is this a good deal?

Is no scupper holes a deal breaker for you? I’m more put off by the lack of thigh straps.

Its a decent fishing boat, a bit heavy

– Last Updated: Aug-18-08 10:26 PM EST –

for my tastes. The scuppers aren't important if you aren't fishing where there is a lot of wave action. Thigh straps aren't usually added by fishermen unless they fish fast water or maybe the surf zone. Wouldn't take that boat into the surf zone though, you need the scuppers there with what's essentially an SOT. The price appears to be fair.

I’m not fishing
just kayaking. Thought people might

know more about it on this forum though.

I’ve seen them at a couple of dealers.
I wouldn’t want one if a SOT was my goal, nor if I wanted a SINK, or a canoe. I’m not sure really, where they fit. Or who would want one. I wasn’t impressed with them at all . . . .


looking for something to take out my kid
not going to be “one of those kayakers” who puts his kid in the hatch! Thought this might have space in the middle there, right in front of me, on the floor between my legs (the kids are still small). If it’s the one I’m thinking of, I saw flatpick give a good demo of it at Canoecopia last year, but wonder about the scupper holes (or lack thereof). Looks kinda fun to me.

You’re on the coast, right?
Ocean going? I’m not one of experience there, but I do take my 6 year old son out with me (just did yesterday evening) sitting in my lap in my LL Stingray SINK. You want something wide, because you need room for your feet to spread out with two little feet in between them. So you’re on the right track with a SOT, but in ocean waves, I’d think you would want scupper holes for sure.


It might work for bays, lakes, and slow
rivers. Lots of SOT owners put the kid in the tankwell, but that only works if the child is old enough to be able to hang one by themselves. The Synergy has a tank well that would work in that situation. As far as putting the child in front of you, I’m not sure how much room there is between the seat area and the console area between the legs, one of the things I don’t care for about SOT’s, but apparently is needed for rigidity.

Malibu has what’s called a “gator” hatch available as a child seat. While its a hatch seat, the child sits in sort of a low sided bucket facing the paddler. Its very popular. The Malibu’s all have scuppers. The X-13 comes standard with the gator hatch. But, the suitability of the gator hatch is age dependent, as well as dependent on the individual child…not for a squimy 3-4 year old, but might work with one that age who takes instruction and is calm.

Another to consider may be the Native Ultimate. Its more canoe like, but is very stable. No scuppers, but has more floor room, especially the 14.5. Again, its a bay/lake/slow river kind of craft. They have a high resale value compared to the Synergy or a canoe:

The 14.5 tandem can be paddled solo by removing one seat.

Then, there’s a tandem kayak like the Ocean Kayak Malibu II xl, a stable barge of a SOT, but popular for parents and kids with a reasonable resale value, also relatively inexpensive. I believe REI carries Ocean Kayak products if that’s where you want to buy.

OK also builds the Zest tandem, its about 16 ft long, but I’ve never seen one or heard of anyone having one. The Malibu is one of the SOT’s often recommended for fishing as a solo beyond the surf zone, though less so now that a number of solo kayaks are available for that purpose.

Yes. It’s a dealbreaker for me.
I don’t know where you paddle, though.

There is nothing remotely canoe-like about that design. It’s a kayak. If you don’t want your kid in the hatch, get a tandem SOT. I’ve got an Ocean Kayak Malibu II that works great. I take the center seat and have one of my kids in either the front or back seat. It’s not a glamorous or new design, but it works and works well and you can buy them used at rental places along the coast for reasonable prices.

  • Big D

I’ve got one but
I don’t fish. I really liked the maneuverability. For me, it’s more maneuverable than my MR14. It’s a hoot in moving water. You can also have fun with it

Did you build the Bimini top?

those are really funny
Now you’ve spoiled it for me; I don’t know if I could live without the Bimini top, knowing that it’s out there

its not bad
I was going to buy it if it had a higher weight capacity. I sat in one at the local outfitter and it was real comfortable. Didn’t get to try it on the water though. It definately is a hybrid. You don’t sit as high on top as you would with a true SOT, so you tend to feel more secure, lower center of gravity. If they made one with a 600lb weight cap, I would get one.

Good deal
Yes, that’s a pretty decent price. The dealer cost is probably in the $500 to $550 range, so they aren’t getting much out of the sale price compared to the normal markup for kayaks and canoes.

Thigh straps and scuppers are a bigger deal when you start getting into Class II or better water (or larger surf). This design is much more suited for flatwater and Class I stuff. I’m sure you’d get wet in Class II rapids and could possible flood the thing in Class III.

Based on Redmonds assessment, I’d say it’s a great boat in small creeks, and Class I/II whitewater. Also a good boat for fishing flatwater. If you’re going to be covering a large area and paddling bigger water, there are better choices that track better and glide further (e.g. Tarpons, Manta Rays) that are just as well or better suited for fishing.


Bo, this is a better deal.
Still may not be a perfect boat for you, but it’s a good price and has scuppers. This is basically the SOT version of my Stingray, and I had my son in my lap in it the other night. It was comfy enough, but would have been better as a SOT.


The Manta Ray 14 is very
versatile. It will track better than the Synergy and is a great platform for fishing, photography, diving, camping, etc. I bought one last year as a closeout and found out that dealer cost is just over $500 (retail was $850).

I’ve done 14 mile day trip on a river (day and night trips), Class I and Class II rapids, and I’ve fished and done photography from it many times. It’s no speed demon, but I think it compares favorably to the Tarpon 14 and the Synergy. A drier ride than the Tarpon 14 for me (230 lbs) and I found the Tarpon 14 much harder to turn at low speeds. Very comfy boat too.

Just another 2 cents from me.


that’s 4 cents now
thanks all! :wink: