Xcape X^

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MikeB
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Xcape X^

Post by MikeB » Mon Aug 29, 2011 5:06 pm

Views and thoughts on the Xcape X ?

In particular, views on maximum load? As in, will it cope with 18st of paddler + my usual 50 to 60 lbs of gear?

Mike.

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Helen M
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Re: Xcape X

Post by Helen M » Mon Aug 29, 2011 5:11 pm

Is losing weight an option?

H - x

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MikeB
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Re: Xcape X

Post by MikeB » Mon Aug 29, 2011 5:14 pm

Helen M wrote:Is losing weight an option?

H - x
No!

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Helen M
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Re: Xcape X

Post by Helen M » Mon Aug 29, 2011 6:00 pm

Ahh - OK so gear stays then! lol

H - x

JohnGreenview
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Re: Xcape X

Post by JohnGreenview » Mon Aug 29, 2011 11:16 pm

Hi

I am no expert. I have an explore x (about 2 years old) and weigh about 16 stone (6'2"). I had it fully laden recently on a trip to Summer Isles. It performed beautifully. If anything it was more stable with a heavy load and moved through the admittedly idyllic seas elegantly and effortlessly. I am seriously considering carrying lead when it is empty to weigh it down. It was certainly not down at the sealine when fully laden and carrying me. I would think it could take another couple of stones with ease (ask tiderace).

I really like the cockpit. I find I have room to move with ease and don't get cramped. Having said that I don't feel I am slipping about all over the place. Can't roll yet (embarrassed to admit) but friend rolled it with ease.

My only complaint is a leaking front oval lid. Anyone got any suggestions other than renewing it?

I should say I have contacted Dan at Tiderace and he has been patient and helpful with a novice.

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Jim
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Re: Xcape X

Post by Jim » Tue Aug 30, 2011 1:40 am

MikeB wrote: As in, will it cope with 18st of paddler + my usual 50 to 60 lbs of gear?
Lightweight!

(OK I do need to lose some, well lots of, weight)

I did look at the specs for the Xscape but didn't get round to trying one. If you want some alternatives to think about just ask, I can think of a couple of Rockpools worth looking at too.

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Re: Xcape X

Post by swagstaff » Wed Aug 31, 2011 8:46 pm

Perhaps someone can tell you how much lower you will be in the water if you add 60 pounds.
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MikeB
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Re: Xcape X

Post by MikeB » Wed Aug 31, 2011 9:10 pm

Excellent!

You might have photo'd me when I was powering through the waves rather than seeing how stable it was sidey-on, and watching the tourists watching me - - !

The demo was very helpful - a most impressive boat - I'm still debating whether it'll carry me and my exped load so that hire suggestion hasn't been forgotten! Looking at the pics does leave me wondering - -

Good to meet you and talk about such a wide range of things.

Mike.

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Re: Xcape X

Post by GlenR » Wed Aug 31, 2011 11:25 pm

To get a true sense of the waterline when loaded, you will need to see the boat side on in completely flat water!

As for whether it will carry you and your kit?

Most definitely and with ease!

All of the Tiderace boats look slightly low in the water around the cockpit, but this is just how the design of the deck and seam, make it appear! When loaded they cope really well! In fact i am still amazed at how much my Xplore will take!( having come from using NDK explorer for years), All of my kit and group safety kit , spares and food for 10 days plus and still have room to spare!!!!(I do carry lots of luxuries as i do like my comfort!)
And the waterline doesn't change drastically when loaded! Unlike other boats.

I have paddled the Xcape series and it is a very capable boat !Having excellent and increasing secondary stability.

Glen

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MikeB
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Re: Xcape X

Post by MikeB » Fri Oct 07, 2011 11:52 am

Hi - just to close the loop on this, I hired an Xcape X from SKO for a club outing on Loch Etive a couple of weeks ago. I liked it and ended up buying one when I returned the hire boat! It's got that red and white diagonal slash color scheme, which may take a little getting used to! There was a convenience factor in buying off the shelf - and of course, a price factor too. At the moment, these boats are very competitvly priced indeed. Here's some initial thoughts.

I was very, very impressed - it swallowed my fairly heavy kit (big tent and a reasonable quantity of food and an unreasonable quantity of drink) with ease, (and carried someone else's tent as well!) and coped with some lumpy seas and high winds on the Sunday. Accepting that an overnighter on Loch Etive isn't in the same league as the mainstream expeds these boats have been on, it was a decent representation of the sort of paddling I do. Which is mainly weekends and the occasional week out.

The rear hatch is rather smaller than the Quest against which I was comparing - and the skeg box intrudes badly of course. It'll be a slim thing you pack down past it! The day hatch is slightly bigger and the fore hatch significantly bigger. The hull design provides a wider profile by the cockpit, which is what gives this differential - that said, the boat is 22.5 ins wide, so only .5 in wider than the Quest. For the "larger paddler" and those with big feet, the Xcape X certainly gives a lot of cockpit space. The design seems to create volumn by, and in front of, the seat. Rather like a Nordkapp Jubilee in fact.

There is a downside to this concept of buying an "off the shelf boat" - even with a couple of inches left on the footrest adjustment, there's about 6 ins of redundant space between the footrest and the bulkhead. Room enough for a drybag, but I've never been a fan of such things in the cockpit.

I've always packed "stern heavy" and was concerned that the narrower rear hatch was going to force me into putting more than I normally would into the front, with resultant trim and performance problems. It isn't a problem - even with the heavy tent in the front hatch, the boat performed fine.

I enjoyed the boat - a lot. It was great in the strong winds and confused, bumpy water we had on the Sunday, and ran downwind very well on Saturday in some moderate surf waves. I also found it fast - to put that into context, in my Quest I generally worked hard to keep in the middle of the pack, whereas I found myself generally having to hold back on that trip. The Nordkapp Jubilee I had way back in the day also let me keep at the front of the group, so impressed to find another fast boat.

It appears to handle bumpy water very well, and while we didn't have any notable swell, the conditions on Sunday weren't pleasant. This boat inspired confidence though, takes an agressive edge and never gave any indication of wanting to let me take an early bath either loaded or empty. The knee / thigh braces are superb - allowing very positive control indeed, and this is a significant factor here. If only other mainstream manufacturers would follow the same thinking!

The boat seemed very neutral, with rather less input from the skeg than I expected but was quite happy running cross-wind (and cross-sea) with or without the skeg. So more experimentation there.

The hull shape is quite "V'd" in comparison to the Quest, which will account for the excellent stability in lumpy seas - I found the Nordkapp slightly worrying in similar conditions, and even the Quest would be a little twitchy. I prefer the handling of the Xcape X.

In terms of overall "fit", it worked very well for me - and was exceedingly comfortable. I suffer a bit of a niggling lower back problem, but stepped out of the boat after 3 hours slogging into the wind feeling absolutely fine, something which hasn't been the case for rather too many years!

I had (briefly) paddled an Xplore X and was very impressed with it, but in truth I was of the view that it was on the big side in terms of cockpit fit, even for my present 18st, 6'2" frame. Perhaps I should have taken one out for a weekend to get a really true comparison, but my abiding memory is still that I rattled around in it. In terms of packing space, there's very little between the two boats - the difference is in the cockpit.

Last weekend was a day trip on the Forth - nothing out of the ordinary, albeit a wee bit lumpy in the afternoon. Again, delighted with it in that usage and in truth I have to say I thoroughly enjoyed paddling the boat, as against just enjoying the trip. A subtle distinction of course.

The build quality is superb! Flawless in fact.

The boat is described on the Tiderace site as being "designed to be forgiving and to inspire confidence in the paddler starting out on their kayaking journey." This sort of implies that it's a beginers boat and I'm not sure I'd agree with this totally. I think this description undersells the design frankly. I must admit that my preference is more towards a forgiving craft than a highly dynamic one (read tippy and unstable) but neither do I want something rather like a cuddly old Labrador.

I've yet to try it on a long trip, or in really notable seas, but I rather suspect it's going to be fine - and I tend not to take on those more "interesting" seas anyway - and probably more enjoyable than what I'm used to. I still like the Quest a lot, and regard it highly, but the Xcape X just seems to work better for me as an overall package. One of the key objectives was to get a slightly bigger cockpit and that objective has been achieved, and without compromising the other important criteria.

Downsides? Other than having to re-think my packing plan, the only other thing I have to address is coming to terms with having to carry my splits on the foredeck. The blades on my standard size Lendal Kinetics are just a little too wide for the rear elastics. That said, perhaps the foredeck is a better place for them anyway. The front elastics are placed too far forward to make reading a map practical, so that's an issue which will need a new spraydeck (with map bungees) to fix. The upside of this though is an excellent cockpit design which allows me to get my legs out, while still keeping my bum on the seat!

I can't see the point of the wee foredeck hatch although I have noticed that it has started to fill with little things. Flares wont go in, and neither will a VHF. It does however now have some usefull odds and ends in it. And choccy bars.

The next decision is what pump installation to use - and of course the joy of drilling holes to accomodate that! I sense an electric pump.

Mike.

JohnGreenview
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Re: Xcape X

Post by JohnGreenview » Fri Oct 07, 2011 4:36 pm

Bill

Thank you for comments on silicon for hatch. I have recently put some on but still to test on the water. The hatch sides still are a bit more of an angle sticking out a bit. In the other hatches they are more vertical. Time will tell.

John

Nick P
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Re: Xcape X

Post by Nick P » Fri Oct 07, 2011 4:54 pm

On my Xplore, I sprayed the hatch rims and the inner lips of the hatch covers with Ambersil silicon spray. It has made a huge difference to the ease of removal and replacement and all hatches are, as far as I can tell, waterproof.

Nick

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MikeB
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Re: Xcape X

Post by MikeB » Fri Oct 07, 2011 4:56 pm

Bill Maisey wrote:
My only complaint is a leaking front oval lid. Anyone got any suggestions other than renewing it?
John
My solution to oval hatch issues is to smear a little silicon oil or grease (silicon doesn't harm plastics) around the rim. It makes aligning an oval hatch loads easier, misalignment being the main cause of leaks ...
But might it not make (any) future need to do a repair in that area a bit challenging? A little "rubber & plastic lube" (Halfords) applied very sparingly will do the job too.

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Re: Xcape X

Post by mick m » Fri Oct 07, 2011 10:59 pm

Re pumps, I have both foot and electric pumps in verious boats, I wold go the electric, ther efortles and realy reliabel if instaled right, I realy recomend the rull 500 , iv had bad resolts with other brands .

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Erling
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Re: Xcape X

Post by Erling » Mon Oct 10, 2011 7:34 am

MikeB wrote:..., so that's an issue which will need a new spraydeck (with map bungees) to fix.
Congrats with your new boat, Mike, and welcome to the Tiderace Owners’ Club. Thanks for the write-up! I hope you will be as happy with your Xcape X as I have been with my Xplore. The one thing I have struggled with is getting a completely dry cockpit. None of the standard decks I have tried have sealed very well. If your Xcape has the same cockpit shape as the Xplore, I’d definitely recommend getting Tiderace’s own spraydeck (or rather, the Seals deck that Tiderace got custom made for their boats). This solved everything. They also have loops for the map bungees you want.
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MikeB
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Re: Xcape X^

Post by MikeB » Sun Jan 08, 2012 7:33 pm

Thanks for that suggestion Erling - I did get one of those - it really is superb! But why dont they provide the bungee!!!!!! Mike.

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Re: Xcape X^

Post by Summit to Sea » Mon Jan 09, 2012 6:43 pm

It keeps the price down!

;-)

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MikeB
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Re: Xcape X^

Post by MikeB » Mon Jan 09, 2012 7:01 pm

Summit to Sea wrote:It keeps the price down!

;-)
;-)

Perhaps - but it creates rather more hassle than one would expect from a Tiderace product! Mike.

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