Foam core or not?

I’m looking to get my first solo canoe next spring.

Under consideration are the PB Rapidfire, Savage River Otegan, GRB classic XL, Bell Magic and a Superior Shockwave. What are the advantages or disadvantages of the foam core. Any other impressions of these canoes would be appreciated. The boat will be used in flatwater for day trips lasting 10-12 hours and some fishing.

Maybe no disadvantages for your
planned uses. Even the best foam cores can pose repair challenges if river use causes them to be dragged over rocks or whomped on ledges. I worry about that because I have a Bluewater Chippewa which handles well enough for easy whitewater. I’ve heard that, besides rocks punching or munching into the core, there can be problems at the edges of the core when the chines or bilges are hit.

But you’re not contemplating whitewater use, and you’ll probably not be using your boat on many rivers.

I am not a fan of UL foam core boats

– Last Updated: Oct-11-09 9:50 AM EST –

as they can break and crack when loaded with tripping stuff (which increases stress) if you have an accident( and are sometimes very difficult to fix) but for day trips lightly loaded..the foam core boats might allow you to get out there more often.

I am more curious about what you are looking for. You have included some very different boats.

What cracks, the foam inside the core?
I can’t conceive of the inner or outer composite layers of our Bluewater core cracking, because of the amount of Nylon and Kevlar in those layers.

all foam layups are not the same
and yup the kev and the foam core both have several cracks. We never were able to seal them successfully and water got in and rotted the foam after 20 years.

Perhaps had we done it right in 1991 the tale would have been different

I plan to use the canoe for exercise and fishing. I will use a double blade paddle, mount the seat low and use footrests. I like the looks of the shockwave best and have discussed a carbon/kevlar layup with the builder. The other boats are ones that I like the looks of and at least from what I have read should be quick. I’m just not sure the foam core boats would hold up well to my weight in the long run. I weigh 270lbs and probably take 20lbs of gear with me each trip. I use a Pungo 140 now and want something a little quicker, lighter in weight and with easier access to my fishing gear.