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Sea Kayaks?

Discussion in 'The Pub' at netrider.net.au started by cejay, Jan 3, 2011.

  1. After doing a short trip a couple of months ago I've got the urge to buy a sea kayak. I have no experience or real understanding of all the different types and what's needed for what. For instance, there appears to be kayaks, sea kayak, sit in kayaks, sit on kayaks, recreational kayaks, fishing kayaks.....

    I want to go out from shore, perhaps no more than a km or so from the shoreline, in calm to slightly choppy seas, all year and perhaps no more than a couple of hours at a time. I won't be doing inter continental trips, interstate trips, won't be battling cyclones etc...The seas here are generally calm, with some days of moderate swell but aside from when a storm is brewing not a lot else.

    Prices seem to range fro $500 to $3000 and I'm buggered if I can tell exactly what would fit. I don't want to spend $500 to find that $1000 would have been a better bet.

    Any advice (aside from seeing a specialist retailer, but if I do that I tend to buy!!).
  2. All I can say is, if you can't do an eskimo roll and plan to go somewhere you can't touch the bottom, then don't get a "sit in" kayak.
  3. The longer they are, the faster they go and generally, the more stable they are.
  4. My son was painfully desperate to have a kayak for Christmas (the novel ways that he found to make mention of his need for a kayak will be sorely missed) and as he had certain criteria it made the search quite narrow.

    For him it needed to be a sit-on kayak as he didn't want the hassle of eskimo rolls and draining procedures and he was more interested in paddling the local water ways and near shore areas. He also wanted it to be tandem so that he could go out with friends, girlfriend or family members but would have been happy/settled with a solo.

    Prior to Chrissie off the wife and I went on our search with the good fortune that there's a couple of kayak specialists locally and checked a few out and got a couple of prices. We were even more blessed with the opening of an Anaconda store which stock and were advertising something that we hadn't spotted previously - a modular kayak.

    The Tequila kayak from Point65°N provides a best of both worlds alternative in that it can be quickly and easily set up as either a solo or tandem kayak with the additional benefit that it's modular nature can make it easier to transport.

    As a I mentioned earlier they're available through Anaconda stores but we bought the boy's through C-Kayak at a far better price - check out their website too as it may well give you the answers you're chasing.

  5. Fantastic, thanks for the advice, especially with regards to the rolls. That's something I'm not too keen on learning how to do. I appreciate that longer equals faster and perhaps more stable, but j3st3r that seems exactly what I'm looking for.
  6. Having seen the crocodiles just off shore from Trinity Beach I strongly suggest you get a bloody fast one.

    If my memory is still not too addled I think the boat shop on the Bruce Highway just near the airport turn off sells kayaks?
  7. If you're of a practical sort of bent, you could try building your own, like this for example.

    Probably not the cheapest way to get one, but look at it as extending your skillset.
  8. Cliffy, you need a sit on top kayak. Other than that it really depends a bit on how far you want to go and how hard you want to work.

    Longer equals faster and easier to paddle while wider equals more stable but more effort to paddle. My Seabreeze sit on top is about 260cm long and 70cm wide. It's very stable and allows me to surf it (though shorter would be better for surfing). I could happily lauch it from Palm Cove and paddle out around the island but it I was going much further I'd be wanting a longer boat as mine does take a bit of effort to paddle. My canooe is 488cm X 85cm and is easy enough on the arms to paddle all day but it's also a bit tippy for the inexperienced (should be wider but I modified it).

    Thinking about that, you probably want a sit on top that is longer than 9' and at least 70cm wide. I would think 12'-14' would be perfect and would be what I would get if I lived where you do (ya lucky bastard).

    On top of that you will want a back rest. Annaconda sell them cheap where as specialist dealers sell them for a fortune. Whatever it cost, get it and clip it on anyway cause they save a lot of back pain.

    Some boats come with pedals to power the craft in addition to the paddle. They don't go fast on pedal power but could be handy if you feel lazy. Usually they are for people to control the boat while fishing. If you don't want to cast a line, you probably don't need them but I figured you should know it's an option.

    get an expensive boat then ruin it all with a cheap arse paddle. The paddle is pretty well as important to a kayak as the engine is on a mororbike. Get a good mid range paddle as they tend to be more foriving of begginer technique than a top end paddle. The cheap ones are a pain in the bum for anyone to use though.

    A dolly (wheels) to trasport it from the car to the water is good to have also. It saves the arms from extra lifting after a good paddling session and protects the boat from potential damage through dropping it.

    Good luck on your search. The dealers will also have good advice. Leave your wallet at home and then they cant pressure you to buy while yu ask your questions. Or you could ask the guys that run the paddling tours in Palm Cove about the in and outs of their boats. :)
  9. The first part is correct, but width will detirmine stability. :)
  10. Thanks Seany!
  11. And also the cross sectional shape. The flatter it is, the more stable it is. The more round it is, the more unstable it is. They tend to put ridges in them to make them track better (stay in the direction you want) and increase the strength.
  12. Very true. Most sit on tops are fairly flat and stable anyway, with the ridge as you say so stability is rarely an issue. They tend to be designed with begginers in mind. Anyone who doesn't want to learn eskimo rolls would probably prefer not to tip over in the fist place I guess. :)
  13. Crocs?! Fk that!! I'd be getting one with an outboard!
  14. Long narrow hull equals fast, but unstable and not particularly manoeverable. Short rounded hull equals stable and manoeverable but slow. Flat hull stable, and slow.

    Have you watched the olympics. The sprint (flat water) kayaks are long and triangular, the slalom (white water) kayaks are shorter and rounded.
  15. Because if you can't eskimo roll, then you have to get "out", then turn the kayak over again, which typically means its now full of water.

    If you can't touch the bottom, emptying a kayak that is full of water is very hard.

  16. I thought about what you wrote, made sense from a beginers point of view so edited my post.

    I learnt in a white water kayak, with spray deck, and after learning how to go in a straightline and turn when I wanted to I learnt how to roll.
  17. Hi All,

    Be prepared - this kayaking lark can be bloody addictive!
    Another factor that can change the behaviour of a boat is weight of the paddler, though not really an issue with sit on top.

    Absolutely agree re the importance of the paddle being comfortable. I'd go for a smaller offset (the angle of one blade to the other) than the 90 degrees a lot of paddles are sold at as its generally kinder to the wrists. I use anywhere between 25 and 85 degrees depending on what type of paddling I'm doing at the time.

    One additional thing to mention - pfd or lifejacket. At the risk of sounding like a Nana, these really should be considered essential - and I think in a lot of states its now required to carry one. Get one that fits comfortably and allows you to paddle comfortably, the size and shape of them varies a lot. Give it a good rinse after salt water and store it out of the sun and it should last for ages.

    Oh, and the eskimo roll isnt that hard - and its much easier to learn when young :)


  18. A bloke at work is selling this one at the moment $900. I'm in Sydney though so probably doesn't help you at all.

    Attached Files:

  19. is that a sail?
  20. Yep it's a sail, it has a rudder as well apparently.