Length Of Hurricane Phoenix 120

I just bought a used Hurricane Phoenix 120 over the internet. The price was right and the shipping free. When it arrived it seemed shorter to me than the 12 feet advertised by the manufacturer. When I measured it, it was just 11 feet 3 inches in length. Did my boat shrink or is Hurricane misrepresenting its length?

Rotomolded boats are usually shorter
than the molds they are made in. but a 9 inch shortage in a supposedly 12 foot boat suggests the maker also rounded up a bit.

There have been hilarious discussions on whitewater boards about which color results in the most shrinkage of a poly boat. Maybe if flatpick sees this post, he will give his opinion.

2 x 4s
aren’t really 2 inches by 4 inches either.

Lengths tend to be approximate
Very, in long boats too. The usual “17’” kayak is anywhere from 6 to 9 inches longer than that, the original “16’” Elaho was actually more like 15’6" and so on. The numbers you see in call names are more of a shortcut for naming purposes, to separate the shortest ones from the next longer ones from the next longer ones etc in a maufacturer’s line. They are not an actual measure.


– Last Updated: Mar-26-09 12:15 PM EST –

On the website the manufacturer lists this boat's length as 12'.

Pretty sloppy advertising IMO.

I agree that you can't rely on the product name for an accurate length. But if the detailed specifications are off by nearly a foot, I'd call that dishonest.

Standard industry trick
Nothing says they have measure bow to stern down the center line. Measure from stern to bow around the gunnel edge. Chances are it will be closer to 12 ft.

Old power boat manufacture trick

but then why is my Pamlico 140

– Last Updated: Mar-27-09 12:36 AM EST –

14 feet when I measured it, as advertised?

Learned A Lesson
From now on I won’t buy a boat until and unless I have actually seen and paddled it.

Does it really matter?
Not trying to be smart here, but have you paddled it yet? Does 11’-3" paddle that much different than 12’-0"? Even two 12’ kayaks with different hulls can be very different experiences so I imagine a 11’-3" kayak could paddle better than or worse than a 12’ kayak. It is not so much the length as it is the design of the hull. We have a Phoenix 120 and a 130 as family and guest boats. It never ocurred to me to measure either one. I have only paddled each about 5 minutes apiece so I may not be a good resource but in my limited time with each I thought they both were extremely stable, smooth paddling sit on tops. A lot of people use them for fishing. We have taken kids and adults out on them and they had a great time. The Trylon seems pretty tough, holds its color, and looks great, much better than my roto Prijon. They are very light and each time I lift one onto my roof rack I wish my kayak was so easy to handle off the water. Depending upon what you want to do they could be right or wrong for you. Personally I wouldn’t stress about the length. Paddle it and see if you like it. Good luck. Steve

Wait a minute…
You have decided that the boat is unsatisfactory based solely on some diff in length by inches? That has bupkiss to do with whether or not the boat will be a good one for you, as long as it is roughly within that length family. The overall questions of storage, hull shape, hull speed and fit (cockpit and volume) are what matter.

It is always a better idea to have paddled a boat before buying if possible. But you may want to consider getting some seat time and skills work in there as well to be able to assess a boat based on a few more criteria.

I think there is a valid point
to having some truth in advertising. If you call an 11’6" boat a 12 footer that’s probably still a bit of a stretch, but the consumer should be able to compare lengths and widths, and such in an apples-to-apples way – at least on the specs page.

If you paid for a 50 inch LCD and then discover it’s really only 46 inches, you’re not gonna be too happy because you were comparing the price and features with other 50 inch models. The computer monitor size went through this stuff years ago when I was in sales and I remember having customers complain that their 17 inch monitor was less than 16 inches. I didn’t enjoy having to explain to them why they weren’t getting what was in the name and marketing materials. But at least all the mfg’s were fudging the numbers.

IMO, the spec length ought to be in feet and inches from tip to tip (straight line) within an inch or so of what they deliver. Tolerances from one boat to the next out of the same mold should be fairly small, so this isn’t really asking for much. A trusty 25 foot tape measure should do the trick.

I know, it’s the marketing guy and not the mfg guy, but still…


If the specs are wrong…
that’s one thing. But since this boat was bought used, it may well be that a trip to the manufacturer’s page could have found the correct ones. In any case, that’s not what I was reacting to.

The OPer seems to be saying that the boat is unsatisfactory just because it isn’t exactly 12’ long. That’s a good way to choose a ladder, but it’s hardly the only important attribute in a boat.

I checked the spec. It says 12’.
Now I have to go measure the Tarpon,Rapidfire,and Malecite! Oh Darn!

Did you wash it in cold water
and dry it on delicate? Or on the Hot/Hot cycle and Heavy dryer setting? If not, I hardly think it shrunk. It had to have been built that size . . . .


Could be 12’
Many boat manufacturers measure tip to tip along the bottom of the boat which makes it longer.

Otherwise it’s called a 120… it really shouldn’t matter.

Noticed on the review page the
Phoenix 120 is listed as 11’6", so the marketing guys have probably just changed things on the Hurricane site.

I do agree with those who say give it a try and see if you like it. If you got it used at a good price, you can resell it and chalk it up to experience if the boat doesn’t perform well. Lightweight boats are pretty easy to sell as long as they will float…


I pointed out weight to Hurricane
A couple of years ago I weighed a bunch of Hurricane boats and found out that they were all 5-7 lbs heavier than the catalog listed. When I spoke to them, they were in disbelief, but weighed a few of their boats. I was right. They called back, explaining that they had upgraded seats and hatches, but completely forgot to re-weigh the boats before publishing the new catalog. Hurricane is a small company and mistakes are human nature. The Phoenix 120 did change for this year, but I think it was only the deck. It went from having molded in foot wells to an adjustable footbrace. Perhaps the boat did get longer and is now 12 feet.

Hurricane Santee 116
I bought mine last year and measured the length at 11’6"----I measured it again this year 11’6"—The folks at Hurricane Aqua Sports are good people–I’ve talked to them over the phone and met their manager down at Florida Bay Outfitters this month when FBO was having a show and tell–

I Tried My Phoenix 120 Today
It’s OK. I’m probably not going to keep it, though. It’s relatively stable and fast and seems well made. It’s a nice looking boat, but it just doesn’t feel long enough for me. The cockpit is too small. I guess it’s just not a good fit for me. Overall it is just too small for my “massive” 5 feet 10 inch, 180 pound body. Probably a good boat for a smaller person. Maybe it would have worked better for me had it been the 12 feet in length as advertised. I’m sure the Hurricane people are good folks, but this boat should not be advertised as a 12 footer. It’s 11 feet, 3 inches. The missing 9 inches makes a difference for me. I guess the Phoenix 113 just doesn’t have the right ring. On the positive side, I also tried out my new Malone inflatable HandiRack roof rack today and it works great.

size and weight
I am 5’10’’ 210 lbs and 65 yrs old and I can get into and out of my Santee 116 ok