anyone paddled an Eddyline Merlin XT?

interested in your impressions.



had one and sold it
and have regreted it ever since. A great little boat. Light, fast, manueverable, lots of room for a trip. Only three problems: 1) The pronounced v-hull extends in a sort of flange to the very stern which makes paddling in reverse dicey; the boat will want to cut sharply this way or that. 2) The cockpit rides rather high up your waist which makes rolls less comfortable/ more challenging. 3) Replace the Eddyline decklines and fittings (which in a rescue can disconcertingly come off in your hands) with something more substantial like the decklines and fittings Impex uses. But it’s a super fun boat; the deep-V hull means you can lean the boat way over and spin it around on a dime. Well, maybe a quarter. Loved that thermoformed ABS material too. If you can find one with the older key hole cockpit, go for it! Parting with mine was my only regret. A sweet little boat, now discontinued.

Depends on your size I’d think.
I’m an average-sized female and found it HUGE. My sister paddles a regular Merlin and loves it. My only concern was a lack of skeg (I have a Nighthawk 16 and it has one)but my sister doesn’t seem to miss having one.

Another LT
My wife has one and loves it. If the XT is of the same quality then I’m sure it is also a great boat.

had a problem a few years ago with a bad batch of deck line fittings. I contacted them after a couple of mine broke and they sent me a new set.The new ones don’t break.

merlin xt
I am looking into getting back into paddling after 10 years out of the sport, and my old boat, a Chinook ( Aquaterra ) is showing its age and is due to be replaced. A local shop is moving out their last Merlin XT down from $2200 MSRP to $1500, brand new. Seemed like a good deal for a Thermo boat, but like anything else will probably be a lot different than I am used to. The lack of rudder concerns me a tad, although I am not used to one kind of wanted one on my next boat, but people tell me the Merlin is fine without one.

I’ll probably be demoing the boat within the next week or so, along with a Valley Aquanaut Club that runs about the same price, right at the edge of my budget. Realizing they are different boats in style. The price was what made me give the Merlin a lot more thought. Wondering about the stability, have heard conflicting opinions…

It felt like I was in a bathtub so it was very stable. Actually, secondary stability was better than primary, as in the Nighthawk 16.

As for not having a skeg or rudder, my sister (who is not a very strong paddler) has handled her LT fine in pretty strong winds and waves without having them.