New to sea kayaking

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Drew 1888
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Location: south coast Devon
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New to sea kayaking

Post by Drew 1888 »

Hey all just wonderd if you could help i am mew to kayaking and would like any advise that you couldgive on the purchase of a kayak and equipment I am based on the south coast of devon

many thanks

Drew

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maryinoxford
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Post by maryinoxford »

Hi Drew,

I'm a fairly inexperienced paddler myself, and I'm sure some better people will be along to give you good advice.

I strongly recommend that you get some lessons on basic technique, and go on one or two organised courses before you buy a kayak and kit. When you've paddled one or two, you'll have a better idea of what you want for yourself.

Water is great. But treat it with respect.

Mary
Not in Oxford any more...

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adrian j pullin
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Post by adrian j pullin »

Hi,

There are a number of great course providers in your area. Make use of them. Also, join a club, where you can try different boats and talk to other paddlers.

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geyrfugl
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Location: Barnard Castle

Post by geyrfugl »

Joining a club is by far the best course of action. Clubs which have a
reasonable number of sea paddlers will typically have one or more
sea boats to borrow, often ones which feel comfortable for beginners,
but don't do well in the performance stakes (often plastic ones).

These are great to start in, and are exactly the sort of boats you don't
want to buy - wait until you are gaining confidence and have had time
to try several different styles of boat (narrow versus beamy, hard chine
versus rounded-bottom, expedition versus daytrip, etc.) Do multiday
trips and see how much volume you need for the sort of camping you
are comfortable with. Then try two or three boats you are thinking of
buying before committing.

Even when you have your own boat, try a few others from time to time.
I found I progressed more rapidly by paddling narrow performance boats
on daytrips in calmer conditions with more experienced companions,
then going back to a bigger, more stable boat in rougher conditions and
for longer trips. A big boat feels stable like an aircraft carrier after a
few goes out in the waves with a nippy low-volume one. A big volume
boat can be a liability on a windy daytrip when so much of it sticks out
of the water - don't be afraid to pack a bag of wet sand in the bottom
of the boat (I strap a long thin bag to the keel-line between my legs,
but a bag behind the cockpit may be more comfortable depending on
what space you have).

Everyone's tastes vary, as does their paddling style and ambitions, so
don't just ask people "what" boats they like, but find out "why" they like
it.

If you have room, own several boats. If you can't afford to buy several
boats, consider building several boats - skin-on-frame are quick and
cheap and great for daytrips, hardskin boats built to fit you perfectly
cannot be beaten and look great too !

Image

Andy

rockhopper
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Post by rockhopper »

Hi Drew,

as already advised by others, join a club. They will have boats to try and also people who wil be willing to give helpful advise on paddling technique, skills, boats, paddles.........
Definately do 1 and 2 star BCU tests to teach good basic skills right from the start.
Also, consider buying a cheapish second hand whitewater/river boat as well as a sea kayak as I found that these were great to practice paddle strokes, rolling, edging and other skills which would initially be trickier in a larger kayak. This also increases your confidence greatly.
Personally I would buy a plastic sea kayak to start with. They tend to inspire early confidence, are tough and don't need much upkeep, they are cheap and they can also be resold with only a small amount of depreciation when and if you want to upgrade. Buying an expensive fibreglass boat when you first start out would seem unwise as they are pricey and do need more skill to use them (and therefore may affect your confidence). In addition I think that it takes a bit of time and experience before you will know what you personally want from a boat.

Have fun.

Rog.

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runswick2000
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Post by runswick2000 »

Buying the first boat I could afford and then making it up worked for me.....then again the boat was a hindrance and I'm inept.......on second thoughts join a club or go on a course!
Perhaps the greatest flaw in democracy is the idea that, if a majority of the population believes arrant nonsense, it somehow makes the nonsense true.

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Bod
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Post by Bod »

Drew

I don't know exactly where you are in South Devon but you have two decent choices. In alphabetical order as I know people at both clubs!

Teignbridge Canoe Club are regularly out and about and they certainly have sea paddlers.

http://www.teigncanoe.org.uk/

Alternatively there is Totnes Canoe Club who also have some sea paddlers.

http://www.totnescanoeclub.org.uk/
John B.

Drew 1888
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Location: south coast Devon
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Post by Drew 1888 »

Thank you all for the advise i will take it on and join a club before a purchase with luck may evan get on the water as ofton as i can

Once again many thanks


Drew

Drew 1888
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Post by Drew 1888 »

well here i am looking out me window in Exmouth now inching to get on the water mmmmm are well soon with luck

Drew

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Cornholio
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Post by Cornholio »

Join a club (read and watch as many relevant DVD's as possible too- The Kayak roll, Sea Kayak Safety for example), if the club pool boats are garbage consider buying a cheap temporary one to learn to roll in. Probably best with a plastic sea kayak to begin with(capella RM,Valley,Dagger,Wilderness Systems etc)- plenty of them to choose from and you don't want to get a super dooper composite then wreck it the first few times out. Plastic's better for taking knocks by far- leave the POSSIBILITY of getting a composite until your clubmates have let you try theirs (seems the only way you'll get a demo in any sea boat in scottyland I can think of..;-))
Some sea kayakers on here seem to have that element of boat snobbery about them (similar to racing cyclists and their love of everything superlight and fast(and fragile) etc., and often the bike and rider are grossly mismatched in performance terms...) and a slightly Luddite attitude to advancing technology in plastics- it has to be composite or nothing!
Not everyone has the desire to own one, and a plastic one (about £1k)is a good start with a bit of future proofing as your skills develop.
Maintenance of a composite boat is a chore I want to avoid- I'd rather paddle than polish my spare time away! Plus not everyone has a place to store a boat, let alone access to somewhere to work on it...
"God tells me he can get me out of this mess, but he's pretty sure you're f****d..."

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Mark R
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Post by Mark R »

Cornholio wrote:a plastic one (about £1k)is a good start
The Rainbow Laser is the cheapest 'proper' sea kayak, costing £550-£650.
Mark Rainsley
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Cornholio
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Post by Cornholio »

there you have it!
"God tells me he can get me out of this mess, but he's pretty sure you're f****d..."

Owen
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Post by Owen »

Cornholio wrote:Maintenance of a composite boat is a chore I want to avoid- I'd rather paddle than polish my spare time away! Plus not everyone has a place to store a boat, let alone access to somewhere to work on it...
My boat is 22 years old, I rinse the salt and sand off it before putting it on my car. I dry out the back hatch as the skeg started leaking about three years ago. That's it maintenance wise.

Over the years I've done some work on it, its on it's 5th keel strip, apart from that all the work has been because I wanted to do it not because it needed anything done. So, I can't really see what your on about here.

As for composite over plastic. There are some very good plastic boats out now but there are a hell of a lot of right dogs as well. A good plastic boat will be better than a badly designed composite boat (and there are some bad ones around). But, if everything else were equal the composite boat will at the moment out perform the plastic one.

The really important thing isn't what boat your paddling, its what you do with it. Paddle what you can afford, paddle what you feel comfortable with but don't tell people their snobs just because their paddling what they want to paddle.

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Cornholio
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Post by Cornholio »

Had an interesting PM over my comments- didn't realise I may be offending anyone over what I think is a fair comment regarding boat snobbery re composite/plastic. SORRY if i've offended anyone but it's what I've encountered in my short time kayaking...
"God tells me he can get me out of this mess, but he's pretty sure you're f****d..."

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