Well after searching and searching I have come to the conclusion that an SOT capable of open water expeditions in the 16 foot range with at least 400 lbs capacity is not in production.The closet boats I have found are the Kraken 15,the Trident 15.5 and the Tarpon 160 but these are designed for off shore fishing, are way too heavy and are not designed for multi day kayaking expeditions? Any Ideas?
Not a SOT, but a very capable
boat for open water expeditions with a large cockpit, 500 lb capacity, and weighing 63 pounds: Sea Wind.
Hand made and pricey, but sometimes you can find them used.
Last week I met a gentleman who had a Sea Wind on top of his truck in a local parking lot. He had some interesting stories about how that boat saved his life several times while he was paddling it in the Yukon.
Ignite by CD maybe ok for light touring
but probably lacks the load capacity or hatch volume for extended trips.I need at a minimum 50 gal hatch volume and at least 400 lbs load capacity.Something like the kaskazi Pelican (only has 300 lbs capacity) with the capacity and dimensions of the kaskazi Dorado would be idea.
Why a SOT?
400lbs. is a lot of weight in any kayak depending on your size that’s a lot of gear. My thoughts are the longer faster SOTs are designed for speed and not gear hauling.
maybe work on reducing your gear load
have you looked at:
Kaskazi Skua Ar-arx 17’4.5’ x 23 around 50 lbs (comp)
Kaskazi Pelican 15’7" x 24.5"around 55lbs(fiberglass)
perception Napali 15.5 15’8" x 26.5" 65 lbs roto
Longer plastic boats for greater load
capacity will not result in a lighter boat. Not going to happen. If you are wanting more than a 400 lb load capacity in a sit-on-top, you will need to look for a glass/kevlar boat, which will be difficult to find. The krugar seawind might be a compromise for you and this Easyrider Cormorant might also bear some investigation. http://salem.craigslist.org/spo/5211394973.html
Only 335lb capacity though, looks fast.
V6 is very efficient with a 165 lb load.
I can’t speak to it’s performance with larger loads. I’ve never had anything in the hatches on our day paddles.
do the hatches stay dry?
They look sturdier than those on the V7, but curious if they’re watertight.
Never tested them.
Never been in waves that washed over the deck and never directed a water hose on them and I transport the boat deck down.
Friends used this
Two friends paddled 3800 miles on their SOT encountering a lot of bad weather and big waves etc. They used the Hobie.
Here as a fantastic summary video of their expedition. It is very good.
WITH very large loads and lots of high tech gear too.
They became the First Americans to descend Source-to Sea of N. America's longest watersystem under all human power. Here is the video showing their SOT
the OP specified weight is a concern. Stripped Hobies are 110 lbs and they run to more than 130 lbs set up with accessories. WAY too heavy for expeditionary use.
I have a better suggestion: the Feathercraft Java. 15' 4" x 28" beam, 36 pounds and 450 pound load capacity. Can also be packed in a duffel bag to carry on a plane. Checks every box.
Call Lyle Hancock at Folding Kayak Adventures in Colorado and talk to him about the ruggedness and performance of Feathercraft boats (he uses them for worldwide tours.) IN fact there are two classified ads on his site from selling a used Java, one in Michigan for $1400 and one in California for $1500 (half the price of new). Since they can be shipped in a carton, doesn't matter where the boat is located.
I'm on my 3rd Feathercraft -- outstanding boats. There are reviews of the Java here on pnet:
epic v6 or stellar s18s
I have paddled with a friend who has a stellar and it can sit in 25kt winds side on just fine. Both will be 2 to 3x faster than any plastic bathtub sit on top.
The stellar s18R sit inside version is the current round vancouver island record holder.
btw 400 lbs is a lot of stuff. Most big expedition 18’ boats top out at 320-350 lbs.
one of my paddling partners has one of these.
:Load capacity is overstated in my exper
ience.I tour with a boat with a stated capacity of 400 lbs.With my paddling weight of about 210 plus 86 lbs of gear the boat has the same speed loaded as it does when not loaded but it is “sluggish” and slightly less stable. I think that boats really only paddle well with no more than 2/3 of the stated capacity. Therefore with a maximum touring load of 300 lbs I believe I need a boat with a reserve of at least 100 lbs to paddle well over distances.
Pelican would be an easy favorite if it
had the capacity of the Dorado II. Skua is too narrow for my comfort in rough conditions. The perception is out of production.
Capacity load and performance load
are different. When reading specs make sure you know which load the manufacturer is referring to.
I know canoes best and Old Town states most of their canoes with a capacity of 1000 lbs or more. But that is with six inches of freeboard and ergo six to seven inches of boat well sunk.
Canoes perform well at 4 inches of boat in the water. Less so with more in the water. With six inches you would be just as well off paddling a log
So your optimum capacity could be well 60-70 percent of stated capacity
However other canoe makers do give a performance capacity.
In the kayak world, which I have way less knowledge of, make sure you know which capacity you are dealing with.The one that will probably not sink you or the one where you will get a decent performance.
It’s a compromise, like everything
I think you are correct that, in general, boats will be sluggish and harder to paddle when loaded toward the high end of their specified capacity (complicating this would be the fact that the methods by which maximum capacity are determined can vary greatly between manufacturers). But on the other hand, more load capacity means a bigger boat, and at some point a larger boat will, unavoidably, be more of a barge in all respects, regardless of load. I doubt that there’s a way to conclusively decide at which point the negative aspects of a bigger boat start to outweigh the positive attributes which make you want it in the first place, except by hands-on experience.
A few choices
1) Mirage Kayaks 583 - has front and rear hatches. It is a fast kayak and will haul a heavy load.
2) Stellar 18S - Another fast boat, hull shaped more like a surf ski. Fast and touring ready.
3) Epic V6 - I have a friend who overloads his with all the stuff needed to make us fabulous meals.
4) Epic V7 - plastic, one soft hatch as sold, but I put a hard plastic hatch cover on my back hatch and am installing a small front hatch as well.
5) Current Designs - Ignite - should be even better than past excellent CD sit on tops. My 14 foot Kestral heal a load and kept up with the group.
7) Kaskazi Pelican
8) Any composite boat can be converted, just chop out the cockpit and install a sit on top insert. OK it sounds easier than it looks, but now that I’ve make the first insert, it would be easy to make another.