Nordkapp RM?

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Eilidh

Nordkapp RM?

Post by Eilidh »

I'm buying my first boat this autumn, and am almost convinced that the plastic aquanaut lv is the one for me, but am also wondering about the low volume nordkapp (is it called Enthusiast?).

What are the differences between the two, as regards stability, responsiveness, load etc?

(I know you'll all say to try as many boats as possible before you buy, but because of where I live, going to demo a boat is expensive and time-consuming. Don't want to bother if I'm not going to like the nordkapp anyway!)

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adrian j pullin
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Post by adrian j pullin »

I have a Nordkapp RM which I think is great ...but...

It is a tippy boat. The aquanaut is rather wider and more stable. The Nordkapp is faster but narrower which means it has less primary stability. I would say that as a first boat the Nordkapp might be a bit wobbly but that depends on how much you have actually paddled. If you have been paddling years using club boats, you might find it ok. If you are fairly new to sea kayaking, I would go with the aquanaut.

Depending on where in the Highlands you are, can yo get to Skye? Gordon Brown would be worth a visit http://www.skyakadventures.com/.

Cheers
Cheers

Adrian J Pullin
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"No! Try not. Do. Or do not. There is no try." - Yoda
Kayak lore: "He who capsizes must also roll".

Pete
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Post by Pete »

If you're looking for stability combined with responsiveness, the P&H Cetus is worth a look (if you want a glass boat), if you're happy with plastic then the Scorpio or Scorpio LV are definitely worth a look before you swipe that card and commit.

Pete

DominiqueS
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Nordkapp RM

Post by DominiqueS »

Do a search on this site and on
http://www.paddling.net/message/search. ... 5c82140e9e
for "Nordkapp RM" , "Nordkapp plastic" etc and you will find a lot of comments that should help you, including comparisons with many other boats. Ocean Paddler also had a useful review by Doug Wilcox.

I just got a Nordkapp RM and going out in heavy wind and bouncing chop it felt very solid and intent on minding its business of plodding straight (where an Avocet or a Pintail would feel solid but very willing to play). It is a great boat. An Aquanaut would have felt even more solid I guess. As for stability: it's a question of perception, skill and your own morphology - you have to try it for yourself, keeping in mind you will learn quickly to control it. Build one of those http://www.rollordrown.com/stool.html to watch TV, tighten the rounding on the feet as you progress, and it will become child play to balance most boats...

P&H: the boats mentioned are new entrants in basically the same field (which also includes the NDK Explorer). When looking at them, I suggest you compare the P&H and Valley outfitting: bulkheads, footpeg rails and locking mechanism, hatch covers (both hatch and rim), etc. I believe that for for plastic boats the Valley construction has a significant hedge. (Might get sharp answers to this one, but I find some of the new P&H outfittings disappointing...)

Eilidh

Post by Eilidh »

Helpful comments, thanks!

(Dominique, the wee rocking stool thing would be brilliant, but unfortunately my DIY is not exactly legendary...)

Hear what you say about being able to adapt to a tippier boat, but have read several reviews on the composite nordkapp whose paddlers couldn't get used to the lower stability. Is the poly nordkapp any different?

Think I'm going to have a go south for a demo amn't I...!

DominiqueS
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Nordkapp RM

Post by DominiqueS »

- The balancing board is very easy to make, just go for it... I did one in soft wood in a few hours with hand tools, and am no handyman at all. If you search the web you will find other examples.

- the Nordkapp RM may be "easier" than the composite Nordkapps? Furthermore, many stability-related comments refer to the earlier Nordkapps rather than to the more recent ones. But you're right, you have to go and try them yourself... It's really worth it, and only you can tell what works for you.

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Bruxy
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Post by Bruxy »

Hi Eilidh,

Your question will generate lots of sound recommendation from folks with regard to suitable boats - but at the end of the day, these will be very subjective and what's good for one will be not so good for another. Everyone will agree, though, to try before you buy - but I appreciate it's difficult up here in the Highlands to do that.

To that end, not sure where abouts you are based, but if you can get yourself over towards Cromarty sometime, then you'd be welcome to try our boats - we have a Nordkapp LV and a plastic Aquanaut LV which you sound specifically interested in. I'm certain you'll find a big difference between them! We also have a plastic Avocet and a Nordkapp Jubilee which you could also have a go in and which will again provide a different sort of ride.

PM me if you're interested and we'll sort out a day.

Cheers
Chris

Eilidh

Post by Eilidh »

Thanks for the offer Chris....have pm'd you

Eilidh

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Windowshade
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Post by Windowshade »

I paddle a Nordkapp Jubilee and a Nordkapp HS. I've also paddled a Nordkapp HM and (one day) a Nordkapp LV. I've sat in a Nordkapp RM, but never paddled one. I've paddled (one day) both an Aquanaut and an Aquanaut RM LV. Lots of other kayaks, too.

In my view, any Nordkapp would be a difficult kayak to learn in. It's just too demanding. Better to get one when you've built your skills through training & experience. By contrast, the Aquanaut LV is a well-mannered, moderately stable kayak that will perform well in conditions and has good maneuverability. It is a very good kayak, one in which you could more confidently develop skills.

DominiqueS
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Nordkapp RM

Post by DominiqueS »

How can "I've sat in a Nordkapp RM, but never paddled one" lead to "In my view, any Nordkapp would be a difficult kayak to learn in"?

Eilidh, the only way for you to truly know is to paddle these boats. Don't listen to us! Looks like you have a great opportunity, hope you will have a great time.

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Windowshade
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Post by Windowshade »

DominiqueS wrote, How can "I've sat in a Nordkapp RM, but never paddled one" lead to "In my view, any Nordkapp would be a difficult kayak to learn in"?

The answer is that all Nordkapps are fundamentally the same. I've owned a Jubilee, an HS and an HM. They're all the same kayak, with minor variations.

Like any other kayak, if you paddle a Nordkapp in easy conditions ... like inland in Ontario ... it will be OK. However, if you paddle on the open ocean, a demanding kayak can give you nasty surprises unless you're ready to handle it.

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MikeB
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Post by MikeB »

Windowshade wrote:The answer is that all Nordkapps are fundamentally the same. I've owned a Jubilee, an HS and an HM. They're all the same kayak, with minor variations.
I'd seriously question that - there are minor differences between the HS/HM and the other H variations - the Jubilee is a totally different boat, only sharing the name.

All Nordkapps have similar characteristics though - apart from the very early "originals" they all have poor initial stability so they feel "twitchy" at first. Secondard stability is good.

I can't say I'd recommend them as first boats, based on watching a few friends with them and having had a Jubilee. Then again, I also know people who love them, having started paddling in one.

There are some comments compiled in the N/kapp article in the Almanac - I guess you've read it?

Mike.

DominiqueS
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Post by DominiqueS »

Like any other kayak, if you paddle a Nordkapp in easy conditions ... like inland in Ontario ... it will be OK. However, if you paddle on the open ocean, a demanding kayak can give you nasty surprises unless you're ready to handle it.
Geography is irrelevant - the Great Lakes can be quite vicious and have sunk their share of boats, while on the ocean one could easily choose to paddle only in easy conditions. Different type of seas when nasty, that's all.

What is a "demanding kayak" is subjective, skill, balance and morphology dependent, and in the end probably as much a function of the paddler than the kayak. Great kayaks are in fact easier in the rough, with how much "rough" contingent on what one can handle. Hence the usual advice to try a boat in as many conditions as one can - or dare.

Personal view: this initial stability issue is way overblown and learning to stay upright is not that difficult with practice. If one thinks that some people start on the water with racing canoes, racing kayaks, surf skis or rowing shells, our sea kayaks are all pretty lame… Choosing a hull should depend on what one wants to do with it, from racing to fishing, and then skills can be developed accordingly.

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steve-m
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Post by steve-m »

I bought my Nordkapp RM earlier this year and am puzzled by all this talk of them being twitchy and tippy. Try hard as I can I cannot make mine feel at all tippy or twitchy. I had some rough seas in the Minch north of Skye and the boat handled those conditions just fine, not only that but it is surprisingly responsive and manouverable when rockhopping and cave exploring. Even in busy seas i have been happy to stop and sit in my Norkapp RM and take photos or look through my monocular for wildlife.

Photo taken from a Norkapp RM in the Minch north of Skye

Image

Interestingly when I did a sea kayak session for a couple of non sea kayakers at the club they both preferred my Nordkapp RM to the clubs Capella RM. They liked the responsiveness of the Norkapp they found it easier to edge which they felt was a positive characteristic. I guess as someone else has previously suggested, if you do not tell people a boat is tippy but just let them get on with it then they will get on just fine.
Steve-M Shropshire

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Windowshade
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Post by Windowshade »

MikeB wrote, "There are minor differences between the HS/HM and the other H variations - the Jubilee is a totally different boat, only sharing the name."

I've read other reviews to this effect, and used to believe them. But, I don't any more. I have a Jubilee and an HS; this year I sold my HM.

On several occasions I've compared these kayaks, first paddling one, then another. I've done so in a variety of conditions, calm to rough.

The differences are marginal (aside from the different "feel" of an ocean cockpit vs. a keyhole cockpit). A Nordkapp is a Nordkapp, HS/HM or Jubilee.

That said, my favorite is the Nordkapp LV. It's a fantastic day boat. Other Nordkapps need weight in them to perform at their best.

smallbear
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Post by smallbear »

How much difference is there in the amount you can carry in the LV? I'm considering options for a first composite boat after paddling an Aquanaut HV for almost a year. I like the Aquanaut and it holds plenty for multi-day trips. Just wondered how much of a difference there is with the six inch shorter, one inch lower LV?

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Douglas Wilcox
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Post by Douglas Wilcox »

The Nordkapp LV is great as a weekend camping boat, mind you, I have compact and light tent and sleeping bag. If I am going for a week I do prefer the extra spce in my Quest.
Douglas

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Jonas Karlsson
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Post by Jonas Karlsson »

...great discussion...makes me think...makes me glad :)

Must say this...one boat...so many ideas, opinions and emotions...just lovely

Image


Just a great a boat...MUST paddle this weekend!

Take care

Jonas

http://www.flickr.com/photos/kayakvarberg/

smallbear
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Post by smallbear »

Hi Douglas - thanks for that. So far we've only managed two-day trips and my partner carries the tent and I take the food. We take our own sleeping mats and bags etc. We're hoping to extend that next year - weather permitting!
Mind you - as long as the LV has enough space for my OPTIO W30 - superb wee camera, taken some smashing pictures since I got it in the spring. Very much enjoyed your Paddle08 talk though - inspirational stuff!

Owen
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Post by Owen »

I've just had a Nordkapp RM on loan for the weekend to try out and I was really impressed. It swallowed up all my normal camping gear plus my big winter sleeping bag and down jacket which filled 80%+ of the front hatch. So for summer trips that should be loads of space for up to a couple of weeks as long as you pack sensibly.

The front bulkhead could be moved back a bit as there's quite a lot of wasted space in front of the footpegs. Although I'm sure I could find something to fill the gap. The footpegs are crap, we shouldn't put up with such rubbish on something costing over a grand. The seat was very comfy but I did find myself siting back during the day so maybe it could do with tilting forward a bit.

The water was calm so I didn't get to try it in waves. I did do three hours night paddling in it while it was empty and it felt rock solid not at all twitchy. It went straight when I wanted it to and around corners when I wanted to turn. Edging and holding it on edge was easy; what more could you want. I'd like to borrow it again and try it in some rougher water but so far I like it.

timax
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Post by timax »

I paddled a borrowed one for a couple of weeks. hated it at first , then padded out the hip pads so that i actually fitted the boat and found I really liked it. So If you think its too tippy make the fit a bit tighter and it may transform the kayak for you.

mclaughlin
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Nordkapp Rm

Post by mclaughlin »

Eilidh,

My advice is go for the Nordkapp RM [Plastic]. This is a great boat and a good inbetween size from the Nordkapp LV and the standard Nordkapp composite. The Aquanut will be ok initially but you will ' out grow it'. My first boat was a RTM Ysak - very flat bottomed boat - stable but very slow and upgraded to a Nordkapp RM.

Richard.

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