Looking for a 12-15 ft kayak

Hi. I also posted this as an ad but wanted to have more exposure. I’m looking for a used12-15 ft carbon, thermomolded or fiberglass kayak. I paddle mostly on slow rivers, back of island sounds, and lakes. I want something able to withstand the occasional rock or oyster bed. I’m 5’4” and 130 lbs. I can lift up to 50 lbs onto my car but prefer lighter. I’m in central NC and can travel a couple hours to see a boat. Thanks in advance

I think you need to refine your specifications a little beyond just length and material build. Why limit yourself up to 15 feet and why not consider polyethylene and thermal plastic as well as composites? You should do a lot of looking at a good kayak shop if possible, or at least on the internet to get some idea of which attributes you prefer. Not all kayaks are equal per given length, or build.

If possible, you should demo at least a few really good boats to get some idea of what a good boat should feel like. I guess I am assuming your experience is somewhat limited due to the nature of your inquiry. If I’m wrong–sorry about that.

Thank you for the comment and ideas. I have some experience and have owned a small rotomolded plastic boat as well as a 16 ft fiberglass Arctic Hawk. I hoped to buy a Delta 12 ft but all local stores are out. Also preferred to buy used if possible.

Not fiberglass but an all carbon fiber Lincoln Chebeague LV is at my place looking for a home from a client looking to get herself a longer boat.

Nice. I’ve not had a carbon boat before I don’t plan to drive it into rocks but how does it handle the odd scrape.

I would love to see it. I’m in Winston-Salem, NC. Also, what is your asking price?

I am with @magooch - be helpful to know more info. This would help us guide you to suggestions.

Along with why the under 15’ composite, things like your body size, what type of waters you intend to paddle, and what types of trips you plan to do.

Note - the Delta is not a composite boat, but a thermoformed boat. Does this mean thermoformed would be Ok? This could expand your horizons, as there are not a lot of 15’ and under composite boats on the market (especially used, as most of the under 15’ composites are more recent designs).

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Lincoln is top quality hull. Look on YouTube on how they are built. I think they’re good as any. They are super light also.

Thank you. Will make suggested edits.

Composite boats are generally not the best choice for oyster beds or rocky shores unless you like doing gelcoat repairs.

Few boats are constructed using only carbon fiber anymore. Carbon fiber cloth is very light, but brittle. Like fiberglass you can easily put a hole in it if you hit something hard enough. Most boats in this class now use a carbon fiber/Kevlar fabric. Carbon fiber for weight and Kevlar for strength. If you hit something with a boat like this, or a Kevlar boat , you may break the gelcoat, but it is extremely unlikely that the boat will leak.

Rotomolded and other plastic boats are nearly indestructible in normal use. Their disadvantage is weight. This is a factor in getting the boat to and from the water and on and off the car. Other than acceleration, boats of the same model but different composition do not differ that much once in the water.

Prices rise steeply when going from plastic to fiberglass, to Kevlar and them carbon/Kevlar. Aramid is a Kevlar variant.

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Great in a nutshell explanation.

I’m pretty sure the logic translates to canoes as well as kayaks?

I tended to fall on the cheaper more indestructible end of things and willing to pay the weight penalty. Others want the space age construction for their reasons.

I remember a discussion on one of the bike forums where folks were picking away at every ounce of weight with carbon fiber and exotic materials and here I am riding an indestructible steel frame touring bike and I said I know how to get 40 lbs of weight off my bike, it is all sitting on the seat post. Many of the guys enamored with space age and getting every ounce out of the bike could themselves trim off 20-30 lbs off the seat post.

There is something to be said about not worrying about sliding your boat down a dirt path or dragging it back up one. :canoe:

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I could never drag my kayak anywhere except a few feet off the beach.

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