Merlin XT vs. QCC400

I am looking for my first, USED, kayak and live in Connecticut. I like the Merlin LT, but it was a bit snug and so am thinking about the XT. Someone recommended a QCC400.

Does anyone have thoughts on these two, or suggest another model? Again, I loved the LT but it was tight for me (5’8" 155 lb). Day touring is the goal, in rivers and the LI sound. Thanks.

I have ta QCC 400
It is a great kayak. At your size, 5’ 8", 165 lbs, it may be too big for you. I am a 5’ 11" 185 lbs and I still have room to spare. I also have the CD Solstice GTS, which fits me better.

both good options
I’ve never paddled a QCC but from the cult following I’m gonna say they’re good boats. The 400 looks pretty high volume to me but I could be wrong. Not sure if you were looking for high volume or not.

I’ve owned a Merlin XT… one of the longest held boats in my fleet, and I liked it a lot. Tracks great, very wind resistant, stable enough, looks great, lightweight. You get the idea.

I see no bad options here. Happy paddling, with whatever you choose!

Pass on Merlin XT
We used to carry Eddyline; they have some really good designs (Merlin LT, Nighthawk 16, Fathom) and some really awful ones: Phoenix and Merlin XT.

The XT is supposed to be a big person’s boat but lacks both primary and secondary stability for those with upper body mass. I’ve had more students go over in that kayak than I care to count. I notice Eddyline isn’t making it any more…

I love mine and I weigh 165 at 5’-6". The boat is high volume but I have padded the cockpit and it’s very comfortable while allowing control.

I’m interested in the Merlin LT or
Nighthawk 16. Can you tell me the difference in how these two boats are to paddle? I was originally interested in the LT because it is considerably lighter than the Tsunami 140 I have test paddled. My local Eddyline dealer says the Nighthawk is easy to paddle, but it is heavier. I’m not able to always have someone help me load kayak onto my car.

you gotta love that search

– Last Updated: Jun-21-08 5:13 PM EST –

the p-net archieves option: "QCC 400", all forums, all messages.

So many QCC 400 threads, so little time.

The QCC 400X is one sweet boat, per Rebecca, my friend and partner of 30 plus years.


Just Cannot Go Wrong With The QCC 400
May be “higher volume” and although it certainly can accommodate, it does not necessarily favor the larger paddler. Shorter and stockier, I love the overall handling, true unassisted (skeg, rudder) tracking and forgiving nature in a variety of conditions. Quicker than average, nimble and the cargo capacity to boot, it may be QCC’s most versatile and best all-around boat. I have moved on to a 700x for even greater speed and fitness paddling, but the 400 is still close to my heart (my wife paddles it now) in more ways than one.

Tri, regarding the stability
or instability of the XT…that was my experience exactly. I was almost ready to pull the trigger on one on sale and dealer offered a free demo. Am I ever glad I did…it was just too twitchy for my 210lbs. It was straight as an arrow, but not a good match for my rivers/lakes and rough water. I thought it was my lack of paddling/balance skills (of which I freely admit to a pathetic roll technique) on the XT…happy to read your opinion/experience. Still looking for a 16’ kayak with good manners on primarily quick/fast rivers, larger lakes that get wind occasionally and ocean bays. Suggestions appreciated…pm’s fine as I don’t want to hijack this topic.

The QCC saga continues

Merlin LT / Nighthawk

– Last Updated: Jun-23-08 1:01 PM EST –

I use a Nighthawk 16 as my primary boat and my wife uses a Merlin LT as hers. I have paddled her Merlin LT a few times and here are my findings (mind you I'm 195#, 5'11" tall):

Merlin LT - smooth paddling boat that tracks very well and is very stable (initial/secondary). For me, it rides a bit low and so I feel I'm plowing a bit when I paddle it. Turns easily and is a great boat for lakes/oceans.

Nighthawk - faster boat than Merlin LT that tracks well and turns fairly easily via carving/edging. I use the skeg when paddling crosswind or when waves are coming up behind me. Less initial stability than Merlin but very good secondary. After 2 minutes in the boat, the intial stability is plenty sufficient and is comfortable. For my size, the NH is the better boat. My wife comes in at 110#, and is 5'3" tall.

I would think at your size, you could fit either boat (I think the cockpits are the same size although I dont know that for a fact). Both are very well built and would be good additions to your fleet. The NH comes in at 49# to the Merlins 42#. I toss mine on my Outback by myself all the time (use a step stool). If you have any back / shoulder problems though, you'd want some help. Good luck and let me know if you want any add'l info on these boats relative to each other.