Choice as all-rounder

Looking for as close to a do-it-all 'yak as I can find now that storage is an issue. I have spotted that nice Xcite Hardcore on the boards but also found a Cetus MV and a Nordkapp LV (both new) for the same price.

I have paddled a Nordy LV but not the Cetus MV or Xcite - so would anyone with experience think either of these boats would a better choice than the Nordy LV for an all rounder?

I would use it for playing in surf, bumpy water and doing trips < 15 miles with a light kit. I have paddled surfskis/racing kayaks so stability is not a big issue.


XCite does it for me

– Last Updated: Sep-03-13 1:21 PM EST –

XCite hadrcore gets my vote (since I have one in S-size). It's literally unbreakable, very stiff and very stable despite the width. I've bounced off rocks surfing thinking I busted gel-coat only to find minor scratches.

Overall the boat is very maneuverable, stable on edge, it's not a very fast boat though (I have difficulties keeping it above 4.3mph for cruising speed). It is very easy to roll. No appreciable weathercocking in light-to-moderate winds (and there is always a skeg). One problem with the skeg is that it gets easily jammed by gravel/coarse sand, so you need to be careful when launching.

Surfs anything - it's a joy to paddle in following seas in any wind :)

In short, I think it's one of the best boats I've sat in.

Tried 2 of these…
… Went with a Nordlow. The Cetus didn’t fit me as we’ll, and just didn’t feel right overall. It was the first Sweed form boat I tried, so maybe that had something to do with it. Nice boat, well made…

For me the Norlow was not on my list, but felt the best all around; fit and paddling. It’s a fast boat but is also very responsive, handling like a smaller boat.

Can’t get much better than a Valley, P&H, or NDK, from a quality of build and design.

You might also want to
Take a good look at and demo an Eddyline Raven. I’ve paddled all the boats mentioned and I thought the Raven was the real deal for an all-arounder. Or for that matter, just a very good sea kayak.

Oh no not me …
I’m not looking for a boat. The OP is though.

What suits you
I have a Nordkapp and have paddled the other two (owned by friends). All are great boats for your purposes. But, they do have their unique traits and it comes down to how they feel when you paddle them. For that level of investment, I would rely on your own impressions, not opinions of others.

Good inputs
Agree with the first response regarding the strength and stiffness of the Tiderace boats. I have owned several of them (Xtra, Pace) and have found the build quality to be excellent. The P&H boats come in a close second though with the Valley boats not far behind. (my experience of course) All three companies also have provided excellent customer service too - and that is important to me as well.

I have probably 100 hrs in a Nordkapp LV so feel pretty confident that I know how good a boat it is. Just haven’t found an Xcite and Cetus MV to try yet - though I did try the Cetus LV briefly 4 years ago. (didn’t buy it but can’t remember why) Yes, the previous poster is right of course that I won’t make a decision solely on the opinions of others - but that said - I WANT everyone’s inputs as that is what this board is all about.

Keep 'em coming!!

Cetus MV of course
A used carbon/kevlar one with metal flake dark blue deck and red seam and keel strip, in particular.

I even know where you can try one out.

See you on the water,


The River Connection, Inc.

Hyde Park, NY

North Shore
I would add to your list the North Shore Atlantic as well. Great all around boat, nicely built and outfitted.

Thanks all…
I went with a '12 Xcite - the build quality, stiffness, and handling was too much to pass on. I admit that the Cetus MV took a close second - but since my main focus is paddles under 10 miles and surfing/rough water play, the Xcite moved to the front.

As to the Nordlow - very tempting but didn’t feel as secure in it and will push myself more in the Xcite.

Thanks again…

That’s the thing with the NordLow
It feels great to play and trip but if you find yourself over your own limits, it will not help you like a Cetus or some other boats would…

That said, where is that Nordkapp LV that you mentioned? I paddle the RM and like it quite a bit, but a lighter version would be welcome (the 56lb advertised weight on Valley’s site for the RM is WAY off the actual weight of my RM, but I read that the composite comes near it’s advertised weight).

The Nordlow I had lives in NC I believe…tried to get her back after I sold her but the guy loves her too much to part with her. Saw Youtube footage of him taking her out into hurricane Sandy last year and I can see why. He is obviously a better paddler than I will ever be!

Try them
Those three boats have really different fits and feels, in my opinion. You’ll just have to try them. The xcite has a different paddler position from the other too. And the Nordkapp has a distinctly different hull shape than the other two. Any might be a good all-rounder, but you’ll have to see what’s right for you.

Got it. I think the days of …
… Sell-off of Nordlows by owners who determined these are not the right kayaks for them are over :frowning:

So, normal to premium used prices apply …

You really need try a Tahe Greenland T
This is a medium volume kayak that is a joy to paddle. Until I paddled one I had no idea that there was a kayak that was so responsive and neutral in any condition. If you haven’t paddled one you won’t understand. If your looking for a great all around kayak you must give it a try.