Name: Smithfield_Paddler

Most Recent Reviews

So I've owned and paddled a fairly wide variety of boats. From Pungos to Scorpios. After being a touring boat guy for several years I just kinda got tired of all the gear required to paddle a touring boat. I now wanted a boat to paddle just a few miles at a time that had enough stability to fish and swim off of. The problem with most SOT's is that they can't really be edged effectively. I really didn't want to use corrective strokes all the time to turn the boat. This hull is a great compromise of stability and maneuverability. You can actually edge turn this boat very well.

Plenty of dry storage if you want to make an overnight or weekend trip. Seat height feels like a good compromise between the sporty low height of the Necky Vector and the more traditional heights of the WS Tarpon boats. Speed is slightly better than most other SOT's due to the hull shape. The molded in handles are GREAT and very well balanced. Makes the boat much easier to pick up and handle. Honestly one of the easiest SOT's to car top. Also keeps the boat from snagging on the roof rack when upside down like a traditional strap handle does. I know it seems like an odd thing to gush over but I LOVE the handles!

Bottom Line: I'd say this boat is about 60% touring and 40% fishing.

This is the boat you want if touring-like performance is your number one requirement in a SOT. If you're looking for a balance of characteristics, you may want to try something else.

Very low seat height and foot wells made for a very wet ride on calm waters for this 210 lb paddler, even with the fancy scupper plugs. The fairly narrow beam and hull shape provides for a quick and responsive boat. Gunnel height is pretty high due to the low seat height which makes swinging your legs over the side a bit uncomfortable. This really is a SOT that you sit "in".

The boat seems to perform exactly as Necky intended. It's just too single minded for me. Test paddled this boat and bought a Perception Triumph 13 instead.

Paddled a rental recently at Crystal River Kayak. I don't see many Delta's in my area so I was interested in paddling one. The boat has hard chines that seem to maximize it's 22.5" beam. Fit and finish of the boat was quite nice and the thermoformed plastic deck and hull looked really nice despite being a rental/demo boat. I wasn't knocked out about the skeg control rope.

The boat edged quite well to allow good maneuverability and the flat bottom made the boat a great day tourer in that it had plenty of initial stability. Very reassuring. Seat was also quite comfortable, more so than my P&H. Another rope cleat arrangement adjusts the back rest and it worked very well.

Speed was good to better than average....I was able to maintain around 4mph with little effort. I picked the boat up and put it back on the rack after paddling it....wish my poly Scorpio was that light.

The boat badly needs a day hatch. Probably the only negative thing about the boat. Really Delta?? No day hatch on a seventeen foot boat??

I like a deeper boat, and the deck is more accommodating than the specs would have you believe. FWIW, I'm six foot tall and about 205 lbs. This boat had plenty of room for me and probably more. Great boat to visit the manatees with

Didn't intend to leave a review of this boat, but I can't believe more people haven't reviewed this boat!! Had her for a little over a year a now. Coming from a Pungo 140, then a CD Sirocco and finally my Scorpio. Bottom line. I love this boat!! As maneuverable as my Sirocco but with a good bit more initial stability. A good amount of storage space and great outfitting. Particularly on the thigh braces. The back band is average and could tolerate an after market upgrade. A great day boat with enough speed to take on a multi-day trip if you wanted. Not a speed demon but quicker than my old sirocco. For me, the jury is still out on the skeg deployment design. I don't hate it but honestly think I prefer a standard cable set up. The plastic skeg with the bungee tensioner seems to be a little wiggly in the side to side area, never the less able to hold her on course in a cross breeze. I do however find it comforting to know that I won't damage the skeg in an accidental beaching. Can't speak to it's surfing ability but it does handle confused 2 foot chop very well ( I didn't even have to lay out a low brace). But give her a some edge and she'll turn where you want. Yeh, I really like this boat. I did have a minor manufacturing defect which was repaired to my satisfaction by the dealer near the rudder dowel at the stern of the boat. I do admit that it was a surprise coming from P&H but it was a fairly minor defect (albeit, one that was letting water into my aft storage compartment.)

I'm about 6 foot tall, with a 31" inseam and weigh in at 205lbs. A smaller person (175lbs or less) might find the LV version of the Scorpio a better fit.

All in all, I would recommend this boat to anyone in my size range +- 20 lbs. Love this boat!!

I've been using a small size bag for about two years now. I'm not a heavy user and it gets used for day paddles only. I've not had any leaks and I love the nylon exterior. I've even used the bag for my SOT and it sat in water the whole time. The soft shell makes it super easy to fold and stuff in a day hatch. I've had zero issues with my seam tape or any other quality control problems. I might be inclined to say that they wouldn't hold up to expedition abuse as well as a typical PVC type dry bag. But then again, they might be just fine. I'll be buying a second bag this summer.

I've used this skirt on my Sirocco for a couple years now. I pretty much use it exclusively during our hot Virginia summers. Keeps the inside of the boat nice and cool as compared to a full skirt. I would highly recommend this skirt for warm air/water paddling.

I’ve been paddling my Sirocco for almost two years now. I go about 200# and 6’ with a 31-32" inseam. I was looking for a boat that I could plant my bum in the seat and still be able to swing my legs into the boat. The Sirocco was just able to pull this off. Unfortunately I was not able to demo the boat prior to purchase. Upon my first outing I thought I had made a mistake.

The chines are quite soft and the bottom of the boat is fairly round despite Current Designs calling it a "shallow V." CD also rates the stability the same as the Storm kayak. I’ve paddled the Storm and it is NOTHING like the Sirocco in terms of stability. The Storm has loads of initial stability, the Sirocco considerably less. The Sirocco, for me, lacks initial stability to the point that I really had to pay attention to what I was doing. Now she will edge and turn like a champ, but be ready for a swim if you push her too far.

I’ve had a hard time feeling the end of the secondary stability so I always keep a low brace on the ready when making sharp turns. I suspect this may be partly due to me having more height above my hips than below. Derek Hutchinson, whom I do respect, did design this boat and he’s not exactly a real tall guy. The primary stability does improve significantly when the hatches are loaded and I’ve taken to bringing 8 lbs of ballast for the front and rear hatches during day paddles. That said, I’m still not comfortable enough to bring my good digital camera with me on the boat. She’d probably feel great with 40 lbs of gear. Being like most boats, she feels more stable moving then sitting still.

She tracks ok with the skeg up and just fine with skeg down. I’d never say it’s a bad tracking boat. Remember she is a great turning and very playful boat. While being playful, she still maintains a fine cruising speed for most any situation. Of course, if you’re looking to do really long paddles on a regular basis you should be looking for a different boat.

I found the outfitting to be decent but probably still sub-par to most of the boats it competes with. I like the foot braces and I hated the stock back band (it was replaced after the first summer). The thigh braces are so-so and also definitely sub-par compared to the competition. Other than that the boat has held up very well with no leaks or skeg problems. Most importantly, the plastic used for the boat seems to be as good as or better than the competition although not in the same league as Prijon and P&H. I paid $1100 for the boat new in ’07 and that seems about what it’s worth.

I’m now looking very hard at the P&H Scorpio, hoping to find more initial stability without giving up maneuverability. I’m sure my old Sirocco will make someone very happy...

I wanted to update my previous review regarding the Twist Lock (TLC) on the Aqua-Bound paddle.

I was contacted by Joe Matuska, General manager and founder of Aqua-Bound paddles, after he read my review of his product in which I stated that the twist lock had come undone two times while paddling. Now keep in mind that I had never even called him to complain. So imagine my surprise when he called me to offer a brand new paddle with an updated TLC design. I did have the Manta Ray but asked him to send a Stingray instead. The new paddle arrived in short order, free of charge. I have never experienced this level of customer service from any other company. Can’t recall the last time the general manager of any company ever called me to try and resolve a problem... ever. Needless to say, I was very impressed.

The new TLC design has a more definite “click” as it locks in. I have used it on two separate occasions (6 hours total) and had no problems whatsoever with the paddle coming apart on me. The new design is definitely superior to the previous generation. In all fairness to my old Manta Ray, the twist lock never came apart on me again aside from the two occasions on it’s first use. I think after I got a little sand in and out of it, the increased friction in the coupler helped keep it from unscrewing.

I’m very happy with my new Stingray which I’ll review in the Stingray section.

I own a new Stingray, all carbon, compliments of Aqua-Bound. It features the improved twist-lock (TLC) coupler. I had issues with my old TLC on my Manta Ray and Joe Matuska from AB sent me a new paddle with a new TLC design. It has a more positive “click” as it locks into place. I’ve had no problems with this paddle coming apart after two separate outings of 3 hours each.

Paddle has a nice light swing weight and no flutter whatsoever under aggressive paddling. I gave the paddle a 9 based on the fact that I’ve only used it for six hours. I think if it was going to come apart, it would have by now.

Carbon shaft and blades make for a nice swing weight. The blades do flutter a little bit which is a shame. I've also had a problem with the twist lock coming apart. Just like a previous reviewer, I thought I had not secured it properly but when it happened a second time I knew it was the design. I'm thinking about gluing this thing together. I regret this purchase...