fast sit on tops

looking for recomendations for fast sit on tops for a smaller paddler

Hurricane Phoenix.

try a different forum …

You’ll get more useful information about SOTs there.

Also check out surf skis if you want to go fast and live in a warm climate.

Fast SOT’s
can be hard to find. Trust me, I’m looking. Check these out:

Now, I’ve never tried any one of these. My favorite SOT is an Ocean Kayak Sprinter, but they don’t import them into the US any more. The Spirit kayaks in the Fit Paddle web site seem to be similar. One of these days I’m going to Austin to try one out.

Surf skis are definitely the go-fast SOT’s and the newer versions are more stable, but most of them have very little storage area.

best guess…
1st …there,s no such thing as a fast SOT…they’re too wide …they are built for stability not speed…2nd/spend the $$$$ and get a hard shelled SOT, they glide/cut thru the water easier with less effort therefore are “faster”, easier, less tiring from less hydrodynamic drag on a slick,waxed hard shelled exterior than the comparetively rough plastic exterior.

Kestrel 140
I’ve got a Kestrel 140 sit on top by Current Designs. Although I’ve never paddled sit insides, it seems really fast to me (I have paddled a wide range of sit on tops over the years.) Only 25" wide and 38 lbs. Kind of pricey, but a great boat.

As I said … not the place for info
You’ll find a lot of folks here who post about SOTs and know very little about the best boats out there.

Agree with String and Eric
I have a Hurricane Phoenix 140 and an Epic V10, both SOTs, and they’re pretty quick.

They’re out there

– Last Updated: Mar-06-10 5:27 PM EST –

I've always paddled "performance sit-on-tops". That's my own descriptor, I've never heard any one else use it.

Here's a few I own:
Tsunami Scramjet
Heritage Shearwater /HOP-On-Top 18 (for sale in the classifieds)
Twogood Surf ski, (with 2 valley hatches, as close to a high performance expedition sit-on-top as I've ever seen).
Epic V-10S

You wrote that you're smaller; there are several new small surfski-like boats that have come on the market in the last few years. The Flash mini-ski is an example:

While they aren't a popular catagory, there are fast sit-on-top kayaks. The ones listed above are also good examples, although I only know them by research, I've never paddels them. I paddle in a group with an OK Sprinter, and that sit-on-top can definitely keep up.

Check out the archives on for great discussions. Fast sit-on-tops are always a popular discussion on that forum.

Beau-guest is mistaken.

The fastest SOT…
I know of that is RACE LEGAL as a SOT and not considered a surf ski is the Knysel Isthmus. It may be harder to paddle than some surf skis however. I don’t think they are made any longer but still some around.

Fast sit on top
is an oxymoron

Then, I guess surf ski paddlers
are oxymorons. You know, like Greg Barton and Oscar Chalupski.

Why is “fast” important to you?
On your profile, you described yourself as advanced and said: “i like just paddling and im also into diving from my boat i like free diving, scuba diving, uw photography and spear fishing.”

For those activities, an SOT is ideal - especially a wide-enough (translate stable) one. Are you looking at the possibility of sacrificing primary functions for the sake of saving t i m e?

After a lot of research, I finally bought a Native Watercraft Manta Ray 12 - I’m short and it’s fast-enough for me. (Other boat’s a Pygmy AT14.) No problem keeping up in group paddles with those paddling touring boats, but then that group is not into showing off who has the fastest boat.

Some thoughts . . . have a good, long-enough paddle for an SOT. Also (and I know this is anathema for some), if you already have an SOT and encounter situations in your paddling activities where you have to make some time, there are those who are adding the electric trolling motors to their boats. Check out You Tube for some interesting video and find rigging hardware for SOTs online.

fast sot
its not for me ive had a clc pax 20 and im paddling the clc shearwater [best boat ive ever been in] i also have an rtm tempo for diving and guest, im looking for a friend that wants to get a couple boats for his kids and i dont want him to wind up with a couple of tubs.i know what my recomendations would be but he’s buying used so the larger selection of decent sots i can give him the more likely he can find a good deal

fast SOT
Look into Royak Marine’s Tour boat set up for scuba. I’m 5’8" at 190 and it’s as quick as my Romany. Easy to get in and out of on the water and an abundance of storage. It is 14’ long with a narrow beam of about 22". One sits low and not atop a platform. It is not designed to be an expedition/long distance boat, but awesome in mangroves and daily “fun” paddles.

Current Designs Zone seemed pretty
quick and stable when I tried it for a bit at ECCKF last spring. 17’ x 24.5" and low profile may work for you. Try a bunch of those suggested above side-by-side if you can with a buddy and compare. R


– Last Updated: Mar-07-10 7:48 PM EST –

1) Can often beat 'regular' SINK
2) Is NOT an oxymoron
3) Are available out there with some searching
4) Second Knysna Isthmus as fast boat -ours IS fast (often in 3 dimensions, LOL!)-and it's the white in Grayhawk's pics
5) Are sometimes AKA surfskis (but not waveskis)
6) May require a steep learning curve to use
7) Speed ultimately is not just a boat, but just as importantly, it is the motor that determines speed, to VERY rapidly


-Frank in Miami

Also look at the
Skua and the RTM Disco. I think Sing has a Disco?


At one time…
…I had an RTM Disco and posted a full review.

Small snippet from my review:

“I reached a top speed of 5.7mph as measured on 2 eTrex GPS units. It was very easy to cruise along at 4mph. Still VERY stable, turns on a dime, and absolutely ZERO bow noise when slicing through the water. I don’t mean some. I mean no noise at all…even at top speed. The thing silently cuts through the water. Rear entry noise is silent, too. The only thing that disturbed the water was my paddle. The boat continued to glide forever after I stopped paddling and is VERY easy to kick it back up to full speed again.

2 sweep turns while sitting still and you can be facing 180*. Lean one gunwale into the water and the thing spins right around. Tight turning radius. Since the rear entry of the boat is as sharp as the front entry, backing is VERY quick and easy to control.

This boat has the potential to be a wet ride, so I purchased a Frogg Toggs Angler Bibb raingear set at Gander Mtn which should help keep my butt from getting rubbed raw if I have to sit in water for long periods of time.”

I’m 5’10", thin build, and bounce between 150 and 160lbs soaking wet. The cockpit can be a wee bit tight and I found myself getting cramped after a couple of hours in the saddle.

Different Forum
Topkayaker is pretty slow these days, but you should go there. At least you won’t get some of the usual BAD advise I see on this thread.