Hull design?

I was just wondering of those of you who like to play in the waves, if any of you perfer a hard chined boat or a soft chined. In waves two to six feet does one hull ride better than the other or does it boil down to the paddlers experience? Also does it effect rolling?

There’s much more to it…

– Last Updated: Jun-25-06 9:32 AM EST –

...than chine shape.

Having said that, my favorite rough water boat is a pre-'95 Pintail that has a very rounded hull. Compared to it's similar, hard-chined sibling, the Anas Acuta, I find that it's more stable (probably due to the 1.5" wider beam) and it slides around on the water - and rocks - better. It rarely catches me off-guard or does anything unpredictable. In comparison, the AA tends to get thrown around more, perhaps due to it's somewhat slabby sides.

slabs get pushed around more. depends how they’re arranged! alot is based on rocker profile when it comes to wave action, too.


Hull design?
Iam trying to determine as to what to look for in a hull design in my next boat. I have CD solstice, no rocker, very soft chine. Its great for crusing, but I am hoping to start looking for a kayak that will be more adaptable for playing in bigger waves of the great lakes. Any suggestions are welcome.

Learning it myself

– Last Updated: Jun-25-06 6:24 PM EST –

Worth reading:

Take a hard look
at a NDK Explorer. A lot of very knowledgable people paddle them. Must be a reason :slight_smile:

and the reason being…
…people are sheeps following the herd…(Sorry NDK fans).

This kind of reasoning “a lot of very knowledgable people paddle them” => “it must be good” is bothering me.

How about this one: If you need a big stable barge like a NDK boat to stay upright, then you’re not really good.

If it wasn’t for the whole aura surrounding the NDK phenonema, I doubt the wide and heavy NDK barges would get half the attention they get now.


You don’t like NDK. What do you like?

I Would Care More About Rocker

– Last Updated: Jun-26-06 6:01 AM EST –

than chine shape if I were using a long boat for wave play. Less rocker, more likely to bury the bow and then a broach. Rocker will not only minimize pearling but allow better pivoting/turning on the wave.

flatter hull will get up to planing speed quicker than a rounded hull. Once that happens the chine shape may affect ability to carve more sharply or not. But, judicious use of shore side stern rudder is probably more important in long boats in keeping on and controlling on a waveface than the chines themselves


What I dont like…
…is fanboyism. You can do worse than an NDK-boat. I’m not advocating everybody should paddle the same kind of kayaks as I do/like.

I like a range of different kayaks. They all have their advantages and disadvantages. Tonight I’ll be doing flatwater racing - I’ll take an ICF racer. Next weekend I’ll join a Northsea trip - I’ll be in a seakayak.


Not that wide and a barge?
I am not a big fan of NDK boats although they are ver popular here in Northeast USA. However, since the Explorer is listed at 21.5" beam for a 17’ 8" boat, I don’t think it is much if any wider compared to its competitors. As to being a barge, it seems there are those who think it is a beginner’s boat, but those who love rough water play also admire it for its abilities in those conditions. Maybe it is a perception thing, but also perhaps its traits suit both ranges of paddlers in that it is a boat which is assuring to anyone at the level they push it to. So not sure why term barge applies to it.