Looking to buy a used kayak. Suggestions?

I’ve had a few kayaks and haven’t yet found the one for me. I’m currently using a Sundolphin Aruba 12SS and it is mediocre, at best. I’ve modified it a bit to handle my long legs and sealed up the foam bulkheads to make them watertight. It does OK but I just want something longer with a better hull.
I’m looking for something for easy rivers and lakes. Basically, I like to paddle the lakes and reservoirs here in and around Utah. I also like to go camping, so something with good storage is best for me. I used to do a lot of hiking, but my knees don’t like the downhills anymore.

Here are a couple that I’ve found locally that have piqued my interest. I’d love to hear thoughts on these and/or any other I should be looking out for:
This one is a bit more than I can afford and probably overkill for my needs, but I sure like it! https://www.ksl.com/classifieds/listing/50326345

Both the Squall and Alchemy are very well-regarded kayak models and both are listed for very good prices for quality boats, if they fit you well and are in good shape (plastic not dried out and brittle looking and no “oil can” dents in the hull). There are owner reviews of both of them on this site and you will get a lot of information by reading them (under the “Reviews” tab above). The Alchemy doesn’t note which size it is but if it really is 53 pounds it is probably a large. If you can go look at them, check out the fit. Some say the Squall is snug for them and you did not state your body size. ideally you would be able to test paddle them but that may not be an option.

The red sea kayak is a weird make I have never heard of: Hangchua sounds like it was made in China. The Chinese are known for making knockoffs of US and European kayaks so I would be suspicious of the build quality of that one and avoid it.

What size are you? Squall looks good if you fit for 450. Probably get a little not advertized price. Can you try any of them


Says large paddler what ever that means. What year is it?

There may be some general information here of use to you:

Well if you two sea kayaks are acceptable wipe the rec boat off the list.

The Alchemy is hardly a “rec boat”. Don’t know why they would ID it as such in the ad. It’s a competent touring kayak.

I think the Alchemy would be a good step up from what you are using, and meet most of your needs. $500 is a decent price (they are $1200-1300 new). I agree it is not a recreational class boat - but a day touring sea kayak that is good for beginners through advanced paddlers. Few would classify me as a recreational paddler nor a beginner, and I own and paddle an Alchemy. I have done up to 4 nights of camping out of mine. My profile picture here on p.com is me in an Alchemy.

They did make 2 versions of the Alchemy (2017 was the last year for Alchemies), an S and an L. If it is the S, you mentioned long legs, so you may have issues fitting. L should be fine for most people (I am 6’, 32" inseam, size 11 shoes, and 215# and use an Alchemy L just fine, with room to spare).

Thanks for the suggestions. I’m 6’-4". I’ll find out which model the Alchemy is. I’ll do some research first as I’ve found most sellers don’t know those sort of specifics.

PaddleDog52, what do you mean by “a little not advertized price”?

Typos! usually if someone is advertising 450 you can offer 400. Unless they say 450 firm. All they can say is no. Then you have to decide. Last two digits of serial number are the year.all boats have HIN numbers since 1972.

@PaddleDog52 Gotcha, that is what I thought you were saying, I just wanted to make sure I wasn’t missing out on some secret buying trick or paddler code since I’m new to the site and paddling lingo.

I think based on the weight that the Alchemy is a large. But you should ALWAYS sit in any kayak for sale before buying it. That will be the true test. Even though I am short (5’ 5") because of the way my feet turn out (duck-footed) I can’t fit comfortably in some normal adult sized boats that narrow too sharply where my feet are placed. It’s kinda like buying shoes…