Similar boat to Dagger Juice?

Into the second white water season after a long time away from the river, I started searching for my first white water kayak in a long while. I would prefer a used one for a start.

Of the boats I tried, the best so far is the Dagger Juice 6.9. But I haven’t seen it too often on the classifed list yet. (it being a relatively new boat?) So I started to think what would be the alternatives that have similar characteristic?

Because I’m only 115, a lot of boats are too big for me. That really cuts down on the potential lists.

  1. I’ve tried the Diesel and it felt like driving a truck! (Actually worse, felt like a hapless PASSENGER in a run away truck!)
  2. Even the GT still felt kind of vague on the water. Can’t feel the pulse of the river. (at least I felt somewhat in control though). ;o)

    Why I like the Juice?

  4. I can feel every inch of the boat’s edge (bow to stern) and how it interacts with the current!

    I can distinctly feel the cause and effect of what I do resulting in the boat ended up behaving. If I make a mistake, I’ll know it right away, too! ;o)

    It being not exactly forgiving is in a way good for me, by forcing me to learn. I’m not doing any serious rapids, only class II & III, at this stage. (I can always get another boat if I ever do big waters.) Since I already have a river roll, an occasional flip or two doesn’t faze me. I really want to maximize the learning on milder river before I put my life and limb to the test of class IV’s. So I don’t care for a boat that mask my mistakes and giving me false sense of security, either. (much rather get the knocking done in class II/III than class IV/V – if ever).

    So, for those who had experience with the Juice, what else comes close? For those who hasn’t, what’s on the list of small volume boats for aggresive learner?

Without too much thought from
my end, maybe: Wavesport Ace, EZ, Bliss Stick - Blitz, Jackson Fun or 4 fun. I am not familiar with Jackson Fun or 4 fun series or Liquid logic but but they sound good. Also Riot. Juice I understand is a good low volume good down river boat with plenty of play potential. See you downsteam. You may also wish to ask your question on Boatertalk as there are more ww boaters on that site.

ww boat

– Last Updated: Jan-07-06 7:41 PM EST –

check out jackson kayaks I've been looking at them and they seem like good boats to me. i have a dagger and realy like their boats to but would have no poblem going to a jackson. their web page is
good luck with your search.

Not Similar

– Last Updated: Jan-08-06 6:56 AM EST –

but you may want to try a Booster 50. The outfitting is quite adaptable and easily dialed in to fit my 5'3", 140 lbs quite well. It's got a bit more length and less volume than the Juice 6.9. 7'4" and 50 gallons vs. the Juice's 6'9" and 60 gallons. 60 gallons seems like creek boat range for your weight. I have a dagger ultrafuge, which has the sort of pronounced scooped out front like the Juice. When I crash through a hole, it wants to dive under and scoop, leading to nice enders if I am not careful. Of course, the extra volume may make the Juice pop right up and over. I can't say since I have paddled it.

I started with with a Perception Shock which is slicey and only 42 gallons. I was inadvertantly squirting and throwing enders left and right. I was too heavy. I find most boats over 45-46 gallons to be pretty forgiving for class II/III, provided they aren't tricked out in the design of the deck lines. The Booster's top deck design is not radical and should be forgiving. It's longer length will give more speed for river running, ferrying, catching eddies, etc. My Necky Chronic is 48 gallons and under 7' long and kind of "spud" like, as I think the Juice is. It's fun for playing with on waves and holes but sucks when it comes to speed (not what it was intended for anyway).

Plenty of used Boosters in the $400-$500 range.


Pyranha I3/I4, Wave Sport EZG42, …
or maybe Perception Blaze 6.9, or even a more playful Kingpin/ Kingpin Icon in the 6.2 (med) size or 6.1 (sml) if you wanted to play more – ALL of these boats are recent playful river runners (Kingpin is more a playboat that runs rivers well), and if you want something more of an all-around river runner but sized for you, perhaps the Liquid Logic Trigger, which is a little like a Diesel 53 (if they made one!) but more playful. The Trigger might be the most versatile of this group, too.

Thanks, sing
"Necky Chronic is 48 gallons and under 7’ long and kind of “spud” like, as I think the Juice is. It’s fun for playing with on waves and holes but sucks when it comes to speed (not what it was intended for anyway)."

What is “spud”?

Actually, surfing small waves and maybe a little bit of playing is what I have in mind for the next season. That may be why the Juice caught my fancy. I felt I could make it do anything (including the wrong thing! ;o] ) Yes, the Juice’s speed is pretty god awful. So maybe the Booster could be a worthy alternative.

Spud As In Potato Like

– Last Updated: Jan-09-06 4:42 AM EST –

where much of the volume is centered around the cockpit. If you look at this pic of the Necky (similar to the Juice), you'll see that where the volume is focused. You also notice the moderate scooped front (I think the Juice appears a bit more).

Say you ride a wave. Instead of carving side to side, you let the boat ride straight into the trough. The bow gets underwater and the scoop will then catch more water forcing it further down. Than the volume/bouyancy of the cockpit kicks in and the boat wants to literally pop out of the water. This reaction is used to help make aerial play moves. As you run downriver and through a hole, the scooped up bow can go into the backwash of the hole, dive under, and force a pop up. Fun if it was intended. Scary if it was inadvertant.

The booster top deck is more rounded and is intended to shed water and be more forgiving. The Trigger mentioned up above also has a more foregiving top deck and longer for more speed. I personally think it has too much volume for me (since I am used to lower volume for class II/III stuff) and maybe even for your 115 lbs. It will run through anything on a class II/III but will inhibit play other than surfing a standing wave. The Trigger is probably more of a full on river runner vs the Booster as a river running/play boat.

In general, the more volume of the boat relative to the paddler, the less play potential. Too much volume can sometimes diminish edge control. The boat however is still foregiving because it acts like a cork bobbing over everything.


Thanks again, sing

– Last Updated: Jan-10-06 4:53 PM EST –

Checked out the various kayaks mentioned. Funny that all the websites (and I'm sure brochures) show photos of boat from top and side but never bottom! For a product whose function is largely determined by the bottom (hull) shape? I wonder what those guys are thinking!

Granted, the top of a white water kayak is still pretty important for its performance. But that is an exception rather than the rule. I've also seen other boat ad's that shows the top only.

Try to find a Pyranha I-3 or…
a Wave Sport EZ. They are very similar to the juice. The Dagger Id is another one that comes to mind. The best boat that I have seen in that style of boat is the new Pyranha Streches. You sould also be able to find a Juice 6.9 somewhere for a good price. I just sold one used for $500 and I have them new at $800. I hope that helps.