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Big Stick

by Islander

Reviews

The Big Stik is rated at 80kg. I weigh 100kg and find…

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The Big Stik is rated at 80kg. I weigh 100kg and find no problem. Catches waves well and carves across the face. Have not cut back, probably due to lack of skill. Will perl if run straight down the face, but this is he case with other much larger sot's I have tried. Enjoy if you can find one.

I disagree with the review where it was stated that the Big…

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I disagree with the review where it was stated that the Big Stik was not suitable for paddlers over 225#. I have surfed mine at least twice a week (waves permitting) and I am 6'3", 290#. There was a learning curve to understand the stability of the boat. I rolled regularly for the first month, particularly in cross chop. Since then, as long as I go out regularly, I compensate for the motion without thought. I have tried other kayaks rated to hold paddlers my size in the surf and there is no comparison. I have to Island Waveski about a custom build, but don't have the cash. Until I do, I'll keep the Big Stik.

I purchased my Big Stik in June and have been loving it…

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I purchased my Big Stik in June and have been loving it ever since. I previously was using an Ocean Kayak Scrambler in the waves. The difference between the two is night and day. There was small learning curve in getting used to the Big Stik's stability (maybe two-three sesssions), but now that I used to it, it toally ROCKS!!! I am riding waves like I never have before. The fins hold the Big Stik in the wave and let you carve some turns. I have been out in 5-6 foot waves and my Big Stik performed excellently.

Regarding the first review, you CAN be over 200 lbs and use the Big Stik. I weigh about 220lbs and have experienced no problems at all.

Larry, my friend who owns and operates Yakkity Yaks Kayaks in Lavallette…

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Larry, my friend who owns and operates Yakkity Yaks Kayaks in Lavallette, NJ, said that this is a VERY tippy boat for a big guy. His fleet consists of Islander kayaks, so he ought to know. Boy, was he right about the Big Stick! Islander says that the Big Stick has a 290# weight capacity, but that's overly optimistic. Larry said that anyone over 200# won't have fun in this boat, and I'm inclined to agree with him. Here's why...

In spite of his assertions, I tried renting one when the surf was small on the Jersey Shore earlier this summer. Even though I'm 6'2" @ 275#, I figured I could make it work-wrong! I'd no sooner get seated, then I'd fall off. If I managed to get in the seat, the slightest wave would tip the boat, promptly ejecting me. I never even had a chance to plant my feet on the foot pegs. A longboard would have handled better, even if I were sitting up! Therefore, I never got a chance to see how this boat handles.

The boat is well constructed. It has removable fins, or skegs. This will allow the paddler to configure the boat for ocean conditions, riding style, etc. This is a very nice touch. The footpegs are also adjustable, just like those found in a conventional kayak.

Unfortunately, this boat is only suited for someone who weighs in at <=200#. For big guys like me and Larry (we both weigh over 250#), forget it; the Big Stick is not at all suitable. If a boat won't allow you to stay afloat and paddle the thing, what good is it? Therefore, I gave it a low rating of 3.

I've surfed the Big Stik in conditions varying from mild surf to…

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I've surfed the Big Stik in conditions varying from mild surf to very rough stuff. I started on a Yak Board and went to the Islander. The Big Stik has a much steeper learning curve than the Yak Board but is, IMHO, alot more rewarding. The Big Stik feels more like a longboard than any kayak and is much more responsive and faster on the waves than any other kayak I've surfed. I put the tri-fin system on my boat and use it only when the waves are glassy and breaking on the outer bar. I don't use them if there's a chance I might have to run all the way into the beach. The fins do help carve a wave by keeping the back end from fishtailing. The Big Stik is very easy to paddle out when compared to the Yak Board and accelerates very easily when trying to catch a wave. Mine is also relatively watertight and never needs to be drained during the course of the day. I was constantly draining the Yak. My only complaint with the Big Stik is the adjustable foot braces. They were constantly being pushed all the way back to the stops whenever a wave hit them. This becomes a real problem when trying to get on the boat for the paddle out. I solved the problem by tieing the release lever in a fixed position. I would recommend the Big Stik to anyone who is serious about sit-on-top surfing but not serious enough for an epoxy wave-ski.