Read reviews for the Impulse by Seda Paddlesports as submitted by your fellow paddlers.
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I am too small for this...
I am too small for this boat at 5'10 and 160 lbs. I am very athletic, but use a greenland paddle, and this boat would work better with a vertical euro stroke. The deck is too high for me, the stern poops down and it is difficult to turn without edging. Tracks super straight. Strong, fast, low drag, heavy.
This is my second year of...
This is my second year of kayaking and I purchased a used 2002 Impulse at the end of June. I’ve had it out 30 times over the last three months. My usual route is a 4 mile loop in a large bay and the average speed is 5.2-5.5 MPH. Last year I had a Perception Sea Lion and my average speed was about 1 MPH slower. The Impulse is tippier than the Sea Lion and it took a few weeks to get accustomed to it. The ride characteristics are also very different. The Sea Lion would take water over the bow and bounce over wind driven waves like going over a washboard and the Impulse just slices through waves and chop.
I am 6 ft tall, 230# and can easily get in/out and feel comfortable in the cockpit for up to 2hours; my longest trip so far. I’m still experimenting with different types of strokes, trying to get the most speed and exercise into my paddling time. There are a lot of crew teams on the bay here so I usually try to keep pace with them for as long as I can. The hull form of this boat is built for speed and is great for a bay with small wave conditions. In high winds and rough waters I have found it difficult to turn into the wind and following or quartering waves requires lots of bracing.
All in all I really like this boat and find it's great to knock about in.
I owned an Impulse. I...
I owned an Impulse. I bought it used for $1600 and sold it for $1800. It should hold value for you, too. Kevlar, 50 lb, made in 1999, I
Rounded hull, so it Races well. Rolls easily:
laybacks or c-c, I almost
always deployed rudder, so can't remark on
weathercocking. Rudder also makes it track well.
very comfortable cockpit. Mine had a non-sliding
rudder control. Easy to enter seat first. Fun Boat!
I purchased my Impulse in...
I purchased my Impulse in December, just before the factory holiday shutdown. I have been paddling it for 6 months now (about twice a week) and have had it out on the big bay (San Diego) and ocean in lots of wind and choppy conditions blowing from all points of paddle.
I do half my paddling on windless morning weekends and the boat is fun and a little faster than the Phoenix Isere I was using. It glides without seeming to leave a bow wake.
Where the ‘long-skinny’ benefits of this boat shine is in the afternoon when the wind comes up; then the boat is much faster than my Isere. Twenty one inches vs. 24 inches of width makes a big difference in waves, the slender Impulse cuts through and seems to go just as fast as on flat water. Less work wasted lifting the boat over every wave. The only time this boat isn’t tracking perfect is in a range of 10 to 35 deg off beam in a strong choppy sea; then it’s easier to find a different route, or deploy the rudder. The rudder is worth getting for windy conditions around the harbor, or (as I found) in the unexpected high wind condition; it is also good for drifting down wind and taking a break.
This is my first skinny boat, and I might not have opted for this model had I not talked to Joe and Bonny Sedivec, the owners of SEDA. Joe asks about my background and said he thought I was ready for the Impulse instead of the Swift. I already have a short sporty boat and the Impulse has helped increase my skills. (I waited too long to get it padded to fit.) The quality is far better than I expected. I opted for Kevlar without the Jell coat; I was warned I would see flaws that are usually hidden, but I can’t find them. The cockpit is comfortable and roomy, and though the boat is big I’m able to handle it at 5ft 8 and 140 lbs. It doesn’t feel big on the water. The hatches seal well, though I had a minor sewing problem with the strap/handle to the neoprene inner cover. I fixed it in ten minutes. The covers are a little difficult to close until you learn to hook the handle side first when installing the seal.
This boat is beautiful; though that wasn’t a concern to me, I am hard on boats and expect them to just take what I dish out. I would buy it again today, if I were shopping. It isn’t for everyone, but if you paddle big water and want to get to distant places this is a pleasing boat to own; it’s a “no compromise“ design and wouldn’t be well suited to tight marshes or twisty rivers, but I love it on the bay.
I ordered a Kevlar Impulse...
I ordered a Kevlar Impulse after extensive research and very positive recommendations from two experienced friends. I was impressed with SEDA's technical literature and customer service. The kayak handles very well, even without a rudder. The price is extremely low, but is explainable because they don't advertise extensively and operate a no-frills operation. I used several models by Necky and the Perception before buying. I like the Impulse the best. The 21" beam is not that hard to get used to and is really fast. I couldn't be more satisfied. There are many other excellent kayaks, but I couldn't justify paying another $1,000-2000 for another kayak without a lot of technical information to support it.
An update to my posting...
An update to my posting below. Make that a 9.5 - I just can't give any boat a 10 - there's always got to be something better? Anyway, I finally bought the Impulse last year and have won a couple of races in my class with it. It is definitely quick. It is definitely very hard to turn, but I have developed a heavy, into-the-turn lean which makes it easier. The secondary stability is so strong, a hard lean is quite comfortable. I agree with other reviews that it does not like beam seas. The only other feature I'm not crazy about is the rear hatch cover - the plastic cap over neoprene allows water to easily wick into the neoprene - the rear cockpit never takes on water, but is always somewhat wet.
I used an Impulse for...
I used an Impulse for several years as my fast boat. Great fit (I'm 6'2" and about 205). Handled almost any conditions, but did not like beam seas. I've tested a number of boats over a standard course, and the Impulse was up in the top 2-3 for speed in a touring boat. Kevlar was fine, but had an awful lot of resin in the mix, so was solid, but heavy.
I've had an Impulse for...
I've had an Impulse for several years. It is very fast, it literally flies in following seas. It is a handful in beam seas. Seda boats are built like brick outhouses. Very good value, but may not be the perfect boat if you only have one boat. (Does anyone just have ONE boat?)
I borrowed the Impulse for...
I borrowed the Impulse for a race and it improved my time dramatically - I probably would have given it a 10 that day. In the first race, I was in a Dragonworks Islander and averaged 5.0 mph. I did 5.5 mph in the Impulse in rougher conditions (it had a rudder, which helped tremendously). Loved the way it paddled and tracked. You'll need some strong leaning/turning skills to handle it properly. Didn't buy it because I found a faster boat and three dealers I talked to all were concerned about Seda's glass work quality. It's still a strong contender in my book, just not THE one.