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Looking for a kayak

Hi,

I had an inflatable kayak and it was great but I found a hole in it today and I have been wanting to look at actual kayaks anyways.

I mainly use the kayak for just paddling around and some light fishing. I would like to be able to swim off it too.

Here are what I have been looking at

Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100

Perception Swifty Deluxe

Future Beach Trophy 126 Deluxe

The most important things to me are tracking and speed, however I don't want to sacrifice everything else just for that. I prefer sit inside but sit on top is safer and easier to swim off of.

I am open to other suggestions but I can get the above locally so any suggestions would have to be able to be shipped to my location and still stay below $400.

Also any recommendations on a paddle? Thanks

Comments

  • @brendon7358 said:
    Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100
    Perception Swifty Deluxe
    Future Beach Trophy 126 Deluxe

    The most important things to me are tracking and speed, however I don't want to sacrifice everything else just for that. I prefer sit inside but sit on top is safer and easier to swim off of.

    I am open to other suggestions but I can get the above locally so any suggestions would have to be able to be shipped to my location and still stay below $400.

    I suppose "tracking and speed" are relative, because your list includes boats that are only one step up from what I'd refer to as "pool toys". Call me an elitist if you want. Better yet, call me experienced.

    That isn't to say you can't have fun with these boats in calm protected water close to shore, but anyone making claims about great speed and tracking relative to these boats is full of BS.

    Rather than buying a new bottom of the line box store "kayak", consider something mid range and used. Your preferred local classifieds will almost certainly yield something better than your current short list.

  • Where are you located? Craigslist or FB marketplace in good areas should have many great deals on used boats, and you can often find packages that include paddle & PFD.

  • Yeah - you are not going to get speed out of a 10 ft boat that is nearly 3 feet wide. Speed means longer and narrower, as does tracking.

    Also if you want to swim off it, you need to be able to get back into it from the water. The Swifty is a serious problem there, for most people it can't be done. The SOTs may be more doable..

  • Celia and Sparky are right -- a short fat boat is never going to be fast or track much better than your inflatable did. A longer sit on top would be a better choice for your stated preferences and you are not going to find one new for that price.

    Recommendations on a paddle are to buy the best and lightest that you can afford. Better to have a $200 paddle and a $50 kayak than a $50 paddle and a $1000 kayak. Werner and Aquabound make some decent paddles in the $125-$150 range. But with your tiny budget you are probably going to want to look for used boat AND paddle. I have bought many used kayaks over the years and they often came with a paddle -- in most cases I spent $400 or less on both. The paddle (and you) are the "motor" of the kayak and you want one that is the right size and is relatively light with the proper sized blade. Don't get aluminum shaft -- fiberglass is better and carbon is best.

    Tell us where you live and we can check what is available on your local used boat sites that might be worth considering.

  • Hey my little 9 foot Keowee the yak before the Swiftie tracks perfectly - back and forth, back and forth, back and forth, and I can easily hold 2 MPH all day long with a strong wind behind it

  • edited July 10

    I live in Goldsboro North Carolina. I should have specified, I already have a small powerboat so most of the reasons for a nicer kayak don't matter to me i.e. Paddling long distances or in waves I would just use the boat.

    I plan on using the kayak just every once in awhile in small ponds, and lakes. With only light fishing and not going very far or for more than a couple hours.

    By tracking and speed I meant just out of the options in my price range, I rented a kayak once (no idea what it was) and I could paddle it pretty quick, it didn't tire me out and I could swim off of it. I think it was a sit on top, so I just want something like that. Paddling the inflatable would tire me out super quickly, couldn't get any speed and if I took the skeg off good luck keeping it straight but it was fine with the skeg.

    I don't mind buying used but all I have seen here are Walmart kayaks being sold for $100 over what they cost new.

    Local stores I have available are
    Walmart
    Dicks
    Dunham Sports

    This was the kayak rental place, they don't say what they are but maybe you could recognize them
    https://www.crosswindsboating.com/kayak--sup-rentals.html

  • You have two primary contact points when kayaking -- your butt and your hands. I upgraded from a basic fiberglass paddle to a Werner full carbon fiber paddle. What a huge difference. Even moving up from a basic paddle to a good full fiberglass will make a world of difference, due to the lighter weight and greater responsiveness...

  • Brendon, I know nothing about SOT kayaks but here’s a 14-foot used one in your area:

    https://raleigh.craigslist.org/boa/d/asheboro-kayak/6931231592.html

    For SINKs there are a few Wilderness Systems boats in the 13-15 foot range around your price point on CL, and a Perception Airalite 13.5 they’re asking $550 for, but maybe would take less. In any case there’s stuff better than the new ones. Take a look and ask on here. And give your height & weight.

  • @JackL said:
    Hey my little 9 foot Keowee the yak before the Swiftie tracks perfectly - back and forth, back and forth, back and forth, and I can easily hold 2 MPH all day long with a strong wind behind it

    The Keowee and Swifty have different hull shapes - at least my samples do. But, handling is somewhat similar. The Keowee needs a bit deeper water because of the less flat bottom.

    Jack, only 2mph sustained in your Keowee? Man, I thought you were a racer :wink:

  • @Yanoer said:

    @JackL said:
    Hey my little 9 foot Keowee the yak before the Swiftie tracks perfectly - back and forth, back and forth, back and forth, and I can easily hold 2 MPH all day long with a strong wind behind it

    The Keowee and Swifty have different hull shapes - at least my samples do. But, handling is somewhat similar. The Keowee needs a bit deeper water because of the less flat bottom.

    Jack, only 2mph sustained in your Keowee? Man, I thought you were a racer :wink:

    The swifty is the exact same as the Swifty. the swifty is just a newer model.

    No one in their right mind races a Keowee/Swifty !
    But I will admit they work real well with a skirt in the white water Nantahala River

  • I ended up getting a sundolphin Bali 12 ss, I followed your advice and got a larger kayak. It is 12' long 31" wide. It weighs 48lbs and has a capacity of 395lbs.

    I also followed your advice regarding paddles, my budget was around $300 and I got this kayak for a great deal of $160 (msrp $500). So therefore I have about $140 to spend on a really nice paddle. I decided to get one online so I can get the best I can find without being restricted to it being sold in stores.

    So what paddle do you suggest? I want to spend between $100-$200 on it. The kayak is 12' x 31" and I am 5ft 9inches and weigh 165lbs. When I kayak I will have between 0-50lbs of gear. Maybe at some point I will bring my dog who is 76lbs.

    I plan on using the kayak in ponds, lakes, slow to medium strength rivers (no rapids), and the ocean. I plan on just launching it into the surf and anchoring about 100yds offshore, just enough to get past the breakers.

  • I looked for MONTHS for a paddle... if I could have afforded it I would have bought the Werner Camano. I ended up with the next best (my 2 cents) which is the Auqa-Bound stingray carbon. Minimal differences bust 1/2 the cost.

    I have a Current Designs Kestrel 120, (12’). I’m 6’1, my yak is only 25” wide. I did a 230cm, and although you’re shorter, that 31” boat width might put you in the same category. Check the measurement chats on most manufacturers sites.
    Congrats!

  • @brendon7358 said:

    >

    I plan on using the kayak in ponds, lakes, slow to medium strength rivers (no rapids), and the ocean. I plan on just launching it into the surf and anchoring about 100yds offshore, just enough to get past the breakers.

    It is amusing that you'd not go on rivers with rapids but you'd launch out through the surf in the ocean in a Sundolphin sit on top and anchor just past the breakers. One step at a time. The surf is likely a bigger step than you think.

  • @Overstreet said:

    @brendon7358 said:

    >

    I plan on using the kayak in ponds, lakes, slow to medium strength rivers (no rapids), and the ocean. I plan on just launching it into the surf and anchoring about 100yds offshore, just enough to get past the breakers.

    It is amusing that you'd not go on rivers with rapids but you'd launch out through the surf in the ocean in a Sundolphin sit on top and anchor just past the breakers. One step at a time. The surf is likely a bigger step than you think.

    I understand where your coming from, but I did it before with the inflatable kayak and as long as I timed it right it wasn't a big deal.

    The reason I said no rapids is because there aren't any rapids in my area and I'm not going to go look for them.

  • Brendon, you will want to learn how to surf in fairly soon. Staying inside the breakers often means spending a fair amount of time sideways.

  • Surfing in is what I always do, I carry the kayak out past the majority of the breakers by walking/swimming with a life jacket, then I get in the kayak and paddle the rest of the way. Coming back in I stop right where the waves start breaking, wait for a good one and surf it in.

  • This guy is selling his kayak, and says he’s got a Werner Camano paddle he’ll also sell for $100. Ask how long it is and potentially scoop it up.

    https://raleigh.craigslist.org/boa/d/chapel-hill-wilderness-systems-cape/6929380975.html

  • @JackL said:

    @Yanoer said:

    @JackL said:

    The swifty is the exact same as the Swifty. the swifty is just a newer model.

    My Swifty and my Keowee hull bottoms have different shapes, so the design of one or the other must have changed at some point.

  • Took the kayak out for the first time today on the river. I ordered a werner camono paddle (Craigslist guy never responded) but it won't be here until Wednesday so I just used the paddle that came with my inflatable kayak.

    The seat is super uncomfortable, not much back support.
    I was able to get it reasonably quick but the paddles are terrible and tired me out really quickly.

    I ordered a new seat, some handles to make carrying easier, an anchor trolley, and some cleats to make it easier to tie to stuff (docks, vehicles, etc). I also have my previous fish finder from my boat I am going to out on there. Will report back once I have made all the modifications.

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