Have access to Wen’s but not Millbrooks, and cant find AC/DC reviews. Old dog looking for lightest good tracking, efficient, low profile boat for tandem day trips on flat water and occas solo easy river/creek running. Both of these have very similar specs. AC/DC seems good bit less expensive. Any guidance appreciated. Rick
Not the same at all
This is an apples to oranges comparison. The Millbrook AC/DC is a fast whitewater canoe and the Wenonah Escapade is a fast short tripper. Others will chime in and give you an appraisal of the AC/DC. I will tell you the Escapade has no rocker and is shallower. It is a straight tracking small volume tandem. It is narrow enough to be paddled solo by a large paddler. It is best suited to 2 light paddlers with a medium load.
It will walk away from the AC/DC crossing a lake, but will fill with water in a rapid the AC/DC will run dry. It will be lighter to carry, but not as strong.
I agree with your assessment.
But while I think the AC/DC would handle “ok” on lakes, I would not want to use an Escapade on any but smooth and deep rivers. The Wenonah Spirit II would outhandle the Escapade and would be more acceptable for river use.
g2d ; Adirondack not Spirit for this one
The specs set down in the original post are for a low profile, lightweight, straight tracking canoe. The Escapade is those things. For a slightly slower, better on rivers, still lightweight hull; i would go to the Adirondack. The Spirit might have too much freeboard to meet his low profile spec. You know how much i love the Spirit and how many miles are on my boat, but it would be a tough boat to solo for long.
You have more time in Millbrook boats than anyone i know. Tell him how the AC/DC would fit his specs.
But I have not paddled the AC/DC.
The AC/DC was designed by Berry for the “combined” class, where placing in slalom and in downriver are combined. I don’t know the boat’s racing record. It was raced in Combined tandem on the Nantahala and was third behind a couple of more conventional boats, Trippers or something.
So I have to judge how the boat will behave from its appearance on the millbrook.com website. It does have enough rocker to handle ww better than anything Wenonah makes at present. It is narrow and tubular enough to be fairly fast for a rockered boat. With less wetted area than the Escapade, it will be an easy boat to paddle as long as one isn’t trying for high speed. It has enough “bite” at the ends to manage on a wavy lake. It is probably too narrow and too tubular (round bottomed) to be a good poling boat. For solo play and tandem use, an ME would probably be better.
Millbrook offers a 14’ 6" Patriot which is supposed to be a shorter, more solo-ish version of the AC/DC. I have never seen pictures of it, but one could email Kaz to see if he has info on either boat. I know he has paddled all his racing boats, but for outside-designed boats like the AC/DC, I don’t know whether he has tried them.
I’ve not paddled an AC DC but
I looked one over a few days ago. Having only read the blurb on the Millbrook site, I was surprised when the boats owner claimed that it was a Prospector like design. After looking I can’t disagree.
It looked much more like a river tripper than a down river racer to me.
I agree that it would be comparable to the Adirondack.
Based on my experience with my Souhegan, which is Kaz’s standard layup, I would ask and expect to pay extra for a heavier layup. Also I’m pretty sure that Kaz does not put float tanks in any of his boats as he builds primarily for racers.