Qaarsut 5.0^

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Qaarsut 5.0^

Post by Rdscott » Sun Mar 08, 2009 11:37 pm

This is my first post in the sea and surf area.

Due to my recent involvement and enjoyment into all things sea i am looking at purchasing my first sea kayak

Now being a student Money is an issue. so i was looking at a Qaarsut 5.0

i was woundering if anyone can tell me anymore information than brookbanks have.
such as how they handle, Forward speed stability and turning and what the size of paddler they are for, (I'm 5'7 at my tallest and weigh about 12 stone)

things i will be looking at doing in it, general sea kayaking, anglesey, the hebradies and so on the longest kind of trips at the min would be 7 days with minimalist equipment, I do a lot of outdoor work so have lite and small kit.

How would it cope with the likes of Islay's seas with a quite cautious paddler


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Re: Qaarsut 5.0

Post by Jim » Mon Mar 09, 2009 1:26 pm

The Qaarsut 5.0 is I think the original size, which is quite a small boat, similar to the Anas Acuta. It always seems tiny in a group of of sea kayaks and I've only seen it paddled by youngsters, but I'm not sure if that is necessarily a good indication. I suspect you might find the 5.5 a bit more of an all rounder, with more space for camping kit, but possibly at your size you would fit a 5.0 better? I think you should try and at least sit in both to make your mind up.

In terms of handling it is a greenland style design, which means it has hard chines (V shaped hull), which can feel a little wobbly at first but you soon get used to it. The V keel does tend to help it go in a straight line and the combination of the keel and chines mean they can surf quite well with a following sea. The new ones seem to have skegs so it will be possible to get whatever handling you want without too much effort, but even without the skeg the qaarsut should run straighter than most greenland copies. It is a small light boat and much more manouevrable than most other boats.
In terms of what sort of sea it will handle? - anything! (with the caveat that a longer boat will be easier to paddle fast for a long time).

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Re: Qaarsut 5.0

Post by Owen » Mon Mar 09, 2009 1:39 pm

I paddle an Anas Acuta and find it fits me fine. I have tried sitting in a Qaarsut (the smaller of the two) and found that I couldn't get in it. I'm 5ft 9ins and 13st. They're very low volume so unless you go very minimualist I think you'll find seven days camping a bit of a push.

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Re: Qaarsut 5.0

Post by woody » Tue Mar 10, 2009 12:56 pm


I'm your man. Owned one for a year before I totalled it rolling my car (still sad about that).

Just for comparison I'm 5'10 and 10 and a half stone, most people think I'm a skinny wretch.

Great boat for rough seas, the rougher the better, it comes alive in such conditions and is very rewarding to paddle, feeling like an extension of the self. It doesn't like to be sat still or in a straight line for too long. If you are getting one of the new ones then it will have a skeg which will make for a much easier handling boat in certain conditions of wind. My old skegless one required a lot of patience and old school technique. I found it's manoeuverability a smidgin disappointing after paddling my old sirius in that when you banged it right over on its edge it didn't quite turn on a pinhead like the old sirius, but it was still good and less nerve racking. It wasn't the best surfing boat I ever had but it was ok. I would disagree with the poster who said it should run straight though, the hull is quite rockered and this boat wants to "break out" like a creeker.


It's fine for paddling over longer distances although I wouldn't say this was its forte. It won't eat the miles like a quest or a nordie. 40km felt like enough to do in a day thank you very much. I did a seven day trip in it without any resupply, in tandem with an avocet which is also a small boat and we were comfy. Weren't living in luxury though and we did eat every scrap of food. There is a cool space at the side of the seat bulkhead where you could easily fit 5 or 6 chocolate bars, wayhay! The newer design with the skeg will be quite cramped for packing though but you say you have small kit so will be fine. To go solo camping you will need it. Comfort wise it had the best seat of any kayak I ever sat in. Never had any numbness or pain. Might be tricky for long legged big footed people though. I wore playboat slippers.

They come with a keel strip which is pretty brittle, not nearly as good as the ones on valley and p&h boats. The build is very light over the deck (don't let NIgel Dennis jump on it!), more substantial in the hull but I never had any issues until I put a car on top of it. The hull and gelcoat was holding up fine, like any other boat really. The fittings seem fine and the seat and backrest are excellent.

It's definitely a fine boat for an adult, although heavier people might get a pretty wet ride. If you were very substantial in the tummy, thighs or hips you might struggle to get in.

So in summary a great boat best suited small skinny people and to more exciting conditions. Maneuoverable but predictably so, no nasty surprises. Capable of longer trips but not its strength. Lightly built especially over the deck. Comfy and well thought out. I would try to demo it on the sea because it's fairly unique.

Hope this helps
Frith wood
Rain rain we want rain

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Re: Qaarsut 5.0

Post by catman » Tue Mar 10, 2009 5:14 pm

I Recently demoed one with skeg. Nice boat but cockpit ergonomics just wrong. The thigh grips were too low and completely useless....a shame really as otherwise I would have bought it. Strangely, the old skegless version looks to have a better cockpit arrangement.

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Re: Qaarsut 5.0^

Post by Rdscott » Tue Mar 10, 2009 9:38 pm

i have been informed it maximum waight range is quite low, and was told a paddler od 85kg would probably be its max with very little equiptment.

i will try and find one to demo first i think the info is great the more the better

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Re: Qaarsut 5.0^

Post by TaysideTom » Tue Mar 10, 2009 10:08 pm

If you're a bit short of readies, don't buy a new kayak. You can build a very nice kayak for a lot less. Or if you'd rather not (or don't have access to somewhere suitable for building), buy a second hand boat. There's a sea king on ebay at the moment, which might do for you.

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Re: Qaarsut 5.0

Post by Jim » Wed Mar 11, 2009 1:39 pm

woody wrote: I would disagree with the poster who said it should run straight though, the hull is quite rockered and this boat wants to "break out" like a creeker.
Well corrected. I can't fit in one but a friend has one and it looked like it should run straighter than an Anas Acuta, a bit difficult to judge when someone else is in the boat though!
TaysideTom wrote:Or if you'd rather not (or don't have access to somewhere suitable for building), buy a second hand boat. There's a sea king on ebay at the moment, which might do for you.
Sea king is what I paddle, it is a 5.5m hard chine boat so in principal is likely to be similar to the Qaarsut 5.5, I would expect the Qaarsut 5.5 to be a little more refined with better hatches/bulkheads etc. and noting the point above it should run straighter than a Sea King, but might not! The one on ebay could be a real bargain, main bit of advice would be to consider changing the hatches for push on rubber ones, fairly easy DIY job.

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Re: Qaarsut 5.0^

Post by stripper » Wed Mar 11, 2009 4:08 pm

I have a Quarsut 5.0 without skeg and use it mainly as a play boat for rockhopping/surf play days although it will do the miles if required, but its not a Nordy. I think its great for manouvering and responds well to edging in and around the rocks. No problem in a rough sea. In my humble opinion its limited for a weeks camping trip especially if its one of the later boats built with a skeg. It'd be ok if sharing kit with a partner. It isn't the best boat to track in a straight line with any wind about and I find I have to tack sometimes to make it work. This is however a fun characeristic of the boat rather than some other popular boats which in my opinion are a bit mundane. I did have to rework the backrest to give support but the thigh grips are fine for me.
As with most things there are compromises to be had but its a fine looking boat with a character very much like the Anas,which you either love or hate,like Marmite. I'm a skegless freak so my opinion is probably void anyway.
I paid Brookbank £900 new for mine which I thought was good value.Comes with crap keel strip,boat bag,deck cover, but its free! Clever seat/bulkhead for emptying.
Would defineatly recommend test driving it thoroughly along with a few others. You may find a plastic alternative will suit a first boat purchase better and easier to resale once you want to up spec later on.


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Re: Qaarsut 5.0^

Post by Duncan W » Thu Aug 20, 2009 3:40 pm

I have just viewed the site for the first time. Can I give you some background on the Qaarsut?

Some years ago I built a plywood kayak for a friend who had just undergone serious back surgery and who's existing kayak was very heavy. He was about the same weight and build as Ken Taylor who brought a sealskin kayak back from Greenland in 1959. So I built him a plywood version of Ken's kayak but with a modern three hatch deck arrangement, even although it was only built as a day boat.

I also built a small plywood sea kayak at the 1998 Jersey Sea Kayak Symposium, as a demo. It was built to fit Kevin Mansell's daughter Lisa, then about 8 years old I think. Some time later the propriator of Island Kayaks approached me for a design for a kiddies kayak and the "Jersey Junior 98" was produced in GRP.
The kiddies kayak was launched at one of the canoe exhibitions in Birmingham and was tried out in the pool by some adults (not big adults!) who liked it and wanted a bigger version, about 16 ft 6 ins long. I was approached again and asked if I had plans for such a kayak, so my friends plywood boat, directly based on Ken Taylor's kayak was produced in GRP. As to the name, it would have been nice to name it Igdlorssuit after the place Ken's boat came from, but thats a bit of a mouthfull so Island Kayaks named it after the settlement nearest to Igdlorssuit with a more snappy name.

Duncan R. Winning.

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Re: Qaarsut 5.0^

Post by MikeB » Thu Aug 20, 2009 5:19 pm

Welcome Duncan - it's grand to have feedback on the history / background, especially from the originator!


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