Surf SOT???

Everyone give me your opinion on Surfing SOT’s Looking for one, so give the dirt please

Strike And Kaos
The Cobra Strike and the WS Kaos are the most popular. I have surfed both and prefer the Strike.

A few others to consider…
Did a bit of shopping around for a SOT surf boat recently and settled on the Lipstik since I got a great deal (yay eBay) - here are a few others to consider:

  • Ocean Kayak Rrrapido
  • Perception 5-0
  • Islander Lipstik
  • Islander Bigstik

    Only ding I have against the Lipstik thus far is that the standard footrests (Keepers) are pretty unruly - they get out of position pretty easily if your feet aren’t firmly planted on them (for example, when you wipeout). Otherwise it’s a perfect fit for my build and skill level.

    You’ll find all of these mentioned in this article, which gives a great breakdown of the types of boats you can use and the various tradeoffs associated with them:


One thing you need to post is your weight.

The Strike and Kaos are good performers over a very wide range of paddler weights. Go with a boat that has a fin or fins if you want to rip on the waves. If you are in central PA and are going to be on the Jersey Shore, Maryland coast etc you might consider getting a Ocean Kayak Scrambler. It’s easier to get out in the messy short period waves, wind swell and still kind of fun to surf.

Product Reviews
If you haven’t already, you might want to check the product reviews on this site. I have owned both the Strike and the Kaos. As you will note in my reviews, both have their good points…and bad. You might also want to get some feedback by posting on and click on the Surf Zone section. And as always recommended on this site…try to demo your selection before you buy.

I’ve been leaning toward the Strike or Wave Witch. I just found out that Cobra is changing some stuff on a number of their new boats this year, so I think I’ll wait to see whats changing.

As far far as weight goes, I’m 200lbs, But I wanted to hear fromeveryone not just 200 lbers. That was why I did give that info. I have a high level of experience paddling(just not on a surf specific boat), but again like to hear what erevyone is using.

Thanks for the help, and anymore advice is apprieciated

Plastic Witch is discontinued
You might still be able to find one, but they stopped making new ones a few months ago.

Wave Witch
The Wave Witch is a Hawaiian thing. I understand breaks in Hawaii are often off shore.

I surfed an orignal fiberglass Hunt Johnsonn Shorty Wave Witch in NORCAL shore break and found the rudder thing too complicated for me. But I never used a rudder before that day. Maybe you are more coordinated

I was also concerned about damaging the rudder in a shore break, but a the owner does it all the time at Moss Landing. A guy named Izzy who hangs out at Boatertalk Surf Zone.

I’m 200 lbs and have a few boats
I surf a Cobra Strike, a Mako surf kayak, a Necky Jive, sometimes an Ocean Kayak Frenzy, and have been trying out waveskis, have not bought one yet though. For getting started in Surf the Cobra Strike is the best fun for the money. In small stuff you might want to surf it with the fin off, try and see how you do. Its handles a bit differently than other boats but once you get it dialed in, its a lot of fun, very fast on big waves for a SOT. Only disadvantage is the cheap Cobra hardware. Not a big problem to fix though.

what about a necky strike?
i am inheriting one, it seems to handle small surf well enough. is it a ‘surfy’ boat? i would like to improve my surfng skills

Necky Strike?
Are you sure you don’t mean Cobra Strike?

Or Necky Spike
IIRC, that was the short Necky SOT.

What not to get…
The Ocean Kayak Yak Board.

Nothing against OKs, I love my Frenzy, so I bought a Yak board to have a cheap second boat and a surfing kayak, which the Yak board is supposed to be. I found the Frenzy actually surfs better than the Yak Board, and the Yak Board is slow as hell on smooth water.

I am still surfing the Frenzy when I do try and surf. A Frenzy or Scrambler might be a good starter boat.

my bad, spike is what i meant

necky spike questions
i seem to be inheriting one, where can i get thigh straps and would the necky drop skeg be a good idea to help prevent sideslip? its hard for me to imagine tracking down the green shoulder without some kind of fin in the back. is a stern rudder (paddle) enough to prevent sideslipping in this boat? most waves here are 2-4’ with a few occasional big days

Some Info
You can get thigh straps at most stores that sell SOTs, there must be some in your area. You can also buy them online from Tom Holtey at (recommended) or from Ocean Kayak on line. Are the strap eyes already in place? If not you need to put them on with a rivet gun. (There are good instructions on Tom Holtey’s webppage. Not very hard but a little bit nerve racking the first time you dril a hole in your boat.

I would not worry about a skeg or rudder for surfing the spike. Just go out and work on your rudder technique and work on surfing “down the line” staying in the curl of the breaking wave more or less parallell to the beach instead of perpendicular to it by edging in hard.

The spike is not going to be a high performance surf machine but it will be fun in the small surf you have. Warning you will become addicted and need bigger fixes.

hey dart

– Last Updated: Apr-02-05 7:30 PM EST –

i'm already addicted, love my antique rondell longboard.

The waters getting warmer
I keep thinking about shucking paddles, PFDs, helmets and learning how to stand up surf this summer. I gave it a shot last year and I was really bad.

Fins & Stern Rudders

– Last Updated: Apr-03-05 6:56 AM EST –

most dedicated surf boats will have the fins located near the paddler's butt cheek area. So, as you cut across a wave face, the fins are almost right under you to hold your weight/boat in place.

The Necky Spike's skeg is located more to the rear. I don't think it's the optimal place to give you grab on a steep wave face. However, it can probably give some drive on a turn/cutback (though I don't know how fast you can do this in a 12' plus boat) combined with a good stern rudder. With respect to staying on the wave face on a boat that has no rails and fins (like your long board or surf boat), you'll need to learn to stern rudder on the shoreside of the boat while leaning aggressively into the wave to engage the chine. The shore side stern rudder will act as a fin and rudder near your weigh center to keep the boat on a wave face. However, if you don't lean aggressively enough into the face to carve and slide down instead, you may trip over your shoreside rudder for some spectacular wipeouts. :)

Definitely get the thigh straps so you can control the boat's edges more. Then, go play and learn.