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Name: Jme

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I bought this in kevlar lay-up about 6 weeks ago. I have paddled it 3 times so far for about 40 miles total. Some of the things I really like about it are as follows:
  1. It is a perfect sized cockpit for my 5'10"" 200 lbs frame (short waisted -long legged). I fit perfectly and the cockpit is a nice comfortable medium size that would be perfect for anything from day boating to an extended expedition. My thighs rest comfortably against the braces and the seat is comfortable enough.
  2. It is agile and narrow (22) and the soft chine give it excellent secondary stability. Some might say tippy but I came from a 24.5 inch boat and have not gone for an unintended swim so far. It glides well even with my 200 lbs.
  3. It tracks excellently without the skeg, with the skeg it is bullet proof. It handles swells and difficult water without any drama.
  4. Made in USA with the fit and finish you would expect from a premier kayak manufacturer. Lifetime warranty for the original purchaser.
Some of the negatives:
  1. I find the back band uncomfortable and not very supportive. Some have found a way to re-rig this to improve it but I haven't found any details yet.
  2. There is a small amount of water ingress into the hatches. I haven't found a kayak yet that has bone dry hatches. (I practice wet exits and recovery at the end of each paddle-new boat) The front hatch is quite small, making packing large items in the front compartment difficult.
  3. The warranty is not transferable. Unlike seaward which has a fully transferable warranty. This negatively affects resale.
Overall I'm very happy with it. it's sporty for a 17.8 but comfortable and capable.

I bought this as part of the closeout sale from Bomber Gear. I paid attention when I ordered it and got the correct size. When it showed up I followed the instructions provided, which said to stretch out the skirt by putting it on the boat overnight. After fighting with the skirt for an hour I was finally able to get it on using vice grips. I thought I must of ordered the wrong size, but after checking I confirmed that I had ordered correctly.

The first time I used it I was a little apprehensive that I was going to have difficulty with getting the skirt on and off. After using it and practicing some wet exits I am happy to say it works perfectly. It is a high quality piece, doesn't leak in the slightest, and stays on when you need it to.

Inexpensive, MEC quality and excellent warranty make this a must have for the 4 season Canadian paddler.

Great looking, stable and comfortable boat. I paddle this on the ocean by my home in British Columbia. Handles the rough stuff well, tracks excellently, and paddles with agility. I like the build quality of the hull. I LOVE the hatches, they may slightly leak (less than a cup in a 4 hour paddle in ocean swells), but they are so easy to use. Elie says they can be sealed with some sealing tape, but I'm not bothered by the small amount of water ingress. The seat is comfortable, the boat is light, but feels very sturdy and stiff. The hatch combing feels robust.

A few negatives - they day hatch is difficult to use while on the water, which defeats the purpose of the hatch. The rudder pedals are sliding vs the preferable gas pedal style. Initially, a lot of the fasteners were not properly tightened which I find sloppy.

All said though, a thermoformed boat for less than some rotomolded boats is a good thing. Also the customer service at Elie is very good. Another of my boats needed new foam pads and handles and they were shipped out quickly and for free, being based and made in Quebec, Canada, I am also happy to support them

Good recreational boat, probably Pelicans best. I bought this as a first kayak, wanting something that could do it all. It tracks well, has a large open cockpit for easy entry and seems well made. I have had issues with the neoprene on the knee guards peeling off after the first use, but pelican seems quick to look after warranty issues (mine was missing a rear handle and they sent out 2 right away) i expect when i contact them about this they will be forthcoming with replacement pieces.

On to the boat and its characteristics. It is stable with very good initial stability, has a deep "V" hull for a rec boat. I have had it out in 3-4 foot ocean chop, clear flat lakes and it handles nicely, is quite agile and easy to paddle. There is an optional rudder kit, but its pricey at $250 ish. The rear hatch is a nice size, doesn't seal particularly well, but i think that's the same for most sub 1k kayaks. It edges well enough for a 28 inch beam boat, and is as fast as a 12 foot should be. The foot pegs are solid and adjust easily, the seat is very comfortable, i have had 2-3 hours in it with no discomfort at all. It seems to handle even better with my wife in it (118lbs vs 205lbs). I have been able to roll it a few times (only once inadvertently) and the large cockpit makes it easy to get into from a swim. The lack of bulkheads will make it flood and with very little buoyancy you need to have float bags or some other means of additional buoyancy. (I have filled up the rear compartment with pool noodles and added float bags to the front and it takes on much less water.

All in all it looks well made, has a few nice things like the water bottle holder, the front "hatch" (you could put a can of pop in there, not much more) and the comfortable seat and footpeg layout. The Twin sheet thermoform construction makes it stiff and comparatively light, i have no problem hoisting it on the roof of my pickup. The removable drain plug at the back makes emptying the water out a snap. I bought a spray skirt for it, but at 51 inch length cockpit it is mostly ineffective as the water just pools in your lap and leaks through.

If you use this mostly in lakes and inland or sheltered waters then its a great little boat, if you plan on hitting the open sea I'd say find something a little more sea-worthy. Good luck!