Well I have been doing lots of research and I believe this boat may be the boat to purchase. After reading all of the reviews the only thing I have a question about is, will this boat be ok for a beginner? Some reviews say it is to tipsy for a beginner and others said it is fine. So if you have paddled one or currently own please advise. Also, before I place my order, what would you have done differently to the boat if you where to re-order it? Maybe move a bulkhead position, change the seat or have the rudder moved up so it doesn’t drag etc… Thanks!
Buy a cheaper boat used .
If you are just getting started that’s a heck of a lot money.
Best to buy a used boat, and learn to paddle.
if I spend 1500 for a used boat and then in 6 months buy a 3000 boat total is 4500. I just want to do this one time… If it means a steeper learning curve that is fine with me…
Not correct analysis
If you buy a $1500 used boat, you likely will sell it for close to the price you paid for it. If you have to post on Pnet and ask if a $3500 boat is good for a beginner or not you don’t know your a$$ from your elbow and you are wasting your money.
It will sure look good on your landrover I bet.
Order the boat sans rudder and
footbraces and get mine instead ! : ) REAL world upgrade in performance, comfort and control.
Can offer a gruppo price w/paddle.
Your math is off
You can usually re-sell a used kayak for about what you paid. Look at them as long term test paddles - that you can trade in for others and learn a lot from on the cheap.
Are there are “beginners” out there who would do fine in a 700? Sure. Hell, some folks jump right into surf skis and K1s. This happens, but is not typical (note the move to more beginner/intermediate ski designs).
I have not met any such prodigies myself - and as much as I love my 700 (x5 years now…) - I would very likely have been cursing it as a first kayak.
A steep learning curve in one thing. A frequently inverted learning curve in cold waters is quite another. Am I saying the 700 is not stable? Not at all. It’s very stable for a 21" wide kayak. After paddling one for many years it feels as stable as a dock to me. However, it did not at first.
I had probably 2000 paddling miles on an SOT when I got mine- and while I was OK right off the first few months were a bit “interesting” in anything beyond flat calm. The adjustment took a while.
If you have too much focus on staying upright you’re not really able to learn much else until you get past that stage, and are not really all that safe in the meantime.
I balanced that by being in warm and familiar waters. I also practiced capsize recoveries from day one, and moved on to rolling.
If you use a 700 as a beginner kayak - learn to roll before you learn anything else (and learn several other options at the same time). Rolling is best treated as a beginner skill anyway. Doing so is far and away the best way to shorten and flatten that learning curve. Huge shortcut and really opens you up to get to know the kayak from there.
Go for the Gold.
I did and got one paddle in before winter hit. I paddled in a small lake during a sleet/snow storm with ice patches on the lake. The 700 and my first drysuit did well. Although I expected to tip, I did not. First kayak, first drysuit, first kayak paddle, first kayak rack....
I loaded it back up on my car which was covered in 1/8 inch of ice. Can't wait until I can get back out there.
QCC of course sells demos and you can get a great deal from a great company.
And don't let it drop off of your car!!! (long story another post) 8>)
Differences of opinions…
Wow! See! What a range of opinions out there. Maybe its because some people are more athletic and others, well, challenged? Let me also say that as a military guy there is no way to afford a Land Rover. I would prefer a BMW anyway. So $3000 for a boat is a lot of money for me to shell out. Its not candy you know. With that said, I don't buy junk (or support WalMart for that matter). I believe you get what you pay for. So I save for it....
Some people are saying I will out grow a boat with a 24" beam quickily. Others say a narrow boat is to much. I thought I wanted a Seaward boat but recently I have found other companies that make better boats for less money which is where I am at now.... Looking again. I suppose this is just rediculas. The more people I talk to the more confused I become. I think I will just go with my gut feeling on this one. What ever I decide I am sure it will make me happy.
As for the Seda Swift, it is a nice boat but I can get a kevlar Q500 for the same price. So if everyone thinks the 700 is to much and you may be right then the 500 is worth serious consideration....
I told you to go paddle some boats! Rent, borrow, demo. Go talk to folks at paddle shops.
If you'll do that you WILL meet folks with a Q700 and they WILL let you try it. You'll also get to try a lot of other boats.
You're ready to spend $3000 and you don't even know if you'd prefer a rudder or a skeg or neither! Here's your math problem: you buy a Q700 and 3 months later someone lets you try their NDK Explorer and you like it more! Dayumn that hurts.
Come on military man, show some self discipline!
(insert smiley face here)
Let RC Play!
C’mon! Don’t interfere with RC’s first step in developing a comprehensive fleet. I mean I’m sure he isn’t going to need that garage space for the car after all. Oh, you’re not supposed to know about that yet RC.
Beginners can have new spiffy toys too!
Welcome to the sport RC!
See you on the water,
The River Connection, Inc.
Hyde Park, NY
My first katak was a 700 too
and I got it to race in triathlons. I had almost no kayak experiance and the day I got it took it to a lake that had ice floating on it. Point being from the first day I felt like I would have a hard time tipping. All in flat water or slow rivers though. So anyway after 2 months realized that I couldn’t keep up at the races and that’s the only reason I had it, so I end up buying a THunderbolt X and selling the Q700. But like others said you if you don’t know what options you think you need it’s too early to order one. I got it with a skeg and I needed a rudder for racing. Pat from Onno is the one who talked me into a new boat. I called and wanted to lighten the boat and put a rudder on it and he’s the one that said it’s still going to be a sea kayak so I went a new route. But how about that instead of pushing his product he did what he thought was best and talked me out of it. Now that’s service. Anyway point is really decide what you think you want to do with the boat before you buy. But back to your original question yes I think if your semi-athletic and using it on calm water you could start with the 700. I’m 6’3" 210lbs and the boat fit me great.
Ways to get into a Q700
I believe that the company maintains a list of owners who would be willing to let someone demo their boat, so that potential buyers can try the boats out.
That said, there is some opinion above from those who should know that this would be a very challenging boat for you at first.If you jump right into a boat like this without incorporating lessons as part of your plan, you could be looking at a frustrating start.
I agree with Marshall that allover you should be encouraged to go get a new toy. But you are going about it with some very unnecessary assumptions.
First, you don't need to get a new boat to get one that you'll love and will serve you well for many years. Three out of five of our sea kayaks were used, either demos bought at the end of a season or other. One of them was a boat that became a demo because it had taken damage in shipping that the dealer repaired. The only reason one of them has since been replaced by a new boat was that the dealer wasn't quite on the up and up about the boat and Peter Orton at Valley is a great guy. Had it been the usual used boat situation, we'd still have 3 used ones out of our 5.
You are also not accounting for all the stuff that you'll find you want to do this sport. There is easily a couple of thousand of dollars of expenditure still out there to do sea kayaking - clothing for immersion, spare paddle, safety gear, electronics like a VHF radio and GPS etc. If you can hold some cash back for that stuff you'll be ahead. I see that you are a few hours from the ocean, but so are we and we've found we need all that stuff for winter paddling locally if no other reason.
Personally I can't go one way or the other on this boat, except that with the Q700 you've landed on a boat that I think goes further in many ways than the Solstice. It might be worth scheduling time to go to a sea kayaking place in Seattle and do a couple of days of lessons with them as well as getting advice on a used boat.
One question I have is, since you have the other boat so that you can get on the water around you, what is the rush to buy a sea kayak right now? I don't see you having a good situation to take anything you are considering out by yourself until the water gets a good bit warmer anyway.
I Feel Sorry For RC’s Sweetheart
He likes to do things fast instead of good.
(insert smiley face here)
here’s to steep learning curves
Before I say anything I would forward Celia's recommendation to get some demo seat time. Having said that, you know yourself best, so if you're an athletic type with good balance and flexibility, and like steep learning curves (as I do) then I think your course is worth considering. Assuming of course you'll be able to get out often in safe conditions.
I disagree with some here that you should get an intermediate boat first, given that you fit the bill of course. I've been in a QCC and didn't find it as tender as, say, a silhouette.
My first kayak was a 22" beam Avocet RM, and I've never regretted buying it instead of a "beginner" boat. But I had taken classes in sea kayaks, rented sea kayaks, and demoed every sea kayak I could before I made the decision. I also had experience on small sailboats and sailboards before I started kayaking.
You might find some helpful folks here:
Folks here seem to split into the "just do it" and "research it to death" camps -- it's personality more than anything else, and there are happy paddlers of each type.
A used boat will get you on the water while you're learning what you want, and won't lose much value. You can probably find examples of the more popular plastic sea kayaks for under 1K and sell it in a few months for not much less.
If you've just *got* to buy something now, start with the things you'll need for any boat -- a good PFD, appropriate clothing, and a paddle. Having some of your own gear will make it easier to compare boats.
Agree that rolling early helps you make a huge jump up the learning curve -- if you're not worried about capsizing you're less likely to, and you're more confident about practicing skills.
There is nothing wrong with getting a 700x as a beginner IF you are really going to paddle it. To “become one” with the boat you will likely need to spend several hours a week in it for several months. This will develop your skills and give your time to learn how the boat responds to you and the conditions. If you are only going out paddling once or twice a month for a couple of hours you would be better off spending your money on something else.
I think the bigger question is why do you think this boat is “the one” for you? I’m 6’1" and 230 lbs and I feel like I’m swimming in the cockpit of a 700x. I found the foredeck uncomfortably high and had to use a thick foam masik to bring my knees down to where I found it reasonably comfortable. The back deck is just as high, making laying back almost impossible and the overall freeboard of the boat made rescues a greater effort.
I liked the boat for camping and cruising, but for most purposes, it has way too much volume for me.
Sure is a beautiful boat though…
Why are you buying a boat?
That is the question you must answer. Be realistic about what you are going to do with it and you will narrow your choices down to a single boat for each company. Your local water choices have a lot to do with this decision.
I own a 700 and can say it would be fine on the water for a beginner. I have found that beginners make many of their mistakes on land. There is a learning curve regarding loading, carrying, launching, etc. It is nice to have a plastic boat when you are banging it around the first few months learning how to handle it on land.
Personally, I’d skip the 500…
… unless you specifically need something like the 500.
It’s a very different kayak. Nice in it’s own way, and capable if you need to haul a huge gear load, but I’ve seen a lot of folks switch to a 700 shortly after trying one.
Well I have been searching for a boat for three years now. Unfortunately I have been deployed for the past two summers so buying one has been put off. I have been to syposiums like the one in Port Townsend and paddled many different boats including Pygmy, Seaward, Necky and some others. I have rented plastic kayaks both tandom and singles. They are barges for the most part I can tell the efficency difference right away. Of course I am sure there are kayaks made of plastic that are very efficient I just have not paddled one. Some of the kayaks I paddled where narrow and others were in the 24" beam variety. One of the norrowest boats I got in I almost capsized right away but quickly found its secondary stabilty and managed to paddle it around for a while without a problem. So I reality I am not rushing into anything. Three years is a long time and everytime I am near a body of water (which is a lot) I imagine myself out on it. So yes maybe my patience is waring a bit thin. As some have mention maybe a used boat would be a good idea to find out what I really want. From what most people are saying however they have test paddled boats, bought one they like and then eventially bought another boat later for the reason I just mentioned. So it seems to be a crap shoot. The local dealer is a nice guy and has talked to me quite a bit. Since he has paddled most of the boats out there is was good to pick his brain. But even doing that didn’t seem to satisfy me. He likes many boats for different reasons. Some turn better than others but don’t track as well etc etc…
So how long did it take you guys to figure out what you really want in a boat? One person mentioned to me that having 2 boats is nice. Each with different capabilities of course. One was there beginner/intermediate boat and the other there advanced boat. They still use both depending on where they are going to be paddling. Based on that if I buy a beg/int boat I want to be able to still enjoy should I decide to get an advanced boat in the future.
This venture also seems like car buying a bit. You have your Ford guys and you have your Chevy guys and they are going to hype up the one like.
With all that said and me being honest with myself I believe an intermediate boat will suit me the best… I am confused though. Lets use the Seda Swift and the QCC 500 as our example boats. They are configured very much the same. Hull length is only a 2" difference and the width only 1". On paper they are pretty close, but on the water the are completely diferent animals? If so, without testing them side by side would you ever be able to tell the difference? If I bought one without testing the other I would be happy with it right. But if test other after buying the first I may like it better. There lies the delema. I think that will be a never ending process. You will always find a boat that you like better than the one you have. So when do you quit?
paddlers who see you out paddling
the 700 will maybe think you are at the top of the food chain. the first kayak i owned was a somewhat radical, narrow boat. i loved/love it. i wonder, how often are you planning to paddle? how fast is your learning curve? learning a ‘radboat’ takes practice.