Sea kayak for big men?

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Andy k

Sea kayak for big men?

Post by Andy k » Sun Apr 17, 2005 1:41 pm

I'm 6'6" and 18.5 stone. I currently paddle a Prijon Kodiak( which is only just big enough) but am now looking for a glass boat. Who makes a big mans glass sea kayak? I have looked everywhere and sat in a few, but all have been too small.

Help me please! I want one for the summer!

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Mark R
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Post by Mark R » Sun Apr 17, 2005 1:53 pm

One possibility to try...

http://www.shorehamseakayaks.co.uk/html/kayaks.html

Where are you based?
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seismicscot
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Post by seismicscot » Sun Apr 17, 2005 2:33 pm

Wes Boyd has a load of info, albeit with a N. American bias, on his website:

http://www.kayakplace.com/bigguy/bigskart.htm

Cheers,

Clark
Clark Fenton

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MikeB
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Post by MikeB » Sun Apr 17, 2005 5:32 pm

HAve you tried a Quest?

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Zoe Newsam
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Post by Zoe Newsam » Mon Apr 18, 2005 7:55 am

Island Kayaks Expedition. Built for tall people & really roomy.

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Post by geordie01 » Mon Apr 18, 2005 8:12 am

try to get hold of an icefloe or an orion
plenty room in these boats

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Post by RichardCree » Mon Apr 18, 2005 9:04 am

i would recommend the island kayak expedition. just sold one to a big guy with big feet 12's i think and he paddles wearing wellies. where are you, i could let you have a shot.

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Island kayaks

Post by Guest » Mon Apr 18, 2005 11:17 am

Thanks very much everyone. I have checked out the Explore 4 site and am very inerested in the Expedition..... cheap too!

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seismicscot
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Post by seismicscot » Mon Apr 18, 2005 11:28 am

I sat in an Island Expedition at ICE a few weeks ago and found the cockpit huge and I am 6'2" and 15.5 stone! It is a really nicely finished boat at a very attractive price. I will hopefully get the chance to demo one this weekend - I'll post my thoughts anon.

Cheers,

Clark
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NickB
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Post by NickB » Tue Apr 19, 2005 8:25 am

At 6'4" and currently over your 18.5 stone I find the Orion perfect for me, plenty of room and well comfortable!
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Nick Benny

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Post by Bertie.. » Tue Apr 19, 2005 4:07 pm

Hi guys,

I have a demo version of the 2005 Island Expedition boat, which you can always try if you'd like. I'm based in Dorset, if it's any help PM me and we can arrange something. It's definately a boat that will suit a larger paddle, and handles like a dream. The 2005 boat finally addresses some of the cockpit design issues with the older boats.

For any Poole Harbour CC guys lurking on this one, I'm planning on getting the demo out on the water this coming wednesday night - if anyone wants to paddle it, give me a shout.

Bertie..

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Post by Guest » Tue Apr 19, 2005 4:54 pm

Since no one else has mentioned it...........a NDK Explorer HV does the trick for me.

I'm 6ft 2, 15st+ and I need to pad the Explorer out!

I appreciate its all very personal, but for me the Explorer does everything I want from it.

Chances are there’ll be a few demo boats for sale after the Anglesey symposium.

Guest

Post by Guest » Tue Apr 19, 2005 5:16 pm

Money no object
British Columbia - off out in September, read about a trip from Tofino to Hot Springs cove from where you can take a sea plane back (kayaks strapped to the outside). Plus desolation sound looks amazing.


Closer to home - I fancy Llandudno/Conwy to Abersoch around Anglesey along the way............probably not going to fulfil the "sunshine criteria".

Gavin

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Post by Guest » Tue Apr 19, 2005 5:21 pm

bugger....ignore the above, replied to the wrong post. I think my manager my have something when she talks about my attention to detail!
Gavin

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Jim
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Post by Jim » Tue Apr 19, 2005 6:09 pm

It appears from another thread that a Sirius might be suitable, I would have thought not though.

JIM

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Post by miko » Wed Apr 20, 2005 6:55 pm

Check out the Argonaut by Valley. A good boat but with high windage for the average sized paddler. Sold by Knoydart.

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Post by active4seasons » Sat Apr 23, 2005 7:38 pm

Tried the island expedition (not most recent version though) last weekend and I would highly recomend it to the larger paddler. Excellent boat, quality finish and great design. Definitely try one!
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Island Expedition

Post by john campbell » Sun Apr 24, 2005 7:52 am

I have recently bought a 2004 spec Island Expedition after demo-ing one of Richard Cree's at Explore 4. I am 6'2, 190lbs and wear rather fetching size 12 green wellies and the boat accommodates me no problem, plenty of leg room and a comfortable cockpit.

The boat handles very well and is a joy to turn though does need a bit of skeg to keep it on track, especially in quartering seas. It is very stable and easy to get over on its side for turns but the thing which has surprised me most about it is how quick it is. You will have no problem keeping up with the group in this boat on day trips and expedition work. There is also plenty of stowage space for gear. As an allround expedition sea kayak for medium to larger paddlers this is a great boat and at £1100 for last years model, great value.

Thanks to Richard at Explore 4 for the extended demo. Happy paddling.

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seismicscot
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Post by seismicscot » Mon Apr 25, 2005 3:56 pm

As promised here are my thoughts on the Island Expedition:

I recently demo-ed the Expedition in tandem with the P&H Quest. The Expedition won on all counts - by a long way!

The Quest (and several other P&H boats I've seen/used recently) was very poorly finished for a boat with a £1500+ price tag. P&H really look like they have some QA problems at the moment. The new seat in the Quest is quite possibly the least comfortable kayak seat I've ever come across (the old style seat was infinitely superior).

In comparison, the cockpit of the Expedition is extremely roomy (even I would need to pad the hip and thigh area). The extra room also extends to the hatches - the Expedition has a larger cargo volume than the Quest - no need to carry that extra firewood/beer etc on the back deck!

In the handling stakes, the Expedition was significantly more manoeuvrable than the Quest (and the Quest is no real slouch). Interestingly, this agility does not compromise stability - the initial stability of the Expedition is rock solid and would only improve with a significant load in the hatches. On edge, the Expedition turns like a dream.

In a head down sprint, the Expedition is easily as fast as any other composite boat. Even with a couple of extra cms more girth than some other well kent composite boats, the Expedition is easy to paddle with a high angle paddle stroke.

The only boats I have left to demo in the UK are the Kaspian boats stocked by Shoreham. They will have to be something extra special to beat the Expedition!

Cheers,

Clark
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Mark R
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Post by Mark R » Mon Apr 25, 2005 5:02 pm

seismicscot wrote:The only boats I have left to demo in the UK are the Kaspian boats stocked by Shoreham. They will have to be something extra special to beat the Expedition!
There will be a review in the next 'Paddles'. I've made a lot of use recently of the SK18 in particular - fast, responsive expedition boat. Only real downside is that due to the narrow tapered ends, hull storage space is lacking compared to some.

Very surprised to hear the Expedition is superfast at 57 cm wide.
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Post by Guest » Mon Apr 25, 2005 5:33 pm

Anyone compared the Expedition to a NDSK Explorer?

Cheers

Gavin

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Post by CaileanMac » Mon Apr 25, 2005 7:55 pm

Hi

My own boat is an Explorer but I paddle a Expedition fairly frequently as well. Very different boats but some similarities.

The Expedition edges like a dream and very smoothly, the NDK boat also edges well in comparison to other boats on the market. The NDK cockpit is different from other manufactuers and some people love it and other loath it. Chunky thigh braces and long/narrow.

The Explorer handles better than the Expedition without any skeg but the Expedition (no skeg) is more responsive whether on a edge or not. In terms of storage the Expedition wins hands down but is that what you are after?

When it comes down to it - try and demo both boats if possible. Also your overall weight / body 'frame' and paddling aspirations might well be the deciding factor.

Cailean Mac :-)

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seismicscot
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Post by seismicscot » Tue Apr 26, 2005 9:11 am

Mark,

A centimetre either way makes very little difference in ultimate hull speed. The 5 m length of the Expedition is what gives it its speed.

Short explanation:

Length (length of water line) rather than width is the controlling factor in determining speed in displacement hulls, thus:

hull speed (Vk) = [square root (LWL in feet x 0.3034)] x 2.5

Longer explanation:

Although sea kayak design is based on the premise that a long, narrow hull is faster than a wider hull of similar length. This is only true if you are moving at speeds approaching the theoretical hull speed of the boat (which is dictated by the length of the boat). Hull speed is a function of the wave length generated by a boat; longer boats generate longer waves allowing greater speed. Generating a wave by moving a boat through water requires an input of energy (from the paddler); and, the mass of the wave generated is governed by the width of the boat (actually the width of the midship cross section). Thus, a narrower hull produces a smaller wave, requiring less energy, allowing more energy to be expended in making the boat go forward. The wave-making resistance factor becomes negligible in very narrow hulls, which is why catamarans are so fast.

However, all of this is only true when a boat approaches theoretical hull speed, which most paddlers never achieve, and certainly never on a cruise or outing with a heavy load of gear on board. When boats travel well below hull speed, the greatest resistance they must overcome is simple friction, which is a direct function of wetted surface (total area of a boat submersed in water). This where the narrow sea kayak begins to lose its advantage. The factor which comes into play here is the ratio between displacement and wetted surface. Displacement in a boat is measured by calculating the volume of boat below the waterline, times the weight of water. If the total weight of two boats plus their paddler and gear are the same, but one boat is narrower than the other, the narrower boat will have more wetted surface. This is because volume increases at an exponential rate, while surface area increases at a mathematical rate, when beam is increased. With more surface area, at low speeds significantly more energy will be required to overcome this added penalty of friction drag.

The bottom line, of course, is actual speed attained under paddle, which for most paddlers is about 66% of hull speed. For this reason, the lower wetted surface of the wider boat will require less energy to move when loaded down for an extended journey.

Sorry for being so long-winded (the perogative of a university lecturer?), but I hope this helps.

Cheers,

Clark
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Post by seismicscot » Tue Apr 26, 2005 9:31 am

Mark,

What do you think of the Kaspian SK18? My wife was talking to a Pyranha/P&H rep last weekend at the Brookbank demo day and he was bad-mouthing Kaspian boats for their lack of quality/poor finish. Obviously he hasn't looked too closely at his own boats recently!

Cheers,

Clark
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Mark R
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Post by Mark R » Tue Apr 26, 2005 9:38 am

seismicscot wrote:Mark,

What do you think of the Kaspian SK18? My wife was talking to a Pyranha/P&H rep last weekend at the Brookbank demo day and he was bad-mouthing Kaspian boats for their lack of quality/poor finish. Obviously he hasn't looked too closely at his own boats recently!
Well, I refer you once more to 'Paddles' next month...but to summarise, we couldn't find any problems with the build quality. The costs have been saved in fairly naff internal fittings (easily customisable or replaceable) and in things like untied decklines and hatch covers.

You could always ask Shoreham themselves...I think they do look in here, as do Pyranha/ P&H and others.
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Post by kaspian » Tue Apr 26, 2005 11:24 am

Mark,

What do you think of the Kaspian SK18? My wife was talking to a Pyranha/P&H rep last weekend at the Brookbank demo day and he was bad-mouthing Kaspian boats for their lack of quality/poor finish. Obviously he hasn't looked too closely at his own boats recently!
I doubt if he has actually looked at one of the Kaspian boats either! I'd be very interested to know where he thinks he saw one. So far there are only a few in this country, and I know where they all are. Anyone with doubts regarding Kaspian's quality is very welcome to come and see for themselves.
Pete Raynor
Shoreham Sea Kayaks
www.shorehamseakayaks.co.uk

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Jim
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Post by Jim » Tue Apr 26, 2005 11:28 am

That's a fair laymans interpretation Clark, a few mistakes but nothing much worth picking up on except - where did you get the idea that a wider boat has a smaller surface area for a given volume? The boat with sections that are nearer to semicircular will have the least surface area for any given volume, whether that is a wider boat or a narrower boat depends on the shape of the sections. Of course hull shape depends on draft so some boats might approximate semicircular sections lightly loaded and others when heavily loaded. For your final statement to be true the narrow boat must be drawing more than half it's breadth and the wide boat close to half it's breadth - quite a plausible solution but I have no evidence to determine whether or not it is true!

JIM

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Post by seismicscot » Tue Apr 26, 2005 11:54 am

Jim,

I must have been boring even myself at that point - I should have added that in this generic argument that narrow = v-profile and wide approximates semi-circular profile, the latter having the lowest surface area/volume ratio!

See what happens when you step out of your area of expertise! Thanks for the peer review ;o)

Cheers,

Clark
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Post by seismicscot » Tue Apr 26, 2005 12:03 pm

I doubt if he has actually looked at one of the Kaspian boats either! I'd be very interested to know where he thinks he saw one. So far there are only a few in this country, and I know where they all are. Anyone with doubts regarding Kaspian's quality is very welcome to come and see for themselves.
Pete,

My feeling is that P&H are worried that there are now manufacturers such as Island and Kaspian turning out composite boats for 2/3 of the cost of what they are offering.

My wife is still looking for a boat, so we may take a trip down to Shoreham to try out the Kaspian boats soon.

Cheers,

Clark
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Post by kaspian » Tue Apr 26, 2005 12:21 pm

My wife is still looking for a boat, so we may take a trip down to Shoreham to try out the Kaspian boats soon.
Clark,

Give me a call before you set off and I'll make sure the kettle is on!

Pete
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