Which kayak should I buy?

Which kayak should I buy? I’m considering buying a new kayak. I have been paddling my Foster Rowe Silhouette since 1999 and I enjoy paddling the Silhouette as long as it is not necessary to do quick turns in strong winds and rough water.

I have been searching fo a new kayak for a while and even considered building one by myself. But hey, I have the thumbs in the middle of my hands. I can’t build anything that can float. I have to buy a kayak.

So which kayak is the best choice for me?

My demands is:

  • Small Cockpit
  • Easy to turn
  • Fast
  • Low Deck
  • Fit my gear for a one week trip

I would love a low version of the Clapotis Seakayak. The Clapotis is very easy to turn and has a nice cruising speed but it is huge compared to the Silhoutte. The designer Johan Linder is quite tall and has big feet so his priority isn’t  a small cockpit and low deck. Besides that, he only produce a few Clapotis Seakayaks every second or third year.

A kayak friend of mine, Anders Olsson, has build a low version of the Clapotis Seakayak. It is beautiful but unfortunately not for sale… And as you remember I have dropped the idea of building one by myself.

I almost bought a Anas Acuta from Valley last year but I think the Anas Acuta is to expensive and I´m concerned it might be a bit slow. I’m not a fast paddler so I do not know why this should be a problem anyway but I´m still concerned and that affects me. I do like the maneuverability and I fit well in the kayak.

But a couple of months ago I found an article at the web site of Björn Thomasson that caught my attention. Björn is the designer of the Black Pearl. (The Black Pearl was rated 10 out of 10 when it was reviewed by Paddling.net).  The article mentioned that he has designed a kayak for Seabird Designs. The kayak is named Qanik. The Qanik is Bjorns version of the Illorsuit kayak. The reading was very interesting and the design appealed to me. Here is the summary about the information that I appreciate about the Qanik.

  • It is build a few inches longer to increase the speed compared to Anas Acuta. I like!
  • Lower stems. I like!
  • Slightly lower deck. I like!
  • It should be much easier to turn than the Silhouette. I like!
  • Hopefully cheaper than the Anas Acuta. I like!

Qanik designed by Björn Thomasson. The original image is found at www.thomassondesign.com

The Qanik is soon in production and will be presented at the Kanu Messe in Nurnberg, Germany, in October 2010. It will be available at dealers 2011. According to Swedish dealers the prize will be about 14 000 SEK = 1 420 EUR.

I’m certainly going to have a closer look at the Qanik as soon as possible. There is a hand made version done by Erik Franzén, Here is a link to a picture of the Qanik during a rolling session with Dubside.

Do you have any other suggestions on kayak models that might be good for me?

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Comments

2 Responses to “Which kayak should I buy?”

  1. Erik Frantzen on October 18th, 2010 1:25 pm

    Du kan finde flere billeder af Qanik på http://kajakbyg.dk/qanik.htm

    M.v.h.
    Erik Frantzen

  2. Bryan on November 19th, 2010 7:04 am

    The Qanik should be an excellent boat. I built a wood version of the original and my better-half has been paddling it for a couple of years. She loves it. I think the biggest problem is that the bow in the original lacks volume, so it tends to dive when surfing or on following waves. It also weathercocks a bit. See pictures of my Iggy here.

    Bjorn added volume into the bow, which should prevent the diving.

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