Any comments on Nova Craft...

Kevlar/Spectra material? I am considering purchasing a Nova Craft Prospector 16 in Kevlar/Spectra and was wondering what about the material as far as durability, maintenance and repair. Any comments would be appreciated.

I don’t think they gain any advantage
from including Spectra, but they are a good company with good designs and craftsmanship. I would not pay extra for Spectra, but if their price is similar to Kevlar/carbon/glass for a design you want, go ahead.

There have been problems incorporating Spectra into boat layups. CE Wilson may comment. I’ve been watching the market for some years since Spectra was first tried, and Novacraft is almost the only company to continue using it.

Noteworthy is that Spectra is almost absent from the whitewater slalom boat companies, while carbon, Kevlar, and S-glass have been used steadily.

Tough Enough…
…to survive a night wrapped around a rock in a river with the current pouring into it, with the hull bent so badly that the bottom was jammed hard up against the centre thwart.

Happened to a friend’s kevlar Nova Craft Prospector - he went back the next morning, used a pry to free it from the rock, and it sprang back into shape, with NO leaks! One gunwale cracked, and the gelcoat looked like it was molting where the bottom had been distorted - but the hull was intact and held it’s shape.

He repaired the gelcoat, fixed the gunwale, and was still using it for extensive tripping when he moved away four or five years after the incident. Nice canoe to paddle, too - I liked it better than our kevlar Bluewater Prospector - more glide, truer tracking, a better all-around canoe. Can’t see anyone regretting buying one…

Sounds like the hull design is great,
but I’m not sure what the incident you describe proves about Kevlar. It is quite possible that if Kevlar had replaced the Spectra in the layup, the boat would have come through the pinning just as well.

Reading Novacraft’s write-up for the Supernova, it appears that their “Kevlar” layup doesn’t have much Kevlar. So if anyone wants their toughest layup, perhaps they should choose the Spectra model, or the Royalex.

I have a 17’ nova craft prospector. The hull design is awesome.

I have seen a well used spectra boat and it looks about the same as a well used Kevlar boat. Meaning I don’t think it really tougher. The gel coat is still the same I think.

What type of paddling are you going to do? I typically think of Kevlar boats on lakes and royalex on rivers. I hate the idea of scratching and repairing gel coat after every trip. If you’re primarily on lakes I’d look at the PAL.