I’m 6’ and 230#. Will a Folbot Cooper fit me? (It’s for sale over the internet, so I can’t test paddle it first. But a good deal. Would love to get one if it fits.)
Bo, the Cooper will work pretty well
in flatwater and chop but if you venture in the ocean, surf and all you may want to hold out for a Khats whose owner is doing a desperation sale. The Khats is a great rough water vessel.
in the interest of self disclosue
are you by any chance 6’ and 230#?
BBraz has one.
The cockpit on that thing is hugemongous.
I wrote a review on pnet
actually like mine a lot. Just had it out yesterday.
for the difference in price between Feathercraft and Folbot and an accurate assessment of what you are going to use it for, it should be easy to make a decision.
couple of personal modifications on the Folbot and I have a very seaworthy craft. And they cost less than 50 bucks.
Medicineman who owns a wisper was very impressed with the stiffness of the Cooper and says that there is minimal if any difference between them in the overall rigidity of the boats. Obviously Feathercraft is legendary for their quality but to be honest, I have had no quality issues whatsoever with the Folbot and couldn't be happier.
Show him your pics, Brasbraz.
Bohemia, his re]view on Pnet is very comprehensive.
I loved my Cooper
When I bought my Cooper I was 6’1" 240 and it fit me well, but I was definitely at the top of the weight range for that boat. The cockpit was plenty big, but there was still a spot under the coaming for me to hook my knees when bracing. When I decided to learn to roll, I found it was enough contact for that, but barely. After a few rolls I would have some good bruises on the inside of my kneecap. It was much easier to roll when I added a couple of additional knee straps. Still the cockpit was big enough that I didn’t feel any risk of entrapment with the extra straps.
At my weight, the boat rode pretty low in the water making it incredibly stable. It still was able to turn easily by edging. The low waterline really just meant it was slower and wetter than if it weren’t riding so low. I put on a little weight after buying the boat and noticed even slower and wetter paddles. If you don’t bring much gear, you’ll be fine at your weight.
The skin is incredibly rugged. The frame started to bend a bit after many, many rescues and learning to roll in it. Even with the bending, it is just as seaworthy and not noticable on the water. The bending just means it takes a bit longer to assemble.
I haven’t taken my Cooper out since I bought a rigid hull boat last Fall. The assembling-dissassembling process goes fast (15-20 minutes) but I prefer the zero minute assembly of my rigid hull.
The biggest complaint Cooper owners have is the seat. It really does suck. The Folbot Forum has some discussions of modifications people have made to make the seat acceptable, but I never tried any of them.
All in all, I see the Folbot Cooper as significantly less expensive than the Feathercraft boats, but without a significant drop off in functionality. Of course, I’m basing that on incomplete information since I haven’t paddled a Feathercraft.
6’2" and 230
cut the back off and just use the rigid pad between the chines. A standard two chamber paddle float inflated and wedged behind the seat works perfectly for a backrest.
Another thing I just did is thread a 1/4 inch bungee through the material that covers the coaming so it tightens up considerably around the foam coaming. I can now put on a sea sock and a skirt with no issues of the coaming material coming off.
another thing. check on the skin. The original skin was not as robust as the newer skin. Not to say the original isn't good (I believe it may be a bit lighter) but you probably have to be a bit more careful with it.
I feel like I hit the bell
at the county fair!