Zephyr 16.0

G’day all,

Can anyone give me some personal info on the wilderness systems Zephyr 16.0. It has not arrived in Australia to date. I use to have a tempest 170.


I asked about the same boat in this forum a couple of months ago and didn’t get much of a response. There is one useful product review for the Zephyr (Wilderness Systems), though, that you might want to look at if you haven’t already. We’ll just have to wait for more people to check it out and then post their thoughts.

flatwater seat time
i paddled the plastic 16 at a friends shop. see my profile for my size. i found it to have an excellent cockpit fit, quite large, easy to get in and out of for my size, a shocker really. super maneuverable, spins like mad. a very nice balanced boat, totally phat on edge. if it was out when i ordered my Romany S, i very well may of got this boat instead. light, cheap and unbreakable, i’m dying to get it into the surf and rock gardens. my RS takes a beating and cracks up often due to the kind of paddling i do and the brutish rock environment where i live. the Z16 is just an easy boat to like. if you want a beater that you don’t have to worry about, short list this yak.

For some reason, we (the people I work with) like the 15.5 much better. It seems to be more predictable, doesn’t bury the bow in surf as easily, turns easier, you can get it on it’s side easier. The ws hatch covers leak like crazy on our 15.5 and 16. The kayaksport cover is dry. I really like the 15.5. It’s a great boat, but I still like the Romany better.

If you have specific questions, let me know. I have around 60 days in the 15.5 at this point.

The Z 15.5 is a winner. The 16 a dog.

I believe the jist of the of the…
…question was how does the Z-16 compare to the T-170. I have about a week in the Z-16 and am very interested in your thoughts on the 15.5, however, that is a different thread. I would love to see your thoughts and will pose that question.

Do you have anything to say about the Z-16 compared to the T-160?


Nice interpretation of the first post. I thought he was asking for personal opinions of the Z-16. I gave him my thoughts.

I’ve never paddled a T-160, so no.

Smaller Scale Comparison

– Last Updated: Aug-29-08 9:01 AM EST –

I own 2 Tempest 165s and have demoed the smaller Zephyr.

They roll about the same.

The Zephyr has more shin clearance than my Tempests. I had to move the seats back in my Tempests.

The Zephyr has more secondary stability. Really likes to sit on edge.

The Zephyr turns more easily.

If you like to do that static brace stuff the Zephyr beats the Tempest.

The Zephyr is slower than the Tempest.

I think the Zephyr would be a great rough water, surfing, playing boat but if I was out to cover a lot of miles on fairly calm water the Tempest would be my choice.

Zephyr 16.0
I just finished Paddle Oregon in a rented Zephyr. Initially I was very disappointed in not getting the Tempest 170 that I signed up for. However this boat really grew on me. It was very comfortable and it got me safely through the mild rapids we encountered on this trip. It has reasonable speed. I would consider owning either a RM Zephyr or T170 as a secondary boat. My only complaint is that the rear hatch would not seal properly and was unusable. Now if only my EFT would get here …


Newberg, OR

great comments
Thanks guys. Very interesting points between the 16 and the 15.5

LENGTH 15’ 5"/ 470 cm

WIDTH 22.5"/ 57 cm

DEPTH (AT CENTER) 16"/ 40.6 cm

WEIGHT (ESTIMATED) 52 lbs./23.5 kg

MAX CAPACITY 275 lbs./ 125 kg

LENGTH 16"/ 487 cm

WIDTH 23"/ 58.4 cm

DEPTH (AT CENTER) 17"/ 43.18 cm

WEIGHT (ESTIMATED) 54 lbs./24.4 kg

MAX CAPACITY 300 lbs./ 136 kg

looking at the different specs its interesting to see why.

What is the point about leaking hatches this seems to be a common occurrence.

any recommendations on how to fix

Replace them
I’m not sure if it can be done, but the day and front hatch may be replaceable with Kajaksport hatches. Measure twice before cutting.

WS should start shipping with their new hatch design. Hopefully, it will be better than their current hatch cover design.

Tempest Yahoo Group
Join the Tempest Yahoo Group. Steve posted instructions with photos on how to replace the hatches on Wildy RM boats with Kayaksport. Take a peek.


stern and day
are do-able but NOT the bow.