat but another trusted sit on top .usually do a training circuit then get blown back in .ducking not really that essential and not great for avoiding drinking sea water but good paddle technique is .It is similar to cycling up steep hills. pace yourself and keep a steady speed going but with any small breaks in the wind then paddle more to make the most of that. Also you can sometimes pick a slightly longer route which isn’t directly into the wind making it about 25% easier

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Re: Anyone tried these boats

Post by P4ddy »

No, but i will shamelessly post a pic if our inflatable that we've used on the river and sea in both dead calm and in a chop in Lulworth cove. Image

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Re: Anyone tried these boats

Post by ChrisJK »

This is a fun thread. I tend to count my inflatable as a recreational craft and have been pretty cautious with it particularly in wind at sea . Thanks Jim for that advice re rip tides. Thanks Plymouth demo I was thinking of giving a Greenland paddle a try out on my Gumotex. I think boats like these can be moved with different paddles. I have given a go with both kayak and canoe paddles and sometimes kneeled whilst using a kayak paddle.

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