Once again please don’t flame me for asking this question. I fully understand that people’s opinions of boats vary, different boats perform differently for different people, etc. However, please make some generalizations here. Unfortunately I don’t have the opportunity to test paddle these boats easily so I am trying to get some info before doing so…
I am 5’8 and 190 pounds with most of my weight in my upper body. I paddle a Greenlander Pro most of the time and have an Avocet as a surfing and play boat.
I like the Avocet, but find it lacking in secondary stability. I think I am just getting too heavy for it.
I am considering another boat as a replacement. I want something playful that surfs well and that will have good secondary stability for me.
I am considering the Romany and the Anas Acuta. The Anas Acuta would seem to be a good match for my Greenlander Pro I would think; although I have heard that it paddles much differently despite the similar chines.
I have actually heard that the Anas Acuta and Romany paddle fairly similarly despite their much different appearance.
What can you tell me based upon your experience with the Anas Acuta?
Given my height and weight (fairly non-standard as far as paddlers are concerned) can you tell me if one boat might be better than another?
Again, I think I am getting on the heavy side for the Avocet. The Romany is very similar so perhaps I am heavy for it too. Not sure. The Anas is a bit longer and therefore should have a little more overall volume (despite the lower deck and narrower width). Perhaps it might do better for me???
What do you think?
If you’re too heavy for the Avocet (which you’re really not, it just doesn’t feel right to you anymore), you’re likely too heavy for the Anas Acuta as well. But don’t rule it out until you’ve tried one.
Of the two, IMO, the Romany would be a better surfer/playboat for someone your size.
But definitely try them both first. My money would be on you liking the Romany better.
try the Romany.
I believe this is the new (in name at least) higher-volume Romany.
Not too heavy
You’re not too heavy for the Avocet. Many of the people I know who paddle Avocets are around your weight (some heavier).
I’m pretty sure that an Anas is lower volume than an Avocet and maybe lower volume than a Romany.
I’m 180 and find my Romany a ball of fun. I wouldn’t say it is a better boat than an Avocet, but it does feel different.
Having just spent two days on the Deerfield in my Inazone, it seems not wholly dissimilar in feel to my Romany. Think of the difference in feel between an old school boat and your Diesel. To me an Avocet feels more like an old school ww boat and the Romany feels more like a planing hull boat.(I know the Romany is a displacement hull.)
you aren’t too big
i have 5 inches and 25 pounds on you and most of that is too high as well and don't find any problems with the avocet...fun little boat.
that being said, i have been paddling a romany surf since it came off the trailer here and it handles quite differently...it carves better with a more defined rail than the avocet but some other things are more difficult - i can't get it to do 180's as easilly as an avocet and the av seems to surf backwards straigher without the edge to catch that the rs does and so surfing backwards straight and then sinking the rear and popping it up and over is easier in the avocet. and i think that has a lot to do with the relative chine of the rs to the avocet. that make sense?
so in my experience the rs does surf down and carve a wave face better but with the avocet, i can do a variety of other things more easilly....although, i only had the rs for a few months and avocet for years so i'm sure that's part of it.
in short, they are both fun but with a little different surf characteristics.
as for the aa...ain't no way in hell i'd take that outta the pool! ocean cockpit, tiny little thing that it is! THAT boat, i'm don't feel comfy in and think am too big to paddle.
Sounds like a condition I wouldn’t want while paddling!
my less than 2 cents…
If you’re overweight and unstable in the Avocet, the Anas Acuta definitely won’t be a good fit for you since it has significantly less volume than the Avocet. Length means very little in that instance since the deck is much lower.
Try the Romany out to see how you like it. I think the Avocet and the Romany feel about the same from a stability standpoint and I actually prefer the Avocet all around but I’m a lighter guy. If you can’t confidently edge your Avocet and you’re in the stock seat pan, can you cut out the seat and install a foam seat to lower your center of gravity?
Honestly at your weight, for what you’re looking for, I’d recommend the Skerray (either glass or plastic) or the Nordkapp LV which are both larger boats that turn on a dime.
Avocet or ???
I’m your height and weigh a little more (mostly upper body). I primarily paddle an Avocet RM.
Buy a Cetus.
What’s the max. recommended load?
I’ve wondered what the max load (paddler + gear) is for which these boats will perform well, from the designer/manufacture, and from user experience.
Romany - no load numbers on the web sight. I paddled it at 230 lb body weight and maybe 25 lbs gear and it felt like it was sitting too low in the water for good performance in 1-2 ft beam and quartering chop. It felt like the waves were pushing it around a lot, certainly relative to my T170. I think waves were grabbing the deck. (Marvelously wind neutral though.) I concluded that maybe 220-230 lbs total might be ok, but not 250-260 for ideal performance.
Avocet - Web site says up to 175 lbs is ideal. I assume that’s total load, paddler + gear.
Anas Acuta - Web site shows the plot for the Aquanuat when I click on the Anas, so don’t know.
Can anyone fill this in a little better, just from a performance under load perspective?
Let me clarify a bit…I guess that the wording “too heavy for” is a bit strong. A better way of saying it would be that I think my weight is heavier than optimal for the Avocet. I feel that my weight results in less secondary and a sort of a “flat tire” feel in the water as I have little free board.
SECONDARY STABILITY PREFERENCE: I can very confidently edge the Avocet and am comfortable with it in rough water. I have had it is very rough surf and clapotis. However, it does require some quick instinctive bracing in rough conditions, and requires a little more push on the paddle when bracing on a wave being side surfed (when the boat is starting to slow down and paddle support starts to decrease) whereas a boat with a bit more secondary does not. Furthermore I just kind of like that edge to lean against when edging deeply on bow rudders, etc.
VALLEY SITE: The Anas Acuta does show the plot for the Aquanaut on its weight distribution plot. Obviously a mistake; however, the Pintail which is about the same boat has a weight plot and shows about 160 at the middle of the curve…higher than the Avocet’s 130.
ROMANY: I have paddled a Romany some. This weekend I paddled with Nigel Dennis at the NC BCU Symposium and asked him about my weight / boat combination. He said I was boarderline for a Romany and said that when loaded with kit my stability would probably suffer a bit.
I like this boat and am leaning toward it. I have paddled two of them on seperate occasions with very different results. The first was a newer model. Had no backband which I don’t prefer. Found it to have outstanding secondary and very confidence inspring. Almost a bit boring in the surf. Surfed well with its higher rocker. The other was one that I recently purchased and paddled two days in the surf last weekend. Very different experience. As it turns out this one was a very early model that had a much lower front deck…much like a LV (according to Nigel Dennis himself who told me that it was not an LV but fit like one due to its age). It fit way too tight. As a result handling suffered. Stability was poor on it as well, maybe due to its tight fit. I actually went over in it a few times in the surf which I never do (but it gave me some good rolling practice). I did find it to surf well though and really liked the rocker. Just did not like the fit and the stability profile which again I think is due to the overly tight fit at the thighs. This boat is now for sale as I just can’t paddle it.
So as you can see my experience with the Romany is varied. I am leaning towards one though.
ANAS ACUTA: Looks like a great boat but maybe it is too low volume for me. Also not crazy about ocean cockpit. Also looking at the very low deck height I think it would give a very tight fit at the knees or would require a very straight legged position in the boat (which I guess is typical for a Greenland style boat)
I wouln’t recommend the Anas Acuta…
...as you're nearing the maximum practical weight for it and it's really not a great surf boat. My experience with it (I own one) is that while it catches waves pretty easily, it tends broach hard and fast, and you can't correct it once it starts to go. I suspect that it's a function of the hard chines and slab sides. Don't get me wrong, I love the boat, but it has its limitations. BTW, the foredeck is not particularly low (~12").
For what you're talking about doing, a Pintail (I own one of them, too) or a Skerray (I paddled one for 2 1/2 weeks in Shetland) would be a better boat. The Pintail - especially the pre-'95 design - surfs much better than the AA. The Skerry can be thought of as a slightly bulked-up Pintail, slightly wider and deeper (~1" in both dimensions). You don't hear much about it, but it's an excellent boat.
While I think a regular Romany would be fine, the word I’m hearing from those who have played in the boat seems to indicate that the Raomny Surf may be the boat that would best suit your current desires.
As already noted, it replaces the Romany HV (aka Poseiden). It has a slightly longer waterline, harder chines and larger cockpit than a regular Romany.
There are a few in country. Tom Bergh has a couple (MIKCo). I believe the one in which Rick has been playing is one of Tom’s. Of course, they are so new, you won’t find one used.
tom has several romany surfs for sale and one in the fleet...i was paddling the fleet boat for awhile.
tom's off of portland, maine (maineislandkayak.com) if you are interested in talking with him about the boat or are going to be up that a ways.
and in looking at your profile bowler...several of us were driving south to the keys a few years back and passed a sign on 95 that said "havre de grace" and then some other very easilly pronounced town...so as we drive by, i say, "huh...now how would you say that?" and my buddy quickly responds by looking straight at me and then slowly and phoenetically pronouncing the name of the other town listed on the sign and then says "and i thought you were pretty smart"
still funny to me.
I’m serious …
try a Cetus if you can find one. It’s almost 18’ long, but some have likened it’s turning ability (on edge) to a pintail. I’ve only paddled the prototype on flat water, but it is impressive in turning ability and speed.
It blows everything else mentioned here away in surf! Rarely do I say anything so absolutist about boats, but I’m with ya 100% on that. Some of these boats would perhaps be better all round compromises, but for pure surf, the Coaster rocks…for a sea kayak that is.
sounds like a winner to me.
Light, fast, fun and surfs well.
my $0.02, anyway.
They had at leaset one Romany Surf last Fall. If you are in the neighborhood, you might stop by. It would be interesting to see if Marsha would take her Avocet back as Trade-In…