Eddyline Nighthawk 16 or 17.5

Trying to decide between these two boats. Does my size (200lbs, 5’11", 35" waist) preclude the 16 foot version? I may run into a storage problem with the 17.5 boat and its more expensive. Any nighthawk users out there? Also, does the 16 foot version have perimeter lines? thanks!


agree with salty
The NH 17 is a big guys boat. Bigger than you. Or for hauling a lot of camping gear.

You might send an e-mail to guinness1759. He has a pretty yellow decked NH 16 he was thinking about selling.

And watch those Eddyline perimeter lines. Largely decorative. Will pop off in on your hand at the worst possible moment (like when you need them). If you really think you’re going to need them, I recommend replacing the black plastic parts that hold down the line with Impex outfitting (sorry, don’t know the name of the part).

Unanimous-16 is just right
I own a 16 and I now think of it as big for me. I’m 5’ 10’ and 180#. I believe they are now using a stronger part for the lines. I have practiced rescues, etc. and never had a problem with anything breaking. The 16 is a nice boat with plenty of room for camping stuff.

the problem isn’t the line
It’s the deck-mounted fixtures: the line pops right out from under them under pressure. I’ve had two Eddylines built since 2003–a Merlin XT and a Nighthawk 17.5–and it happened on both boats. I’ve only ever been out paddling with Guinness one day, and it happened to him during rescues. We can only speak for our experience, but that’s three for three. It’s only a problem if you pull really hard, but that’s what decklines are for, so Eddyline needs to revisit the subject. The way they have it now, the line is held under a plastic “claw”. When the plastic bends, out comes the line. A rude surprise during a rescue.

Although original poster, there is no…

– Last Updated: May-28-07 8:00 AM EST –

..damage to the boat when it occurs. Just need to rethread the deck line through the "claw" and secure with a screw driver.

As this seems to be the boat for you, I wil email a local paddler, Guinness1776, who has one in like new condition who paddles a different boat now--he may part with the Nighthawk 16. don't know. but he is an honest and kind person.

Had that w/other makes
I didn’t look at it closely when it happened, so it is possible that there was a compounding issue like a screw that had been allowed to loosen or something. But we had the front as well as one near fitting pull right out of an Impex boat one night just coming into shore, when someone got out to pull a boat in closer. And a friend was doing a tow in surf and the fittings in the bow of the towee’s NDK boat tore out.

There are a couple of things that might toughen up the fittings. One is a more robust mounting, another would be good glassing around the part of the fitting that goes under the deck for ones like Valley that screw down.

thanks for adding that, CD
yes, the “damage” done is no damage at all. I got carried away with a pet peeve. And everything CD says about Guinness is right on the money too: an incredibly nice guy. An excellent boat, and right here in our area.

I have a NH 16
I’ve not experience problems with fittings, but I haven’t stressed them much, either.

I don’t think you’ll run into a size problem with the Nighthawk. For one thing, the cockpit is way larger than my Currituck’s - so much so that I have to readjust my spray skirts going from one to the other.

Eddyline Night Hawk FS
If he ain’t interested in the Night Hawk for sale I certainly am.

NH 16
Thanks so much for all of the feedback. I was hoping the feedback was going to point to the 16. I would be interested in a used NH16 from Guiness if he is willing to part with it for a fair price. So, the 16 does come with perimeter lines?

nighthawk 16
yep it does come with perimeter lines. I’m 6ft 200 lbs. & no problem with fit. Had it 2 years & love it

Eddyline had a problem
with a bad batch of plastic fittings. Contact them and they will replace them for free. I did.

Eddyline says 17.5 or Fathom

– Last Updated: May-29-07 7:09 PM EST –

Joe at eddyline responded to a direct email I sent a few days ago and indicated that I was too big for a NH16. Recommended the 17.5 or better yet the Fathom. The Fathom seems nice but is significantly more expensive.

Trust this list
I cannot say anything else. If you want a boat to go camping in for more than a week and you take the kitchen sink, then consider something other than the 16. Eddyline says it has a load limit of 325#. At 200# you are not even close to too heavy for the 16. It will fit a 6’ 200# person easily as others here have said.

I know
I was a bit surprised to have the company recommend a larger yak. Sounds like many are using them without issues in my weight range.

Is there a reason you are only looking at Eddyline boats? You should sit in and paddle others as well, if you can. I have not paddled the 17.5, but I sat in it. It’s huge - for big guys. I have paddled the 16 and the Fathom. The Fathom is large in the cockpit and would take quite a bit of padding out for someone your size (I’m 200, but a little shorter than you). The 16 fit me pretty well when I last paddled it. I was about 5 lbs. lighter at the time. The Fathom is a nicely outfitted boat, but I didn’t much care for it. It’s slower than the 16 and has way too much room in the cockpit for my liking. It also has a high rear deck and as a result the cockpit combing hurt my back when trying layback rolls. Other than that it’s well made as are all the Edylines I’ve seen. Eddyline makes good boats, but I would also try other brands to find what feels best to you.


Fathom / Nighthawk
I tried both the Fathom and Nighthawk. I’m 6’2" and 210 lbs. I was not too big for the nighthawk, it fit fine, but I carry most of my weight in my upper body and not in my legs. Neither boat needed any extra padding for me. I ended up buying a Fathom because it fit my needs better, but am looking for a used nighthawk for a second boat. Both are well built and fast. I posted a lengthy review of the Fathom on the review page.


This is my 3rd year with the Nighthawk. I made sure to sit in one or two before I bought it but didn’t have it on the water till after I purchased it.

Love the boat, now but the 1st year it took awhile to learn how to control it. Gave myself a good scare more than once, but that would be true of most any boat, I would imagine.

I’ve taken it camping for 3 overnights, no problem, then again I come from a backpacking background so it was a simple thing of putting the contents of my pack into the boat with room to spare.

It likes the rough water and handles it fine esp when loaded, visually when paddling you just ignore any water that may be washing over the deck.

Is ths your 1st touring boat?

1st touring boat
yes this is my first touring boat. I use a Pamlico 140 now mainly for just playing around and fishing. I will be in Northern Michigan in the early Summer and an outfitter up there has offered to let me demo a NH16 when I’m there.