speed T165/ch16/romany/force3/montauk

Assuming the same paddler and conditions, would there be any noticable difference in speed between these?

Tempest 165

Chatham 16


Force 3


Which would be fastest and which would be slowest?

You have to spec the paddler…
Each boat will react differently depending on the paddler.


58 yo female 180lbs.

19 yo male 200lbs.

Poly or glass/other? nm

I would subjectively speculate that the Romany and Chatham would be slowest of the bunch.

I would guess the Force 3 may be the fastest as I think it has a bit less rocker.


does NOT make a boat slow. It makes it ez to turn and actually lowers the wetted surface (drag)

waterline length is the key.


Send me one each
and I’ll let you know.

Paddlin’ on


All else being equal. . . .
Waterline length is going to determine speed. The problem is that all else is seldom equal, and the efficiency of the paddler is the most important variable. I have no problem keeping up with longer boats in my Romany, but if I’m carying a load or burning miles, I paddle my Kapp.

Define "fastest"
This comes up so often, but what I think needs to be addressed is what is the real need?

Does “fastest” mean, which boat can reach the highest speed under a paddlers power?

Or, which one is the lowest resistance, ie, the easiest?

If it is the latter question, what speed do you paddle at?

Taking a guess, I would say if you paddle at 2.5-3kn, the Force will possibly have more resistance (more work) than the others. Perhaps noteable, possibly not. I don’t think at 2.5-3kn, with a heart rate monitor on, you would find yourself working hardly any differently in any of the others.

At 3.5-4kn, I am not sure there will be very much difference in any of them.

At 4.5kn, I would think the Force would be noticeably easier, and the others would start hitting a wall.

If it is simply, how fast can any of these boats be pushed before the resistance goes exponential, the Force (waterline determined hull speed) would easily best the others. That is, if you have the “guns” to do it!

Guess the force 3 probably shouldn’t have been on the list…I was just curious about boats in the same general size range and niche. All are often described as playful, maneuverable etc, but also(except the force) often described as “not particularly fast”. Since speed (as in ability to reach and maintain a faster travel speed)seems to be something people often look at, I was wondering if there was any noticable difference in these boats that are well liked but known for not being particularly fast.

rocker and speed
There’s no way rocker doesn’t affect straight line performance of the boat. I’m pretty positive a highly rockered boat will push more water than a boat with little rocker. doesn’t mean adding rocker to a given design will make it slow, but the way i see it, rocker will either make the boat sit deeper in water(given same displacement and overall length), and it’ll make you spend more energy as it’ll try to climb out of the water like a planing hull, except you just don’t have near the speed to plane. think efficiency of a planing hull powerboat vs displacement hull powerboat going at displacement speed.

not apples vs oranges
Heck, it likely isn’t Valencia vs Navel oranges. More like going to the orange bin, pick one up, then pick up another one, and try to figure out which one you want.

Given the parameters (these are all more similar than different), IMO I doubt there is any truly appreciable difference in resistance at normal (read, 2.5-4kn) paddling speeds. There might be slight differences in how they accelerate, but again, quite minor.

The actual energy savings in effort between any them will be used up hoisting the pint during the post paddle argument.

Just my opinion, of course.

I have paddled all of those (even the force 3, sort of silly to put my 6ft frame in it, but I did), but I didn’t have a heart rate monitor on (my usual test of a boat’s resistance is to paddle with a heart rate monitor and a GPS, you learn a lot!). Can’t really say that any of them were remarkably different in resistance at normal speeds.

At what effort?

– Last Updated: Mar-27-08 11:26 PM EST –

At the effort that most mortal people paddle, there is very little difference between any kayaks.

Take a look here:


Just as a "for example", look at the drag numbers of the fastest boat on the list (The Nelo) and the slowest boat on the list, the Norddkapp H2O.

Up to 4 knots, the drag vs speed curves for these two boats are almost identical with both needing about 3.5 pounds of paddling force to make 4 knots.

4 knots is a pretty good "all day" pace for a strong "serious recreational" paddler.

Lets more than double that effort. At 8 pounds of drag, the Norddkapp will do 5 knots, and the Nelo will do just under 5.5 knots.

So for a nice day paddle, the slow boat and the race boat are side-by-side all day at the same effort.

Take the effort up to race effort, and the race boat is 10% faster than the slow boat.

Gotta think this is a troll
If you cared about “speed”, none of these boats would be on your list.

Which is fastest in a ten foot sea in a 40 knot wind?

Mike Neckar said it well years ago

“Beginners obsess about speed in touring kayaks…experts focus on handling.”

Just go paddle. The slowest are the ones who talk all the time…

From the water
Being that I don’t fit into the Force 3 I’d have to give you the results of paddling alongside my wife as she has paddled the Force 3 (her boat) the Montauk (in the instructional fleet) a Romany (not ours) and a Chatham. She’s 5’2" avg. build (don’t expect me to state weights here) strong high angle paddler. Force 3 at a 20" beam and not much rocker allowed her to go the fastest, the Montauk would be next and I’d say it was Quick but she was having more fun making it and the Romany do skid turns around buoys and the Chatham she hated as it just didn’t glide for her. Can’t say about the Tempest 165. I’m sure there’s a Tempest paddler here somewhere that can add to you the information.

Hope the subjective non hydro-engineering observation helps.

See you on the water,


The River Connection, Inc.

Hyde Park, NY


“Beginners obsess about speed…”

– Last Updated: Mar-30-08 10:43 AM EST –

"Beginners obsess about speed in touring kayaks...experts focus on handling."

Very true. Until you understand why a boat like a Romany or Chatham 16 has so much rocker, full bilge and pronounced chines, the straight glide of a less rockered longer boat seems paramount.

It was only after working on bracing, rolling, surfing, tidal races, etc... that I got my Romany and ended up paddling it more than my beloved Aquanaut.

All that being said, it seems I can feel differences in speed or glide in my boats. My Aquanaut seems to hit the wall at a higher speed than my other boats. My Romany and Elaho DS hit the wall pretty fast. these days, my Nordkapp LV has the most fun combination of quick accleration and decent speed while maintaining a playful nature.

Most people paddle

– Last Updated: Mar-28-08 1:28 PM EST –

flat to slightly choppy water. The CH 16 is an ocean WW boat in a sense. It is NOT a flat water kayak, and to judge such the boat on flat water is like reviewing a Hummer on the highway. The same bow that pushes a bit of a wake on flat water is outstanding in big seas. The more focused a design to a specific task the less "do-everything" it becomes.

And a 5'2" woman of average build is probably way too light for the kayak. I won't ask her weight!

If you DO NOT rock garden, regularly paddle outer coastal waters, or rough conditions, surf etc., do NOT buy the CH 16. If you DO, try it :) You'll understand.

Are you thinking about a new boat?
Just curious if you are considering a purchase, at least down the road. The specificity of this list makes me think that - though I might be all wet. :slight_smile:

If you want to add a boat that can be quite manuverable and still very quick off the mark up to 4 knots or so, though still more of a trcker than something like the Chatham 16, add the P&H Vela. The only thing is that this boat is truly too narrow for most larger people to squeeze into like they can some of the others.

Can’t wait to see the navel gazing on
this one.


Good to know
I’ve only had a chance to demo the Chatham 16 on flat water, and was unimpressed. I’ll look for an opportunity to try one in more appropriate conditions.

What do you think of your Chatham?
I see from another post that you own a Chatham.


You have also recommended the Tempest to others, and recommended nearby demo days to others. Your advice was pretty good and I agree with it. Get to a demo day, or take your Chatham to a demo and see if you are any faster.

So much depends on how comfortable and stable you feel in the boat, how fast you paddle, where you paddle, etc.

Is the question whether your Chatham is too slow? Are you trying to solve a problem like being left behind or ?

I also think from your other posts that you are somewhat new to the sport. A good and well fitting paddle can make a difference. A good lesson on the forward stroke could make a huge difference. You are in New Jersey? Ben Lawry is on the east coast, and there must be other instructors who are good.