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Cheapest 'Real' Sea Kayak?



  • Exactly What I Did
    My T165 is my 'do everything' boat. I found an Alchemy demo model for half price as my play boat / company boat. I think I'll be happy with this arrangement for a good while.
  • Options
    Q on Romany/Explorer Fit...
    My youngest brother is a bit north of 200 lbs, and is 6' 1".

    Think either boat'd fit him? Or would 'HV' would be a good idea?

    Also, are they still making plastic Romanys, or did that go bye-bye?

  • Coaster vs. Sportee
    They have the same specs. The Sportee page says:

    "Versatile for beginning paddlers who want to circumnavigate a lake or an advanced coastal kayaker who wants the ability to surf big waves and explore sea caves"

    That fits the OP's bill.

    I seem to recall Matt Broze telling me that Northwest did some of their manufacturing, and I also recall Northwest kayaks being one of the few (or only) other line on display in the Mariner shop in Seattle.

    Needed research: Compare the date of Mariner's going out of business with the date of Northwest's introduction of the Sportee.
  • My Sportee
    is from 1992 and the Broze brothers retired around 2005. The guy who sold it to me also had a Coaster and said the Sportee was a bit more squirrelly. It really is a great little boat. The only issues I have with it is top speed. I could not make headway against a 4 kt current like I can in a longer boat, and I need to outfit the cockpit a bit.
  • Options
    Yup, CCK is wonderful
  • Been too long
    but that Mystic was a real nice boat.
  • Brother is regular Romany/Explorer size
    -- Last Updated: Sep-22-12 8:22 AM EST --

    My husband is 6'1" and was fine in the regular Explorer, and it his Romany I sometimes borrow. His first full length kayak was an Aquanaut rather than an Explorer because he found the Explorer to be a bit too supportive - otherwise known as boring. He was running up to 185 pounds, another 15 would not make a difference. The Romany can be more uncomfortable than the Explorer for people with thicker thighs though.

    We have a friend who is 6'4" and weighs more than 200, and after much looking a few coaches have admitted that his Explorer HV is probably too small for him.

    BIG note re the various versions of the Explorer (and the Romany) - all of them are for the same volume paddler regardless of the name. The hulls are the same for the LV, regular and HV versions, all they did was alter the deck height and mess with the cockpit. The LV and HV are more about paddler fit in the cockpit than anything to do with the volume. (This created an issue for small paddlers that they fixed with the Pilgrim boats.)

    The one that may be different is the HV version of the Romany - that might have come off the Romany S(urf) hull rather than the regular one, and that hull was tweaked.

  • Options
    Extremely helpful - many thanks, Celia
  • Nifty Line
    Check out the Nifty boats if there's a dealer close to you. Low price, good designs, heavy but they seem solid, nice outfitting for the price.
  • OK.
    I'll keep holding out for a used Coaster.

  • Rec boat?
    -- Last Updated: Sep-22-12 10:29 AM EST --

    FrankNC: good list. But why would you categorize the Easky 15 as a "rec boat"? It's a light touring boat. I think you may be confusing it with the Easky 13 model, which is on the cusp of rec and light touring. At 15' and 22" wide with a standard cockpit, I would not call my 15LV a "rec boat". It has virtually the same dimensions as my Feathercraft Wisper including a low stern deck and it can be edged and rolled, which are not talents one associates with rec boats.

  • Who is CCK?
    California Canoe & Kayak? That's what came up in my search.
  • Romany
    I have put the greatest range of paddlers (in size and skill) in my Romany and had them enjoy it greatly. It is our preferred guest boat among our 6 sea kayaks. I paddle it comfortably (at 6', 180lbs) and my wife has often paddled it comfortably (at 5'4", 130lbs).

    Nigel & Aled designed the Romany to use as their schooling boat. It is the boat that anyone (who fits in it) can paddle and enjoy. It is a fun, responsive boat that is very reassuring.
  • Options
    That is correct.
  • Options
    Guest boat
    Get something with a comfortable seat, will take big feet, and ain't too tippy, 14 feet in length is long enough, and is easy to paddle. Be more upscale on a comfortable PFD, a nice looking wooden paddle no longer than 205 cm, and a bottle of Scotch. You may keep the boat with time, but you will keep the paddle and PFD. The Scotch will keep you from getting buyers remorse.
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