You can tell the owner of Swift is super passionate about his products. I watch a lot of his reviews although I have no reason to buy a canoe. I have to go rent one this year.
If swift really wanted to make a cool option, they could offer a molded closed cell foam side flotation panels that would fill in the area below the tumblehome gunwale. That’s where flotation really needs to be for easy reentry and that would leave the bow and stern open for cargo or whatever. It might only be a couple inches thick, but lining the inside of the hull both in height and length, IMO enough volume could be reached to provide a pretty dry reentry. Easily enough to stay high in the water and then bail. Easy to do at the factory as with molding it could be shaped to suit the body in the boat and also the hull. Plus they could figure a way to secure it where you didn’t have to use it if you didn’t want to. Might add a couple pounds.
Sponsons work wonderfully for both preventing roll over and aiding in a dry reentry but look ugly and make the canoe wider and catch on stuff. Bow and stern flotation bags keep the canoe out of the water when upside down, but when you roll it you get a big scoop of water in the boat and when you climb over the gunwale you push the canoe down more to really engage the float bags. They work but take up a lot of space and require a lot of bailing.
I personally would rather see something practical like that than a show car finish on the outside.
The interchangeable seating is cool as is the built in foot bar. My canoe I added a center seat position to a tandem and removed the other two seats. It would take about an hour to change it back to a tandem and move my bow and stern float bags to the center. Snapping them in and out in a couple minutes would be cool but for as often as I would switch not be required.
I also really like this idea. I think perhaps you should email their customer service with this idea. Maybe if enough people do they’ll look into it.
Float tanks on the side have been done before. Lotus BJX was an example. They were efficient and elegant but did not allow full knee spread in a solo canoe.
Tripping canoes require pack room… However the modern canoeist is more often a day tripper … Not many of us go out anymore for two month long trips where we have to fit packs in that stay below the shear line.
I know for our Wabakimi work trips that the tanks would have been more of a hindrance than an asset. Full packs have enough air to act as float tanks.
Thanks for the info on Lotus BJX. I wasn’t familiar with them and did a search and found a few photos. I’m sure all things at some point have been tried in canoe designs and likely more than once. I found some photos of the BJX tanks and will enclose one.
They did a nice job with the design and it looks like they could have went much longer and also deeper if it was conformed to the hull curve. The thing about a solo pack boat design in the 14-15’ length is a limited amount of storage space and with conventional float bags a lot of the space is taken up with bags. The area to the sides is tougher to fill with gear and where floatation would be better anyway.
With molding a tank or foam bar the knee area could be molded to add more room for the knees and legs and other area behind the seat could extend more. The type of thing that is hard to DIY but when vacuum or blow molding a tank it is not that much different.
I think the number of people doing extended month or more trips is really a small part of the market and those people really think thru all their options. Just like those people are not going to be inclined to purchase a canoe for those trips because it has a metal flake finish on the hull.
I have my canoe drilled for grab loops both bow and stern and run with painter lines all the time. I would be very reluctant to drill 4 holes thru one of these canoes when brand new. The manufacture could offer reinforced holes or better yet holes joined with a tube for strength and if the buyer wanted grab loops they could add them with a fancy barrel knot on the outside. Many folks also want lacing points and I would never drill holes all down the side of such a pretty canoe. There is no reason those couldn’t be made part of the gunwale design or something like that. It was very easy for me to outfit my used OT canoe as I wanted but doing that to an expensive art piece many wouldn’t do.
I was looking around the Swift page and they have some clever stuff they sell as accessories like gunwale clamps for all kind of things like rod holders and such. They are even trending with the camera mounts people want now. I didn’t see to much on actual safety stuff though.
I have lust in my
I keep watching I’ll be buying a canoe. I need to rent one I have never been in one.
My Bell Rob Roy ('04) has a special “patina” made of many (mostly) good memories. However, that does not mean I’ll be happy about the first scratches and dings on the almost new Magic.
Use them for what they were designed for; paddling.
Almost all boats were once pristine and scratch free. If you are a decent paddler you can keep it almost pretty without too much work.
I have a couple of woodstrips that have won best at show a few times. They have been paddled up narrow creeks and in places with signs that say to abandon all hope if you enter there. I can throw another coat of varnish on them and take them to another show, because I do run into too much when I paddle; though I do when fishing.
Paddledog, here’s one possible usage scenario for you for that Swift solo in your original post:
You go pop the rear glass on your Excursion (it flips open right?). Then you pick up the boat and after you stop giggling about lifting a sub 30 pound boat you just stick it in your truck like I used to do with my Expedition. Then load the pups and head to the nearest pond and see who has the most fun. We can guide you to a state of the art paddle if you like…pretty cheap compared to kayak paddles for canoe paddles. And I just bet the ease of use would have you pondering other possibilities. There are other canoe folks in your state. If you can test paddle a Swift Cruiser 15.8 like the one shown I bet you’d understand why pack boats are Swift’s fastest growing market; they’re kind of a canoe/kayak hybrid.
It kind of works out that the lightest boat over the long run is cheapest per use.
Long term investment,
now if you need a new color every year, not a good idea,
The lighter the boat, the slimmer the wallet initially, but the lighter the boat the more often it gets used.
Ultimately the wallet is fatter. It does take time. Not for day traders.
I guess the question kind of comes down to will I pay extra for the metal flake basket weave finish over just a boring solid color like dark green. Is there a color that might show wear and tear less etc.
Light weight is a definite plus and for some people a must have to get used often requirement. In my case I wish my canoe was 60# instead of 80# and I can only dream of 40# but once in the water for me it’s not a problem. In fact if my boat was 40# I would risk throwing my back out showing off how I can still sling a canoe overhead and at 80# I get out my wheels and roll it to the car and then use my lifting aid to get it on top. Maybe an extra 10 minutes to the process. When I get to where I’m putting in the wheels let me take one trip from the car to the water as I load my gear at the car and once to the waters edge I’m in like a flash.
There are all kinds of tastes when it comes to flashy things be it cars or boats, so for sure there is a market for these boats.
If I win the powerball for sure I will buy a couple.
I wouldn’t put boats in my vehicle I think it’s dangerous. Rental place I say I’ll go to every year but never make it to try one.