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Marlin

by Prijon Kayaks

Reviews

Great boat but Prilite construction feels a bit flimsy

Submitted by: on

I bought my Prijon Marlin PRILITE construction kayak to paddle the length of the Danube, Europe's second-longest river at 2800km. I needed a large boat, being 6'1" (185 cm) and weighing some 95kg (210lbs). I looked at a number of boats - Rockpool, P&H, etc - but none were quite as comfortable as the Marlin to sit in and all were heavier.
Prijon uses a Prilite construction, which is a rotomoulded plastic. It is lighter than traditional rotomoulded boats (I'm not an expert, this is what I was told and read) and reckoned to be as robust.
The Danube, for those who don't know it, has almost every aspect of water you'd think of - some rapids, narrow and shallow parts in Germany, fast-flowing parts where other rivers come in and after rain, very wide lake-like parts in Romania. Oh and many, many portages, some very long indeed (1500m in places) with difficult access/exit points in some cases.
I don't regret my purchase.
The Marlin handled well in all waters. I didn't have a rudder (optional extra that as a highly experienced racing kayaker I thought I'd not need) but the boat tracked fairly well on exposed side-winds, though I did work hard to keep the boat on course in a few places.
The lightweight (22kg - 48kg) hull easily allowed me to put in another 20kg of kit in - tent, food, sleeping bag, changes of clothes, maps, other equipment. There is no shortage of storage space with two large compartments front and rear and a third one that isn't waterproof in front of the cockpit. Netting was great, easily stored drinks and food just in front with my trolley on a net behind the cockpit.
Access for a big paddler is easy, the cockpit is nice and large and I was extremely comfortable at all times.
My only grip is the construction. Prilite gives you the lighter weight, and that was important for me, but the boat feels flimsy compared with glassfibre and other materials. The hull under my seat has warped slightly and the back of the cockpit rim split where I placed my hand as I got in once. Prijon say this is a simple repair with epoxy resin/glue but to my mind it's a design fault. I've come across other Marlin owners with the same problem. How are you supposed to get into the boat without putting some weight on the back of the cockpit? In my view the cockpit rim should be reinforced and strong enough to take your weight as you transfer in.
I also question whether this Prilite construction will take as much use as a grp construction.
Overall, I'd give the Marlin 8/10. A lovely design, great in waves and wind, tracks well, masses of room for gear but the Prilite construction isn't all it should be. But I'm keeping the boat and repairing the cockpit, planning more trips.

I purchased a used prijon Marlin a year ago. Didn't get to…

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I purchased a used prijon Marlin a year ago. Didn't get to paddle it much last year. Have paddled it as much this year already. The blow molded plastic slides across Rocks if the water is low, but it excels as an open water craft. I do like paddling rivers, and I find this 17 ft edges and turns better than a lot of shorter kayaks. I've had it in some pretty choppy waves and it handles beautifully. (fast and effortless) Initial stability, there's not much. Secondary stability, once you learn where it is, is amazing. I'm 5'7" and 165 pounds and a friend of mine borrowed it and loved it. He's 6'2" and 230. He said it was tight getting in and out, but once in he was very comfy. I am so pleased with this kayak, that I stop by Puddledockers in Ithica N.Y. when I'm in the area to let them know how happy I am with my purchase. Big grin!

I recently purchased an almost like new 2009 Prijon Marlin HTP and…

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I recently purchased an almost like new 2009 Prijon Marlin HTP and I'm really happy with my choice. It's beautiful in the water. I'm 52 and a larger guy at 6'2" and 225 lbs. so wanted a larger boat (this one is 17.5') to handle my size and long legs but one that was still sleek and fast. I am a barely intermediate skill yaker with only about 50 hours on the water so far. I had been renting a Prijon Seayak - which I also enjoyed and was actually looking for one to purchase. But once I test paddled the Marlin there was no question the Marlin would be the perfect boat for me to further my skills. This was my first kayak purchase.

This boat is fast, fits me like a glove (I didn't care for boats with larger cock pits), has a comfortable seat and seat back, and stable. The day hatch in front of the cockpit within easy reach is a great feature. I had read about the scratch resistant and strong hull of the Prijon boats and having spent most of my paddling time in Prijon boats I'm sold.

There is one draw back - I've had trouble obtaining replacement parts (hatch covers, for example.) The Prijon website is not helpful and needs to be overhauled. I would score this boat a 10 if I had a source for replacement parts.

This boat looks a little ungainly out of the water, but cruising…

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This boat looks a little ungainly out of the water, but cruising along the German roots show through in the uncanny way it resembles a U-boat.

This is my fiancee's first boat. So far we have one big beef with this boat: The combing seems to be oversized. It take two men and a healthy young boy to get the spray skirt on. We can get it on but I could see plenty of females and possibly some men having trouble detaching the skirt after capsize. My G/F did. Prijon makes their own skirts, this may solve the problem. This is a serious safety issue- I've experienced it with her on two occasions to date. The RM body and hull are very rigid and in general it's thoughtfully constructed.

The design of the seat takes some getting used to, if you have seat problems (we did) make sure all your shock cords are in position. The owners manual doesn't mention this.

The low rating has everything to do with the oversized combing and the safety issues this presents.

I have paddled this boat since spring 2011, and the more I…

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I have paddled this boat since spring 2011, and the more I use it, the more I like it. Most of my experience had been in a Manitou 14 so the Marlin was a big change for me. Initially the boat felt somewhat loose, but after a short period of adjustment and learning to relax in the cockpit that went away. The secondary stability on this boat is great. I have been out in some very windy/choppy water and the marlin handles it with ease. The Marlin turns/handles surprisingly well for a boat this long; putting and holding it on edge was much easier than I expected. I got the boat with the rudder and recommend it. The rudder is not a necessity, but just makes cross winds and rough water a non-issue. The Marlin is fast, comfortable, and most importantly, fun to paddle.