Inland paddling
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Post by nickgolledge » Sat Aug 12, 2017 12:07 pm

Firstly just wanted to say hi. I am totally new to kayaking and only really discovered it when my wife came home from Lidl with a 2 man inflatable kayak! We live close to the river avon in Wiltshire and it's really easy to get onto the river so no excuses not to go for a paddle whenever the mood takes.

The inflatable is really uncomfortable after more than 20-30 minutes as it seems impossible to stay sat upright for long before ending up at 45 degrees and with cramping legs!! Having had a few trips and enjoyed it despite the discomfort I would like to buy something better. Would a better quality single person inflatable be okay or should I fork out £300-£400 as seems about right for a rigid hull?

Any help appreciated please!!!

Nick Golledge

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Re: Newbie!

Post by DaveBland » Sat Aug 12, 2017 6:32 pm

Cool. Sounds like a blast. Good you've found the sport.

Go check out your local club[s] and have a go in a few of their boats and maybe learn a few of the basics.
The benefits of this will be...

1. You'll get to see if it's you and a lack of experience or the boat. You may be fine wit what you have. They'll
2. You'll learn a couple of safety basics that'll keep you out of trouble.
3. Paddlers are generally nice folks and you'll probably find a few buddies to play with

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Adrian Cooper
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Re: Newbie!

Post by Adrian Cooper » Mon Aug 14, 2017 10:04 am

Be careful with that budget. I have seen on Facebook, quite a few older boat designs which are still absolutely fine for £200. When some of these boats came out they were considered ground-breaking, now the fashion police are saying they are old hat. Still plenty of life and enjoyment to be had in a boat 10 years old.

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Re: Newbie!

Post by jb2_86_uk » Mon Aug 14, 2017 1:58 pm

Hi Nick,

I'm in a similar situation to yourself, having just taken up the sport. I'd echo the advice you have already received - although I haven't yet got around to researching and joining my local club - it's on my to-do list, I swear! Definitely try out some other styles of boats. Once or twice a year before now I rented a single sit-on-top and thought it was fine, before I was ready to buy my own I tried a sit-in, and once I had done a few capsize drills and gotten over the sensation of being enclosed, it was a revelation how much more comfortable, manoeuvrable and versatile a sit-in is! I'd be really kicking myself now if I had bought a sit-on-top.

The main piece of advice I would like to throw in, and it nearly caught me out when I bought my boat, is if you're looking at a rigid plastic boat, make sure it's an HDPE plastic one, not an LLDPE. I was very nearly fooled by a retailer (I won't name names) pushing a cheaper LLDPE boat onto me. It was only when we went to another retailer to pick up my wife’s boat (en-route to picking up the one I picked!) that I was informed of the difference and shown an enlightening youtube video explaining the difference. I urge you to search youtube for HDPE vs LLDPE to see what I mean. I upped my budget a little, put a couple of extra over-time shifts in and now couldn’t be happier with my HDPE boat. Definitely the right decision.

Also if you’re going to be transporting your rigid boat(s) by car, factor in the cost of a decent roof rack solution too, you don’t want to spend a significant chunk of money on a nice boat or two and then secure them to your car with budget equipment. You wouldn’t hang a Picasso with a 49p picture hook, would you?

As a side note, I am envious of you, your first taste of kayaking in a tandem with your wife, and you enjoyed it! I only had to do 5 minutes in a canoe with my wife for our BCU 1* award at the weekend and we were about ready to find a divorce lawyer when we finally careered ashore! hehe

Happy paddling!

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Re: Newbie!

Post by nickgolledge » Tue Aug 15, 2017 2:00 pm

Thanks for the responses all, you have really helped me decide how to progress and I have booked a session at local club for next week will let you know.

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Re: Newbie!

Post by Jim » Wed Aug 16, 2017 4:56 pm

Probably the outfitting in the Lidl inflatable is pretty rubbish, you may be able to upgrade some bits like the seats with items from a better quality inflatable manufacturer like Sevylor or Gumotex - unfortunately I am too far from familiar with inflatables to know if this is really possible.
There are usually several inflatable paddlers over on Song of The Paddle forum, I'm sure there are plenty here too I just feel as though I see more inflatable threads over there.

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