Bell Magic is surprisingly stable.

I just bought a kevlar ultra light Magic set up for kneeling with high seat and glued in pads. It is rock solid kneeling and pretty darn good sitting, even within foot braces.

I’ve had a black gold Merlin II for a couple years, but didn’t fall in love with it - the gunwales are too wide for me.

The narrow gunwales of the Magic fit me much better.

I text paddled it on a breezy Tablerock Lake at Holiday Island, AR.

I’d been wanting a Magic with aluminum gunwales for a few years, since I tried one.

Fortunately, even though it was 470 miles away, it was along my vacation route and the seller was accommodating, so we worked out the logistics.

The main challenge after the purchase was how to fit it on the load bars along with the two kayaks they we brought with us. Thank goodness for extreme tumble home.

Thanks Tim.

on your new boat.

The Magic is a super canoe in my opinion. I have mine set up for kneeling, too. Sounds like we had similar experiences with the Merlin II. A nice boat in many ways but a wanted a narrower and better fitting hull. The Magic gave that in spades.

I’m currently paddling mine with a homemade kneeling saddle. Still haven’t decided if I’ll mount it more permanent or stick with the seat set up for kneeling.

Super boat in the wind, eh?! That’s one of my stricter criteria - always breezy or downright windy here in Wyoming. Got a big trip coming up in July on Yellowstone lake where my Magic will get it real expedition trial.

Enjoy your new boat and pleasant waters to ya.

What are you advising? My old Phoenix
C-1 has a very elliptical bottom and very little rocker, yet firms up quickly when tipped. A very stable boat that does not look as if it would be stable. I think your Magic shows the same behavior, the success of a properly designed shallow arch. Low wetted area with stability.

You can set
Magic on its side. Unless you lean over it will not tip.

It still has a large turning radius

Turns just fine…
I did my Freestyle Instructor Certification in a Magic - no issue getting 180 spins in any quadrant with any manoeuvre… and with a wedge, 270+ was possible.

Awesome boat once the seat is raised to the rails. Just need to get used to the off-side rail intruding once the onside rail is dipped into the drink.

Spins just fine. Will turn like
one would expect of a fast hull.

Sure it spins 180 but
do it side by side with a FlashFire and you tell me which accomplishes the 180 first.

Havent tried for 270 in a Magic… You have to stop the Flash actively at 180 or it keeps going.


– Last Updated: May-26-15 5:32 PM EST –

Why are you such a jackass? Yanoer( my same dimensions) might have found his ideal boat for overnight travel. I've a goldenglass model and it's one of my favorites for a weekend or more of camping... This is for ezywater....

Cool! …
I’m gonna have to try that once the water gets nice and warm - I can practice my swim strokes while I’m at it :slight_smile:

Thinking about this I’ll bet that offside gunwale is right there up close and personal, eh?!

I am sure he would
I would too except for my stableful of Nomad descendents.

Magic may be too big for me.
I’ve paddled it three time now and it seems like it’s too much work to keep moving along compared to my shorter boats.

Top speed is good, though.

I still really like the cockpit fit and rock solid stability.

Maybe too much skin friction for me with a boat this size and my 5’6" and 160 lbs, even though the hull surface is in near pristine condition. I may have to accept that my motor is too small for my wimpy motor and poor conditioning. I may be best served with shorter boats. I had similar challenges moving the Wenonah Advantage and Sawyer Summersong without it feeling like too much work.

I’m not getting any stronger.

Magic and forward

– Last Updated: Jun-03-15 7:05 AM EST –

The first year it was available we fitted Magic with a mid height seat because the Bruce Kunze Merlin mold cracked at the split. Magic worked pretty well for kneelers with straight blades, but it is a delta design; strongly Swede-Form, and functions better for sit and switchers style technique with bent paddles.

The bottom shape is typical of most modern Yost designs; elliptical, not arched, in cross section. The secret of DY's recent designs is the chine shaping from below waterline to a couple inches above. Waves seem to dive under the hull, and the chine also allows predictable and stable heeling. Magic was designed too far back to include Yost's newer stepper bow rocker.

For more power forward we need to increase cadence and clean up technique. A smaller bladed carbon bent with probably shorter shaft will boost cadence. Technique is tough over the wires, but stacked hands with a loose lower hand increases forward extension to the catch, and shortening the forward stroke to end just aft the knee at mid thigh concentrates power in the portion of the stroke where the blade is most perpendicular to the stroke and further increases cadence.

bon chance!

Also good to mention
that a smaller blade size will allow reduced effort during the stroke and allow a stepped up cadence. Most straight shaft paddles have a large blade surface that inhibits a quicker cadence. If cadence is increased you can put less physical strength into each stroke to the point of making them nearly effortless and allowing the increased number of strokes to keep your hull speed consistent.

Needs foot brace - how in kev light.
The foam rib appears to be in the way. can’t span between two ribs.

Glue on foam blocks for footbrace
Easy to remove, too.

Wouldn’t that be squishy?

Minicell blocks

If hit and switch…
It definately needs a footbrace as I installed one. Not for everybody, but I installed foot loops( as some racing boats have) on my brace and have terrific 3 point control with this boat. I will add… I’m paddleing my Hemlock Kestral more and more these days as I’m doing more day or campsite originated paddling… Those footloops sort of give me the push-pull effect that really gives me control in many different conditions…

I have installed foot braces in two

– Last Updated: Jun-03-15 6:41 PM EST –

ultralights where I have bridged the foam rib.
I use those plastic cutting boards that you can get at Wally World, (they come in white or green).
Just cut them the size you want, and then rivet them in place. Then rivet your aluminum channel to them.
They have withstood a lot of my pressing on them.

Where there is a will, there is a way !

Jack L

Bell rib spacing is different than
Wenonah and don’t have the metal plate sandwiched in them like the Wenonah ultra light.

I’ll evaluate whether spanning two ribs is possible in the kev lite Magic without adding too much weight.